Anglers fishing with me on my Action Craft flats skiff, the Snook Fin-Addict out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had good action catching and releasing an estimated 130- to 140-pound tarpon and jumping several others on spinning tackle in the coastal gulf recently. Fly anglers also had their shots at tarpon earlier in the week.
Dave Reinhart, from Virginia, and Domenick Raschella, from North Carolina, tarpon-fished a couple of days with me. We drifted live baits while waiting to cast DOA Baitbusters and live crabs to passing schools of tarpon. Domenick jumped three tarpon, and Dave caught and released a large female after a lengthy battle on live crabs with spinning tackle. A memorable fish!
Large schools of tarpon are more plentiful at this point in the season rather than singles, doubles and small schools. They should be plentiful in the coastal gulf as we approach a full moon this week. Look for reds and big trout on shallow flats or edges of bars in Sarasota Bay. Fishing deep grass flats for trout, blues and more should also be a good option. You should find catch-and-release snook in the surf, in passes and around docks and bridges close to passes.
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.