Thursday, January 31, 2008

Nature Coast Fish Move To Winter Pattern


Redfish and Trout bite finally catching up with the New Year!!!!
Report Date: January 20, 2008
Finally, the Redfish and SeaTrout bite has come into full swing this New Year along the Nature Coast. It only took 4 weeks, but most of the Reds and Trout in the area have finally found their winter hideouts. In recent weeks both the Red and Trout populations have been on the move in search of more consistent water temperatures and an abundant source of food.



Ron and Troy spent the dayout on the Crystal River ripping lips on a few Speckled Trout and Redfish. Total these boys landed over 30 keeper Speckled Trout and plenty of Reds.


This major push of fish towards more habitable locations usually occurs in late November or December, however due to summer like weather patterns and an overabundance of bait in the area most fish have remained in the particular hotspots since May.As you can imagine I am in just as much disbelief as are most captains along the Nature Coast that the major fish push inshore has taken this long. However, as the old saying goes, “better late than never.” Although it has taken a while on recent charters my clients and I have been recording record catches of Seatrout and Redfish all fishing similar small areas of the Crystal and Homosassa rivers.




Bonnie braved the cool tempratures of January and was rewarded with this beautiful 27" Redfish.

When I fish these river systems I try to break them up into three sections in order to target fish where ever they maybe hiding. There are deep holes along most of the channels of these rivers and I typically use a Berkley Gulp jig tipped with a shrimp to get the deep dwelling reds and trout. The trick when fishing deep water during the winter is to make sure you work your lure slow, almost to a crawl. If I can’t get the fish to bite in deep water then I will typically try and fish the drop offs using live shrimp free lined with the current. Most of the times while free lining a live shrimp you will get a ton of interested ladyfish or mangrove snapper to come to the bait. If I start getting a ton of trash bites than I will try use cut mullet of ladyfish to limit the amount of small fish.And finally most of my best fishing has been done along the shallow flats that are scattered throughout these river systems. When fishing these shallow flats I always make sure that there is plenty of structure, bait and moving water. All three of these aspects are important as was evident on many of my most recent charters. By targeting these three aspects I rewarded my clients with amazing catches of Reds and Trout lately. On a recent charter with Greg, Bert and Ben Jackson we spent the early part of the morning chasing Speckled Trout with Berkley Gulp jigs. The Speckled Trout ranged from 15-22” and were caught targeting many of the potholes scattered throughout the local flats. After catching a mess of trout, we then target Redfish along some of the rocky points and oyster bars scattered along the river bank. To my amazement many of the oyster bars and rocky points that I had been fishing for Redfish, now contained huge schools of Speckled Trout. After setting up up current I took a few minutes to chum the bars with shrimp. It was amazing to see the oyster bar come to life with just a few hand fulls of chum. For over an hour we caught Redfish up to 27 inches and Trout up 22 inches every other cast. Talk about a great day. Not to mention the weather was top notch also.




Mike Dean did an excelent job of sight casting to this oversized 28" Redfish.
As you can see the inshore fishing has finally caught up with the New Year. If January has an indication on what the fishing is going to be like this year, then folks you better hold on to your hats, it looks as if we are going to have another wild and crazy fishing year.

Captain Kyle Messier
Red Hot Fishing Charters
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.REDHOTFISHINGCHARTERS.COM /


Red Hot Fishing Charters
Crystal River and Homosassa, Florida
352-634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Temperatures Are Key To Catching Fish

Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Forecast, February 2008
Compliments of Mosquito Creek Outdoors Apopka, Florida

Well those Anglers not familiar to Florida may believe fishing opportunities in February are few but far between, but that thought could not be further from the truth. In reality, angling during the winter on the Indian River Lagoon Coast produces outstanding catches if the right tactics and strategies are employed.As always, understanding the cycle of passing cold fronts is essential selecting the proper weather day and having the flexibility to get out on the water while the getting is good will add to one's success. Passing cold fronts are notorious for delivering several days nasty windy conditions followed by a short window of gorgeous weather, and a prudent angler will focus there attention on boat and tackle maintenance and honey dos during periods on ugly weather and call in sick when conditions are right.
With sea trout, black drum, and redfish serving as the primary targets on the inshore flats, water temperature serves as the most critical element in locating and catching fish. On colder days, sea trout will search out and congregate in the warmest water they can find, so focus your attention in deeper holes and pockets adjacent to shallow flats. Another critical element is the fact fish are cold blooded, so during colder periods their metabolic rate slows way down and they eat less, so concentrate your efforts on dredge holes, troughs, depressions, and canals located next to expansive flats, and slow down your presentation to a crawl. My preferred lure in this situation is a Nite Glow Riptide realistic Shrimp rigged on a 1/16 ounce Screw Lock Jig. My tactic is to locate a deeper canal adjacent to an expanse of shallow flats and then cast to the edges and let the jig sink all the way to the bottom before retrieving it very slowly. After the cold snap passes and the weather starts warming up, focus your attention on sandy potholes where both sea trout and redfish like basking in the warming sun. Also, let us not forget the tailing black drum and redfish on the Banana River Lagoon No Motor Zone. There are very few thing in life that get the heart pumping better than the sight of a huge black tail raising slowly out of the water within casting range, and one of those is the first long run of a big black drum in shallow water. Remember, an early start is not necessary if the weather gets cold, so sleep in and hit the water when sun has warmed the flats a bit.



Moving offshore, kingfish will still be consistent along the inshore reefs and wrecks, and they will remain there as long as the water temperature stays above 68 degrees. When targeting kings, focus on bottom structure in the areas of 8A reef, Pelican Flats, and Bethel Shoals to the south. Live bait is often tough to find this time of year, so always carry a box of frozen Spanish sardines with you as backup.

Also look for cobia and amberjack to be present on the inshore wrecks like the Carol Lee, Dutch, and Sub Wreck out of Port Canaveral, and let us not forget the excellent grouper and snapper experienced in February as these fish have a tendency to move in on shallow bottom structure and wrecks. Near-shore, look for tripletail concentrations to improve greatly along the Port Canaveral buoy line and under floating weeds and structure, and for cobia to move in shadowing manta rays if the surface water temperatures reach the upper sixties.



February is also a great time for shore anglers to target pompano, bluefish, weakfish, small black drum, sheepshead, Spanish mackerel and whiting in the surf and larger redfish and flounder around the inlets and jetties. As the water temperatures cool, the pompano should move out of the lagoon and gather in the troughs along the beach in search of mole crabs (sand fleas) their favorite winter food source.


Last but not least, February is a great time to check out those freshwater fishing holes on the St Johns River, and inshore lakes. Currently some good catches of American shad, speckled perch, and largemouth bass are being reported.

February 9th Mosquito Creek Outdoors in Apopka, Woman in the Outdoors presents the Ladies Social Angler Seminar and Wine Tasting, from 9am-2pm. Cost to attend is $40 per person and includes one-year membership and subscription to The Woman in the Outdoors. To register, contact Mosquito Creek Outdoors (407) 464-2000.

March 1st, 2nd, and 8th 9th Bass Pro Shop Spring Fling, Orlando Florida

March 8th Woman in the Outdoors presents a Kids Fishing Day. Event includes a full day of activities and lunch, and the cost is $25 per child. To register, contact Mosquito Creek Outdoors at (407) 464-2000.

April 18th, 19th, 20th, Coastal Angler Magazine Boating and Fishing Expo, Melbourne, Florida.

As always, if you have any questions or need more information, please contact me.Good luck, good fishing, and Happy New Year,

Captain Tom Van Horn
Mosquito Coast Fishing Charters

http://www.irl-fishing.com/
407-366-8085 landline
407-416-1187 on the water
866-790-8081 toll free

Book a charter, and let's go fishing.Visit http://www.mosquitocreekoutdoors.com/ for all of your outdoor adventure needs, its Where the Adventure Begins!

Mosquito Lagoon, High Water Big Fish

The weather has been up and down here in east central Florida with some days sunny and warm and others cloudy, cool, and windy. We have been getting decent catches most days despite the weather and high water.Last Wednesday, Chris, from Buffalo, left the snow behind and joined his friend Debra for a day of fishing Mosquito Lagoon. High winds limited our options but we did manage to catch a black drum around 20 pounds along with a few redfish.Thursday's weather was terrible but the forecast for Friday looked decent. Dr. John from Texas wanted to try some fly fishing for redfish. Unfortunately, the conditions were not as predicted. Winds of 15-20 made for some tough fly fishing. We saw a few tailing redfish but as the weather deteriorated, so did our shots at fish. We tried our best but ended up skunked.Monday, the winds were blowing over 20. I fished the St. John's River with friend Paul. The narrow winding stretch of river northeast of Orlando provided some shelter from the wind. We were hoping to target American Shad with fly and ultra light tackle. We caught a lot of fish but only two shad. The variety, however, made up for the lack of the target species. We landed a few speckled perch, eight or nine nice bass, redbreast sunfish, Nile perch, and a few sailfin catfish. These prehistoric looking creatures are often mistakenly called armoured catfish. They have a tough skin and normally feed on algae and other plant material. On this day, however, we caught them on jigs and mini DOA shrimp. Quite an unusual hook and line catch.On Tuesday of this week, Dr. Valerie F. and her son Matt enjoyed a great day of fishing the Mosquito Lagoon. We started off fishing for some black drum. Matt hooked up first and had a great battle with a fish of 20 pounds.Next it was Mom's turn and her first black drum turned out to be her biggest fish ever and weighed in at 24 pounds.We left the drum and went searching for redfish. Our first bite from a big fish ended when the line broke. The next three redfish, however, were brought to the boat by Matt and were between 25 and 33 inches.Thursday, John from Colorado, joined me for an early star on the Mosquito Lagoon. We found a few schools of redfish at the first stop but they quickly vanished. The next spot was holding numerous single redfish but the clouds prevented us from seeing them before it was too late. By mid day, the clouds parted and John hooked up to a huge redfish that gave his drag quite a workout.This fish nearly filled up my 48 inch landing sling and weighed over 30 pounds. We ended up catching only one more fish, a 24 inch trout but our lack of numbers was certainly made up for in size.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Reds And Trout In Potholes Of Sarasota

