Tarpon Action Heating up in Sarasota
<p>Anglers fishing the coastal gulf and Tampa Bay with me on my Action Craft flats skiff the Snook Fin-Addict, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, jumped a pair of tarpon on flies and had numerous shots at tarpon during the past week. We also caught and released several bonnethead sharks and a large southern stingray on live crabs while tarpon fishing.
Mike Perez, from Sarasota and Richmond, IN, tarpon fished a couple of days with me during the past week. We fished the coastal gulf off Sarasota one day and despite rough conditions he had numerous shots at tarpon with a fly. It was too rough to fish the gulf on his second day, but we found some protected water in Tampa Bay where Mike and his guest, Darren Dimick, from Sarasota, had good action. They caught and released a pair of bonnethead sharks and a large stingray on live crabs while spin fishing early in the day. They switched to fly fishing later in the day and each jumped a tarpon on a black Lefty's Deceiver fly. Both fish were on for about 30 minutes and were close to the boat before the hook pulled on one and the other wore through the 80-pound bite tippet.
On a couple of other trips in the coastal gulf off Sarasota we had numerous shots at tarpon with flies, DOA baits and live bait and caught and released another bonnethead shark on a live crab. Large schools of tarpon are becoming more plentiful as we head towards a new moon later in the month.
Look for schools of tarpon at first light in the morning in deeper areas along beaches. Spin anglers should score with live crabs, pinfish, DOA 4" shrimp, Baitbusters and Swimming Mullet. Fly anglers should do best fishing shallower water later in the day when visibility is best with baitfish fly patterns such as Lefty's Deceiver and EP flies. Reds, trout in Sarasota Bay and catch and release snook in the surf or around lighted docks and bridges close to passes at night should also be good options.
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.
FFF Certified Fly Casting Instructor
www.flyfishingflorida.net and www.snookfin-addict.com
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.