Wading the flats on a flood tide can be productive. (Photo: Tim Boothe)
My story for Hatch Magazine on wading. Enjoy.
When I first started saltwater fly fishing, I waded the flats out of necessity. I had no choice, because I had no boat. Now I have a boat. But I still wade because I want to, not because I have to. Here’s why.
There’s no easier way to fish. It doesn’t matter of if you live in Florida, Texas, Alabama, South Carolina, New Jersey or Massachusetts. Wadeable water is nearby—particularly up and down the East Coast and Gulf Coast. And you can be on the water in a matter of minutes. Have an hour to spare on your lunch break? Or after work before heading home? You can fish. Gone are the days when you need an entire day off from work to fish.
You will fish more, and as a result, you will become a better angler.
My story in Hatch Magazine on the honeymoon in a marriage of fly fishing and boat ownership. Enjoy.
Here’s a late winter/early spring fishing report from Oyster Creek Outfitters/Saltwater Flytyers:
Captain Tommy Derringer of Inshore Adventures reports that an unseasonably warm winter has left the water a bit murkier than usual for late February, making sight fishing a bit problematic. The reds are still schooled up , but they’re tough to see because of the lack of water clarity. A word of advice: Hit the creeks and blind cast the holes to produce double-digit fish outings. Capt. Tim Boothe visited the middle section of the Mosquito Lagoon and says he saw a number of nice schools, but the fish were fickle. Oyster Creek staffer Bill Stalcup said he’s heard reports of baby tarpon and snook in the southern part of St. Johns county. With March winds on the way, it never hurts to get out of the bluster and find a secluded pond.
My story for the Snook and Gamefish Foundation on strategies for catching winter trout. Enjoy.
It’s almost November. A hint of fall is in the air as a tinge of cool air has replaced summer’s suffocating heat. Of course, we’ll miss those flat calm days, but with winter on the way, conditions to catch big seatrout are not far behind. Given that timetable, here’s a look at a handful of the top places in Florida to find your quarry.
The Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission plans a stock assessment for trout in the fall of 2016, so make sure to log your catches in the SGF Angler Action Program. The FWC uses SGF AA data to manage recreational gamefish. More info means better management. Try to do your part.
Back to the best state-wide spots for trout:
Tim takes a break during a long day of fishing the flats.
Just started another book: Fly Fishing St. Augustine. Hope to have it done by early summer. I’m looking forward to this project. St. Augustine is one of my favorite places on the planet — so much art, history, scenery — and yes, the redfishing ain’t half bad, either.
I fished St. Aug. last weekend with Tim Boothe of Old City Guide Service. The reds were scarce — a south wind delayed the tide — but we did manage to find two in the shallow marsh. Neither ate. However, I was glad we got shots. We persevered under difficult conditions and found fish. Sometimes, you have to celebrate the moral victories.
Before that, we fished the deeper holes around the oyster bars for bluefish and trout. Since I’m a sight fishing snob, I usually don’t blind cast to structure, but this time I made an exception in the name of research for my book. After a few fish, I was pleasantly surprised: Casting with a sink-tip line wasn’t half bad and we each caught a handful of fish, which saved the day.
Ideally, it’s more fun to sight fish. The thrill of the hunt followed by the eat can’t be beat. The adrenalin rush is incredible. But I’m learning that you have to adjust to the conditions and do what you have to do to bend the rod. So I bought an extra spool and an intermediate line, perfect for the surf or the deeper water on the flats. What a revelation!!