Summer Fishing Report for Clearwater Fl
Here we are in July and August, the heart of summer and the fishing has been good most of the time. We have been dodging summer storms and a strong depression that left the water dirty and the salinity all screwed up. This causes all the bait fish to move around and reshuffles the targeted species. The small bait fish continue to be on the grass flats throughout the bays and locating these pods of bait is the ticket to finding good fishing.
When the weather did cooperate, there were some great catches with snook, redfish, trout, mackerel and some small sharks. On the good days, the fishing was on fire with multiple species boated and a few slams recorded. Some of my clients caught more than ten different types of fish in the same day.
The following are examples of the catches during the better days and the variety of different species.
Curt had his party out on a hot July day. We started out on the beach and caught a couple of snook throwing large white baits near the jetties. Curt boated the largest measuring in at 35 inches. Then we moved inside the bay and found about two dozen nice size trout and just a few redfish along with mackerel and lady fish. Curt nailed down the "slam of the day" award with his snook, redfish and trout.
With Marks group, we targeted snook in the morning. The water was calm and clean and they made catching these two fish look easy. They followed up with redfish and trout inside the bay and finished the day with catches of flounder, lady fish and a few large mangrove snapper. The whole group contributed to catch this slam.
Bob and sons came out and had an action filled day. The kids boated redfish and trout of all sizes. The redfish were between 18 and 23 inches and were caught on live white bait fished under a float. The largest trout was 23 inches and the youngest son landed a 26 inch cobia.
Daniel and sons, Louis and Matts came out for an inshore trip. The kids didn't waste any time in landing nice size trout and a few redfish. The large mackerel and lady fish also made their showing as well and were biting on live shrimp. Daniel boated his largest redfish ever after catching several others.
Jonathan and family joined up for some flats fishing in Clearwater Bay. His two sons out fished mom and dad and caught the biggest fish. The Jonathan party caught trout, redfish, mackerel and lots of different species to make a busy trip.
John, from Canada, came out fishing on a hot day. We did a lot of looking and some catching as we kept moving from flat to flat. We fished several locations that had redfish hanging out earlier in the week but they must have pushed off. John did find some nice redfish and trout but it took time. John's favorite fish to eat is redfish and he took a couple of fillets home.
Mike started his day fishing for snook out on the beach. The snook were not to be bothered today and we moved inside to locate trout and redfish. Mike found both and landed his biggest red at 28 inches.
As we moved further into August the water really heated up and reached 91 degrees on the flats of Clearwater Bay. Following the high tide up on the flats was a must because the water holds less oxygen the hotter it gets. The high tide brings a fresh flow of water, new bait and turns on the bite.
This will continue through September or until we get a cool front to lower the water temperature.
At that time look for the action to pick up as we enter the fall season.
Capt. Gary Burch
About The Author: Captain Gary Burch
Company: Flats Guide West Florida
Area Reporting: Dunedin, Clearwater and Tarpon Springs
Bio: Capt. Gary is a full time West Central FL. fishing guide from Dunedin. Charter fishing from St Petersburg, Clearwater and Dunedin to Inshore bays and Backwaters. Targeting Snook, Redfish, Trout and other inshore fish. 45 years experience all around FL. Tournament winner and Florida State record holder.