Top King Mackerel / Kingfish Fishing Charters
We had a wonderful time! Few of us got sick, but that was beyond anyones control. Captain Kyle and Isiaha we’re very accommodating and made the trip great for everyone.
James P. with Kyle L. of Destin, Florida
Crew worked hard to get us on as many fish as possible. Very good trip and would definitely use them again if back in the area.
Chad L. with Rodney C. of Freeport, Texas
Caputn Cody and his deckhand Donny were great. He was also very flexible due to weather and we were able to reschedule it for the next day. It took us a while to find a good spot, but once we did, they were both very helpful. Will recommend using him and would be using him again if able in the future
Guillermo Y. with Cody K. of Galveston, Texas
We had an unbelievable time with Captain James and I can't wait to fish with him again. Was in the area for a wedding and was looking to head offshore so we booked with James. He kept in touch leading up to our trip and let us know the kings were running. We headed out through the St. Mary's jetties and set up on the troll after catching some baitfish on the buoys. There were a couple other boats out and no one seemed to get a bite, the kings just weren't biting. From there, Capt. James took us to one of his snapper spots and we reeled em in on every drop. Everyone caught fish and James was super patient helping one buddy who was offshore for the first time. James was a blast to fish with and was super knowledgeable about the area and its history. His center console split the chop like butter. Will be back! - Jonathan with Captain Experiences
Jonathan N. with James W. of St. Marys, Georgia
Captain Emilio and his crew know how to bring a great experience!! Very accommodating and knows where the fish are!! Highly recommend
Jesse M. with Emilio S. of South Padre Island, Texas
What a great day we had. Captain Mitch and Deckhand Jerry were exceptional! Well informed, knowledgeable about the fish and the tactics to catch them. They were fun, accommodating and even went out of their way to make me comfortable when I got a little sick.
George M. with Rodney C. of Freeport, Texas
Alex kept very busy, trying to make sure all of us were baited and trying to catch fish. Very patient and we did ok, considering no one out their today had good catches. We would recommend Alex as a great guide to everyone!
Debbie W. with Henry R. of South Padre Island, Texas
Captain Patrick made our trip special for my family. He was able to get us on the fish!
Stephen A. with Patrick G. of Gulf Shores, Alabama
Captain Mike and deckhand Deisy were awesome! Very attentive and put us on the fish today! We will definitely be booking again! Thanks Capt. Mike!
Randall R. with Mike S. of Surfside Beach, Texas
Excellent experience. Thoroughly enjoyed the trip. Captain Roger put us on the fish and kept us there. We caught way more fish and had to cull it down to these keepers. Boat was in great working order and clean, my wife said it was especiaIly great on the inside. There was plenty of room for the 4 of us to fish at the same time. I would highly suggest the 12 hour trip with this captain and crew. I've been on a couple of charter trips and this was the best by far. Thanks Captain Roger!!!
Jason J. with Roger S. of Port Aransas, Texas
Everything You Need to Know About King Mackerel / Kingfish Fishing
What is a King Mackerel / Kingfish?
The king mackerel, commonly known as kingfish, uncommonly known as Scomberomorus cavalla, is a migratory member of the mackerel family and is native to the Atlantic Coast of the United States and the Gulf of Mexico down to the coast of Brazil.
Kingfish are one of the largest members of the mackerel family (smaller than its cousin the wahoo, for instance). They are a popular fish to target in the summer months and are great for nearshore fishing - you don’t need to head out too far from shore to catch them and they are usually around in good numbers.
The kingfish is similar in appearance to some other members of the mackerel family and at first glance have few distinct characteristics. They are a grey/silver fish with minuscule scales and small dorsal and pelvic fins. Juvenile fish can show yellow spots on their rear end similar to a spanish mackerel.
Kings are a popular fish for both sport and commercial operations, as it is both a powerful fish to catch that sometimes jumps and can go on some tough runs, and is also fairly abundant. They are also schooling fish, so once you’re on them, you’re on them.
### How big do King Mackerel / Kingfish get?
While they are known to get to be huge reaching 100 pounds, 70+ inches, and almost 20 years. Giant kingfish are sometimes called smokers because of their ability to peel line off of a reel so fast that it starts smoking. Kingfish are generally caught at much more reasonable weights between 10 and 30 pounds. Females are the bigger of the two genders, with males generally maxing out at around 15 pounds.
To spawn, females will shed between 50,000 and millions of eggs over the course of the spawning season and males will simultaneously release sperm, whose union is entirely by chance in the sea. Yearling fish can be 3-4 pounds and 24 inches fork length (the length from head to the split in their tail).
What's the biggest King Mackerel ever caught?
The current IGFA all tackle world record kingfish is 93 pounds, caught out of San Juan in 1999 by Steve Graulau....Read More
The Florida record stands at 90 pounds, and its not unusual for 70+ pound fish to be caught off Key West.
Where is the best place to catch Kingfish?
Kingfish can be found both inshore and offshore, but are frequently fished within a few miles in depths between 50 and 150 ft. They can be found around reefs, wrecks, and buoys, but can also swim solo when older and are frequently caught from the surf or around inlets.
They range all over the western Atlantic Ocean and are found from about North Carolina (although they can be found up to the Gulf of Maine) on the north end to Rio de Janeiro on the southern end. Florida is a great place to fish them because this is where stocks from both the Atlantic and the Gulf mingle, and they can both be found in good numbers. Because kingfish are migratory, their numbers will vary based on the season and location, but the big kingfish generally return to the same areas year over year (for those curious, generally Texas, Louisiana, and Florida).
When should I catch Kingfish?
In the US, the season is always open for king mackerel, assuming you can find them! That being said, there is often a size limit of between 24 and 27 inches depending on the state, and a bag limit per angler per day of 2 for Florida, Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi, and 3 for the Carolinas and Georgia.
Since kingfish prefer warmer waters, they can be year round on the southern half of Florida but across the Gulf and further up the Atlantic the fishing will be best in the summer months. There are two big groups of migratory kings that have been identified, with one preferring the Texas coast in summer to mid-Florida November to March. An Atlantic group engages in a similar pattern, spending time in the Carolinas and Virginia in the summer months and the other side of Florida in the winter.
How do you catch Kingfish?
Kingfish are schooling fish so when the bite heats up, you’re liable to get a number of fish to the boat, but its important to make sure you have the right gear - many an angler has gotten broken off by their sharp teeth. You also want to make sure you have enough line so you don’t get spooled by a particularly large king as they are known to go on big runs.
Most king mackerel are caught trolling, and often bite the tail, so make sure you set a hook in the back of your lure. Kingfish have not only sharp teeth but also good eyesight, meaning you want some sort of wire leader to avoid getting broken off but you want to keep it thin enough so it doesn’t spook any fish. Kingfish can be caught on live bait or lures.
Are Kingfish good to eat? What are the best King Mackerel recipes?
Kingfish meat is commonly eaten but is not known to be a great food option. The meat is darker and leaner, and falls somewhere in the middle on the taste scale. Plenty are taken and eaten, but it is not particularly sought out as a dinner option. The meat tends to be a bit oily, so can be smoked well. It is also frequently marinated and grilled.