Marlin fishing in Key West

By Bill Ciccotti

Dunmoreans Brian McAndrew, Bob-O McDonald and myself recently joined Scranton sport fishing guide Ed “Captain Morgan” Coleman on a trip to Key West. And it wasn’t all fishing. But this is a fish story. So, we’ll leave the other stuff out. 

When it comes right down to it, almost every fishing tournament breaks down like this: Give us an entry form, pay fees, learn the rules, play by the rules, go fishing, win money. 

Oh, if it were just that easy. Ed knows the area well from his many trips to the Florida Keys. We were fishing near Hawk Cay with well-stocked coolers. It was a good month for big fish. Marlin were hitting strong in the warm tropical waters. 

The boys were relaxing when suddenly, my line screamed till I adjusted the drag. The monster almost fragged the deck bolts out of the fighting chair. I was yanked forward sharply and yelled, “Hey. I need a little help, boys.” I engaged the reel’s spool and yanked the rod back up as it nearly hit the water. This was a big one. As the marlin tired, I edged him closer to the boat.

Captain Morgan’s sharp hook struck deep. Eddie smiled, “I got him now.” 

Always be extra careful. What you don’t expect will kill you. Brian reached into the crystal-clear water to secure our prize when danger struck. An eight-foot wing tip hammerhead shark surfaced with Brian’s hand on his breakfast list. But Eddie gaffed the leviathan into submission. And we hauled in a fine shark too. 

Yes, it was a great trip with only one fatality. Bob-O’s cooler fell into the water in all the commotion. Bob wanted to go after it. But the hammerhead had friends.

Thus, the cooler received a burial at sea. We celebrated our champion day at Captain Tony’s and Sloppy Joe’s. But as I previously stated, “This is a fishing story.”

So, we’ll leave the nightlife out. 

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