High Hopes Charters Fish Reports

Monday, July 18, 2011

July Forecast for Coastal Angler

North Naples - Bonita - Ft. Myers Beach
July is a great month to head out to the near shore reefs. After the week of the Forth, there is a good chance you will be the only boat to fish a reef or rock pile for days. Gag Grouper has been closed to harvest until September 15th. but there are nice sized mangrove snapper, huge white grunts and a few flounder to be had bottom fishing. All good fun on light tackle and they make a great fish fry. If you want to tangle with a big fish, put a sea rod down with a half a blue runner and you'll have a good chance of hooking a goliath grouper or a big shark. Set a couple of balloon rigs with threads, small blue runners or frozen sardines for explosive surface action. Pretty much a guarantee for sharks and barracuda but you have a good chance at big Spanish and king mackerel or maybe a cobia. I have had several reports of 6 to 9 foot tiger sharks on the 5 mile reefs off Bonita Beach with several hook ups and a boat side release. Like blue water fishing only 5 miles out. What could be better?
The passes, bays, the Imperial and Estero rivers all offer ever increasing catch and release snook action. It is still possible to jump a tarpon at first light in Hickory, Fish Trap or Estero Bay. Great sea trout fishing will continue through July. Live shrimp or tandem rigged jigs should put trout on your menu.
Can't take the sun, tired of the heat? Try fishing the dock lights at night. There are hundreds of well lighted docks from Vanderbilt Bay to Estero Bay that hold fish all night. You can see them, the big ones. They are on the edge, some where between the light and darkness. Shadows, waiting to strike. Try a verity of baits, both artificial and live. If there are no takers, move to the next lighted dock. A small light weight head lamp makes knot tying much easier as you tend to loose your night vision when you fish the lights.
Summer is a great time to be on the water. Calm mornings, less boat traffic and big fish all make you push the limits and range of your boat. Don't get in trouble, think ahead. Watch the weather. Check your fuel, flares, radio, batteries and bilge pumps. Leave a float plan with a friend, or make a phone call when you head out. Let someone know where you are planning to fish. Take extra drinking water and snacks. If you are on an open boat, devise a way to make shade in the event of an emergency.
A small tarp secured to a cleat and the center console or to a boat hook in a rod holder will be enough to get you out of the sun.
Capt. Lindy Yow has fished the waters from Wiggins pass to Ft. Myers Beach since 1993 gaining an extensive knowledge of the near shore reefs and the areas back waters. Offering private charters tailored to fit your needs, family fun or more serious fishing adventures, I can make it work. Call me a 239-273-6122 or visit www.highhopescharters.com for more details. Remember to mention Coastal Angler Magazine and receive 10% off any trip.

Saturday, July 3, 2011

Dale Holcomb shows off a nice mangrove snapper.