Light Tackle - Great Action
Anglers aboard the Reelin & Chillin have caught several species including mangrove snapper, redfish, trout, and black drum to name a few. We had to travel from spot to spot before finding fish, however we hung in there and enjoyed a tight line, and dinner on the plate.
A Fish Tail aboard the Reelin & Chillin
Dave Mathias and I headed out one morning for a near-shore trip. We had all the bait we needed picking up six dozen handpicks, and a dozen pinfish at Hart's Landing. Then on the way out we netted a hundred or so shiners just off Lido Beach. The plan was fish a few reefs eight to ten miles out, however the weather offshore looked threating - lots of lightning. We decided to try a little inshore fishing before making the decision on going out. We headed to a grass flat in north Sarasota Bay on the east side - five to seven feet deep. I started chumming the white bait, maybe six or eight at a time, and the fish turned on. It took Dave and I about an hour to put eight trout in the live well - our limit, along with three bluefish. The weather offshore was getting worse so we called off going offshore and decided to try for reds - one of Dave's wifes favorite inshore fish. We bounced around from dock to dock, flat to flat, bay to bay, and never did find a red. However, we each caught a black drum, and a bucket full of mangrove snapper. All in all it was a great day with plenty of fish on the line, and in the box. I also found out the next day that Sue, Dave's wife, really enjoyed the black drum. She blackened it just like she does the reds, and loved it.
Light Tackle - More Hookups
Using light tackle makes for great action when catching inshore species. Hooking a fish in open water you still have to take your time - let it run - tiring it out - then bring it in for the catch or release. When fishing structure like docks it even gets wilder - you need to horse the fish out from the piles before you can wear him out. The exciting part is just when you think you have him close to the boat he ends up running back to the piles.
The thing about light tackle is your bait has more action, and doesn't wear out as fast - using 10lb test on the reel, 20lb test mono leader, and a #4 Owner MUTU circle hook, (a very small thin wire hook) keeps the bait moving. Think about it this way: Take 100' of close line, tie it around your waist and take a swim - most likely you could swim a good distance with no problem. Now replace the close line with 100' of large rope you would use to dock a cruise ship and try swimming - most likely you would go about two feet, and fall to the bottom worn out. Same thing with a live shrimp or live shiner. You may loose a few fish, however you will get way more strikes. The difference would be like: Heavy tackle, 5 strikes 4 fish - light tackle, 10 strikes 7 fish, take you pick...
Tight Lines & Good Times, Capt. Terry Frankford
Reelin & Chillin Charters Inc.
Redfish or red drum
About The Author: Captain Terry Frankford
Company: Reelin & Chillin Charters Inc.
Area Reporting: Sarasota
Bio: Fishing experience in the Sarasota area for over thirty years - mostly salt water inshore and nearshore. Became a full time guide in November of 2003 after retiring from Verizon Communications as a Network Planning Engineer. U.S.C.G. licensed Master #1125021 – includes Commercial Assistance Towing. Completed Auxiliary boating Skills & Seamanship course. Certified in Senior Lifesaving, Advanced First Aid, CPR, and Open Water Scuba Diving.