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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm in Florida and we were drift fishing for trout yesterday, and noticed this quiet pod of big dorsal fins and tails, these tarpon were milling around on something in only six feet of darkish water. Fired off a green Dixie Jet spoon, since the distance was 30 yards. Instant hookup, so I cranked the motor and we began to follow. Had to do it quickly, with 12 pound line disappearing off the reel. The fish was big, and eventually gulped air as close as five feet away. For the first half hour, two other fish were with him, also gulping air. They headed off the flats straight to the channel, and then out into the Gulf. My fish changed directions countless times, zipping under the boat, while I drove the jonboat and kept the rod bent double. Lots of fancy boatwork, drag adjusting, throttle work, and steering. That boat turns on a dime, fortunately. We must have looked pretty weird towards the end, changing direction every 20-30 yards, spinning around, etc. But few boats were out there on a Friday.

After more than an hour, we'd spotted the green spoon snagged under a scale near the dorsal fin. I realized there is no way to pull a more than 6-foot tarpon sideway with 12-pound line, and we were burning up the day, so I gripped the spool and broke him off at the short 30-pound fluro leader knot. (No swivel). That fish had a massive tail. The older gent with me never could get a picture of the tarpon gulping air, with his cell phone.

So, I'm home today (missing the Saturday crowd) checking my pre-rigged tarpon leaders and hooks. Time to carry them in the boat. Will return to that area this coming Wednesday with the wife, she has sharp eyes for rolling fish. And with a bigger rod. We'll use the push pole to get closer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Not putting a tarpon on a scale...If they're over six feet and really thick, it's okay to call them 120 pounds or so. Went back there today and looked for them, but these weekly storms don't help. This time the water was real dark. Did have a big manatee come up to the boat within two feet of me, though. I stuck a water jug underwater, but he was too shy to drink from it. Sometimes they drink from water hoses at the marinas.
 

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Understood.

Not putting a tarpon on a scale...If they're over six feet and really thick, it's okay to call them 120 pounds or so. Went back there today and looked for them, but these weekly storms don't help. This time the water was real dark. Did have a big manatee come up to the boat within two feet of me, though. I stuck a water jug underwater, but he was too shy to drink from it. Sometimes they drink from water hoses at the marinas.
 

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Yep, that sounds about right. Refer the to the length x girth formula. Has been used by locals here in Florida for decades and is the truest available without doing harm to the fish.:ac550:
 

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Yep, that sounds about right. Refer the to the length x girth formula. Has been used by locals here in Florida for decades and is the truest available without doing harm to the fish.:ac550:
The length x girth formula is not actually the truest available. BTT has an app that is closer - not sure it is available anymore, but it has even been updated and is not the most accurate. If you want the most accurate - go here - you can print it out and use the chart - real easy, no math required - http://www.itarpon.org/how-much-does-it-weigh-.html
 
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