Mostly Cloudy80° FULL FORECASTMostly Cloudy80° FULL FORECAST
Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Captain's Corner

Captain's Corner: Fishing the flats can be strong this time of year

What's hot: Shallow-water fishing, often called fishing the flats, can be very productive this time of year. Water is clear and weed-free, making sight-fishing ideal. Sun, light wind and clear skies are needed to spot fish. Our quarry — trout, reds, snook and occasionally sheepshead — will be easier to see before dropping our presentation in front of them.

Technique: Sunlight can cast shadows or reflect off a shiny reel or bright rod, scaring fish. The sun behind you is best for sight-fishing. Keep low to the surface and cast more horizontally instead of vertically. Minimize false casting and learn a saltwater quick cast. Leave brightly colored shirts and hats home. A smooth water surface makes fish more spooky. Use lighter equipment such as a 6-weight fly rod, floating weight forward line and a 12-foot tapered leader. Smaller flies (size 4-6) with small bead chain eyes will softly land on the water if properly cast. Use lightly dressed flies.

Tips: Polarized glasses and a dark hat brim are needed to see well. Try yellow glasses to brighten things. If you are having difficulty seeing a fish, tilt your head from side to side to improve visibility.

Pat Damico charters out of St. Pete Beach and can be reached at or (727)504-8649.

Captain's Corner: Fishing the flats can be strong this time of year 01/14/13 [Last modified: Monday, January 14, 2013 10:40pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2015 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours