High Hopes Charters Fish Reports

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Thursday, September 29,2011

October Fish Forecast

North Naples - Bonita - Ft. Myers Beach
As the water temperature falls to the low 80's then upper 70's the surface will come alive. Bait schools that were only a spot on the fish finder last month will be flying out of the water, driven by hungry pelagics as they work there way south for the winter. From the passes, a long the beaches and out to the reefs you will see Spanish mackerel rocket out of the water in feeding frenzies. Kings, cobia, cuda and sharks will be in hot pursuit. The grouper and snapper bite is on. You can expect keeper gag grouper and nice mangrove and lane snapper on the reefs. White bait, thread herring, shrimp, squid, cut mullet and sardines will work on the bottom. Beef up the tackle so you can get them out of the rocks. Whether you drift the bait schools or anchor on a reef and chum, you can expect the best surface action of the year. October is an excellent month to troll the near shore waters. A four rod spread is manageable and covers the entire water column . Try silver spoons or surface plugs on the outside set long. A keel sinker will control line twist if you are using spoons. Use deep divers like Rapala Magnums and Mann Stretch on the inside lines set short and deep. It's possible to pick up a gag grouper on the deep divers as well as huge kings, or a cobia. Troll around active bait schools or over the reefs for the best trolling action of the year.
The back water will continue to produce through the month and into November. Slot sized reds and catch and release snook will be abundant in the bays, passes, creeks and rivers from Vanderbilt Bay to Mantansas Pass. Mangrove snapper, sea trout, flounder and sheephead are becoming more active as the water cools. A light rod and small shrimp will bring home a great dinner.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

The mackerel are here!

Carson Binder shows off a Spanish mackerel he caught on a recent reef trip with his Dad.

September Fish Forecast

Published in Coastal Angler Magazine.
September fishing in South West Florida is Great! Possibly the least fished month of all. After Labor Day weekend there will be very few fisherman on the water. Less pressure on the reefs and backwaters means more fish and more aggressive bites for the lucky few that get the chance to wet a line. The near shore reefs are producing nice mangrove snapper and some 15 to 20 inch flounder. Use live shrimp or cut sardines for the best action. Gag grouper will open in the Gulf on September 15th. for one month. Heavier tackle will give you a chance to bring home a grouper dinner. Expect to see schools of Spanish mackerel chasing bait on the surface with barracuda and shark in hot pursuit. Try a slow troll through the bait schools or over the reefs. A four rod spread using a verity of lures from silver spoons to deep divers will give a respite from bottom fishing and possibly a hook up with the biggest fish of the day.
The beaches, passes and back waters are hot with catch and release snook action. Small tarpon are still in Hickory, Fish Trap and Estero Bays and the Imperial River but only for the early risers. Mangrove snapper, sea trout, red fish and flounder seem to be just about everywhere. Fishing the back waters and passes you will need to pick your spots according the the tide. Water movement is key to the fish biting, or even being in the area. Read the water.

August, 2011

Dr. John Lasak ans daughter Anna Show off a Spanish Mackerel.

Jim Holcomb with a huge mangrove snapper

August Fish Forecast

Published in Coastal Angler Magazine
North Naples - Bonita - Ft. Myers Beach
It's summer in SW Florida, and along with hot weather comes hot fishing action if you time it right.
Sunrise is the best time for tailing tarpon in Hickory Bay and the Imperial River. Spotted sea trout bite exceptionally well when the tide starts to fall in Wiggins Pass and the passes of Estero Bay. Fish for Spanish mackerel on the outgoing tide. And here's a great tip: be sure to look for feeding birds working the tide line just offshore from the passes. Silver spoons and flashy jigs will get their attention. The nearshore reefs are holding big mangrove snapper this time of year.

Boat position over the reef is more important then timing in the Gulf. A few feet can make a difference this time of year if you are bottom fishing. Anchor so your chum drifts toward the reef, this will draw the fish out and away from the structure. Chunk some cut bait into the water to enhance the chum slick.

August is a good month to go shark fishing. Any reef will do. Chum the water, put some big baits down on your heaviest tackle and get ready for a good fight. Gag grouper will be closed in the Gulf until September 15. Go to www.myfwc.com for a complete list of regulations on shark, grouper or any species you are interested in harvesting