Bumpy seas greet anglers on opening day of red snapper season

Published: May. 26, 2023 at 3:19 PM CDT
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ORANGE BEACH, Ala. (WALA) - It’s the day a lot of anglers on the gulf coast have been waiting for. Recreational red snapper season opened at midnight Friday, May 26, 2023 and plenty of folks hit the water in search of the prized catch.

“Being out there with my brother, catching fish or trying anyways, you know. Even if we don’t, we’ll still have fun,” said a man named Hunter.

The brothers made the drive from Tuscaloosa for opening day and just like many others, were ready to try their luck. They were heading out for an afternoon trip, but others got a much earlier start and were already back at the dock by midday.

Angler shows off catch of gray (left) and red snapper from opening day
Angler shows off catch of gray (left) and red snapper from opening day(Hal Scheurich)

“This is our second year,” said Darrell Morrison from Rome, GA. “Rough out there but we scratched out a limit so we alright.”

The early catches coming into Boggy Point launch in Orange Beach weren’t big fish but those who took on the bumpy seas were able to catch fish. And, it’s not all about catching fish for some. Ferron Smith and his grandson, Brockton also have a tradition of fishing together on opening day and the fish they catch are just a bonus.

“We got out there and it turned into, I mean a mess, but we went ahead and went out to some of the tanks and was able to get our limit, so uh it was just wonderful to spend opening day with my grandson again this year,” Smith said.

As for Brockton, he was ready to reap the rewards of a hard day fishing, with some red snapper for dinner.

“Yeah, and I just love the taste probably. Yeah,” Brockton said with a big smile.

The recreational season this year goes will run Friday through Monday each weekend until the season’s quota is met. The charter boat “for hire” red snapper season will open June 1st.