What's hot: Kingfish season is here, but it's always interrupted by windy conditions from passing late-season frontal systems. Clear, calm days with easterly breezes between the fronts has produced outstanding action from Spanish mackerel and king mackerel along the beaches. Anchor over hard-bottom areas and deploy a frozen chum block while free-lining lively scaled sardines.
Rig right: Lighter tackle will hook more fish. A 10-pound-test braid is more than adequate for hooking and landing both kinds of mackerel. Use a clear section of monofilament or fluorocarbon to separate the bait from the highly visible braid followed by a short section of light wire to avoid the mackerel's sharp teeth.
Kid-friendly: Kingfish and Spanish mackerel are perfect for family fishing. They provide action, speed and a challenge for any age group or skill level. Chumming with live bait will bring the fish right to the transom and within easy casting range. Simply pitch a bait out into the chum slick and let it swim naturally. Children can usually work fast-running fish against light drag settings, creating a perfect family outing with fresh fish on the table for dinner.
Brent Gaskill runs Summer Vacation Charters out of the St. Petersburg area and can be reached at captbrent@summervacation charters.com or (727)510-1009.