Fishing Report


“Reports this week indicate the freshwater run-off from earlier heavy rains is finally reaching the feeder creeks and East Flats. That means either you’ll have to search a little harder to find saltier water, go deeper or make sure the fish find you,” says Capt. Dave Lear of Tallahassee.

Those creeks that don’t have a direct flow from the refuge impoundments are going to be more productive and less tannin-stained than others like Deep Creek with its spillway. The shorelines between major outflows should also be better. You might have to go deeper than normal, up to 10 feet, to find cooperative trout and that shift will require heavier terminal tackle. Adding scent or noise can give an extra edge as well. Pro-Cure bait gels give real scent to lures. Using noisy plugs like Rapala Skitter Walks or Heddon Super Spooks with internal ball bearings will help draw fish in. Popping or clacker-style corks accomplish the same thing. Floating grass will be a hassle all summer, so be ready to clean treble hooks often or re-rig with the in-line single hooks. Weed guards will help shed the salad too.

There are still some spots with clearer water and more typical conditions. Find those and the success rate goes up. With the near-daily afternoon showers, it will take some time for all areas to fully clear and water clarity/salinity to return to normal.

This weekend marks the 30th anniversary of the Big Bend Saltwater Classic, with Shields Marina in St. Marks and the Moorings in Carrabelle the official tournament weigh-in sites. Besides the chance of summer showers, the mid-week forecast is looking very favorable with light winds and calm seas. Coming off Thursday’s new moon, tides will still be on the strong side. The dawn bite should be very good with the fall, bottoming out around mid-morning before cresting again late afternoon. Peak solunar feeding activity will be best during that dawn window and average for the hour preceding the low.