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Fishing Report – Tampa Bay – New Port Richey – It Was a Beautiful Day

By Fishing Reports

With all the cold rainy weather we have had this winter it is so nice to finally see some warm and sunny days in the forecast. I had some very good clients scheduled to go fishing this weekend and was very excited to get out on the water and see what the warmer weather would bring us. I had them meet me at the dock at 7:30 and i got there about a half hour early to enjoy the sunrise and actually feel the warmth in the morning air that was finally not below 40 degrees.

As we left the dock I planned on heading south toward Tarpon Springs to see if I could get on some redfish and trout that me and Capt. Clay had found a couple of days earlier while out shooting some footage for our new Internet video site Proanglersjournal.com . when I pulled my Banshee off plane I could see some activity close to the area that the fish had been, I poled us into position and we began to see the tell tale head wakes of redfish. We made several casts into and around the school but could get no takers. We worked the fish for another 20 minutes or so and then decided to move through them and go to another school I had found earlier in the week.

When we got to the area of the next school I saw Capt. Clay coming in to, we decided to try and get on opposite sides of the school and hold them between us. This was a great plan except there were no fish to keep between us, they had obviously moved on from the other day. We said goodbye to Clay and went to yet another bunch of redfish, on arrival we watched as an Osprey dove on some mullet, his aim was true and he got his prey. When the hawk hit the water he showed us right where the fish were that we were looking for. A large wake pushed right at us, and as we got ready to cast I could see the redfish moving across the sand bottom from the platform. My anglers all made very good casts in front of the school, but to no avail. For some reason this group of reds didn’t want to eat either, we poled around them and had 4 or 5 more good shots but had the same result.

I was beginning to get a little frustrated with the fish so we decided to move on to another area that I normally see fish in this time of year. When we got into the small bay I could see fish pushing already, as we approached I could see a mixture of trout and redfish, surly these fish would bite. We made several casts to them and again all our offers were turned down. One of my anglers had an 8 wght. fly rod and I told him to give it a whirl, on the third shot…. finally pay dirt, a nice redfish ate a small clouser. We managed one more small red on a Mirrolure Lil John and that was it.

Although the fish was tough I was very encouraged to see the redfish and trout in the shallows in good numbers and schooling up. The weather was absolutely gorgeous and I saw some signs of bait-fish in the area. It should only be a matter of time before the water is warming and the bait will be here. Spring time charters are filling up fast for March and April so if your looking to get out or know someone who is now is the time to make those reservations.

Capt. Greg

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – Charlotte Harbor – Is it Spring Yet

By Fishing Reports

Normally I love our winter fishing, I get to wear jeans a long sleeve shirt and a light jacket and by the middle of the day the jacket is under the deck and we are soaking up the warm sunshine. Not so much this year, most days I have had so many clothes on that I feel like the Michelin Man, and by the middle of the day I was wishing I had more jackets to put on. However through all of the cold and wet and windy days there has been one silver lining to it all, the fish have still wanted to eat when we put the bait in front of them. It is amazing how you can be so cold, almost to the point of teeth chattering and then make one cast, feel a thump and your adrenaline turns into an instant heater for you. Even though I don’t usually fish with my clients when they start to catch fish it make me feel all warm and fuzzy, If I could only bottle that for the cold days that the fish are stubborn!

Well enough of my thoughts on the cold winter…..During the past week I was able to run several Airboat Charters in Charlotte Harbor, and the fishing did keep us warm for the most part. With the airboat I always want stiff north winds to blow the water way off the flats and force the fish into all the holes and troughs. The only problem is this year that north wind is very cold, but we have managed to stay warm. Most of the trips we were able to catch a good number of Redfish and a few Trout, some days the reds would be so balled up in one hole we wouldn’t move for a couple of hours. I was using 1/4 once jigs with Exude Darts and the new Mirrolure Lil John for bait, the slower the better when working them. There was one of the days that we went to a muddy hole and found some snook laying on the dark muddy bottom soaking up the warmth from the sun, that was very good to see. Most of the trips were about the same a good mix of reds and trout and clients that were happy they went, once they realized a fish can warm you up!

I have one more week of Airboat Charters scheduled for the end of this month, then the tides and days will get longer and warmer. Spring will get here and all that comes with it. Snook will again show up along with all the others from the inshore gang. The pelagics will start to follow the bait and the Tarpon will not be far behind. This year Spring vacation will not just be for the folks on land!

