Saturday, January 21, 2012

Bahamas Underwater World in Pictures

It is absolutely criminal to consider going to the Bahamas and not getting in the water.
There is so much beneath the surface and so many colors and life that begs to be revealed.
With the closest Islands less than 60 miles from the South Florida Coast each calm weekend in summer finds boats by the dozen heading for the crystalline aquariums that are the natural coral reefs off the small islands.

On this diving trip I spent a lot of the time with the camera and with the advantage of a single breath of air was able to turn the underwater world into my own petting zoo. Here are some of the little guys we were able to play with.

83 Florida Spiny Lobster ready for anything as long as it isn't the lobster pot
78 This is what greets you if you reach into a hole to get the aforementioned Spiny lobster, a legitimate Sea Urchin Spine that will leave your hands throbbing and a quick invite from your best friends to pee on it to make it feel better.... It just got weird.
87 She's a keeper! and there is a lobster under that rock too...
124 Peacock Flounder. Incredible camouflage, spectacular designs and purple.

154 Big Nurse Shark. This one let me hang out with him for almost an hour. Even hand feeding a hogfish that had been bitten in half by another shark. Such a cool experience and there is nothing I enjoy more than being near any animal underwater and touching them is just a bonus.

185 Staghorn Coral. This spot Jenn has deemed the Aquarium and is one of favorite places to snorkel in the world. The numbers of fish and excitement there is overwhelming.

Live the Salt Life!!!!!

Bahamas with the Girls | Beautiful Bahamas photos

Breezy and her Brother Chad have grown up running across to Walkers, West End, and all the islands of the Bahamas so in essence this was their playground and always will be.
This was Jenn's first trip to West End and she's getting the hang of our lifestyle pretty quickly. Pick up clothes for the beach at Salt Life.
No matter how many times you walk out on the beach, dive beneath the waves, drop in on a bit of whitewater, or soak a line, if you live the way we do, you look at the world with the same childlike awe as if it was the first time.

It never gets old, never take it for granted and appreciate every second you have. There are so many little details in our SaltLife that while aren't going to fill magazines pages or break world records, fill our hearts and minds with stories and memories that get us through until we can enjoy it once again.

Having Jennifer with me makes me appreciate it even more, whether she is just humoring my excitement at every little change in the ocean and the smallest of creatures, she is there with me smiling and laughing and enjoying it as if she found another treasure.
And that is what it is, every day on the water, in this life, what I'm feeling is as if I've lucked into the best life. The only one I ever want. The Salt Life. Click here to see more beautiful Bahamas photos.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Change in Season | Wahoo fishing

Wintertime blue water in northeast Florida is all about wahoo fishing. Guys who chase 'em know what I mean, a wintertime addiction... Experience tells you to be ready and when conditions line up, you've just got to go. Everything was lining up just right for this trip. C & H Mr Bigs and Wahoo Whackers, rigged and ready to go! And even better, it worked out that my son-in-law, Steve Grant, was able to come along as 1st mate on this trip.
Steve is no stranger to putting big wahoo in the box. We both learned from the best, Capt Don Combs- owner of C & H Lures.
We met our charter at 5:30 for departure, they had never fished the blue water before, do we knew they were in for an adventure. I think Steve and I were more excited than the charter- we knew we were prepared- and memories of wahoo past made for an hour and a half ride of pure anticipation to the break.
After the cool 64 mile run, we found a temperature break just inside the ledge. Time to put out the high speeds. C & H Mr Big white over blue, the C & H BAMF both occupy the riggers. The black and red Mr Big and Wahoo Whackers are on the flatlines. All rigged behind trolling weights with shock leaders- ready for action. Conditions were a little rougher than expected, 3-5' would be putting it nicely.
About a half hour into fishing, the black and red Mr Big gets slammed! Almost instantly, the white over blue Mr Big is also attacked. If you've never heard lines scream off a 70 when you are going 12 knots in one direction and a wahoo nails it going the opposite direction at 30 knots, you are missing out... Talk about something that will get the boat excited in a hurry.

Yeah man!
Double header.

Steve works hard to clear the other lines, as our anglers strap in for the fight. 1st fish comes in, textbook- rod tip up, secure the trolling weight, leader the fish up , for Steve to make the perfect gaff. 1st fish, in the low 30's, hits the deck, but we still have lots of work to do. This fish is acting like The Man. Even though our angler is inexperienced, he is hanging tough in rough seas and reeling like a pro. We finally see the fish as he approaches the boat- and he's a good one. I turned over the wheel so I could secure the weight and leader the fish. When the fish got within ten feet of the stern, he made a short dash, landing his head straight between the engines. Steve reacted quick, and sunk the gaff into his head. After getting a couple more hands on the gaff, he flew over the stern. Catch our Wahoo fishing shirt at Salt Life!

Wahoo baby!
This fish is pushing 80 pounds... - that's what I'm talking about! Even though fish over 120 lbs are caught each season off of the break in NE FL, we were pretty happy to have this one in the box. After a couple hours of more trolling in building seas to no avail, we decided to call it a day and make the 64 mile run home.
As each of the clients found their cozy spot for the ride home, Steve and I couldn't stop talking about new tactics we want to try and when we can get back out to he blue water to feed our deep sea wahoo addiction.

Wintertime Wahoo- now that's the Salt Life.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Bahamas Dreaming

Had a good trip a while back to West End Bahamas and we were blessed with amazing weather for the majority of the time there.
While I love a hard core fishing and diving trip the beauty of the Bahamas is everyone can have fun in and out of the water and you don't have to go out all day to get enough fish for dinner and have a blast.
With the boat loaded with friends we'll usually dive a few hours on a good reef and while we are drifting inevitably the girls and kids start jumping in and snorkeling with us or having dive contests off the T-top or tower. Grab the best diving gear, including our diver down shirt, at Salt Life.
When the conditions are this good it doesn't take much to make a good day great in the Bahamas.
Here are a few pics from the trip. Can't wait to see you there!
Cameron Kirkconnell

Teahupoo: Biggest Waves ever | Surf video

Teahupoo in Tahiti is known for big barrel waves. This video just got released a few days ago and the surfing world is freaking out about it. Click the link below to view some of the biggest waves you will ever see, and while you're at it, grab the best surf gear at Salt Life. If you love to surf, this video is for you.

Live the Salt Life!!!!