Consecutive storm fronts loaded with wind and rain have made changes to our reasonably comfortable winter. (A couple of weeks ago air conditioners were still in use.) Now a rollercoaster of fronts may make a real mess offshore. These storms are capable of creating rough sea conditions and can also make a veritable soup of sand in the water column. The mix of silt stirred from the bottom makes it hard for fish to find bait when offered. Patience will be needed if you plan on taking any fish. While the surface might look clear, the bottom may still be cloudy. The best baits will be cut sardines and squid. Sometimes small pieces of squid will work better than anything else. You might be surprised when a big grouper grabs a bait that is a size usually offered for grunts. Take your time at each fishing spot, it might take a few minutes to get them going. A hint on where to look: Fish usually seek out areas with lots of structure to break down sea conditions during a storm. A final thought: Please take care when planning your outing. Leave a float plan in case you experience a problem while offshore.
Larry Blue charters the Niki Joe from Madeira Beach Marina. Call (727) 871-1058 or visit captainlarryblue.com.