Capt. Rick Grassett’s Fishing Report for 1/18 through 1/28/08

Anglers fishing with me on the Snook Fin-Addict, out of CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had good action with a variety of fish during the past week and a half. Fly anglers caught and released bluefish, trout and ladyfish while anglers using spinning tackle caught and released reds, trout and bluefish. The best action was with bluefish in Big Pass and reds along the west side of Sarasota Bay.
Sarasota winter residents, Sam Semel and Bruce Feldman, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Friday, Jan. 18th. They had fast action with blues in Big Pass on Diamond jigs and MirroLure Top Pups and trout to 18” on CAL jigs at the Marina Jack flat. That afternoon Bill Gallagher and Ray Smith, both from MD, had similar action fishing the same areas with Clouser flies and CAL jigs.
Sarasota winter resident, Harry Beaty, and his guest, Paul Rotz from Ontario, Canada, fished with me the following Wednesday. They caught about a dozen blues to 1 ½ lbs. in Big Pass before we headed into the bay to fish for trout and reds. They caught and released about a dozen trout and a nice Spanish mackerel near Bishops Point and 7 or 8 reds to 27” near Buttonwood Harbor on CAL jigs with shad tails.
Sarasota Herald-Tribune outdoors editor, Steve Gibson, joined me for a trip on Friday. The focus of the story was to be reds in Sarasota Bay, but a front pushed through on Thursday evening changing our game plan to “post front” fishing. With a stiff northeast wind and water in the high 50’s, we had our work cut out for us. We fished the east side of Sarasota Bay, where we caught and released a red and several trout to 18” on CAL jigs with shad tails.
Fly angler, Hal Lutz from Parish, FL, fished the Terra Ceia Bay area with me on Saturday. Hal is an experienced fly angler with several giant tarpon jumped or landed to his credit, but hadn’t done much shallow water fly fishing for reds, snook and trout. Sight fishing was our goal, but visibility wasn’t great. We worked potholes and mullet schools and Hal scored his first red and trout on my Flats Minnow fly. This fly is now available in the spring 2008 Orvis catalog and at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters along with my night snook fly, Grassett’s Snook Minnow (a.k.a. Grass Minnow).
Keith McClintock, from Lake Forest, IL, and his guest, Dave Eakin from Richland, WA, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Monday. They caught about a dozen bluefish and ladyfish on CAL jigs with shad tails and MirrOlure Top Pups in Big Pass to start the day off. During the rest of the day, they caught and released 7 or 8 trout, including a pair of 20” trout, 7 reds and a 3-lb. bluefish on CAL jigs with shad tails. The best action was with reds near Buttonwood Harbor and with the big trout and bluefish along the east side of Sarasota Bay.
The weather pattern looks good for the next several days and tides will improve as we head toward a new moon on Feb. 6th. Reds and trout in potholes of Sarasota Bay and Charlotte Harbor and trout and bluefish in Sarasota Bay should all be good options.

Tight Lines,
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.
FFF Certified Fly Casting Instructor
(941) 923-7799
E-mail
snookfin@aol.com
http://www.flyfishingflorida.net/ and http://www.snookfin-addict.com/


Sarasota winter resident, Harry Beaty, caught this big red near Buttonwood Harbor on a CAL jig with a shad tail while fishing Sarasota Bay with Capt. Rick Grassett.


Dave Eakin, from Richland, WA, caught and released this 20" trout on a CAL jig with a shad tail while fishing Sarasota Bay with Capt. Rick Grassett.


Hal Lutz, from Parrish, FL, caught and released this red on a Grassett's Flats Minnow fly while fishing Terra Ceia Bay with Capt. Rick Grassett.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Fish Protected Areas In Wind


January 25, 2008
INSHORE:
While the winds picked up....the fishing slowed down this week along the Treasure Coast. It has been a pretty windy week and hard to find areas that are fishable. The water quality isn't too bad in spite of the rough conditions. It's been hard to spot bait or action lately with the water rough all over the river. Not many anglers have braved it out there. Hopefully, a reprieve is in short order!
Most of the action consisted of ladyfish, jacks, black drum, sheephead and a few trout. Most of the river has been hard to fish so we have concentrated on areas that have been somewhat protected. Each day will be different on those areas, so watch the winds and plan your day.
John Musial was down this week and we fought winds all day, but did manage a number of jacks and other fish, including one nice trout on the flats. Most of the fish have come from 2 - 5 feet of water. Live shrimp has been our best bait for now. Once this weather relaxes, it should get back to some good winter fishing opportunities.
Bridges have been holding sheephead, black drum and croakers, while the inlet and jetties have Spanish mackerel, bluefish and jacks. The anglers, who have been braving the beaches, are catching whiting and some pompano on shrimp or sand fleas. It's been a tough week and we all are looking forward to some nice weather again.
Tip of the Week:
Rain gear is essential not only in the rain, but can sure come in handy on those windy days on the water. Water spray and wave action can bring a lot of water into the boat. Those cold days can make it even worse. Break out the rain suit and it can keep you dry and warm on the tough days of fishing. Keep dry out there!
As always, remember, fishing is not just another hobby....it's an ADVENTURE!!Good Fishing and Be Safe,
Captain Charlie Conner
772-284-3852

(Captain Charlie Conner has been fishing the Indian River Lagoon for over twenty-five years. Specializing in light tackle fishing in Fort Pierce, Vero Beach, Jensen Beach, Stuart and Port St Lucie, Florida. His weekly South Indian River Lagoon Fishing Report gives you the latest inshore fishing information for the Treasure Coast area on the Indian River Lagoon.}

St Lucie Inlet Offshore Inshore


JAN. 18, 08 FISHING
LET’S GO CATCH A FISH, SEAS ARE FLAT, WIND IS DOWN AND THE TEMPS ARE PERFECT. SOUTH FLORIDA, I LOVE THIS PLACE.
FINALLY OFF SHORE HAS SETTLED DOWN, NOT PERFECT IF YOU ARE SAIL FISH TOUNAMENT ANGLER BUT PERFECT FOR THE REST OF THE ANGLING WORLD. SAIL FISH ANGLERS LIKE A LITTLE WIND, COOL WEATHER AND A LESS THAN CONFORTABLE SEA AND THEN THERE IS ME. GOING OUT OUR INLET TODAY, WORKING THE WATER FROM 80’ TO 125’ HAS BEEN THE ACTION ZONE WITH SAILS AND DOLPHIN KEEPING ANGLERS BUSY. NO NOT LOTS OF SAILS BUT MOST BOATS REPORT A RELEASE OR TWO AND REALLY THAT’S ALL YOU NEED. NOW THE DOLPHIN BITE IS THE TARGET AND THESE FISH ARE FROM TEN POUND FISH TO MID TEENS WITH A FEW BIGGER FISH... TROLLED BAITS HAVE BEEN THE BAIT OF CHOISE, LIVE BAITS HAVE BEEN A HARD FIND WITH THE SWINGS IN TEMPS WE HAVE HAD AND THE ANGLERS COVERING GROUND ARE CATCHING, THAT’S ALL THAT MATTERS. TODAY THE SEAS ARE FLAT AND WE SHOULD GET SOME BOTTOM REPORTS AND GROUPER IN THE TEN TO FIFTEEN POUND CLASS SHOULD TOP THE LIST WITH MUTTONS A CLOSE SECOND.
FINNALY, BACK TO THE REPORT AND THINGS ARE CHANGING; NOW IT IS TO COOL TONIGHT????? WELL NOT SURE WHAT THAT MEANS BUT IT IS REAL NICE AS I TYPE, COOL WE CAN DEAL WITH IT IS THE WIND THAT ROCKS THE BOAT AND BRING UP THE SURF. PLENTY OF BLUE FISH WITH THE MORNING HOUR BEING BEST FOR DUBLE HOOK UPS BUT THEY HAVE BEEN THERE ALL DAY. IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR SOME ROD PULLERS COME ON DOWN ANY TIME, FUN TO CATCH AND THERE ALL DAY. THE POMPANO BITE IS CRAZY WITH SCATTERED TIMES FROM EARLY TO LATE DEPENDING ON YOUR LOCATION. ANGLERS REPORTS OF TWO OR THREE HAPPEN ALL DAY BUT TO GET IN THE SCHOOL YOU JUST HAVE TO PUT IN TIME. PLENTY OF WHITING, CROAKERS AND FEW SPANISH MAC’S ARE MIXED IN; SURF HAS JUST BEEN A GOOD LOCATION TO CATCH FISH.
WELL IT DID GET COOL LAST NIGHT AND NOW THE WIND IS BLOWING, I KNOW GOOD FOR THE SAIL FISH. ONE OF THE GREAT POINTS OF BEING IN OUR AREA AND FISHING INSIDE IS THE MILES OF SHELTERED AREAS TO FISH NO MATTER WHICH WAY THE WIND BLOWS. INSIDE FISHING IS REAL STRONG. TROUT, REDS, SNOOK, DRUM THE LIST IS LONG. ONE CAN ALMOST PICK OUT A TARGET AND THERE IS A LOCATION, SHELTERED THAT YOU CAN FIND YOUR FISH. THE REDS HAVE BEEN ON THE WEST BANK ACROSS FROM BEAR POINT AND THE SPOIL ISLANDS ACROSS THE SAIL FISH FLATS CLOSER TO THE INLET. TROUT ARE JUST HANGING OUT IN THREE FEET OF WATER AND I AM SURE THAT THEY DO NOT KNOW THE SEASON IS OPEN. SHRIMP, DOA’S, SPOONS, GULP HAVE ALL BEEN ON THE LIST OF BAITS. EARLY THROUGH MID MORNING HAVE BEEN YOUR BEST BITE TIMES BUT AS I SAY, NEVER CAUGHT A FISH WITH A WATCH ON. THE POMPANO HAVE STACKED UP UNDER THE BRIDGES BUT THE TIMES ARE SCATTERED NO PATTERN, BUT WE DO HAVE COOING TREND GOING AS I TYPE THIS. TEMPS MAY PLUMIT INTO THE SIXTY'S, I KNOW GOOD FOR THE SAILS, FLOUNDER, AND POMPANO BUT WHAT ABOUT ME? WE HAVE A GOOD CATCH LIST FROM THE RIVER THIS WEEK DEPENDING ARE WHERE YOU ARE FISHING. THE DRUM, POMPS, MACS AND BLUES ALONG WITH LADY FISH, JACKS AND A BUNCH MORE, YOU JUST HAVE TO GET YOUR BAIT WET.
STILL TRYING TO GET THE BUGS OUT OF OUR LIVE BROADCAST, JUST CAN NOT GET THE WORD AND MOTIONS TO SPEED BUT WE ARE STILL TRYING………………………HENRY

