Getting an Early Start!!!

Summer is definitely upon us and the weather has been extremely warm by mid day. I have been starting my trips a lot earlier than normal to capitalize on the cooler water temps in the morning and beat the heat of the day. Snook fishing has been the main objective and they are biting very good in the early dawn hours. Tidal flow is also key as low tide water temps are reaching near 90 degrees in the peak sun hours. The incoming tides are producing big snook around the rock structures while outgoing tides are funneling snook into cuts near the passes, waiting for bait to be pushed to them. Grunts caught in traps along with medium sized pinfish are working well in the clear beach waters. Greenbacks are becoming harder to catch in the north Pinellas area, typical of this time of year. Redfishing has slowed a bit, especially after passing the new moon phase. There are some redfish seeking cooler waters along the same structure that tends to hold the snook and trout. Rock jetties and troughs along the beaches are the targeted areas that are producing the most fish. Hydration is so important. Drink water even when you are not thirsty. Heat related illness can sneak up on you and by then it’s often too late to catch up on fluids.

Fishing is Hot, Summer is Here!!!

Large Snook on Clearwater Fishing Charters Snook are stacking up on the north Pinellas beaches for Clearwater Fishing Charters. The water temp is consistently in the low 80’s and they are eating with regularity. There are several swashes from Clearwater to Tarpon Springs that are holding numbers of the smaller males, but the larger females are occupying structure like jetties or rockpiles. Greenbacks are still plentiful when chummed up on the flats although grunts and pinfish are getting attacked more often by the bigger fish. I like to hook those bigger baits near the tail, causing them to swim down and away from the boat. They cover more area and are likely to swim right into the strike zone. The trout bite has been spectacular lately. Many of the same regions that are productive for snook will hold the larger female trout. However, on a recent trip with kids for a local summer fish camp, we caught several trout by slowly drifting the grass flats in 3 to 6 feet of water, especially near to the passes. Using small sardines for bait we also caught jacks, ladyfish and small sharks. Tarpon are showing very good in the passes and along the beach. I’ve had success drifting larger baits like threadfins or pinfish under a float with about 6 feet of leader and a 4/0 circle hook. Once I locate a pod or a lane that they are traveling I will try to lead them a few yards.

Snook and Tarpon!!

Hi everyone! Summer is approaching fast and the fishing is fantastic! It’s been a great year so far! If you have fished with me in the past, please visit my TripAdvisor link available near the top of my website. I would really appreciate some feedback if you have time to post a review! I am ready to fill the few holes I have in the next couple of months so give me a call or an email. Here is the latest…

Snook are on the move in Clearwater and North Pinellas. Most of the springtime transition points have been vacated and the snook are staging around the passes and along the jetties and beach troughs. They are few in numbers so far, but once more of the larger females arrive, the smaller males will accompany them in greater numbers. Spawning takes place through the summer months creating a healthy appetite for the linesiders. Also the reason for the season closure on May 1st through September 1st for the west coast of Florida. If holding a snook for a picture, always support them under the belly, horizontally. This puts less pressure on their sensitive jaw and helps to release them as healthy as possible. Several baits can entice a snook to eat in the summer months such as sardines, threadfin herring and pinfish. Grunts are a very attractive source of protein for large snook. Fish the drop offs along the edges of the beach, especially in eddies and vortexes created by strong moving tides. Tarpon are making a slight showing from Clearwater Pass north to Three Rooker Bar. Mid to late May will see an increase in numbers of tarpon as they migrate from the south. Fishing with cut baits also known as “dead sticking” in known migration paths along the beach is an effective way to get an early season hook up, especially if the fish aren’t showing well. As they become more obvious, leading a group of fish with a bait under a cork is a very productive method to hook one of the strongest fish in Florida waters.