Capt. Greg

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – Tampa Bay – New Port Richey – You Never Know

By Fishing Reports

Yesterday was one of those days that should have been very good for the fishing we were trying to do. A good low tide around mid morning, light north winds to make the water stay out, and a lot of sun so we could see the fish we were after. It was all in place except someone forgot to tell the fish they were supposed to be there and be hungry. We headed out to a flat in search of a school of redfish, but when we arrived all we found were mullet and a few strays. Not horrible but not what I was looking for, we did manage to catch one small red but that was it in 3 hours of searching. I decided to make the offer to put the boat on the trailer and head north to an area that I had been doing very well on the big gator trout. As we were driving north I called a good friend and fellow guide Capt. Clay to see how his day was going, He was in the area I was trailering to and I hoped for good news. He told me they to had been having a slow day, and that the fish would just not cooperate. As I put the boat in the water at the Anclote River I really had a good feeling about the move, we ran out to the island to fish some holes and troughs that usually always hold some fish. When we got there Capt. Clay was already out there not looking very enthused about the fishing. We put the power pole down and began fishing the same area I had done very well in just two days ago. Again the conditions were perfect except for the fish, they did not want what we were offering. We did manage 3 or 4 trout but that was it, I made one more move to a hole that is very secluded and could only be reached with the help of my Banshee Extreme. We got there and once again it looked perfect lots of mullet sunning, large pines to block the wind and clean clear water. Once again we were disappointed in the result of what we caught. We did manage the best fish of the day in this hole, a 23 inch Speckled Trout, bit that was it.

After about an hour in that hole we decided it was time to go have lunch ourselves, and realized that sometimes the fish win the battle. We will be back soon and I know the fish have to eat sometime. It is funny when we get used to catching 50 or 60 fish a day, that a day where we catch 10 or so fish just doesn’t measure up. But nothing cant beat a beautiful day on the water.

Capt. Greg DeVault

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – Boca Grande – Redhot Fishing

By Fishing Reports

Even though the air temperature were in the 40’s when we started, it was not long before my clients were feeling all warm and fuzzy from the pull of redfish. With the tides at there stevelowest and the help of my airboat, we were able to access all of sand hole and small troughs that the redfish and trout use to wait out the tide in Gasparilla sound.  We had to hit about 3 holes before we found the one that was holding a large bunch of fish. Once we got set up on them it was game on for the next couple of hours, redfish and trout came to the boat after falling prey to our Mirror lure Lil John baits. There were several slot sized redfish and most of the trout were in the 18 to 20 inch class. After the bite slowed we were able to go farther into the back country and find a large hole with a good dark bottom. The tide had started to come in and the trout were laying on the edge of the flat waiting for what ever the tide brought them. We set up on the back side of the hole and caught trout on just about every cast  until the water got high enough fro the trout to spread out on the flat. By that time it was time to head to the dock to put the boat on the trailer and grab some lunch.

With February will come the last of the negative low morning tides that make the airboat so effective, however this will open up the flats to the Ranger Banshee and alot of great fishing for March and April.

Fish on,

Capt. Greg DeVault

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – Tampa Bay – Spring is Just Around the Corner

By Fishing Reports

As we come to the end of January, we are still in the grips of the coldest winter I have ever experienced. But just like every year I look forward to the month of February. February means we are on the verge of our best fishing of the year. While it may still feel cold there will be a noticeable amount of humidity with the morning sun. We will start to see a gradual but very definite upward climb in our water temperatures. And if history repeats it self ( as it usually dose) we will see the bait fish show up in all the regular haunts. Once this occurs we will be standing on the edge of 4 months of the best fishing our area has to offer. The Redfish, Trout, Snook, and Mackerel will all start trying to put back the weight that they lost over the diet period of winter,this will offer us as fishermen a very unique time. The fish will feed with reckless abandon, and forget about some of there weariness around the boats and other disturbances we produce. In essence the fishing will be good and it will be easyDSC00336.

But as I look outside I see a beautiful day with alot of sunshine, but mother nature is not quite ready to let go of her wintry grip just yet. The weeks weather forecast says we are in for another cold front at the end of the week. The fishing will be good ahead of it, but the cold air behind it will reinforce why the fish are in there deep holes and warm springs for a few more weeks. And while I look forward to throwing the net to catch dozens of silver crickets, I am preparing for another round of airboat trips. The water is very low and access is denied to most, but with the help of my airboat I have been able to find a redfish or two this year. This is a fun time of year but with everyday we are coming closer to the best time.

So get the tackle tuned up, make sure the boat is ready, spring will be here before you know it. Or if you want to make sure your at the best spot at the best time call your favorite guide and set up a spring time fishing trip. You wont be disappointed.

