Sarasota Bay & Coastal Gulf Action Explodes
<p>Anglers fishing with me on my Action Craft flats skiff the Snook Fin-Addict, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had good action in Sarasota Bay and the coastal gulf recently. Spin anglers scored on reds, snook, trout, flounder, blues and Spanish mackerel. Fly anglers had great action with little tunny (false albacore). Some of the best action was on deep grass flats where blues and trout fed in glass minnow schools. Reds in the low 20" range were scattered on shallow grass flats and along bars.
Tom and Mary Howard, from Bradenton, Fl, fished north Sarasota Bay with me on Monday, 9/19. We focused on skinny water and the action wasn't fast, but they caught and released a slam including a red, a couple of snook and several trout and flounder on CAL jigs with shad tails.
Rusty Chinnis, from Longboat Key, FL, and I scouted the coastal gulf off Siesta and Casey Keys and had great action with little tunny and Spanish mackerel on Tuesday, 9/20. Little tunny were "surfing", eating tiny baits with their heads and backs out of the water, which made for some exciting top water strikes! We landed 7 or 8 little tunny to 10-lbs and about 6 Spanish mackerel to 2 ½-lbs on my Grassett Snook Minnow, Clouser and Bubblehead fly poppers.
Jerry Roth, from Longwood, FL, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Thursday, 9/22. He also had a slam including 3 reds, a snook and several trout on a Zara Spook, Jr. and CAL jigs with shad tails. Greg and Patty Pratt, from Cincinnati, OH, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Friday, 9/23. They had good action with trout, blues and Spanish mackerel on DOA Deadly Combos and Ultra Hair Clouser flies. I spoke at the Florida Sportsman Fishing Show in Tampa and helped out at the DOA Fishing Lures booth on Saturday and Sunday, 9/24 and 25. It was good to have a chance to visit with old friends and talk fishing with some avid anglers.
We were met with lightning and sloppy sea conditions on Monday morning, 9/26, so we rescheduled our trip into the coastal gulf for little tunny and Spanish mackerel. Aledia Tush, owner of CB's Saltwater Outfitters, and Melissa Littlewood, both from Sarasota, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Tuesday, 9/27. They caught and released trout to 18" and blues to 3-pounds on CAL jigs with shad tails at Stephens Point. Melissa connected with a nice red in skinny water on a weedless rigged CAL shad tail near Buttonwood Harbor.
Steve Partain, from Atlanta, and his son, Chris Partain from OK, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Wednesday, 9/28. The action was slow to start due to a slack tide but as the water started to move the action got cranked up. They caught and released numerous trout to 19", blues to 4-pounds and a Spanish mackerel at Stephens Point and near Whale Key on top water plugs, DOA Deadly Combos and CAL jigs with shad tails. Chris also caught a red on a weedless-rigged CAL shad tail along a bar on the east side of the bay.
Outgoing tides in the morning should be good this weekend. Bay water is still warm enough that mornings are fishing better. Snook are moving onto shallow flats and staging around sand bars in Sarasota Bay. Action in shallow water and the coastal gulf should only get better as water cools.
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.
FFF Certified Fly Casting Instructor
www.flyfishingflorida.net and www.snookfin-addict.com
Rusty Chinnis's Sarasota fly albie caught with Capt. Rick Grassett.
Steve and Chris Partain's Sarasota bluefish double caught with Capt. Rick Grassett.
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.