What's hot: Water temperatures inshore plummeted to 52 degrees last week. When it gets that cold, slow or even stop your presentation. Working channel edges with scented soft plastics can bring steady ladyfish action. Turning them into cutbait for redfish and the occasional gator trout can turn a tough day into a quality day.
Tactics: Finding a leeside shoreline can be tough on a north wind, but they exist. Target the low midafternoon tide. The water has warmed a bit, and the fish are holding over the outer edges of the flats, which are laden with large stretches of sand that intertwine with sparse grass patches. Fish seem to feed well in this scenario, but it might last for only a couple of hours. Work a large area by fanning out multiple rods with medium-sized chunks of ladyfish.
Nearshore: Light-tackle bottom fishing slowed a bit but was still good this past weekend despite the cold water. Calm conditions made for easy runs out a couple of miles for mixed bag action of grunts, sheepshead and hogfish. Target hard bottoms in 20-40 feet with live shrimp on a knocker rig with a 1-ounce sinker.
Tyson Wallerstein runs Inshore Fishing Charters in the Clearwater/St. Petersburg area and can be reached at (727) 692-5868 and via email at email@example.com.