What's hot: Snook can be found in big numbers along west coast beaches. Large schools will be in passes with strong tidal flows. The easiest place to find big numbers is along the beach in clear water. Snook will hold right along the beach in the trough formed by the wave action. I look for a large, dark shadow, anchor and pitch baits to the spot. If the shadow moves, I know it's fish. If it stays still, it's grass.
Tip: A 12-foot cast net allows me to fill the well quickly and throw in deeper water. I like to have a variety of baits. You never know what snook will eat. Scaled sardines (also known as whitebait) is everyone's top choice. Threadfin herring (greenbacks) are equally good but very sensitive and die quickly.
Tactic: Approach schools with care. Running motors will spook fish and shut them down. Snook will run to deeper water when spooked, making it difficult to sightcast. Use a push pole or trolling motor on the lowest setting to get close.
Rob Gorta charters out of St. Petersburg. Call him at (727) 647-7606 or visit captainrobgorta.com.