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30 October 2015
Posted in Fishing Tips
Cool Temps and Hungry Gamefish
November in Central Florida is notorious for greeting us with blustery easterly winds as our first significant cold fronts pass. Although windy, fishing will remain outstanding in and around the inlets until water temperature drop below 70 degrees and as long as sea conditions remain fishable.
In the inlets of Ponce De Leon, Port Canaveral and Sebastian, snook fishing will remain excellent during low light periods and at night as the remaining baitfish traveling down the beach are forced in close to the jetties and other structure with the best action occurring during slack tidal periods, especially the end of high tide. During these periods hungry gamefish take advantage of slow currents and feed heavily. As the tide begins to fall, gamefish move into their ambush locations to finish off their frenzy. Breeder Redfish, jack crevalle, bluefish, ladyfish, Spanish mackerel, sharks, and tarpon all share in the fury, so step up your tackle size and hold on.
My favored technique is to cast net live mullet, and drift them through the passes on a sliding sinker rig. Look for areas of feeding activity, birds diving and fish busting, and adjust the size of your weight based on current. The rig I use starts out with a Daiichi Bleeding Bait circle hook proportionate to your bait size to allow a natural swimming appearance. In simple terms, small bait small hook, large bait large hook. Next, I attach a 30-inch section of 30 to 40 pound test Gamma fluorocarbon leader to a 20-pound test braided mainline. If large tarpon are your target or are suspected, step your leader size up to 60-pound test. Before I tie on my hook, I slide my slip sinker on to the leader, then attach the hook, and finish the rig off by using a split shot or plastic bead located between the barrel sinker and the hook adjusted to keep the weight off of the hook.
As I drift through the passes, I like to cast parallel to my drift with just enough weight to keep the bait in the feeding zone, and increase the barrel sinker size as the current picks up. Additionally, as we near the end of November and finger mullet diminish, switch to pinfish on pigfish as bait. Finally and most important, pass fishing in November can be dangerous, so as I drift through the inlet, I keep the helm manned with my engine running, keeping a close eye on boat traffic and sea conditions, and always be prepared for evasive action if needed.
29 October 2015
Posted in Fishing Tips
November is always a fun month to enjoy the fishing along the Treasure Coast. We are in the middle of our winter transition and you can also count on cooler temperatures that will start the thermometer sliding when it comes to the water temps as well. The days will remain nice and warm, but the nights will become cooler this month. It’s time to change your fishing tactics out on the water.
We enjoyed a very mild winter this past year and hopefully it will be the same again this winter. The fall mullet run will continue into November and bring lots of action to the inlets, rivers and beaches throughout the area.
Trout will continue to be a target of many anglers. The trout bite will be good on the flats, but you mustmove to the deeper areas as the temperatures cool the water down. Look for them to be in three to six feet of water this month. My favorite lures are DOA shrimp or Deadly Combos when trout fishing. Don’t forget to fish the sand holes and drop offs on the flats. Many sand holes are much deeper than the flat and you can expect some nice fish to be hiding in them waiting for that easy meal to drift by. Harbor Branch is especially productive for me during this time of year as well as the Midway Road area.
The pompano beginning to return to the river and will be a favorite target for anglers throughout the winter. When fishing the surf, use sand fleas or clams and the same in the river. Don’t forget to try a Doc’s Goofy Jig for the pomps. Many are located when they skip behind the boat wake. Keep your eyes open for them.
The snook bite will continue to be good, especially at night. The inlet, jetties, bridges and docks around the river will be holding snook. Lighted docks are very popular when night fishing. Live baits, Bait Busters and Terror Eyz are very popular for snook fishing. Don’t forget the spillways when the water is running over them. They can be another very productive area for snook.
02 October 2015
Posted in Road Trips
Runnin’ and Gunnin’ for West Point Strippers
West Point Lake, near LaGrange, GA, is both a productive and fun place to fish. The area offers anglers a variety of fish and non-anglers plenty of things to do. The anglers in the party will have the opportunity to catch large mouth bass, strippers, hybrids, spotted bass, crappie, bream and catfish.
For non-anglers the city of LaGrange is only minutes away with shopping, dining and other entertainment. Activities range from dabbling in Civil War history at Bellevue, the antebellum home of noted Georgia statesman Benjamin Harvey Hill, to examining life in ancient Israel at Explorations in Antiquity. If more modern adventures are your cup of tea a real-time walking tour of downtown LaGrange is available and there’s an APP for that.
With a shoreline of more than 500 miles anglers have all kinds of nooks and crannies to investigate. The lake contains over 26,000 acres of surface water as it tracks along and even crosses the Georgia/Alabama State line.
When the Corps of Engineers created lakes like West Point it was mainly for flood control and hydroelectric power. The huge bonus of that activity was the provision of excellent habitat for fish and wildlife and general recreation opportunities for residents and visitors to Southwest Georgia. When the dam was built and the lake was flooded, numerous trees and other structures were left standing. That standing timber provides excellent fish habitat. Man-made fish attractors have also been added to the lake to improve angling opportunities.
02 October 2015
Posted in Fishing Tips
Fall Weather Patterns
October marks the transition into the fall weather patterns along the Treasure Coast. It has been a hotsummer and I’m ready for some milder
weather for a change. You can expect temperatures to begin to cool down somewhat into more comfortable days to enjoy the outdoors. Water temperatures will begin to slowly cool off as well. This year has brought us lots of rain and a quiet hurricane season so far. October provides great weather and hungry fish. It's a fantastic month to be fishing!
The fall mullet run will continue to dominate the area as large schools of finger mullet fill the beaches, inlets and rivers of the area. You can expect lots of big fish to be feeding on them both day and night. Snook fishing will be best during the night hours on the higher ends of the tides. Live finger mullet, croakers and pigfish will be the best live baits to use. DOA Terror Eyz, Bait Busters and feather jigs will be good artificial lures to use for snook.
Try around the jetties, turning basin and bridges as well as many of the deeper docks around the river. Lighted docks are especially productive when fishing at night.
Redfish have continued to be a wonderful fishery for us again this year. Each year has seen their population increase and many anglers have enjoyed the experience of fishing a large school of reds this year. October will continue to be a productive month for those who seek redfish on the flats. DOA shrimp or CAL grub tails are two of the best choices for redfish along with a variety of live and cut baits. The west shoreline south of Fort Pierce is always a good area when looking for redfish.