The rain has really cooled off the bay lately and made the water tannic in color. Do not be concerned by this. If anything, it is a welcome sight. Bait is everywhere, and the fish are eating the bottom out of the boat. As the weather continues to get nicer, your favorite fishing holes and passes are sure to be crowded. The snook bite has been phenomenal, and I have been catching more big fish than I have in a long time. With all the freshwater pouring into Tampa Bay, look for water changes. This will be a good indication of good water flow. That water flow pushes bait around on both the incoming and outgoing tides. Set up where you can present your bait to look the most natural. Cast up into the current and let the bait drift along a point or mangrove line. The redfish bite continues to be strong. The big breeders have already started to school up. These fish have pushed in from St. Petersburg all the way into north Tampa Bay. Just remember these fish get pressured pretty hard, so the key is to set up and wait. Try scouting these fish and learn their pattern before ever throwing bait at them. Of course you can catch a few out of the school if you just go after them, but if you learn their pattern and can set up in the right position, you will catch them for hours instead of minutes. Try live bait or dead, sticking bait for these fish.
Mike Gore charters out of Tampa Bay. Call him at (813) 390-6600 or visit tampacharters.com.