Snook Nook Bait & Tackle Shop
3595 NE Indian River Drive
Jensen Beach, FL
(Just South of the Jensen Causeway)
(772)-334-2145
(Since 1949)
E-Mail: henry@snooknook.net

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Half Hitch Tackle Fishing Report 1-24-08


Report for 01-24-2008

Salt Water

MEXICO BEACH/PORT ST JOE OFFSHORE
Heavy seas are hindering offshore anglers this week but fortunately, the weather will improve soon. Keep targeting those near shore wrecks for winter Grouper and Amberjack.

ST JOSEPH BAY
REMEMBER! Anglers, Speckled Trout are catch and release only during the month of February. It is time now to target Redfish. The intercostals canal is already showing promise with periodic catches of Bull Reds. Use a live shrimp directly on your jig-head or frozen shrimp on the bottom using a Carolina rig and Mutu light circle hooks size 1/0. Anglers are reporting big Sheepshead in the canal also. Another great place for Sheepshead is the seawall near the PSJ Marina and out around the marker buoys. The Whiting continue to be the fish you can count on in the surf with the best numbers being caught off Cape San Blas around the stump hole area and lighthouse and Crooked Island Beach.

DESTIN
The weather has been on again and off again and that equates to how the fish have been also. Sunday and Monday were really good days on the pier for Bonito. Most anglers were using White Jigs, White Jerk baits and spoons. A few reports of Sheephead were caught on the pier using Shrimp.
In the bay White Trout are still good on D.O.A. terror eyes, while Specks are doing well in deep water holes and in real skinny water using Berkley Gulps. The Reds will also take the gulps but a Gold Spoon worked very slowly off the bottom is also good.

In the surf there is an occasional Pompano and some big Reds. The big Reds go for Shrimp and Pompano for Sand Fleas. Bonito have been coming in range for the surf fisherman on calm and cold mornings. White jigs work best for the Bonito. In the gulf the Flounder bite is still good on the shallow reefs, plenty of Mingos on the edges and Butterfly jigging for the Amberjack is still going off on most of the metal wrecks especially the ones in 120 to 300 foot depths. Glow, Blue and Green butterfly jigs are doing the best.

We have the new Shimano Saragosa saltwater spinning reels in stock and we are taking pre-orders on the new Saltwater manual pickup kit that fits the 14000 and 18000 size reels. The manual kit also fits the 2008 model of Spheros in sizes 14000 and 18000 also. The manual kits will be somewhat limited availability this spring so get yours ordered now.

Also in stock are the new Shimano Tiralejo surf and pier rods. The 8’ and 9’ medium make great King rods for the pier and the 8’ and 9’ medium heavy will make excellent pier rods for Cobia. These are made of the new light weight super strong TC4 graphite used in the Trevala jigging rods.

NAVARRE
Fishing in the Navarre area and West has been good during the last week, despite the weather influence. There have been good catches of Speckled Trout at all river entrances including the East River, Escambia River and most of the feeder creek entrances to their adjoining bays. One Trout caught was over 7 1/2 lbs. It was caught on a gold D.O.A. Shrimp under a popping cork near Milton in Blackwater Bay.
Some small catches of Pompano and Whiting were made off Navarre Beach. Redfish are still in the area around Fort Pickens and Pensacola Pass. There were 2 reports of small to medium Grouper being caught around 3 Mile Bridge between Gulf Breeze and Pensacola. These fish were between 18 and 23 inches and were caught using Cigar Minnows fished on the bottom.

Fresh Water
Take yourself live shiners and head to Lake Wimico as some good size Largemouth Bass are hitting well right now. Put the shiners under a weighted popping cork so you can do some attracting to get the Basses attention.

Half Hitch Tackle
850-234-2621
2206 Thomas Dr
Panama City, Fl 32408

www.halfhitch.com/

Fishing Report prepared by Half Hitch Tackle Staff.

The Captains Corner Fishing Report is provided by local charter captains and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Half Hitch Tackle.

This report is dedicated to the memory of Al Hubbard.
Al Hubbard was a field editor for Florida Sportsman magazine, an outdoor writer for the News Herald and a board member of the Florida Outdoor Writer's Association.
Mr. Hubbard was also the owner of Al's Outdoors Outfitting Services.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

St. Joseph Sound Fish Are Aggressive

Fish and Fog
1-23-2008

I decided to fish St. Joseph Sound this morning just because I had a few ideas that I wanted to try. I got a late start however because my trailer lights weren't working. I tried for an hour to get them to work and when sun up came, I just rolled out with them working as best I could get them to.

The scene at the boat ramp was not indicative of what was to come once I ventured a little ways from shore. It was foggy. Not terrible but still a little unnerving as I ran 9 miles South of the ramp. Also, just for a heads up, don't trust your GPS maps too much in the fog. Mine was about 500 yards off on an island and I came within 25 yards of planting my boat into the island's North shore before I saw it. My GPS said I was 500+ yards east of the island.



Once I reached my first stretch of shoreline, it didn't take long to realize that that this was going to be a great "catching" day. In the first ten minutes I saw two schools of redfish and several fish tailing. It wasn't 5 minutes after the visual confirmations of fish that the situation turned into physical catching of fish. I caught 5 reds in the first 20 minutes using my trusty Exude RT Slug on a weightless Mustad Powerlock hook. Only this time I was trying out a new color that I picked up at Fisherman's World in Tarpon Springs. The new (to me) color is called Croaker Shad. It's kind of a tan color with silver and green flash in it. I picked it up because I thought it looked like a good imitation of several kinds of baitfish that are abundant in the winter months here. The redfish seemed to agree with my logic.

After I caught several fish, including 3 trout over 20", I decided that I just had to get some of these aggressive fish to hit a top water plug. On the third cast the water exploded underneath my plug. Unfortunately the fish missed all 6 hooks hanging from the bottom of my lure. In fact, the next 10 strikes I got on top water all came up blank. Then I finally hit pay dirt with a nice 24" red on my Mirr-O-Lure He-Dog plug. The bite lasted until well into the incoming tide and then it shut off around 10:30am.

Once the bite shut down the fog really set in. I had thought that the sun would burn it off but I was wrong. By noon I couldn't see more than 30 yards. I decided to head home instead waiting to see if the fog would burn off. Being on the water in the fog is kind of eerie because you lose your sense of direction and you can hear other boats whizzing by you but you can't see them or the direction they are heading. I just took my time and kept my head on a swivel and made it home in about 45 minute.

It wasn't a bad day at all. I could have done without the fog but the bite today made it worth it.


