Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Snook, redfish and big trout were the stars of December

Steve Harris of Baton Rouge, La., is a happy angler after landed this hefty Myakka River snook.
               December ended on a hot note for Southern Drawl Kayak Fishing

                On a scouting day, I fished the Myakka River and experienced my best (non beach) snook day ever. I caught and released 17 snook to 36 inches, two redfish and five tilapia. Most of the fish were caught on MirrOlure Little Johns on 1/16-ounce jig heads.

                Craig Howard of Michigan joined me for a day on the Myakka and did well. We totaled eight snook to about 25 inches and three gar to around 15 pounds. Again, the MirrOlure Little John produced for us.

                Paul Shoup and his son, Abe, joined me for a four-hour trip in Sarasota Bay on the day after and front and experienced typical slow action. We totaled only two trout, and lost a larger "mystery" fish.

                Steve Harris of Baton Rouge, La., had a great day on the Myakka River, catching and releasing a bunch of snook. We totaled 13 snook to about 32 inches on Little Johns.

                Casey Gawthrop of Indiana had a fine day in Sarasota Bay. We totaled 12 redfish to 28 inches, five snook and about 15 trout on MirrOlure Little Johns and MirrOlure MirrOdines. Casey hooked a big fish on fly rod at the start of the trip, but broke it off. I think it was a large snook.

                Prior to the cold, Sarasota Bay was on fire. Redfish to 32 inches, snook to 30, spotted seatrout to 29, pompano to 4 pounds, bluefish to 6 and flounder were hitting Little Johns on light jig heads.

                If you haven't tried the Little John, you're missing out. It's a 4-inch soft plastic that fits nicely on a Norton 1/16-ounce jig head. If can be worked with minimal hangups in shallow grass.

                The MirrOlure MirrOdine has been producing a majority of my big trout. Prior to 2012, I had landed only two trout of 5 pounds or more. I totaled 56 trout from 5 to 9 pounds this past year -- mostly on MirrOdines.

                I fish the MirrOdine on a light rod with 5-pound braided PowerPro. I keep the drag very light so that I don't rip the lure out of the mouth of large trout.

                I've got a spot in Sarasota Bay where big trout will congregate through April.

                However, I probably won't get back out on the back until mid-February. My plan to fish local tidal rivers for snook.

                This is hard fishing. Anglers are rewarded -- if they keep their lures in the water. Every cast has the possibility of a 25-pound snook.

                To date, our largest river snook is an 18-pounder. We've landed numerous snook of 10 pounds or more.

                We also encounter redfish, largemouth bass, gar, tilapia and an occasional tarpon on the river.

                Not only can the fish be spectacular, but the scenery mesmerizing. On a typical trip, we'll encounter great blue heron,  night heron, bald eagle, osprey, wild hog, deer, raccoon, otter and, of course, alligators.

                I only offer  6- and 8-hour trips on the river because of the distance involved.

                My January scheduled is filling up. Contact me if the urge to feel a big snook on the line is too much to resist.

               I also got my new Native Watercraft Slayer 14.5. It's a great fishing kayak stable. You can fish out of one of my Ultimates or the Slayer. Just let me know your preference!

Happy New Year!

Steve Gibson

Southern Drawl Kayak Fishing



(941) 284-3406

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