Trout & Reds Best Bet in Sarasota
<p>A blast of cold air settled in on southwest Florida recently, dropping water temperatures into the low 50's in the morning. However, afternoon water temperatures were close to 60 degrees last week following some sunny afternoons. 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 trout, snook, flounder and redfish on flies and jigs on several trips in the last couple of weeks. I also had fast action with trout in Palma Sola Bay when I fished a day with my friend Steve Gibson.
Gary Reed, from WV, and his son, Jonathon Reed from Bradenton, FL, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Thursday, 12/16. The trip was originally scheduled for Monday, but due to strong winds and cold temperatures we bumped it back to later in the week. Action was slow, but they caught and released a couple of flounder to 18" and a small red near Long Bar on Clouser flies and a CAL jig with a grub. Vic Cook, from Columbus, OH, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Saturday afternoon, 12/18. He caught and released 10 or 12 trout to 18" on Grassett Flats Bunny and Ultra Hair Clouser flies along the east side of the bay from Stephens Point to Long Bar.
Longtime friend and customer, David Schofield from Sarasota, FL, and his son Mike, from New York City, fished an evening in the ICW with me on Wednesday, 12/22. I was monitoring water temperature all week and was cautiously optimistic. Sunny afternoons warmed the water a few degrees and fish responded favorably. They caught and released 5 snook to 22" and an 18" trout on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly. Although there weren't a lot of snook in the lights, we found them actively feeding in a couple of spots.
On Thursday, 12/23, I was the guest of Steve Gibson, of Southern Drawl Kayak Fishing, to do some kayak fishing. We fished Palma Sola Bay and had fast action with numerous trout to 22" and a few small reds and flounder on CAL jigs with grubs and shad tails. Gibby can be reached at www.kayakfishingsarasota.com .
Fish jigs and flies slow, close to the bottom and focus on potholes, channel edges and drop offs for reds and trout for the best action. Next week's tides and weather should improve towards the end of next week. With a strong front pushing through this weekend, conditions may be windy and cool for a couple of days. Afternoons may fish better due to warmer water. Happy Holidays to everyone!
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.