What's hot: Summer catch-and-release snook fishing has been excellent, especially during the peak tidal phases. New moon tides the next few days should have the fish biting.
Tactics: Target big snook at typical summer holding spots; bridges, jetties and barrier island sand shoals are all good. Sand shoals offer a chance to catch big snook in super shallow water. Free-line grass grunts along the drop-offs in the morning. Jetty fishing is a great option. Free-line live pilchards and grass grunts against the rocks during the strong part of the tide. Bridge fishing is probably more consistent at night.
Tackle: Beach and jetty fishing can be accomplished by your standard inshore outfit, typically a 7-foot rod with a 4000-sized spinning reel spooled with 15-pound braided line. Leaders should be heavy enough to work the fish in a timely manner: 30-pound fluorocarbon seems right. Bridge fishing should be done with either a heavy spinning reel spooled with 50-pound braided line and a 60-or 80-pound leader, or a stout conventional rod and reel.
Tyson Wallerstein runs Inshore Fishing Charters in the Clearwater/St. Petersburg area and can be reached at (727) 692-5868 and firstname.lastname@example.org.