Hot Snook and Flats Action in Sarasota
<p>Anglers fishing with me on my Action Craft flats skiff the Snook Fin-Addict, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, caught and released snook, trout, reds, Spanish mackerel, blues, pompano and flounder during the past couple of weeks.
Dave Reinhart, from Richmond, VA and his son, Daniel, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Tuesday, 3/8. The morning was slow and windy, but the wind laid down in the afternoon and they had good action with trout and Spanish mackerel to 2-pounds and an 18" flounder at Stephens Point. Daniel ended the day with an 8-pound red near Buttonwood Harbor. All fish were caught on CAL jigs with shad tails.
My clients fished skinny water for reds and trout with flies and jigs in both Sarasota and the Terra Ceia Bay areas on a couple of other trips that week. We had some shots at reds, had some follows on a fly and caught one on a CAL jig with a shad tail. We also caught a few trout along the way. A front pushed through on Thursday with rain and wind, forcing the cancellation of Thursday's trip. Ron Hagemeyer and Gary Paulson, both from MN, fished Gasparilla Sound with me on Friday, 3/11. It was a very windy, especially in the afternoon, but they had good action in the morning with trout to 18" on Clouser flies and CAL jigs with shad tails.
My brother, Kirk Grassett from Middletown, DE, came down for a short visit on Saturday, 3/12. We fished deep grass flats on the east and west sides of Sarasota Bay and had steady action with trout, Spanish mackerel and ladyfish on Grassett Flats Bunny and Clouser flies. We also fished the ICW that evening near Venice and found snook feeding aggressively, despite cooler water. We caught and released more than 25 snook to 24" and 10 trout to 18" on my Grassett Snook Minnow and Gurgler flies.
Mike Sprague and Ralph Primavera, both from NJ, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Monday, 3/14. They had good action with trout, ladyfish and bluefish on CAL jigs at Stephens Point and near Buttonwood Harbor. Fly angler Matt Tilley, from ME, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Tuesday, 3/15. We started the day at the Middleground flat with about an acre of breaking fish. Matt caught and released numerous ladyfish and Spanish mackerel on Ultra Hair Clouser flies. He also caught and released trout, ladyfish, blues and Spanish mackerel along the west side of the bay.
Dick Reece, from Dayton, OH, and John Freeman, Jr., from Venice, FL, fished the same areas with me on Wednesday, 3/16. They had steady action with trout to 18", bluefish, Spanish mackerel and a pompano on CAL jigs with shad and grub tails and DOA Deadly Combos. Flats action slowed a little towards the end of the week as we approached the full moon. Ernie Gray and sons, Bob and Doug, all from Canada, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Thursday morning, 3/17. They caught and released trout, ladyfish, bluefish and Spanish mackerel on CAL jigs with grub and shad tails and DOA Deadly Combos at Stephens Point and the Middleground and Marina Jack flats.
One of the best trips of the week was when Martin Marlowe, from NY, fished the ICW near Venice for snook with me on Thursday evening, 3/17. He had fast action, catching and releasing more than 25 snook to 26" on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly. He also fished Sarasota Bay with me on Friday, 3/18, where he caught and released trout to 3-lbs and 3 reds on CAL jigs with shad tails along the west side of the bay.
Tides are good early next week as we had away from Saturday's full moon. Look for action to continue with trout, Spanish mackerel, blues and pompano in Sarasota Bay. Catch and release fishing for snook at night in the ICW near Venice should also be a good option. Check the beaches when conditions are good for Spanish mackerel, little tunny, tripletail, cobia and more.
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.
FFF Certified Fly Casting Instructor
www.flyfishingflorida.net and www.snookfin-addict.com
Daniel Reinhart's Sarasota Bay CAL jig red caught with Capt. Rick Grassett.
Martin Marlowe's Venice Grassett Snook Minnow fly night snook
About The Author: Captain Rick Grassett
Company: Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.
Area Reporting: Soutwest Florida
Bio: Capt. Rick Grassett, owner of Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc., is a full time fishing guide and outdoor writer based in Sarasota, FL. He has been guiding since 1990 and is an Orvis Endorsed Outfitter fly fishing guide at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters in Sarasota. Specializing in fishing with flies and lures on light spinning tackle, Capt. Rick fishes the bays, back country and coastal gulf waters from Tampa Bay to Charlotte Harbor in his 18’ Action Craft flats boat. He is a Federation of Fly Fishers certified fly casting instructor. Destination fishing trips are another specialty of Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service. Capt. Rick has lead groups of fly anglers to remote fishing locations around the world. Crane Meadow Lodge, MT, Los Roques, Venezuela, Andros Island Bonefish Club and Bonefish Bay Club in the Bahamas are several destinations where he has hosted groups in the past. Capt. Rick is a field editor for Saltwater Angler magazine and a monthly columnist for the Tampa Tribune. He has written articles for The Fisherman magazine and Orvis News. In addition to writing for these publications, he has been featured in articles in Florida Sportsman, Sportfishing, The Fisherman and Fly Fishing in Saltwater magazines. Capt. rick's web site, www.snookfin-addict.com features weekly fishing reports, current photos and and monthly fishing forecasts. He also maintains a second website that is specific to fly fishing and fly casting instruction, www.flyfishingflorida.net.