November 28, 2013
November was a month of wind, rain, sun and calm conditions.
It also was a month of redfish, snook, spotted seatrout, bluefish and Spanish. The only thing missing was pompano, a species that usually shows up in good numbers around Sarasota Bay in November. Perhaps we'll catch plenty of pompano in December.
We did a lot of fly fishing in November. Most of the action took place in the shallows and deep grass around Buttonwood Harbor on the west side of Sarasota Bay off Longboat Key. We did pretty well, casting Gibby's TK Flies and synthetic Clousers.
Trout, snook and redfish were holding the edges of the shallow flats on the outing tide. We did best while wading the edges and casting the TK Flies on full floating lines. In addition to snook, trout and reds, we also managed bluefish, Spanish mackerel, jack crevalle and ladyfish on the edges of the flats.
It's good to see jacks back. They were hurt critically during the freeze of 2010 and it has taken this long for them to rebound. After the freeze, we weren't catching a half dozen jacks a year. Things improved slowly year by year. Now, we're catching up to a dozen jacks per outing -- and they're pushing four and five pounds! I'm think that next season we'll see a bunch of seven- and eight-pound jacks.
That's great news!
Longtime client Pete Wolocko of Michigan joined me for an outing and had a decent day. Using MirrOlure Lil Johns on light jig hads, Wolocko caught spotted seatrout to 20 inches, jack crevalle and a 30-inch redfish. We were fishing inside Buttonwood Harbor along the edge of a grass flat.
Denton Kent of Washington D.C. fly fished the shallows with me on a strong outgoing tide. He totaled 15 spotted seatrout to 18 inches on TK Flies.
Vinny Caruso of Bradenton fished a number of trips. He decided to take up fly fishing and only used a fly rod during the month. He did well. Caruso caught quite a few spotted seatout to 22 inches, plus jack crevalle and ladyfish. He hooked one redfish, but wasn't able to land it.
We'll start to explore the Myakka River and will begin concentrating on the stream by mid-December. We usually begin fishing the Myakka in December and fish it heavily through mid-February. Last season, clients caught snook to 42 inches, plus redfish, tarpon, gar and largemouth bass.
On two occasions last season, we came within a largemouth bass of a Super Slam (snook, redfish, tarpon, gar and bass).
These trips book early so that you're assured a trip (or two).
We're going to put more of an emphasis on fly fishing the river, but we'll also do plenty of spin fishing.
While December is mainly a river month, bay fishing should produce trout, pompano, redfish and jack crevalle.
We'll also do our share of freshwater fishing. Local lakes and rivers should produce plenty of bluegill, shellcracker, stumpknocker, tilapia, channel catfish and largemouth bass.
Everglades trips are expected to result if all of the above, plus oscar and Mayan cichlid.
Southern Drawl Kayak Fishing
About Steve Gibson:
Southern Drawl Kayak Fishing ownerSteve Gibson is one of the most experienced anglers in southwest Florida. Gibson has been fishing for 45 years and nearly 35 of those years in Florida.
A professional outdoor writer and photographer, Gibson's writing and photographs have appeared in several publications, including Florida Sportsman, Gulf Coast Angler, Fly Fishing in Salt Waters, Saltwater Fly Fishing, The Fisherman, Cabela's Outdoor Magazine, Paddle World Magazine, Blood Knot and Florida Fishing Weekly. Steve is a Native Watercraft endorsed guide.
Gibson resides in Sarasota with his wife, Kathy, their daughter, Morgan, and their Jack Russell Terrier, Jack.