The fishing has been very good the past two weeks – monster reds, trout, bluefish, Spanish, ladyfish and even the pesky catfish have been plentiful! I’ve been hitting the water at various hours, from early morning as the sun comes up to late trips in the afternoon. I’m picking my times to work best with the tides, and sometimes it’s nice not having to be up before the rooster crows.
The trout bite on the flats has been halfway decent with most of the fish ranging from 14” – 18” with a few fish over 20”. Most of the fish have been caught on MirrOlure’s Top-Dog Jr’s, suspending twitch baits, and the new Paul Brown bait or live bait under a popping cork. Remember, if you use the new Paul Brown bait, don’t use it near bluefish or Spanish mackerel as their sharp teeth will rip chunks out of it and at $8 bucks a pop, it can get pretty costly!
I’ve also been catching some of the biggest reds I’ve ever seen in Pensacola Bay and the Pass. Live bait is the key, but you can also catch them on artificial baits from time to time.
Other fun species are Spanish and Grouper, and over the past few days we’ve caught plenty of both. On 6/30, we boated a nice 24” gag that we had to throw back, which was a bummer but rules is rules. My client still had a great time fighting the fish, and it even had a hook in its mouth from being hooked before. Talk about lucky!
Spanish are getting thick in the bay and pass; some schools are the smaller 12 –15” fish, but if you get lucky you’ll find a few bigger fish mixed in.
I’ve not been offshore due to the seas being rougher than I like, but with all the excitement of inshore fishing, why bother? There’s plenty of fishing inshore to keep an angler busy.