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  1. Captain's Corner: How to go after the largest trout


    The largest trout are available now. The key is to find warmer, shallow water containing small baitfish. Current tides are perfect for this. A high incoming tide late in the afternoon will flood shallows that have absorbed the sun's rays. A favorite place is a long sandbar that has adjacent healthy grass. Some of these were created when shorelines were dredged years ago to provide deeper water for docks. Leave your boat or kayak and wade right on the bar as this will be firm and easygoing. Get out maps and charts and look for these locations. Using good sunglasses, a hat with a dark underbrim and the sun at your back, stalk prospective locations like a fish-eating bird. Even large trout can be hard to see. Move slowly and look for fleeing baitfish, nervous water or the fish's shadow on the bottom. You will spook some fish, but remember where the lunkers are for future reference and to help develop a pattern for finding more. A 7- or 8-weight fly rod with a 12-foot leader tapered to 15-pound test fluoro­carbon helps make a stealthy presentation of your favorite baitfish pattern to the fish's strike zone. Use a floating line and white fly patterns without weight. …

  2. Kriseman scoffs at Foster's claim that sewage dumps hurt Tampa Bay, endangered public health


    ST. PETERSBURG — Hours after Mayor Rick Kriseman took full responsibility for the city’s sewage crisis, he told the Tampa Bay Times on Saturday that more than 100 million gallons of sewage dumped into Tampa Bay had done no environmental harm or risked public health. …

    Bill Foster, shown in 2012, said Mayor Rick Kriseman "damaged the bay" due to the city's sewage crisis, in which about 200 million gallons were dumped into the bay. Kriseman denied these claims. [Times files]
  3. Column: Florida's worst year? Try 1919 or 1895


    Historians put events into perspective. I am one, and I know that not every event is HUGE! …

  4. Review: 'Silence' is a masterful theological mystery from Martin Scorsese


    Only Martin Scorsese could shepherd a theological mystery like Silence to life. Only a devoted yet questioning Christian would try. …

    In Silence, Andrew Garfield, center, plays Father Rodrigues, a priest searching for another priest in 17th century Japan. [Paramount Pictures]
  5. Captain's Corner: Use sandbars to your fishing advantage


    Cold fronts passing through with strong northeast winds will push water out of the bay on low tides, exposing every sandbar at the edge of every flat. I use this to my advantage, looking for cuts in the bars. Fish have no choice but to use the cuts on extreme lows as their highway to get on and off the flats. The last cold front dropped water temperatures to 60 degrees, so neoprene waders are a must when temperatures get that low. These keep you warm while wading in the shallows. A good pair of wading boots also is important to protect you from the stingrays. Another important item is a wading belt. It allows you to carry an extra rod, a small tackle box and, most importantly, keeps water from entering the waders if you slip or fall. I like to wear a breathable jacket, that way sweat can escape from all of the vigorous wading. I prefer a 7-foot rod and a 30 series reel loaded with 10-pound braided line. It's a light combo that will not wear me out while wading. The light braid allows for long casts with the wind and covers more area when blind-casting. A long 6-foot, 20-pound camouflage leader will keep reds from seeing the braided line in clear water. A red quarter-ounce jig rigged with a root beer-colored tail is hard to beat. It imitates a small crustacean, a favorite of redfish. …

  6. Editorial: Negron's smart next step for the Everglades


    There should be no doubt that the Florida Legislature should move forward with a sensible plan to create more water storage space south of Lake Okeechobee to achieve the goals of the multibillion-dollar Everglades cleanup effort. That is critical for easing the dumping of toxic lake water onto the eastern and western coasts, replenishing South Florida's drinking water supply and increasing the flow of water to replenish the Everglades basin. The science is settled and the money exists, and lawmakers and Gov. Rick Scott should act in the interests of public health and the state's economy. …

    Algae laps along the shoreline of the St. Lucie River last year, when heavy rains forced the release of tainted water from Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie estuaries. The releases spawned massive blue-green algae blooms.

Palm Beach Post
  7. Clemson, Alabama players offer championship advice for high schoolers


    TAMPA — Bright lights, screaming fans and a throng of reporters pushing, shoving and shouting to grab their attention isn't new for football players at the University of Alabama and Clemson University. Consequently, the recent College Football Championship Media Day struck them as fairly routine. …

    Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver ArDarius Stewart (13) signs autographs for fans during the College Football Playoff Media Day at Amalie Arena on the Saturday before the game.
  8. Mike Bianchi: Dabo Swinney is the new crown prince of college football, but Saban is still king


    TAMPA — After an unbelievable, inconceivable finish, Clemson is now undoubtedly the best team in America, but don't ever forget this: Alabama remains the most dominant program in college football. …

    TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 09:  Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide talks with head coach Dabo Swinney of the Clemson Tigers after the Tigers defeated the Crimson Tide 35-31 in the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game at Raymond James Stadium on January 9, 2017 in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) 686857421
  9. Captain's Corner: Cold snap can mean new targets for fishing


    We had our first influx of cold air this past week. It sent shock waves across the Tampa Bay Watershed, and that's not a bad thing. We have enjoyed another very extended fall again this year. All of a sudden we have become thrust into winter. What does this mean for the fish? It means the pressure on snook is off for a couple of months, giving them a reprieve and time to rest and prepare for next summer's spawn. It also means targeting some different species of fish and using some different styles and techniques — in other words, breaking up the monotony. A question I get a lot is, "What are we going to fish for?" That answer changes day to day and is heavily influenced by the predicted weather conditions and tides. If the weather is nice and the bay is calm, it can be a brisk run in the bay boat to any one of the many rock piles in Tampa Bay to target sheepshead. These guys are tricky, and it takes a while to get a feel for when to set the hook. They are tasty critters, and often they are invited home for dinner. If the weather is windy and cold and the tides bottom out in a negative way, I like running a skiff and fishing deep into the back country targeting redfish and trout, maybe a few snook and occasionally, when the stars align, juvenile tarpon that seldom eat. …

