Monday, June 22, 2009

Summer Doldrums = Great Fishing!

Mosquito Creek Outdoors Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Report, June 21, 2009

By Captain Tom Van Horn

Events and Seminar Schedule:
July 25, 2009 "Free Fishing Classes" Introduction to Saltwater Flats Fishing Series, Class 4 of 8, "Hard Bait Applications" 10 am-12 noon at Mosquito Creek Outdoors, 170 S Washington Avenue in Apopka. Instructors are Captains Chris Myers and Tom Van Horn. For more details or directions, contact Mosquito Creek Outdoors at (407) 464-2000 or visit their website

The doldrums have settled into Central Florida right in time for the first day of summer with average high temperatures reaching the 95 degree mark. Hot is the key word here, because hot is the term best describing our catching this past week. The summer doldrums are a short period of time when the sea breezes control our weather, just before the influence of our tropics take effect and the cold water upwelling arrive. The doldrums result in a slick calm Atlantic "Lake Atlantic", with seas of less than two feet. It also results are clear blue ocean water all the way to the beach and very hot conditions.

This past week, I made serval trips out of Port Canaveral all resulting in quality catches of large jack crevalle, bonito, kingfish and tarpon. My first adventure was with my good friend Steve Chapman, as we ran south, we ended up finding a huge school of bonito, jacks and tarpon off of Melbourne Beach in about 30 feet of water. The school was pushing hard on the surface and every cast resulted in an instant hook-up. Steve was first to score throwing a Top Dog, but the bonito he caught inhaled the plug and the removal resulted in a dead fish. Gang hooks can be dangerous for both the angler and the fish, especially with big fish, so we switched to DOA Bait Busters and Storm Wild Eye Shad, and commenced to catch one big fish after another. Of course, each fish resulted in a 20 to 30 minute battle due to a size range of 15 to 30 pounds. There were also plenty of tarpon around, but you couldn't get the bait past the jacks and bonito. We also found some nice tripletail, for which Steve took several home for supper.

My next adventure was with my good friend Larry Carter resulted in similar situations, with the addition of some smoker kingfish and a huge silver king, (tarpon). The kingfish have moved in close along the beach to spawn on the new moon, and they have been feeding in the range of 30-feet of water. For tarpon, simply look for bait pods along the beach with rolling tarpon, and free line live pogies or finger mullet back into the frenzy and hang on. My best tarpon this week was in the 120 pound range, but she broke off late in the battle (20 minutes) as I failed to bow to her as she jumped close to the boat.

This is my favorite time of year to fish near-shore, but conditions can become dangerous due to the concentration of anglers trolling in close proximity to each other and loading and launching at the ramp, especially on the weekends, so please be courteous and patient while on the water.

I also received similar reports of near-shore fish coming from Ponce inlet and Sebastian, so don't hesitate and miss all of the fun. As always, if you have any questions or need information, please contact me.

Good luck and good fishing,

Captain Tom Van Horn Mosquito Coast Fishing Charters
407-366-8085 Land line 407-416-1187 On the water

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