What's hot: During the higher tides, trout hang in the mullet schools closest to the swash islands. Work the drop-off on the edge of the flats until the water is deep enough to get on the flats. Next, look for mullet jumping close to the island. With the sun at your back, slowly move within casting range of the mullet. Cast into the school and keep your rod tip high so the jig won't get snagged in the grass. The larger trout like to hang in the mullet schools for protection from dolphins. Stay with the mullet to have a shot at the larger trout.
Tackle: Light lines will give you greater casting distance. This is important because the mullet in shallow water won't let you get too close to the school. We use small jigs in the root beer or motor oil color. MirrOlure, Love's Lure and Tsunami jigs are working best. Work the jigs as slow as possible but fast enough to keep them out of the grass.
Pro tip: Some trout are well over 20 inches. Release the larger trout, which are the females that supply our area with future fish. Trout tend to stay near an area, so release the breeders, and our area will continue to have a strong trout population.
Doug Hemmer charters out of St. Petersburg and can be reached at (727) 347-1389.