Tampa Bay Fishing
Captain Clay Eavenson
813-300-2147
http://www.captainclay.com/
gofishing@captainclay.com

Apalachicola Trout Bite Is Excelent

Anderson Heagy caught this flashy redfish with Capt. Jason Rucker

Before sitting down to my computer to write this fishing report I called all the Flats & Bayfishing guides I know for them to put in their 2 cents worth. Keeping in mind that we get winter-like weather in Northwest Florida, 39 degrees overnight is durn cold by the way, it's been pretty typical for this time of year with plenty of warm sunny days to balance out the chilly ones.
Capt. Chris Robinson says that hes seen a few reds recently but the up & down temperatures have them off pattern. He has had an excellent trout bite using jigs on a rising tide, catching 14" to 17" fish. Atlanta must have finally gotten some rain (Yes? Details?) because we have had a push of fresh water recently - good for the oysters but it's got the stripers & hybrids a bit mixed up and spread out making them harder to locate. For the most part, Chris has been working on publishing his 2007 Tarpon photos in book form. Should be hot off the press in the next couple weeks. He described it to me as "Pictorial Tarpon Mania with Gill Shaking Action". This limited production book is now available - I have copies in my office. Capt. Jr. Holland reminded me that Speckled Trout season is closed during the month of February but We Catch Fish (better come catch em now while you can keep em!) so you will just have to practice catch & release with us then. Right now mid January we hear there's lots of trout on Cat Point. Also in February we look forward to the Spanish Mackerel moving back in - they're a riot to catch! Note - Bayfishing trip prices have increased slightly over last years end of year price.
And Capt. David Heinke just said "It's Cold!" but maybe that's because he would rather be inside his warm house tying flies instead of outside doing yard work.
Keys Update - The following days are still available with Tommy or Chris in the Lower Keys: February 22-25, March 15-17, 23 & 24, April 11-14 & 18-21. Jason has Late February and early March dates open as well. And if you have reserved dates but haven't gotten around to sending your deposit in, here's your reminder!
Groundhog Day!

Come spend it on the Forgotten Coast touring over 100 homes during our area-wide (Franklin & Gulf County) Open House. Saturday February 2nd, 10-4. Click the following link for more details & the list of homes. http://www.blogger.com/The rules have changed for Bulk emailing and I am no longer able to send out my fishing reports to everyone at the drop of a hat - that may be a good thing. I will be posting my fishing reports to the website regularly and sending individual emails a usual, however the result of this new format will determine whether I can continue to send out my newsletter in a timely fashion. Let me know what you think & Thanks for being a loyal reader!
Kathy Robinson

Robinson Brothers Guide Service
118 Commerce St.
Apalachicola, Florida 32320
850-653-8896
850-653-7196 (cell)



REALTOR - Robinson Real Estate Company
850-653-1653
Apalachicola Bay Area Chamber of Commerce http://www.apalachicolabay.org/
Carrabelle Chamber of Commerce http://www.carrabelle.org/
Gulf County Chamber of Commerce http://www.gulfchamber.org/
Florida Guides Assn. http://www.blogger.com/

Perfect Conditions For Snook



Southern Snookin' SLOBBERKNOCKER Style!
What a great night! Darren and I were on one boat and Doug, JD and the infamous Ricky Bobby were on Doug's boat. We battled snook all night. We kept the identity of Ricky Bobby hidden so the press would leave him alone. All the fish were caught on jigs and we had a blast doing it! We had perfect conditons and the tide was right along with the full moon. No telling what would have happened with live bait. We landed 15 snook and missed several. Some of the fish would just wear you out. It was one awesome night!We will be talking about it this week on the 'Hawgwild Fishing Show'! Tune in for reports from around the state and Ricky Bobby!Every Saturday from 6-8 am on ESPN WIXC 1060 and WAMT 1190 and the replay every SUnday from 6-8 am on ESPN WHOO 1080!Tight Lines and Good Fishing! NEW PHOTOS!
23 Jan 2008 by Captain David Rogers

Orlando International Boat Show Seminar
I will be giving two seminars at the Olrando International Boat Show next week. The show is Friday thru Sunday. I will be there Firday night from 5-6 pm and Saturday from 2-3 pm. I wll have some MirrOlures and Rip Tide baits for prizes! Come on out! Florida Fishing Weekly is sponsoring the event!Tight Lines and Good Fishing!BOOK NOW FOR JANUARY AND FEBRUARY! 407-405-0819!
12 Jan 2008 by Captain David Rogers
Captain David Rogers
AAA Hawgwild Saltwater Charters LLC
Host The 'Hawgwild Fishing Show'
ESPN WIXC 1060 /WAMT 1180 Satudays 6-8am
(407-273-1190) Live call-in
ESPN WHOO 1080 Sunday 6-8am/ replay -
http://www.hawgwildradio.com/
407-405-0819 Book Charters
http://www.blogger.com/

Everglades Fishing Report 1-'08

Everglades Fishing Report
Everglades National Park, FL
January 24, 2008

The first of the milder cold fronts has already rolled through, and the fishing action remains steady. The water temperature is in the mid 70 degree range, which starts the fish moving into their Winter haunts in the backcountry - Shallow clear water, which makes for some real exciting "sight fishing". You'll be surprised how these large fish will migrate to, and live in such shallow water. Many of our recent Redfish catches have taken place with the fish's dorsal fin sticking out of the water!
This is one of the best times of year to go Everglades fishing, as the weather is traditionally clear and warm. Fishing the protected backcountry bays and rivers is some of the most beautiful and productive fishing you'll find anywhere. However, as things do start to cool off a little more, don't be fooled into thinking that you no longer need sunscreen - use plenty of SPF 30 and drink lots of water.
As expected, the Redfish fishing has remained very strong over the last few weeks, with "rats" lurking in every shallow bay. Fish for them in mouths of creeks on outgoing tides, or in the back of shallow bays around oysters on a rising tide. They have been hitting everything from live bait to jigs and flies.
Snook fishing has continued to be very good, with usual catches in the 24 - 30 inch range. There are a number of both larger and smaller Snook mixed in as well. And, like the Redfish, they are hitting on live bait, jigs, flies, and topwater plugs. The topwater plugs are the most exciting way to catch them, as they will crash these baits with an explosive attack. This time of year they can be found anywhere from the outside points, or way up in the backcountry. Keep in mind that the current which triggers their feeding can come from the wind, as well as the tide. They love to take up a position on the down tide/wind side of a point that has the current sweeping across it. When stalking them in the backcountry "stealth" is of the utmost importance - even the slightest sound can spook them in shallow water.
We are fortunate to have a resident population of small to medium sized Tarpon in Everglades National Park. They will be targets of opportunity for the next few months. Backcountry bays have been the most reliable producers of Tarpon, often suspended just under the surface. Like Snook, they'll hit a top water plug, or fly (black death, cockroach, EP mullet), early in the morning or evening hours. During the day, a live bait offering will be your best chance of success.
Call me today to go on an Everglades Fishing Charter !

Everglades-Fishing
Captain Brian Richardson

239-340-0265
http://www.everglades-fishing.com/

US Coast Guard Master Licensed Captain Licensed Everglades National Park Guide FL Guides Association Member IGFA Certified Captain

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Indian River Lagoon Water Extremely Low

Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Report, January 22, 2008
Compliments of Mosquito Creek Outdoors, Apopka Florida
Winter clearly had a firm grip on most of America this past week, including Central Florida, and its influence has dominated our weather with snotty conditions all week. Although the weather was tough, I did manage one outing on Wednesday as part of a 15-boat group charter. The morning greeted us with 50-degree temperatures and east winds of about 15 knots, not the best conditions by far.We met our group at Parrish Park in Titusville around 7am, and as they unloaded from the buss I could immediately tell they weren't from Florida. My anglers, Keith and Sean were some of the first to department the buss, and Keith was wearing a short sleeve shirt. One of the great things about guiding anglers on the Indian River Lagoon is meeting folks from all walks of life and from distant locations, and the less they know about the our diversity of our fishery the more enjoyable the experience. As it turned out, both Keith and Sean we from Minnesota, and they were fishing through a hole in the ice just a few weeks earlier.



Keith Meierhofer's 38-inch redfish caught on 01-16-08
The weather conditions were not bad at first, and as I attempted to poll into our first spot we could see redfish tailing and pushing in the distance. Currently water levels on the Lagoon are extremely low, and as hard as I tried, we couldn't reach the fish. Next, we departed the flat to fish in deeper water, and finally caught the two largest redfish in the group.


Sean Cheslock's IRL Redfish caught on 01-16-07

My good friend and lagoon mentor Captain Rodney Smith once said "as a fishing guide, on some days you are a hero, and on some days you a zero", which sums up this weeks charters. Yesterday, I had the pleasure of fishing Catherine and Jim from Canada, and the weather was a bit windy but enjoyable. The only problem was we couldn't buy a bite, and after fishing hard for six hours, our net result was one redfish.



This photo is a correction to my last report which should read," Tom's No-Motor Zone redfish caught on a Salt & Pepper RipTide Flats Chub". From left to right, brothers Chris, Tom, and Bill.

Seminars and Events

February 10th, Gander Mountain, Meet Your Maker Event

March 1st, 2nd, and 8th Bass Pro Shop Spring Fling, Orlando Florida

April 18th, 19th, 20th, Coastal Angler Magazine Boating and Fishing Expo, Melbourne, Florida.

As always, if you have any questions or need more information, please contact me.Good luck, good fishing,


Captain Tom Van Horn
Mosquito Coast Fishing Charters

http://www.irl-fishing.com/
407-366-8085 landline
407-416-1187 on the water
866-790-8081 toll free


Book a charter, and let's go fishing.
Stock up on your outdoor needs online from the comfort of you own desk at: http://www.mosquitocreekoutdoors.com/.


Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Skyway Piers Fishing Warming Up

I spoke with the North Skyway Fishing Pier, in the mouth of Tampa Bay, this afternoon. They tell me that fishing was slow the last few days due to the cold front blowing through, but with warmer temperatures and calm winds it should pick up. Look for spanish mackerel and bonita to make a showing at the piers about two hours before, until an hour after the afternoon tide change. Live shrimp or bait fish, Got-Cha Plugs, small Kandlefish Lures or small spoons will get the most action. Use a short piece of wire leader to help prevent cut offs. Anglers targeting grouper on the rock piles are catching quite a few short fish but few keepers. Live pinfish on the bottom will catch the most fish. Also look for sheepshead around the bridges pylons. Fiddler crabs, blood worms, and shrimp will be the best baits. For more information contact;

North Skyway Fishing Pier
727-865-0668
10501 Sunshine Skyway Bridge
St Petersburg, FL 33711
http://www.skywaypiers.com/

Monday, January 21, 2008

Redfish Anxious To Entertain

January 14, 2008 - No Place Like Home
There is no place like home. There is no place like home. There is no place like home - especially for a fishing guide living along the central east coast of Florida. After spending a week and a half in the frozen tundra of northern Alabama, it sure was good to return home to the greater Orlando area. While visiting family though, our Florida weather was besieged by an artic blast which dropped temperatures and threw the Chamber of Commerce (along with the fish) into a near panic. However, I am glad to report now that both weather and fish have returned to normal. Capt. Roland had several guide trips worthy of reporting over the past week or so. The first involved several local utes (youths) and took place in the Indian River near Melbourne (60 miles southeast of Orlando). The Ryan boys, Michael, Daniel and Joey had a grand time on their charter catching a number of redfish, snook, black drum, sheephead and snapper. Pictured below is Michael holding one of his trophies, a rare wintertime snook.


Rich Spycher and Rich, Jr, a father and son combo, escaped from the frigid regions near Chicago to enjoy our warmer Florida environs and do a little fishing. Chartered with Capt. Roland, these northwesterners had a great guide trip catching 7 reds to 26 inches, 6 black drum, 3 sheephead and mango snappers and one bluefish. Fishing the deeper shorelines of the inshore islands near the historic fish camp on Honest John Canals (65 miles southeast of Orlando), the action was nearly non-stop for about five hours. Lee and Angie, a couple from Kansas vacationing just north of Orlando, joined two Native Sons Fishing guides, Capt. Roland and me, the following day, on the same waters, and fishing the same tides. And even though we caught a similar variety of fish, they were smaller and a whole lot less in numbers. Fishing can be fickle! All in all though, a great time was had by everyone on this gorgeous, sun-soaked day - evidenced by the smiles in the photographs below.








Finally, Ray Duval, an old buddy of mine from Baltimore, chartered last Friday for a little redfish action on the Banana River in Merritt Island (40 miles east of Orlando). The reds were plentiful and anxious to entertain. Pictured below are Ray and one of the numerous reds caught on the half-day guide trip.


Native Sons Fishing Guides
Captain Rocky Van Hoose
321-986-9588
rvanhoose@cfl.rr.com
Captain Brad Jones
321-626-5072
jonesmelb7@bellsouth.net

Posted by Rocky Van Hoose on January 14, 2008 at 11:39:02 AM

Captain Charlie's February Forecast


January 17, 2008
February Forecast
INSHORE:
As another front has come whisking through the Treasure Coast, it's the first week in a long time that I haven't been on the water. Catching up on a few things around the house and anxiously waiting for my Mother and Brother to arrive from West Virginia.....yep, I'm a hillbilly from long ago! Let's take a few minutes and look ahead at what will be happening around the Indian River for February.
Snook season will once again open on the Atlantic Coast and anglers will be out there seeking the slot size fish around the river. It might just be a good time to check the dates on your snook permit. Fishing around the bridges in both Fort Pierce and Stuart will be a good bet on a hookup. The turning basin around the Fort Pierce inlet will also be holding snook along the seawalls. Don't forget to fish some of the deeper docks around the area. Live bait, feather jigs and DOA Terroreyz are good choices to entice a snook to bite.
Redfish have been a bit scattered as the water turns cooler. They will be hanging on the edges of the flats and moving up into the shallows on sunny days to keep warm. Try some darker color jerk baits like the DOA CAL rootbeer 6" on a CAL jighead. Fish around the deeper mangroves for a chance at a slot size redfish in February. Work your lures slow....slow....slow... Try cut bait or live pinfish on the deeper areas of the flats. You can catch a red during the middle of the day on the flats during winter. Patience and persistence sometimes pays off out there.
Trout should be the most prevalent bite in February. Find some good grass flats in 2 - 5 feet of water and use live shrimp on popping corks. Harbor Branch and Queen's Cove are good areas north of Fort Pierce and the Power Plant to the south also can provide some good action. Jerk baits are good artificials along with shallow running MirroLures.
If you plan on fishing the jetties or bridges, look for croakers, sheephead and black drum to be hanging around the catwalks. Bluefish, mackerel and jacks will usually be crashing bait around the jetties. Winter conditions can be challenging some days so plan your day around the weather. It can be gusty most days, but there are many places to fish depending on the direction of the wind.
The SURF will continue to hold whiting and some pompano. The pomp bite has been better this year, Use shrimp or sand fleas along the beach for these fish. Silver spoons or shiny lures can coax a bluefish, mackerel or jack to bite. It can get tough to fish on the easterly blow in winter, so watch the weather before heading out.
Tip of the Week: Water temperature varies throughout the river and can affect the fishing. The warmer the water in winter, the more chance you have at catching fish. Deeper water will be the best bet in early mornings and on sunny days the flats can come alive as those temperatures begin to rise. Watch for bait.... Fish will follow the bait and you will have an even better chance at hooking up. There are a lot of variables out there this time of year. Be aware of conditions and use them to your advantage in winter.
As always, remember, fishing is not just another hobby....it's an ADVENTURE!!Good Fishing and Be Safe,

Captain Charlie Conner
772-284-3852
(Captain Charlie Conner has been fishing the Indian River Lagoon for over twenty-five years. Specializing in light tackle fishing in Fort Pierce, Vero Beach, Jensen Beach, Stuart and Port St Lucie, Florida. His weekly South Indian River Lagoon Fishing Report gives you the latest inshore fishing information for the Treasure Coast area on the Indian River Lagoon.}

Friday, January 18, 2008

Half Hitch Tackle Fishing Report 1-18-08



Report for 01-18-2008 Salt Water
MEXICO BEACH/PORT ST JOE OFFSHORE
Trolling for Grouper continues to produce nice fish... Troll a Mann’s stretch 25’ in 50’ or shallower over shallow wrecks like the lumber ship and the stretch 30’s in 60’ plus over the car bodies will work. The water is calming this week and if you can get out head to the 120’ mark for the best bite. Live bait is best, Second choice is of course butter flied Northern Mackerel or Cigar Minnows.
Triggers are strong right now and are caught with a drop rig of three #2 Owner Fly liner hooks 12” apart with squid being great bait. They are around any wreck or reef and are a great eating fish.
Amberjack’ are a great target right now and the bite is strong. Set up a chum line over the offshore reefs or Air Force towers and toss a free line bait in amongst the chum line.
ST JOSEPH BAY
Live shrimp fished on the bottom is the bait of choice in the canal and the PSJ marina. Some good Redfish catches are reported from the canal jigging live baits along the bottom. Work your way up into the bayous where the bottom is dark for some good afternoon action. Gotcha grubs and DOA ¼ oz clear/red flake shrimp are bringing them in.
The Whiting are still thick right in the surf with Cape San Blas still being your best option. Best overall rig is a 2-hook Pompano rig with a 2oz pyramid weight (1 oz if using light line). Grasp a shrimp, pinch off the head and tail, and run the shrimp over your hook starting tail first. Sheepshead' are also being caught in the surf on their migration. Flounder will still hang around the inshore wrecks, especially since we have this warming trend going on... Carolina rig a Bull minnow on a 1/0 mutu light circle hook with 15 lb fluorocarbon leader.
PANAMA CITY OFFSHORE AND BAYS
Grouper are being caught in shallower water. Scamp are being caught within 5 miles of the beach. Lots of Red Grouper can be caught within 10 miles over hard bottom areas. Live bait, whole Boston Mackerel and jigs(Shimano Butterfly or Williamson) are working well. Jigs with a glow color to them are a sure bet.
Amberjack are on many of the inshore wrecks and reefs in good numbers. Try the Bridge Spans for lots of action. The larger fish will be well offshore over hard bottom. Live Cigar Minnows or Pinfish will entice the larger fish, while jigs (Williamson Jig or AJ Jig) will trigger the most bites.
The Flounder bite has been great. Best reports are coming from close to shore structure in up to 75 feet of water. Use a Carolina rig with live Bull Minnows for the best results.
ST ANDREWS BAY SYSTEM
Sheepshead’ are starting to show up in greater numbers. Under the Hwy 79 bridge and around the jetties are hot spots. We just received a shipment of live Fiddler Crabs. This is the absolute best bait to use. Use a Carolina rig with a small hook and light lead for best results.
Pompano are being caught regularly along the beaches. Throw a jig tipped with Shrimp, Sand Fleas, or Gulp. They are also being caught using frozen Sand Fleas, rigged on a 2 hook leader and pyramid sinker.
Silver Trout are being caught in large numbers under the Hathaway and Tyndall bridges. Use Live Shrimp on the bottom for best results.
The Trout bite has been sporadic. Many have started to move into the creeks, marinas, and intercostals waterway. The cooler water temperatures will push these fish into deep holes in these areas. Not much is better than live Shrimp worked slowly on the bottom with a jighead or Carolina rig.
Bull and Slot Reds have moved into the pass in numbers. Gulp, Gold Spoons, Live Shrimp, LY’s, Bull Minnows, Pin Fish and Cut Bait are working well.
DESTIN
On the piers they have had a few good days catching Bonita along with the occasional Flounder and a Pompano or two. Days with colder mornings are proving to be good fishing days.
Out on the jetties anglers are catching Reds, Sheepshead’ and a Pompano or two using live Shrimp and Berkley Gulp.
In the bay, you will find plenty of White Trout around the bridges and in the harbor. Small jigs and gulps are working well. The sheepshead’ are good on the bridge pilings using live Shrimp.
In the gulf the Amberjack bite is still very good and few Grouper. The Jacks are best on big steel wrecks and Grouper are on live bottom.
NAVARRE
The Bluefish and Bonita are still being caught in the Gulf off the piers and from the beach. Anglers are using Jigfish spoons in 1 1/2oz size and Sea Striker spoons in 2 and 3 oz size. There have been sporadic reports of Pompano being caught on shrimp.
The rivers are giving up catches of Trout and Redfish. Most fishermen are using live Shrimp, but there have been good catches made on 1/4oz and 1/2oz grubs. For best results anglers are working live bait and jigs slowly along the bottom in the deeper holes of the river.
Sheephead and Black Drum are still being caught along all the bridge pilings using small Live Shrimp with #4 and #6 hooks. If you can find fiddler crabs, this is an excellent bait to use. Also for all you boat anglers, bring a hoe or a spade to scrape the barnacles off the pilings. This make a great chum line.
Capt. Scott Holmes of the "Yeild Spread" reports good catches of Amberjack on near shore wrecks and structures using Butterfly jigs. Scott says he has tried Live Bait and other lures but the Butterflies are the ticket. The Flounder bite has improved on the wrecks out to five miles. Capt. Robert Cochran reports he has hade some good days with up to 20 fish. Live Bull Minnows and small live Pinfish will get the job done.
Fresh Water
Crappie bite came back on with this cooler weather. Head to Depot Creek with some live minnows and you will have to play with your depth, but start at 6’. Anglers report the bass have moved up a little and are in about 10-12 feet of water and are hitting soft plastics.
Half Hitch Tackle
850-234-2621
2206 Thomas Dr
Panama City, Fl 32408
Fishing Report prepared by Half Hitch Tackle Staff.

