Krystal Hall is known in fishing circles as a killer. We got the details in this exclusive Hook & Barrel interview.
Meet Krystal Hall, Fishing Star & Hairstylist
H&B: Tell me about your hometown in Kentucky, growing up in Florida, and who got you into the outdoors.
Krystal Hall: I was born in Kentucky and grew up on a farm until we moved to Florida when I was six. My first introduction to fishing was freshwater fishing, and then when we moved to Sarasota, and I was introduced to saltwater fishing. Plus, my dad’s side of the family built boats so saltwater fishing became a love of mine. My dad, my Papaw, and my dad’s family were all outdoorsmen, so I didn’t have a choice. I’ve always had a fishing pole in my hands!
H&B: What’s your favorite thing to fish, and where is your favorite place to fish?
KH: I’m on the west coast of Florida, so offshore fishing is more difficult over here. I love inshore fishing for redfish and snook. It’s different from deep dropping or trolling; there’s a little more skill when you’re working under docks and up against mangroves. I also love fishing for tarpon. The tarpon migrate down here, and they get up to 200 pounds, so that’s a fun trophy fish. For me it’s a lifestyle, not just a fun sport. I catch and eat my fish in season; that’s how I was raised.
H&B: You love to travel. Where are your favorite places you’ve been, and where do you still want to go?
KH: I have become addicted to traveling the world and catching fish all over. I went to Bermuda and caught tuna and wahoo. I caught a sailfish in Costa Rica and marlin in the Dominican Republic. Costa Rica is one of my favorite places I’ve fished. It’s an incredible fishery and an amazing place to adventure. Bermuda was really cool because as we were trolling and fishing for tuna, there were humpback whales spawning near the boat. This summer I’m looking forward to traveling to Colombia and catching some different fish down there. It’s a more remote area that hasn’t been fished as much. You’ve got the Pacific Ocean and then inland fishing on the rivers. It will be exciting to grow my angling skills and techniques and learn about all these different fish. It’s fun to hook something!
H&B: What’s one of your most memorable fishing trips?
KH: I caught my first yellowfin tuna in Venice, Louisiana. That was incredible. I took a bite of the heart, which is tradition. Fresh tuna is one of my favorite fish to eat. And once you have it fresh, you’re ruined for anything else. The tuna that comes out of Venice is bucket list level.
H&B: What do you feel is your responsibility as a woman in the outdoors industry?
KH: What’s really cool in the last couple of years is the women who are coming in to the outdoor industry—particularly the fishing industry. It’s been a male-dominated sport for so many years, and it’s been a bit intimidating for women. But I bring girlfriends out with me, and it’s been great to see them learning to fish and loving fishing. I was in my local Target six months ago, and two little girls approached me and asked if I was Krystal Hall and told me that they followed me on Instagram and that they loved to fish.
H&B: What’s your best one-that-got-away story?
KH: I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had something right next to the boat and it’s either taken by a shark or just broke the line. In the Dominican, I thought I had a massive Goliath Grouper on the line, and it was next to the boat when it broke off and swam away. It happens all the time! You can’t catch them all, and that’s part of the excitement that keeps you coming back for more.
H&B: You are also a hairstylist and own a salon—how does that fit in to your life now?
KH: My mom’s side of the family is third-generation stylists, and my mom had her own salon. When I was graduating high school, I didn’t know what I wanted to study in college, and school wasn’t really my thing. So I went to hair school, graduated, and went to work at my mom’s salon. And I was good at it—it was in my blood. That turned into my main career, which helped me afford my outdoor adventures. During the pandemic, when my salon was closed, I went to the outdoors to help deal with the stress of everything that was happening.
H&B: Any other outdoor interests?
KH: I love archery! I go out in the woods with my dad during whitetail season. We have family in Michigan with hunting land, and we’ll go up there to hunt too. I’ve done gator hunts, and turkey hunting is on my to-do list. During Covid, I started documenting things and making videos, and my following grew. I realized that I enjoyed sharing, and people seemed to enjoy watching. Fishing and hunting are key to my peace and sanity. You go out to the pond and throw out a line, and you aren’t thinking about anything else. It’ s my happy place!
H&B: If you could fish with anyone, who would it be and why?
KH: I would love to go noodlin’ with Hannah Barron. I’m not going to lie, it terrifies me, and not a lot of things scare me, but I’d love to try. That would be amazing!
H&B: Describe your perfect day.
KH: Getting outdoors on the water and fishing. Even if nothing is biting, it’s still warm and in the sunshine, and I’m happy!