My wife and I recently took a long weekend trip to Key West, Florida. Upon arriving, we took a ride down to charter boat row to look for a charter boat captain to take us offshore fishing. Captain Paul Wachter, whom runs the boat named Captain Hook, was there cleaning fish with his first mate Tommy. After a little rundown of his program, we booked a trip for the following day. I was quite impressed with everything he had going on. First off, I’m for the most part a freshwater fisherman and probably spend around 125 days a year fishing my home state of Wisconsin. This would have been appx the 30th offshore saltwater adventure of my life but only the 2nd for my wife. So having a bit of experience as far as what to look for in a captain helped me out a lot. His boat is probably the newest boat around, he keeps it very tidy and clean, fully operational bathroom for my wife, onboard stereo which Capt. Paul pointed out none of the others had and an extremely comfortable boat to fish out of. After a short steam out to the gulfstream shelf, lines went out quickly and before long we were hooked up on our first line screamer. It was definitely constant action for the rest of our day. We ended up with 4 dolphin (mahi mahi), 2 sailfish (released), a black fin tuna, a spanish mackerel, a black grouper and a bonita. Certainly the biggest mixed bag of my career. One thing I’ve seen with other captains and mates over and over again is, the fact they spend so much time out there fishing, they’re way better at it than you and it gets to be a yelling or bashing session towards the clients because they expect you to know all as they do and they get agitated when you don’t. I had some experience on what to do during the fish fight, bringing it onboard and getting photos but my wife has none. Tommy the first mate is a chipper guy that can’t wipe a smile off his face if he tried. He was extremely patient with both of us as was Captain Paul throughout the entire pandemonium filled day. Towards the end of the day a bad storm moved in and threatened our day end. Capt. Paul not only spent years working in the coast guard but also has a boat rigged with great radar capabilities. He assured us that he’d not only be able to keep us out of harm’s way but also be able to time it perfect so that we could get the most out of our paid trip. He was right on the money with that. We were 100 yards away from pulling into his boat slip when the rain started falling. It was a very cold rain with 50mph winds and we were back on the dock under a covered roof while others were floundering around attempting to get away from its wrath. Connie (Paul’s wife), met us at the dock and helped Paul clean and bag the fish in some brutal weather while Tommy cleaned the boat, which I was really impressed with too. This is a long read but all of it is worth pointing out. I’ve certainly found my Key West charter captain for upcoming trips and would give Captain Paul very high marks on his complete operation and staff. Look him up if you’re heading down his way, you won’t be sorry. Thanks for taking the time with me. Thanks again to my new friends Paul, Connie and Tommy!
Hans and Coriayn Juech Oconomowoc, WI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.