Anglers fishing with me on my Action Craft flats skiff, the Snook Fin-Addict out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, caught and released trout and Spanish mackerel in Sarasota Bay and trout and bluefish in Gasparilla Sound on CAL jigs with shad tails and top water plugs during the week of Jan. 6.
Marshall Dinerman, from Atlanta, fished Sarasota Bay with me on the morning on Jan. 6. With an approaching front and a west wind, he had good action with Spanish mackerel to more than 4 pounds and trout on CAL jigs with shad tails and top-water plugs fishing deep grass flats near Whale Key. An awesome looking front with frigid air and wind, but not much rain, pushed through about 11 a.m., and seas went to 4 feet in the bay very fast.
The next couple of days were cold and windy, so I didn't fish. Since water temperatures dipped into the high 50s at night in inshore waters, I postponed a night snook fly fishing trip until the water warms back up. Keith McClintock and Victor Feldman, both from Illinois, made up their trip from earlier in the week when they fished Gasparilla Sound near Boca Grande with me on Jan. 10. They had good action with numerous trout to 18 inches and blues to 3 pounds on CAL jigs with shad tails. The majority of trout were fat, healthy fish in the slot. I also spotted a smalltooth sawfish swimming on top of a sandbar in 2 feet of water. I wasn't able to get a photo but got a very good, close look at the fish. It was the second one I've ever seen!
I had an instructional fly fishing trip in Sarasota Bay on Saturday morning. With an upcoming bonefish trip planned to Andros Island, Bahamas, the anglers wanted to hone their saltwater fly fishing skills. We worked on accuracy, line management, saltwater speed casting and dealing with wind, all important aspects of bonefishing.
Catch-and-release night snook action in the ICW should be good option next week now that water temperatures have warmed back to the mid-60s. Fishing deep grass flats of Sarasota Bay for trout, Spanish mackerel, blues and more should continue to be a good option.
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.