The Captains Corner Fishing Report is provided by local charter captains and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Half Hitch Tackle.

This report is dedicated to the memory of Al Hubbard. Al Hubbard was a field editor for Florida Sportsman magazine, an outdoor writer for the News Herald and a board member of the Florida Outdoor Writer's Association. Mr. Hubbard was also the owner of Al's Outdoors Outfitting Services.

New Port Richey Redfish, Trout Recover

Thursday January 10th, 2008
Full Recovery

Well, we've had a few days of warm weather since our severe cold front that killed a lot of fish. The fishing has been getting better by the day and today proved that we're back to normal, or even better. A buddy of mine called me while I was on the way to the ramp and said that his clients caught over 100 trout this morning before 10am and that the smallest one was 20"! That's a stellar morning in anybody's book. Hearing that got me fired up because it made me think that my redfish may be back on some of my go to spots.

I put the boat in in New Port Richey and ran to the first spot. The tide was pretty low but rushing in quickly because of the Southerly wind we had. As I inched my way up on the flat I could see mullet jumping. That was a good sign because a few days ago the mullet had disappeared along with the redfish. A few minutes later I saw the first small pod of over slot redfish. Game on!

I worked that spot and a few others for a little over three hours and saw well over 500 redfish ranging from 20" to 30+". I didn't catch a ton of fish, because I was working the flats over pretty fast and blowing out a lot of fish, but I did manage 6 redfish and one trout. The smallest red was 22" and the largest was 30". All were caught on Mangrove Red colored Exude RT Slugs fished on weightless weedless hooks.

I know we have some more cold fronts coming but none look to be as severe as the one we had last week so I remain hopeful that these fish will stick around for a while.

Tampa Bay Fishing
Captain Clay Eavenson
813-300-2147

http://www.captainclay.com/
gofishing@captainclay.com

Thursday, January 17, 2008

LIVE From The NOOK

Snook Nook Jensen Beach, FL
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Thursday, 8:30pm, Henry from the Snook Nook in Jensen Beach hosts a live web cast. Tune in to hear the latest inshore and offshore fishing reports form one of South East Florida's top sources of fishing information! To watch the web cast click this link, http://www.snooknook.net/webcast/index.html .

Best Trout Action In Gasparilla Sound

Capt. Rick Grassett’s Fishing Report for 1/8 through 1/17/2008

Anglers fishing with me on the Snook fin-Addict, out of CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had good action in Sarasota Bay and Charlotte Harbor during the past 10 days. Fly anglers scored with trout, bluefish, Spanish mackerel and ladyfish. In addition to those species, anglers using spinning tackle also caught and released big reds, little tunny and flounder. Fishing for trout was best in Gasparilla Sound in Charlotte Harbor while the best action with reds was in Sarasota Bay.
Fly anglers, Richard Ives from MI, and his brother-in-law, Bob, from VA fished Sarasota Bay with me on Jan. 8th. We worked lots false albacore in the coastal gulf off Lido Key, but they were up and down so fast that we couldn’t do anything with them. We did catch and release one Spanish mackerel on an Ultra Hair Clouser fly fished on an intermediate fly line before heading into Sarasota Bay and where we found some nice reds scattered along a sand bar near Buttonwood Harbor. Richard caught and released 3 on CAL jigs with shad tails while backing up Bob, who was casting a fly while I poled the boat. We finished the day with a dozen trout on Ultra Hair Clouser flies fishing deep grass near Whale Key.
The next day, Keith McClintock from Lake Forest, IL, and his son-in-law, Rick Anderson, also from IL, fished the same areas with me. Although the little tunny were still moving fast and not giving good shots, we could throw a top water plug far enough to get in front of them. Rick caught and released a nice little tunny on a MirrOlure Top Dog, Jr. before we headed for the reds. In addition to the reds, which were where we left them the day before, we also caught about 10 trout to 20” and about 6 nice blues to 4-pounds. They caught and released 8 reds to 28”, including several over the slot. Everything was caught with CAL jigs with shad tails.
Fly angler, Capt. Joe Schwab from San Diego, CA, fished with me the next 2 days. Joe is a retired, big boat skipper who spent more than 20 years fishing marlin and tuna on trips from southern California to Baja, Mexico. After spending years chasing big marlin and tuna, Joe likes to relax now by sight fishing with a fly, so that was our plan. Although we saw quite a few reds in Sarasota on Thursday and had a few shots, we didn’t get one to eat. We headed for Gasparilla Sound in Charlotte Harbor on Friday hoping to find tailing reds or sight fishing opportunities by wading sand bars. However, the weather turned on us as winds picked up and clouds moved in. We salvaged the day with trout, ladyfish and a bluefish caught and released in Gasparilla Sound with Ultra Hair Clouser flies fished on an intermediate fly line.
The next 2 days were also spent in Charlotte Harbor with Sarasota winter residents, Tom Lamb and Lee Williams, on Monday and Keith McClintock, from Lake Forest, IL, and Victor Feldman, from Champagne, IL, on Tuesday. Both parties caught and released trout to 21”, several reds and snook to 24”. The best day was Tuesday when we caught about 10 slot size trout to 21”. Cal Jigs with shad tails and DOA Deadly Combos accounted for all the fish.
The wind cranked up ahead of an approaching front on Wednesday so I fished Little Sarasota Bay, which offers some protection from wind, with Manuel Pretti and Donald Chiappelli, both from PA. Despite 15 to 20-mph winds, they caught and released trout, ladyfish, flounder, reds and grouper. The best action was near Blackburn Point. All fish were caught with CAL jigs and shad or grub tails. I awoke to a driving rain storm on Thursday morning, forcing the cancelation of that day’s fishing.
With water temperatures in the low 60’s, no drastic temperature changes on the horizon for the next week and good tides as we head toward a full moon on the 22nd, fishing should continue to be good. Tides are favorable for reds and trout in potholes or tailing reds in Gasparilla Sound and reds, trout and more in Sarasota Bay.

Tight Lines,
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.
FFF Certified Fly Casting Instructor
(941) 923-7799
E-mail snookfin@aol.com
http://www.flyfishingflorida.net/ and http://www.snookfin-addict.com/


Richard Ives, from MI, caught and released this big red on a CAL jig with a shad tail while fishing Sarasota Bay with Capt. Rick Grassett.


Victor Feldman, from Champagne, IL, caught and released this snook in the back country of Gasparilla sound on a CAL jig with a shad tail while fishing with Capt. Rick Grassett.


Rick Anderson, from IL, caught and released this nice Sarasota Bay bluefish on a CAL jig with a shad tail while fishing Sarasota Bay with Capt. Rick Grassett.

