Thursday, September 9, 2010

Summer action has been good for spin and fly anglers

This summer has been good for Southern Drawl Kayak Fishing.

We have been catching some of the largest spotted seatrout we’ve seen in years. In addition, we’ve encountered schools of large redfish and a surprising number of tarpon.

In Sarasota Bay, my anglers have been getting spotted seatrout to 25 inches on D.O.A. CAL Jigs, D.O.A. Shrimp, my Big Eye Baitfish Fly and Clouser Deep Minnows. In addition, they’ve been getting bluefish to 3 pounds, Spanish mackerel to 2, loads of ladyfish and a few jack crevalle.

We’ve been encountering schools of breaking fish and diving birds most every morning while fishing Sarasota Bay. Usually, it’s a combination of bluefish, Spanish mackerel and ladyfish – with spotted seatrout underneath them. This is a great opportunity for fly and spin anglers.

The larger trout have been hanging out around grass edges and in sand holes. We’ve been getting large trout on about 90 percent of our trips.

We’ve also been getting on some schools of large redfish in Sarasota Bay. On one outing, we got six reds from 29 to 33 inches on Bomber Badonkadonks and D.O.A. Big Fish Lures (BFL). The next day, we found the school again and caught a pair of oversized reds on topwater plugs.

We launched on Charlotte Harbor and immediately got into tarpon from 20 to more than 100 pounds. We jumped seven fish and landed a 25-pounder. Most of the action has been taking place on D.O.A. TerrorEyz, D.O.A. Baitbusters and D.O.A. BFL’s. We look for steady tarpon activity there the rest of the month.

John Mallia of Buffalo, N.Y., joined me for a couple of outings. We fished Sarasota Bay and did well on spotted seatrout, ladyfish and bluefish. We sight-fished several bonnethead sharks, but didn’t hook up. John did have a couple of exciting follows!

The next day we headed to Charlotte Harbor to look for tarpon. The silver kings didn’t show up, but we found the mother lode of spotted seatrout. We caught and released 50 trout on D.O.A. CAL Jigs.

Randy Honaker of Centerville, Ohio (in the photos) and I fished southern Tampa Bay and did well. We couldn’t find redfish schools, but we did land a small one while blind-casting. Randy caught and released spotted seatrout to 24 inches, ladyfish and Spanish mackerel. He caught all of the fish on a beadchain-eye Clouser Deep Minnow.

We have been encountered large schools of large reds in southern Tampa Bay. On one outing, we landed eight reds to 33 inches on Badonkadonks and BFL’s. Another trip produced two oversized reds on the same lures.

I fished with a friend of mine, Rick Grassett of Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, and was lucky enough to catch and release and 25-inch redfish on a Prince of Tides fly. I used a 7-weight fly rod and floating line.

As the weather and water cool, we anticipate good action from Tampa Bay to Charlotte Harbor. Tarpon should please the rest of the month. In addition, redfish and spotted seatrout action should continue.

For those who want to tangle with snook, we can get out before daylight and target them on flies or jigs around dock lights. After that, we’ll head out on the flats for trout, Spanish mackerel and ladyfish.

We look for pompano to start showing up in late fall. Last year, we had days for 20 or more pompano to nearly 5 pounds on flies and jigs in December.

Again, I’d like to thank my sponsors: Native Watercraft, D.O.A. Lures, TFO fly rods and spinning rods, Peak Vises and Dri-Grip Sunscreen.

I have some openings in September and October. Fishing is good. Give me a call!

Steve Gibson

Southern Drawl Kayak Fishing

(941) 284-3406

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