Clear Water Makes Spotting Fish Easy

Blue bird skies and high pressure has made it a little harder to get a strong bite going over the last few days on Clearwater Fishing Charters. Clear and calm waters makes it easy to spot fish in, however, they can see and feel your presence as well. Especially in the shallow, more vulnerable depths where redfish and snook are so commonly found in the winter months. Downsizing tackle is imperative to success. I use 10 – 15 lb braided line, 20 lb fluorocarbon leader and smaller #1 hooks in general. And most importantly, position yourself for the longest cast possible, with winds behind you for the most distance. As long as the fish are unaware of the presence of a boat or even a wading fisherman, they are more likely to react naturally in pursuit of a meal.. As sardines and other baits are harder to come by, artificials and live shrimp are the preferred baits. Topwater lures are best in the early morning or late afternoon while the light is lowest. Mid day sun prevents most fish from wanting to come to the surface and risk exposure so deeper diving soft plastics with a 1/8 – 1/4 ounce jighead is necessary. With live shrimp, using a cork with a few feet of leader below is very effective. Trout have been holding in St. Joseph Sound but are very finicky on calm days. Freelined shrimp on the bottom have worked best. Redfish are also showing well around the rocks and oyster bars in the backcountry. Again, patience is key as they are extremely cautious.

 Call Now to Book your Special Day

I’m already getting calls from many of you booking your trips for 2017! I am ready to get you all out there and have a great day on the water! Take a break from the cold, hop a plane or drive southward, I’m here… Call or e-mail 727-365-7560 or brian@captbrian.com. Let’s go fishing!

Fishing Strong Days Before Cold Front!

Approaching cold fronts are a reality anglers deal with his time of year. Usually before a front hits, the fishing can be fantastic. This is mostly because warm southern winds are pulled north a day or two before the front is here, making conditions ideal. Fish can detect a change in pressure and eat veraciously similar to behavior around a new or full moon. This week the fishing has been better than normal for the first week of January, as a cold weather front is arpproaching. Trout are schooling up and still inhaling sardines that are prominent in north Pinellas. Spoil islands from Clearwater to Palm Harbor are holding high numbers of trout. Pinfish and shrimp are getting worked over as well, yet greenbacks are the main focus. Chumming with cut baits along the edge of the flats and into sandy potholes has been very effective for Redfish. Especially around the extreme low tides we’ve had. As the cold weather pushes through the ease of finding the scaled sardines will diminish and live shrimp and artificial baits become the norm. Other species targeted in the cold months are sheepshead, jack crevalle and ladyfish. Sheepshead respond well to cut pieces of shrimp cast near rocky edges of oyster bars in the backcountry and around docks. Although redfish and trout are also willing to eat, many popular species such as snook are less likely to bite.

Low Tide Success!

Warm and stable temperatures have really turned on the fishing in north Pinellas. Bait has also been plentiful allowing the baitwell to be filled most days. Most of my fishing has been inshore as reports offshore have weakened a bit. Redfish are inhabiting the usual spots along the mangroves at higher tides. However, the lower tides have concentrated the reds and snook into sandy holes foraging on crustaceans and other baits swimming nearby. Live sardines, small pinfish and especially live shrimp have been getting pounded. Slowly work from pothole to pothole. It doesn’t take long to determine if there are fish present. Trout have been extremely cooperative lately. Chasing and inhaling large baits as well as soft plastics on a 1/8 – 1/4 ounce jighead. Not only on the flats and in potholes with reds and snook, but they are moving into St. Joseph Sound as they do each year at this time. The islands along the intercoastal tend to get crowded with boats and kayaks alike. Please give anglers already fishing a wide birth if moving into an area, perhaps allowing the wind to push you in the final few yards. Trolling motors are invaluable to maneuver around quietly without disturbing the fish and someone else’s bite.