Word Of The Day REDFISH


Fishing Report 01/17/2008 Capt. Terry Frankford

Redfish, Redfish, Redfish, the species of the week with out a doubt. Thanks to a tip on a location from my good friend Capt. Tony Westheimer, also a Hart's Landing guide, I was able to put my anglers on some Great - Big - Reds. The largest being thirty-four inches weighing in at fifteen pounds caught by John Anderson from Chicago, IL. Using lite spinning tackle with only fifteen pound test line made for some exciting action. Also, Spanish Mackerel, Bluefish, Pompano, Sheepshead, and Ladyfish were around for some great action.

Here are a few fish tails from recent trips aboard the Reelin & Chillin.

Jeff, and Denise Zerby with friends Kevin, and Roberta Grauer nailed the Redfish on a morning trip in Sarasota Bay around structure. All together over twelve Reds were landed in the first few hours of the trip. Only two made the slot of eighteen to twenty-seven inches, all the rest were to large to keep. Roberta caught the big Red of the day at thirty-two inches weighing in at fourteen pounds. All fish were released for the rest of us to enjoy in the future, way to go crew.

Brian Cook, and John Anderson also had an afternoon of fantastic Redfish action. Around ten Reds were caught and released, three were in the slot, however all were released. John stole the Big fish of the week award with a thirty-four inch Red weighing in at fifteen pounds. We headed to Sarasota Big Pass in hopes of getting Brian into some Ladyfish action on the fly. He had plenty of hits and did manage to get one to the boat for a photo and release.

Terry and Ginny Allen hit the Redfish hole and for one last time I was able to get on the Reds. Terry was a catch and release angler and that he did. We didn't even keep track he caught so many with the largest being thirty-two inches. It was such great action that I dropped a line in just for GP and a moment later I was releasing an over-slot Red.

As it goes, all good things must come to an end - I took the next crew to the Redfish-hole with no fish making it to the boat. We were broken off twice, however they just wouldn't turn on again. So my crew the Petricks, Chad, Chris, Ciara, Brent, and Julie headed to the New Pass area to seek action, and found it. Trout, Spanish Mackerel, and Bluefish were all over feeding on glass minnows. These fish had no problem taking our shrimp to the point that I ran out of the first eight dozen, bought another seven dozen and went through them in less than an hour. Ciara, caught the big fish of the day, a twenty-four inch Spanish Mackerel, nice fish Ciara.

Captain's Tip

When you find big fish around docks or other types of structure while using lite tackle keep this in mind. Most of the time the water if going to be deep, around five to eight feet near the structure where the fish are hanging. Your bait needs to be up under the dock or right at the pile, if your cast isn't there, re-cast. Don't flip your bail right after casting, leave it open and feed line out so your bait goes straight down, then flip the bail over. When the bait has reached the bottom get all the slack out of the line making sure not to pull the bait away from the dock. Pay attention, if your not paying attention Redfish will pick up the bait and slowly swim around the piles, this results in a sure break off. As you feel that first tug reel like crazy to pull the fish out from the structure. Once out you can play the fish a little to tire it before attempting the landing. Be gentle with the big ones your going to release, dropping one in the boat or keeping it out of the water to long could kill the fish. These big ones are near ready to leave the bays and head offshore to breed, we need to protect them as much as possible.

Tight Lines & Good Times, Capt. Terry Frankford

Capt. Terry Frankford
941/228-7802

terry.frankford@verizon.net
www.charterfishingsarasota.com
www.naturetourflorida.com

American Shad Have Arrived

Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Report, January 14, 2008

Complements of Mosquito Creek Outdoors, Apopka Florida

Although some nice fish were caught on every outing this past week, the catching was very slow for the most part. Over the past 8 days, I had the pleasure to fish on the St. Johns River for American shad on three occasions, the east side of the Banana River No-Motor Zone, and a solo scouting trip to the Indian River Lagoon in Titusville.

For starters, I fished the St. Johns River in the area south of Lake Harney, and the American shad have arrived, but they are not in good numbers yet. On both of these excursions we caught several nice shad each and a mix of some nice bass, speckled perch, and even catfish, but the catching wasn't on fire.



Billy's No-Motor Zone Redfish Caught on a Salt and Pepper RipTide Flats Chub

On Friday, I had a charter with three brothers Chris, Tom, and Billy on a quest for a large redfish, so we paddled in to the east shore of the No-Motor Zone. Although it was a nice morning, with light winds from the south at about 5 knots and a marine forecast of 5 to 10 knots in the afternoon, I was a little concerned about this wind situation because paddling in would be a breeze; paddling out would be a challenge. In the afternoon my apprehensions proved true as my experience with the marine forecast is a prediction of 5 to 10 knot winds means you add the two together, and in this case, as we faced at least 15 knots right down the teeth on our return trip. Notwithstanding the wind situation, we did not see a single tail the whole day, and our final score was 6 puffers and one nice upper slot redfish caught by Billy on a RipTide Salt & Pepper/ Chartreuse Flats Chub.

Due to the windy conditions today, I returned to the St. Johns River with Captain Chris Myers. I wish I could tell you the bite was on fire, but the truth be known, it was not. We fished hard in the area of the old Marina Isles Fish Camp, and I caught one shad on a pink crazy Charlie, and between us we boated a half dozen speckled perch. As my good friend Captain Chris stated, "It was a good day to be out of the offices".


Seminar and Event Schedule:

January 17th, 18th, 19th, and 20th, Central Florida Boat Show Orlando Convention Center.

No Motors, No Problem Seminar Friday the 18th at 700 PM.

January 22nd, Orlando Kayak Club Meeting, Gander Mountain in Lake Mary 7 PM, Rigging Soft Plastic Baits for Redfish and Sea Trout.

March 1st, 2nd, and 8th Bass Pro Shop Spring Fling, Orlando Florida

April 18th, 19th, 20th, Coastal Angler Magazine Boating and Fishing Expo, Melbourne, Florida.

As always, if you have any questions or need more information, please contact me.Good luck, good fishing,


Captain Tom Van Horn
Mosquito Coast Fishing Charters

http://www.irl-fishing.com/
407-366-8085 landline
407-416-1187 on the water

866-790-8081 toll free

Book a charter, and let's go fishing.
Stock up on your outdoor needs from the comfort of you own desk at: http://www.mosquitocreekoutdoors.com/.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Cool Water Helps Pompano, Sailfish Bite


