What's hot: This week's major high-tide levels will provide great action for redfish. Schools are congregating on top of oyster beds and underneath mangroves. These schools are sensitive to unfamiliar pressure. Extra caution is needed when approaching. I use my trolling motor on the lowest setting so that my boat is not making loud noise. I keep the wind at my back so I can make the longest casts. When the first redfish is caught, it will usually spook the school; let the fish settle and start over.
Bait: The summer spawn has produced a hatch of threadfin herring, scaled sardines and Spanish sardines. These bait are small and will get caught in the cast net. To locate larger bait, I look on the bottom machine in deeper water. The bigger bait will show up as a thick cloud. If I see anything, I throw the cast net from the back of the boat where my transducer is located.
Tackle: Long casts are needed when redfish are spooky. I use 71/2-foot graphite rods with smaller 2000 series reels loaded with 10-pound braid. The light braided line combined with a longer rod with the wind at your back will always produce longer casts. Twenty-pound camouflage leader with a 2/0 circle hook finishes the terminal tackle.
Rob Gorta charters out of St. Petersburg and can be reached at captainrobgorta.com or (727) 647-7606.