Log in Subscribe

Cool weather was a tease, and we're back to summer


The spate of cool fall weather was a cruel tease. The weather is back to midsummer levels, but with no cooling rain.

The only saving grace is that the days are not as long and the 90-plus degree level is just for a few hours each afternoon. Water temperatures started to moderate but now have jumped right back up to the mid-80s again.

The Gulf pelagic run is going to happen despite the heat, but it may be a little later and hopefully longer. Last year there was a dramatic and early cold spell that put the kibosh on a great fall run in early November.

The unseasonably hot conditions have really affected the inshore fishing. The flats species are very scattered and not always very intent on feeding blitzes as yet. The best-case scenario in the fall is a gradual cooldown, but things are pointing to a sudden and substantial drop in water temperatures, which tends to disorient most backwater fish, and it takes a week or so for them to acclimate. One big upside is there is tons of bait around.

A couple of outings this past week produced mixed results. One trip was strictly an artificial chucking affair that produced a lot of trout, spanish mackerel, ladyfish, mangrove snapper, flounder and a stray pompano. Storm's top water bait, the "Chug Bug," was very effective early in the morning on a low incoming tide in three to five feet of water in the bays. The little top water plug even nailed some mangrove snapper. As the sun got higher along with the tide, we switched to a variety of plastics, with the Tsunami "Trout Mauler" being the most productive. Reds and snook were apparently not too impressed with our offerings or techniques.

On another more conventional bait trip, the bait was plentiful, easy to get and produced all of the above plus a few scattered snook and redfish.

In the upcoming week I am planning a couple of forays out to the nearshore Gulf reefs to see what's shakin' out there.

Good luck and good fishing. Be careful out there!

Capt. "Zach" Zacharias

(941) 795-5026

E-mail: zachap@aol.com

Docked on Palma Sola Bay at Parrot Cove Marina/Sunny Shores

115th Street West and 36th Avenue, Cortez, FL 34215


No comments on this item

Only paid subscribers can comment
Please log in to comment by clicking here.