JAN. 4, 08 FISHING
YES I KNOW, "WHERE HAVE I BEEN", WITH OUT A NOVEMBER OR DECEMBER WHATS IS DOING. WELL IT JUST SEEMS I HAVE BEEN BUSY DOING OTHER THINGS. BUT I WONDER WHAT DID I DO WITH THE TIME? SO WE ARE GOING TO TRY A NEW THING A LIVE BROADCAST FORM THE NOOK ON OUR WEB SITE EVERY THURSDAY AT 8:30 PM AND THAT I WILL HAVE TO BE HERE, NO WAY OUT. HAVING LEFT THE TELEVISION WORLD, STILL DOING A LOT OF RADIO I HOPE WE CAN MAKE THIS WORK. IF YOU ARE HOME DIAL IN AND SEE HOW MANY MISTAKES I CAN MAKE. LET’S GO CATCH A FISH.
COLD THIS WEEK WITH TEMPS STARTING THE DAY IN THE LOW FORTY’S AND OVERCAST WITH A FEW SHOWERS, YES THE WIND WAS BLOWING. TODAY IS A NEW DAY OVERCAST BUT QUIET WITH NO WIND. THE WATER IS SETTLING, CLEARITY IS COMING BACK AND THING ARE LOOKING REAL GOOD.
THE SURF IS BLUE FISH AND MORE BLUE FISH SO MANY THAT THE WHITING WERE COMING UP ON THE SAND TO GET AWAY FROM THEM. NOW ADD THE COLD SNAP AND YES WE WILL HAVE MORE BLUES. THESE FISH ARE IN THE THREE TO FIVE POUND CLASS AND YES THEY DO MAKE EXCELLENT TABLE FARE. CUT BAITS, SPOONS, TOP WATER PLUGS WILL ALL GET THEIR ATTENTION. THE WHITING, AT YOUR TOES, NOW THE POMPANO, THEY LOVE THE COOLER WATER. POMPS HAVE BEEN OFF AND ON IN THE SURF WITH TEMPS AND CLARITY MOVING THE FISH. WELL THE TEMPS ARE PERFECT THE SEAS ARE POLITE, LOOKING FORWARD TO CATCH IN THE COMING DAYS.
TROUT SEASON IS OPEN AND THEY DO NOT KNOW IT, STILL A LOT OF BIG FISH TO REPORT. TWO FEET OF WATER IS THE DEPTH AND YOU COULD START ON THE SAIL FISH FLATS AND GO NORTH TO VERO, TOP WATER, SOFT RUBBER AND LIVE BAITS HAVE ALL PUT FISH IN THE BOAT. STILL A LOT OF BIG FISH, GREAT FOR PHOTOS, TERRIBLE ON THE TABLE. IF YOU WANT TO KEEP A TROUT IT MUST BE FIFTEEN INCHES, THE BEST FOR THE TABLE, FIVE IS THE BAG, 15 TO 20 INCHES AND ONE OF THOSE FISH CAN BE OVER 20 INCHES. REDS ON THE WEST SIDE FROM SEWALLS POINT TO FT. PIERCE, IT IS A MORNING BITE AND THAT TWO FEET OF WATER IS THE ACTION ZONE. DO NOT SPEND A LOT OF TIME IN ONE SPOT, STAY IN THE CHANNEL AND WATCH THE WEST BANK FOR ACTIVITY THEN DRIFT IN. I PREFER A JIG, SOFT RUBBER, AND ANY BAIT THEY CAN GET ON TOP OF. SOME ANGLERS GET THEM WITH TOP WATER BUT I JUST TAKE IT A WAY, TO FAST ON THE HOOK SET.ONE PER ANGLER PER DAY AND 18 TO 26 INCHES IS THE SLOT. COOLER WATER IT WHAT IT WILL TO GET THE POMPS TO EAT AGAIN AND THAT’S THE REASON ANGLERS ARE NOT SAYING A WORD ABOUT THE FRONT. THEIR WAS A BITE AND THEN THE WATER WARMED AND THE FISH ALL OF SUDDEN HAD LOCK JAW, COLD FRONT IS SOUNDING ANY BETTER? WHEN YOU SEE THE FISH SKIPPING BEHIND THE BOAT IT IS TIME TO MAKE THE CIRCLE AND DRIFT BACK TO THAT LOCATION. PUT THE ANCHOR OUT START CASTING NYLURE JIGS WITH A PIECE OF SHRIMP ON THEM, VERY SLOW KEEP YOUR JIG ON THE BOTTOM. IT IS TO LIKE A CRAB OF SORTS JUST MOVING ACROSS THE BOTTOM. I WOULD EVEN PUT OUT A ROD WITH A SAND FLEA OR TWO TO GET ANOTHER BAIT IN THE WATER. POMPANO TRAVEL IN SCHOOLS AND THEY USUALY HAVE PATTERN THEY TRAVEL IN, LETS HOPE YOU ARE IN THE TRAVEL LANE. ANGLERS HAVE STARTED TO JIG FROM THE BRIDGE WITH HOT AND COLD REPORTS, DOC’S GOFFY JIG IS THE BAIT AND I AM NOT SURE WHY, WHO CARES THE POMPS LOVE THEM. GOOD CATCH OF MAC’S AND BLUES ALSO HANGING AROUND AND THE MACS ARE BIGGER THAN THOSE CAUGHT OUT SIDE THE INLET. PLENTY OF BLACK DRUM IN THE RIVER FROM ALL ACESS POINT EATING SHRIMP AND THEY ARE ALL GOOD SIZE FISH. JACKS, LADY FISH, SHEEP HEAD AND FEW I HAVE FORGOTTEN TO MENTION HAVE KEPT RODS BENT, RIVER IS BUSY SO COME ON DOWN.
OUT TO THE BLUE WATER, NOT SO POLITE THIS WEEK BUT AGAIN WITH COLD FRONT WHAT SAIL FISH WERE NOT HERE ARE HERE NOW.
SAIL FISH ACTION, START LOOKING IN SIXTY FEET AND TROLL FROM THERE, YOU NEED TO TAKE DINNER TO THE FISH. WHILE YOU ARE OUT THERE LOOKING PAY ATTENTION FOR ANY OTHER FLOTSAM THAT MAY HOLD A DOLPHINS ATTENTION. THE DOLPHIN HAVE BEEN IN THE TWENTY POUND CLASS OR PEANUT SIZE, NOTHING IN BETWEEN, RUN AND GUN YOU WILL FIND THEM. BOTTOM FISH, HAD TWO GROUPER BOTH IN THE THIRTY POUND CLASS AND AN ASORTMENT OF SNAPPER MOST FROM SOUTHERN LOCATIONS, SIXTY FEET, AND SARDINES WERE THE FAVORED BAIT.
I KNOW STAY UP TO DATE, LETS HOPE OUR THURSDAY NIGHT REPORTS CAN GO OFF WITH OUT A CATCH. NOW GO CATCH A FISH.

Snook Nook Bait & Tackle Shop
3595 NE Indian River Drive
Jensen Beach, FL
(Just South of the Jensen Causeway)
(772)-334-2145
(Since 1949)
E-Mail: henry@snooknook.net

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Cool Temps Light Key West Fishing Up


Key West Fishing Report
Happy New Year,
New year’s greeting from your friends here at Dream Catcher Charters.
Festivities and partying are almost over here in the Southernmost City. Our tourist season came here like someone shooting a gun. Traffic has picked up and I think it took me almost 15 minutes to get to work on Friday. I know that is nothing compared to what some of you in the “real” world have to deal with on a daily basis. Oh, Almost forgot. I did not know that my trucks thermometer in the rear view mirror would go into the 40’s. Yes I said 40’s. Key West experienced an All Time Low temp of 43 degrees this week. I experienced some new things.. Heat, I found out my new AC installed two years ago has a heater in it. Good discovery as it was rather frigid for keys standards in my home this week. Thanks Carrier.
Let’s get to fishing The New Year was off to a shivering bang this year. December of 07 went on the books as some of the best inshore fishing ever in December for the Key West grand slam. I often tell people when they are calling to book on Christmas week that they have a one in five chance for perfect weather. Well, this was the one of five it was truly incredible and the fishing was on fire. We caught bonefish, permit and tarpon all month long. Also, the Trout hung around for the 78 degree water along with some stellar Shark fishing too. A few lucky clients had the chance to catch Hammer head sharks and release them off Key West. Very Cool….
Now for the Forecast part. I was looking at the Computer models to cheat a bit with my crystal ball and it seems as though we have a Banner outlook for the next two weeks here in Key West, weather wise. Temps are coming up to the norm of 75 daytime and the water temps should remain in the low 70’s or upper 60’s which is fine for this time of the year. Realistically it’s behind schedule. We needed the front to bring things back to normal and set things up for the coming spring and summer. Funny how all that plays a part. The cooler water temps really light things up for the inshore waters of Key West with the Spanish Mackerel, Tarpon, Permit, Trout, Redfish, Pompano, Cobia and more.
All speculation at this point on the forecast but that’s what makes fishing fun. Ya never know what you will get till you wake up and see which way the Palms are blowing.
Come see us soon here at Dream Catcher Charters. We have a lot of fun things happening here with new boats coming in February in the form of a 32 ft Yellowfin Center console and another 24 Yellowfin Bay boat.

Capt. Steven P. Lamp
Office 1-888-362-3474
Cellular 1-305-304-0497
President Dream Catcher Charters
Fishing Guide for Flats, Back Country, Wreck and Reef Fishing.

Cold Water Space Coast Fishing Tactics

Another Cold Front is Approaching Florida
Here we go again, after a week or so of decent weather another cold front is likely to slow down the fishing. With low temperatures predicted in the low 40’s the water temp is going to fall too. With that in mind, this report is going to touch on some cold water fishing tactics you can use.
First of all, think s-l-o-w. Fish are cold blooded animals and their body temperature takes on the water temperature around them. When the water temperatures are falling the fish are seeking areas where they can be comfortable. For this reason cold weather often moves the fish to deep water holes, canals, or to areas characterized by warm water discharges such as occur at power plants.
You will have to take a big dose of patience with you when the water temps fall. The fish become very lethargic and limit their movement considerably. They are not likely to chase a bait at hot-rod speeds through the water column. If you do catch a fish in an area work it thoroughly because they do tend to concentrate in areas that provide them comfort.
I have two favorite lures for working deep water during cold weather periods. The first is my old standby the Rip Tide Mullet. Rigged on a ¼ ounce jig head the mullet can be worked slowly along the bottom using a reeling retrieve. In other words, just cast the jig out and reel very slowly to drag the lure across the bottom stirring it up as it goes. I like to use a contrasting body and tail such as the chartreuse with red tail.
What I am talking about here is water temperatures that have fallen into the 50’s with a passing cold front. You must make presentations that will be easy for them to eat. You almost can’t go to slow, but you have to make lots of casts and cover lots of territory.
Remember, the fish’s metabolism has slowed and they eat very little anyway so you have to get the bait in front of their nose. Deep water canals or dredge holes where the bottom is soft and mucky are good places to start your fishing day. Fish like to settle down in the mucky bottoms for warmth. Later in the day after the sun has warmed the water you can change your tactics and visit other areas starting on east facing shorelines which are first to catch the sun’s warming rays.
My second favorite bait for this type of fishing is the Rip Tide Mud Minnow. This versatile bait closely imitates a live mud minnow in shape and color. I like the darker colored green or Killifish versions. Work them the same way as described above with a presentation that stirs up the bottom. Don’t forget to keep it slow. If the reeling retrieve does not produce, try imparting a little jump to the presentation by lifting the rod tip gently. Just a couple of inches are usually enough. Visualize the mud minnow coming up off the bottom and landing right in front of a lethargic fish. This just might be the action required to trigger the strike.
Peacock Bass
Talking about this cold weather may make you dream of a tropical climate like Brazil to do some fishing. This is one of those trips of a lifetime deals. It’s not inexpensive but what a trip. It’s a 10 day trip that includes at least 6 days of fishing. A trip like this is a bargain at $3,550 plus airfare and tips. If you would like more information send me an email at presleyr@bellsouth.net. The trip is to the Amazon for some of the best Peacock Bass fishing in the world.
I hope to talk to you real soon with great fishing reports from Florida’s Space Coast.
As always, you can visit my website at www.inshorefishingadventures.com to view pictures of the fish we catch in the Cocoa Beach area. That's what it's all about. Good fishin'.

Capt. Ron Presley
www.inshorefishingadventures.ocm
presleyr@bellsouth.net