Fish On!

Fish On!

Key West Capt. Frank Piku has come across a highly effective way to repeatedly bag bottom fish using rod?

By Capt. Patrick Sciacca — March 2005


Photo: Gary John Norman

 More of this Feature

• Part 1: Fly-rod Bottom Fishing
• Part 2: Fly-rod Bottom Fishing
• Part 3: Fly-rod Bottom Fishing
• 703 Eaton Street

 Related Resources
• Features Index

 Elsewhere on the Web
• Capt. Frank’s Fishing Charters

Happy accidents.

That’s how some great things have happened. Take the Post-It. The 3M cash cow started off humbly enough as a weak adhesive. However, a man seeking a way to mark hymnals in his church book married this adhesive with paper to construct a secure bookmark. The Post-It was born, and it now adorns office walls and refrigerators around the world. As I write this, I’m staring at no less than 15 of those little buggers attached to my PC’s screen.

So, what does the Post-It have to do with catching bottom fish? Other than the fact there’s one reminding me to call the captain I’m going to feature here, not a helluva lot; except that Capt. Frank Piku accidentally found a fish-catching technique that could have the same impact on bottom fishing that the Post-It did on reminders.

Piku’s happy accident started about a year ago while taking a friend into the Gulf of Mexico to do some fly-rod fishing for cobia. Piku aimed his 31-foot Jupiter center console Golden Streak out of Key West, Florida’s, Garrison Bight Marina and headed offshore. Getting to the fishing grounds, Piku and his friend found the cobia to be uncooperative. Never one to be easily deterred—story has it that when Piku was three years old, his father took him fishing from a pier on a Michigan lake, and he refused to leave until he caught a fish, even though his lips were blue and he was wrapped in a blanket—he wondered what would happen if he tried some bottom fishing with a fly rod he was testing. Piku attached an egg sinker to the fly line, added a lure with some dead bait, and dropped the whole deal to the bottom. Bam! In an instant, Piku had landed a grey snapper. That might not mean much, except that the captain and his friend rarely have grey snapper hit a traditional bottom-fish rig. The noteworthy catch was brought boatside, and Piku returned his line. Bam! The process repeated until he had managed ten of these hard-to-hook fish while his friend, using traditional tackle, had zilch. Nada. Zero. See where I’m going here?

Next page > Part 2: The first day provided a glass-like Gulf, and our captain was confident we’d catch more fish than our angling arms could handle. > Page 1, 2, 3, 4

This article originally appeared in the March 2005 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.

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