The water is at the highest point it’s ever been since records have been kept here in Florida. Water continues to run from as far north of the Harris Chain all the way south into Lake Okeechobee and down throughout the Florida Everglades. There have been concerns with the amount of water these areas are presently is holding, not to mention the recent hurricanes. On top of that, Lake Okeechobee and the Everglades are being sprayed by government to control aquatic vegetation knocking down structure, oxygen levels and making for some really tough fishing. This year it’s dawned on me for the first time that we don’t always get the pick the day we would like to fish. It doesn’t really matter as the FLW, BFL, ABA’s, local tournaments and guide trips will all go on regardless of high winds, high waters or unfavorable conditions. We all have to figure out patterns, where the fish are positioned, how they’re eating and what they’re eating to catch them down here in Florida, the fishing capital of the world. This past year I have witnessed anglers catching fish and yes some monsters, time and time again regardless of conditions. Fishing the conditions makes us much better anglers. Put together the pieces of the puzzle, take what Mother Nature offers and turn it into a fantastic day.
1. Lake Okeechobee: Fishing has been really good on the outside, weather permitting. Hard baits, rattle traps, swim jigs, Chatterbait, just to name a few. If you’re fishing grass and cover, swimbaits, swim jigs, aces and burner worms are getting it done.
2. Urban Canal Systems: Fishing is off the chain right now. Top on the list are peacock bass, snook, tarpon largemouth and other exotics. Pick your favorite jerkbait, live bait or topwater. Don’t forget the camera.
3. Holey Land: Fishing in the main canal has been really good. Flukes, jerkbaits, topwater, and spinnerbaits. I’ve been catching some really good numbers of quality fish.
4. Mile marker 35: Fishing big baits through the pads like the snake, Big Easy, and frogs are getting big bites.
5. Everglades Holiday Park: Fishing here has been up and down. If you can find water with no current you will find good numbers of fish. There is some decent peacock fishing as well. Jerkbaits, crankbaits, and worming the ledges have provided some of my best bites. By no means is it on fire, but there are some big ones biting if you’re patient.
6. Sawgrass Recreational Park: If you are looking for numbers, this is the place. Small sinko’s and flukes will keep your rod bent all day. For those of you without access to a boat, they have boat rentals here.
Remember for those of you that do not harvest your fish please handle them properly and get them back in the water as soon as possible.
Help keep our resources clean and free of debris such as line, discarded hooks, bait containers and plastic water bottles. Please pick up after yourself and others. Together, we can keep our waterways beautiful.
Till next time tight lines and bent rods.
Capt. Neal Stark
Fishing with America’s Finest, Inc.
“Changing Lives One Cast at a Time.”
501(C)(3) Non-Profit Organization, FEIN #45-5494005
American Everglades Guide, Inc.