July 28, 2005
I love this time of year! The weather is great along with the fishing. You couldn't ask for better fishing conditions lately. Winds have been light and the heat has been tolerable with some partly cloudy skies and just enough breeze in the mornings to make fishing the flats a very enjoyable experience. The water condition continues to improve above the bridges in Fort Pierce. Hope you had a chance to get on the water!
Redfish has again been the best opportunity all week. We are still finding large schools of reds up on the flats in 1-2 feet of water. Mostly I find them on the east side of the river. Use top water in the first light and then switch to gold spoons, jigs or live shrimp (if available). My guests, Greg and Lori from Michigan came down again this week and had a fantastic day fishing the flats. They caught and released seven reds that ranged from 24" to 28". Twice they doubled up on catches (we actually had three fish on for one short time, but one got off). Great job!
Snook are feeding the flats at daylight and are hitting top water lures, such as Chug Bugs and Zara Spooks. I still find the red/white colorations to work best. The window is short on the flats during the summer so get out before daylight if possible. Largest snook taken on the flats was 22" this week, but there are some larger ones feeding. Find bait in the morning and you will find snook after it. Move along the mangroves later in the morning for snook. Use soft baits and spoons in 2-3 feet of water along the edges. Night fishing for snook along the bridges and turning basin has remained steady throughout the week. Taylor Creek, while still spilling out dirty water, has continued to produce catches.
Trout has remained steady most of the week in 2-4 feet of water. Look for clean water to fish. I like flats with both sandy and grassy bottoms. The trout have good places to hide and wait for something to swim by. Live baits on popping corks along with soft baits have worked the best. I really like the DOA CAL chartreuse jig heads. I use it with white shad bodies for trout. Round Island, Harbor Branch and Bear Point remain productive for trout, even in the heat of summer. Remember, early is better.
Jacks and ladyfish still keep the bait showering out of the water. Top water, jigs, spoons and live bait can provide lots of fun on light tackle. We have caught some nice size jacks and ladyfish this week. Just watch the bait and you can find these predators chasing it. We missed seeing the sharks out this week, but the dolphin have returned to the flats to feed.
Tarpon are around Big and Little Mud Creeks, but are finicky about feeding. Very early morning with live bait or top water will be your best opportunity for hooking up with a silver king. Not a lot of reports on catches still, but August is generally a great month to fish for tarpon.
With live bait getting hard to come by during the heat of summer, stop in the Fishing Center of St Lucie soon. Have Clint or Kelly help you select the best lures for your day on the water. Having the right lure and right color can be the determining factor on how your days fishing can go. They get fishing information from all the local anglers and can get you hooked up on the right tackle for the right fish. Tell them Captain Charlie sent you!
Tip of the Week:
Many anglers practice catch and release. It's the right thing to do to keep our river productive and healthy. The summer heat can be unbearably hard on fish, especially on the flats. Redfish are totally exhausted by the time you get them to the boat and quick action on the part of the angler is critical to reviving the fish and releasing it back into the water. Keep the fish out of the water as little as possible. A quick picture and get it back into the water and move it around to get water running through its gills. Make sure your fish swims off easily and revived. It's important for all of us to protect our river and insure that our children can enjoy the fishing we look forward to each week. It is our responsibility as anglers.....
Fishing is not just another hobby....it's an ADVENTURE!
Captain Charlie Conner
email me at: [email protected]
visit my website at: http://www.fishtalescharter.com