Time is Now for Seasonal Sails in South Florida

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Black Friday signals the official beginning of the holiday sale season. About that same time in late November another great deal begins evolving in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

As shoppers rush to grab great deals after Thanksgiving, the winter sailfish season is warming up on the east coast of Florida. Colder weather in the Northeast and mid-Atlantic bring the sails south. The colder it gets, the better the fishing. Long after the sales are over and the Christmas trees disappear the sailfish season is just picking up, peaking in March in south Florida.

The action can be hit or miss, but worth the effort. Sailfish congregate and migrate in isolated schools. They tend to stay on the move, so the school you encounter one day will likely be long gone by the next trip. Or, they might simply go dormant due to the frontal passage.

Sailfish fishing in a Sea Chaser HFC in Florida,

Water quality, bait and structure are the top three factors for weighing in on a game plan for winter sails. Clean water and an abundance of ballyhoo, bonitos or other preferred staples are good signs.

Trolled plugs and rigged ballyhoo are commonsense bait choices. The ideal rig is a spread of kite baits. Lively ballyhoo or google eyes create a commotion that triggers the predator instinct of sailfish to hone in on the rig from afar.

Savvy captains run two kites, each with three lines spaced at set distances. Set a long, middle and short line until dialing into the preferred bait and distance. Sailfish also prefer to face the current when in feeding mode, meaning their long noses will be pointed south in the northward-flowing Gulf Stream.

The acrobatic leaps of sailfish more than makeup for the bite of a stiff wind blowing from the north. The ideal scenario happens after the New Year begins when the cold fronts begin cycling through every several days.

Conditions get right a few days after the frontal passage. The wind subsides to make boat control and kite presentation more manageable. Even better, winter sails are often caught within eyesight of the shore.

That’s good news for anglers fishing from center console bay boats. An ideal choice is the Sea Chaser 27 HFC by Carolina Skiff.

The 27 HFC delivers safety, comfort, style, and performance like no other boat in the class. The 27 HFC has a 9.6-foot beam, a length overall of 27 feet, and a respectable gunwale height. You get that for safety, along with a fuel tank holding up to 181 gallons for long offshore runs and overnight trips to faraway destinations.

Click here for the brochure page with specs for the 27 HFC.

The 27 HFC is built on Carolina Skiff’s legendary and trustworthy 30 years of boat design. Built with 100 percent composite construction, the 27 HFC is build solid and dependable for years of rugged use in saltwater environments. A quick-lift, high performance step-hull provides quick hole shots to get the boat on plane for a smooth, dry ride.

Hybrid Fish & Cruise (HFC) truly means what it stands for in a boat. The revolutionary design of the HFC 27 is built from the ground up with devoted fishermen and active families in mind.

Add options to customize an HFC 27 to fit your needs, although the boat already comes loaded standard features that provide comfort, convenience, safety and functionality to the boat. Best of all, the standard and optional accessories are factory installed by skilled craftsmen at the Carolina Skiff assembly facility in Waycross, Georgia.

Check out these standard features on the HFC 27:


  • Windlass anchor system
  • Wrap-around bow seating
  • 400-quart insulated storage
  • Built-in bow cabinets with tackle center and storage drawers (2)
  • 208-quart fish storage box built into the bow floor
  • Below gunwale retractable wash-down hose
  • Molded fiberglass leaning post
  • 40-gallon bait well and two tackle centers integrated into leaning post
  • 30-gallon rear baitwell
  • Rear sink with stainless steel facet
  • Rear starboard cabinet with tackle trays and knife holder
  • Fresh water tank with shower spray wand
  • Step-in console with electric flushing head
  • Molded hard top with LED lighting
  • AM/FM radio with Bluetooth and USB connection
  • Underwater LED lighting
  • Courtesy LED lighting package
  • Electric trim tabs
  • 12 flush-mounted gunwale rod holders


carolinaskiff.com. You can find a dealer, learn more about the brand legacy, and build a boat on the website. You can also contact Carolina Skiff and request a catalog. Join the community of Carolina Skiff followers at the Carolina Skiff Facebook Page.