by Capt. Dave Stephens
The last few mornings I have noticed it’s been a little cooler. You can feel the weather pattern is beginning to change. Normally this time of year the water has begun to clear up more. Due to some storms, we are behind schedule. I have had some situations when I found myself in an area that had some bad water. This can happen from the run off. The rains are starting to back off, so I don’t think this will be much of an issue any longer. Overall our fall fishery should kick right back into gear.
Snook fishing this time of year can be done in a variety of ways. The most popular is on the flats. As long as we don’t have some freak cold weather this month, the flats fishing will remain good. This time of year, I like to focus on areas that have deep water access. Another great snook fishery that is often over looked is residential canals. Snook seek deep water for the winter months. This is the month that a lot of these fish will be moving into these areas. Docks that have depth and moving current are the key places to locate fish. Live bait is going to get the best bite, but this time of year don’t overlook artificial lures. Some of my favorites are top water and jerk baits. Match the color to the water, darker water use dark colors. In clearer water use a lighter color.
Red fishing has been good the past few weeks and should stay that way this month. Later in the month the creeks should start holding more fish. On the lower tides work the deeper creeks, as the tide comes in look for fish on the flats. Live bait such as pilchards and pinfish are great baits. If you aren’t able to get live bait, shrimp and cut bait will work great also.
Probably one of the biggest movers this time of year will be Sea Trout. The cooling water will have these guys schooling up. Deep potholes on the flats will be holding good numbers of fish. Also, bars along the flats are great areas to locate fish. As the water cools, even more deeper water such as residential canals and creeks will see alot of action with trout. Live pilchards are great baits, but shrimp on a jig head and popping cork will work great also. Fall trout are great fish to get out the artificial on. Early morning topwater will be hot. As the sun gets higher switch to jerk baits.
Fall fishing on Charlotte Harbor is a great time of year. So get out and experience some of the great fishing our area has to offer.