Tampa Bay – Bradenton – Sarasota – Boca Grande


Report Date: February 16, 2010

Another cold front has hit the Tampa Bay area, but it doesnít mean that the fish arenít biting. Although getting around on the water during a cold front can be rough, once you find an area that is out of the wind and where the water is warm, it is usually fish on.

Locating warm water is crucial to successful fishing during a cold spell.

Look for areas that are large and areas where the water is dark. Large areas of water like the gulf take much longer to cool down than small areas. Areas like the one, three, and seven mile reefs are very good to fish this time of year if it isnít to windy. On windy days, the rivers are good areas. The rivers are not only out of the wind, the water in the rivers is usually darker so it heats up pretty quickly. Some of the best areas to fish in the rivers are areas where the water is very shallow then drops off. You can usually find fish right on the edge where the water drops off.

Shrimp or jigs are your best choice for bait when fishing in the rivers. Personally, when I fish with shrimp I also fish with a really light leader. I hook the shrimp in the head with a weight 6 inches to 14 inches from the bait. When I am fishing for sheepshead or snapper, I fish with the weight closer to the hook. For redfish and drum, I move the weight further away from the hook. When youíre fishing for the sheepshead and snapper, use a small shrimp. Save the big shrimp for the redfish and drum.

Jig fishing is a little different than fishing with shrimp. You have to know how deep the water is to know how big of a jig head to use. Usually when I fish in 1 foot to 3 feet of water, I use a 1/8 inch jig. When I fish in 4 feet to 8 feet of water, I step it up to a ľ inch jig. Please visit www.castawaychartersinc.com and book your trip today!

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