Reliable wind forecasts and where to catch an Amberjack?
Not new to fishing around Charleston, but my previous boat would only allow me as far out as the jetties comfortably. Recently upgraded to a 20' CC with 150 yamaha, so I'm more comfortable hitting the nearshore reefs (capers, charleston 60, etc) when conditions permit.
Does anyone have a reliable website or phone app that provide wind forecasts for these areas a few miles offshore? I know conditions can change over just a few miles. I want to get out there this spring, but do it safely.
Also, I've wanted to catch an Amberjack since moving to Charleston. Their nickname makes them seem like a fun fight. Is there any reasonable chance at catching one at any of these reef locations, or do they hang out in deeper water? If there is a chance, what sort of bait/lure would be recommended and time of year? Thanks, guys.
I use Windfinder and Sailflow to see the forecast leading up to the trip. On the morning of I check the NOAA buoy for current conditions (NOAA buoy 41004).
There are AJ at the 60 In the summer time. You generally wont find them any closer in.
One other forecast for wind and waves is National Weather Service (NOAA) weather.gov. Just click on the map area and then click on the specific spot for your destination. I look at this and the other sites mentioned to try to get a complete picture.
One tip learned from a post on this forum is that the second day of lighter winds, if there are several in a row, is often better.
I have not caught amberjack in less than 65 feet of water. Caught some in February and just recently (picture in March 9 post). In my experience, amberjack are not picky about lures but the best success has been with a variety of jigs fished while also bottom fishing with bait on structure. Sometimes the amberjack are in schools that show on the sounder up well off the bottom. Related Almaco jacks are also around the same spots on occasion and the size/bag limits are less restrictive than for amberjack. Not hard to tell the difference between almaco and amberjacks once a few are caught.
Fun to catch and under rated for eating, you just have to get past being grossed out by the worms. Just cut the wormy parts out and don't tell anyone.
That's good info guys. Thank you. I'll check those sites and, hopefully, will hook into one of those jacks at the charleston 60 this summer.