What's hot: The recent cold fronts have turned on the snook, trout and kingfish bites. The water temperatures in the 70s have those fish chasing down live scaled sardines. Offshore and inside of 5 miles on the hard bottom have produced nonstop kingfish action. Trolling lures has produced some fish, but the best action has been anchoring up and chumming them to the boat. The fish have been anywhere from 15 to 40 pounds.
Tips: With the cooler weather, the snook have become very active. The negative tides have moved them out of the mangroves and into the sand holes on the flats.
Tackle: With the water getting cooler and the algae starting to die off, you might need to downsize your tackle. The cleaner the water is, the easier it is for the fish to see you and your tackle. Try taking your leader down to 20 pound and use a 1/0 circle hook to increase your bite. You might also want to use an 8-foot pole to help you cast farther. Making longer casts to the fish this time of year is the key to not spooking them.
Mike Gore charters out of Tampa Bay. Call him at (813) 390-6600 or visit tampacharters.com.