  10. College Football Playoff: Locals make presence felt in title game


    TAMPA — For Clemson receiver Ray-Ray McCloud, the best part of Monday's College Football Playoff national title game wasn't the double-digit fourth-quarter comeback, or one of the wildest finishes in championship game history. It was the location. "It's at home," McCloud said.  …

    Clemson Tigers wide receiver Artavis Scott (3) during a kickoff return in the first quarter during the College Football Playoff National Championship on Monday January 9, 2017 at Raymond James Stadium, in Tampa, Fla.
  11. College Football Playoff: The Tampa party is over, but here's what remains


    TAMPA — Sometimes, it isn't until you take something apart that you realize how big it was. …

    Clemson Tigers wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud (34) after the College Football Playoff National Championship on Monday January 9, 2017 at Raymond James Stadium, in Tampa, Fla. Clemson Tigers defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide 35 to 31.
  12. College Football Playoff: 'No entitlement' at Clemson and a former walk-on shines


    TAMPA — Between two resplendent moments — a glorious, game-winning touchdown and the Tampa sunrise — Dabo Swinney logged an hour of sleep. …

    Clemson Tigers wide receiver Hunter Renfrow (13), second from left, is congratulated by teammates after scoring in the final seconds of the fourth quarter against Alabama Crimson Tide Monday, Jan. 09, 2017 in Tampa. The Clemson Tigers defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide 35-31.
  13. News at Noon: Obama heads to Chicago for farewell speech; Florida falling behind on minimum wage; football fans jet out of Tampa; Hard Rock christening new poker room


    President Barack Obama is heading home to Chicago to say goodbye to the nation.. Obama has referred to his home in the Hyde Park neighborhood here as "a time capsule," a mostly uninhabited place full of old bills and news clippings dating back to a time before he took office. Obama chose Chicago to deliver his farewell-to-the-nation speech because of his "deep and profound love for the city. …

    President Barack Obama will deliver his farewell address to the nation from Chicago. [ Associated Press file]
  14. Tired Clemson, Alabama fans waste no time catching flights home


    TAMPA — With his red Alabama hoodie pulled tightly around his face, 9-year-old Joey Haley rubbed his red eyes as he rode the escalator into the main terminal of Tampa International Airport. "Part tears, part tired," said his father Jerry Haley, 43. …

    Clemson fans, some of whom came straight from the college football championship, rest while waiting for their flights at Tampa International Airport. [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]
  15. Baker's Dozen: Wrapping up a thrilling college football season


    TAMPA — With the college football season (sadly) over, let's look back at another thrilling year. Here are my favorite moments, games and memories from a season that ended with Monday's College Football Playoff national title game at Raymond James Stadium: Alabama's defense …

    Jauan Jennings #15 of the Tennessee Volunteers runs into the end zone with a 67-yard touchdown reception against the Florida Gators in the fourth quarter at Neyland Stadium on September 24, 2016 in Knoxville, Tennessee. Tennessee defeated Florida 38-28. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
  16. College Football Playoff: Alabama left to wonder 'did that really happen?'


    TAMPA — They sat at their lockers, seemingly more stunned than sad, more shocked than upset. They exchanged long hugs, but very few words. They shook their heads, but shed very few tears. They stared at walls. Stared at floors. Stared at nothing. …

    Alabama Crimson Tide running back Bo Scarbrough (9) gets checked on by the coaching staff after an injury during the third quarter at the College Football Playoff National Championship on Monday January 9, 2017 at Raymond James Stadium, in Tampa, Fla.
  17. College Football Playoff: A memorable game-clincher for former walk-on Hunter Renfrow


    TAMPA — On the receiving end of the winning touchdown pass with one second left in a national championship game was a 5-foot-11 former walk-on receiver who turned down small-school scholarships to follow his heart to Clemson. …

    Clemson Tigers wide receiver Hunter Renfrow (13), center, is seen in the end zone after scoring for the final touchdown of the game agains Alabama Crimson Tide Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2017 in Tampa. The Clemson Tigers defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide 35-31.
  18. Jones: Alabama will forever remember Tampa as the 1 that got away


    TAMPA — They sat at their lockers, seemingly more stunned than sad, more shocked than upset. They exchanged long hugs but very few words. They shook their heads but shed very few tears. They stared at walls. Stared at floors. Stared at nothing. …

    Clemson wide receiver Mike Williams makes a leaping catch in front of Alabama defensive back Marlon Humphrey during a fourth quarter that will go down in college football lore.
  19. Fennelly: Clemson completes a comeback for the ages


    TAMPA — Yabba Dabo Do! Yabba Deshaun Do, Too. They came all the way back. Dabo Swinney and his Clemson Tigers won 13 games and made it all the way back to the national championship game Monday night. Then they came all the way back to win it all. …

    Clemson Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney, right, holds the College Football Playoff National Championship trophy while he celebrates the Tigers 35-31 win over the Alabama Crimson Tide Monday, Jan. 09, 2017 in Tampa.
  20. College Football Playoff notebook: Misled Alabama fans get scalper arrested


    Misled Alabama fans get scalper arrested TAMPA — Don't mess with Alabama fans. It's a lesson a ticket scalper from Orlando learned the hard way after Tampa police arrested him before Monday night's national championship game at Raymond James Stadium. …

    Jody Gallagher of Greenville, S.C., holds up two tickets he’s selling outside of Raymond James Stadium for Monday’s national championship game in Tampa.

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