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – Charlotte Harbor – The Search for Warmth

By Fishing Reports

This past week was the longest blast of cold air I have ever seen in Charlotte Harbor and the entire west coast of Florida. As a result we did have some fish that just could not take it and died. However what dos’nt kill you only make you stronger, and this is true of our fish also . The Snook, Reds, and Trout that found warm water were very hungry, and very willing to eat almost everything we had to offer. I ran my first trip on Tuesday and was greeted at the ramp by two very enthusiastic anglers, and 37 degree temps. I wasnt sure what we were in for but they were determined to give it a try. As we crossed the flats one thing became very evident, the fish that were here, were not anymore! We coverd miles of flats in my airboat and kept seeing the same thing … absolutly nothing.  I told them we had one more spot and if it was empty we were heading in, to my suprise and thankfulness it was loaded with reds and trout, we caught fish out of that hole for almost 4 hours striaght. It turned a cold day into a very plesent one. The rest of the week was much the same with the flats being pretty void of life, but like mother nature alway does she began to replenish as soon as the temprature began to rise at the end of the week. By Friday and Saturdays trips we were back to catching fish in multiple holes and catching alot of them.

This cold blast was very scary for those of us that make a living out here, but it dose show that life goes on and will always rebound if it has the chance. I cant wait to see what a little warm air and warm water will do to the fish this upcoming week.

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – Charlotte Harbor – Dress Warm

By Fishing Reports

This Past week was a little chilly to say the least, and when you put the force of a giant fan behind you it gets really cold, really fast. That is what we had to deal with on this round of Airboat Charters in Charlotte Harbor. I had some of my best clients fishing with me this week and the fish did not let us down. We were able to catch Redfish, Trout, and Snook on every trip. The most notable catch was a 40 inch Snook the was taken on a small 1/8th oz jig, just goes to prove that elephants do eat peanuts! The other notable catch was with Two fathers and thier sons. the bet was most fish by either team, when the number got to 75 apeice we called it a draw. That day was the most fish I have ever landed on a charter, we estimated around 200 reds in a 6 hour trip. The weather has been very good so far this winter,but there is the threat of a large and very cold, cold front setting up to move through the state. If this happens I hope our Snook can get to cover to protect themselves from the cold water. I will be back on the airboat for the next full moon hopefully i will have some more good fishing to report about.

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Fishing Report – Charlotte Harbor – Awesome Airboating

By Fishing Reports

Wow, what a week this turned out to be, I have been down in Charlotte Harbor running airboat charters and the fishing was awesome.  My week started in Gasparilla Sound on Sunday with the wind blowing out of the north at 30 knots, not bad conditions for the airboat. The water was low and leaving fast, the only problem was the wind went from 30 to 35 and gusty, a little tough even in the airboat.
We called it quits around noon with only 12 or so reds caught. It was a tough day. The next three days (Mon, Tues, Weds) were awesome some of the lowest water I have seen in ten years down there. The fish had no choice but to find a hole and hang out, we were able to take the airboat and pick these fish off, it was like fishing in a barrel. We caught between 30 and 40 slot reds a day and had several more rats. The fish were eating just about everything you put in front of them, the main bait was a Exude dart on a 1/8oz jig-head, color didn’t matter. We were also able to get them to hit topwater in the afternoon when it warmed up a little. The areas we were in the most were Whiddens Creek, and Bull bay, with the water as low as it went I had it all to myself and it looked more like pasture land that saltwater flats. The final day of Airboating was suppose to be on Thursday the 24th but due to brisk south winds on Wednesday there was going to be a little more water than what we needed. Instead of canceling the trip we decided to fish out of New Port Richey on my Banshee Extreme. This turned out to be a very good idea as we were into fish all day, Anclote Island gave us about 80 trout between 18 and 24 inches. We went south to another area bar, A good friend and fellow guide had told me about some redfish that were hungry the day before. As we arrived we could see the mullet working in shallow, we approached them and started catching redfish right away. After about an hour we called it a day with 80 trout and about 30 or so redfish. Hopefully the weather will stay calm and allow us to continue some of the best fishing of the year.

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – Charlotte Harbor – Time for the Airboat!

By Fishing Reports

As I am writing this report it is cloudy and spitting rain with a south wind at 15 knots and building as a cold front is pushing our way. Sounds like the perfect day to go fishing, well not exactly . But when the sun rises tomorrow we will have north winds at 20 knots and allot of low water. Now this is what I’m talking about, North winds and negative low tides create the perfect scenario for airboat fishing at its finest. We fish in the Gassparilla sound area of Charlotte harbor were the numerous potholes and deep troughs will keep enough water in them for the Redfish, Trout, and Snook to survive the low tide. However the only way to gain access to these low bottom areas is via my airboat. The airboat will skim across wet grass and take us to the fish that are trapped in these holes. Once we get there we will be using an assortment of baits to catch these fish, topwaters, spoons, and the most popular will be soft plastic Exudes. The day will be spent in the protection of the mangrove backcountry, so while we will feel the wind it will not be very bothersome. I will be running charters from today ( 1-19-2008) thru Thursday ( 1-24-2008). When I return I will give you all the details and photos of the weeks fishing. So wish for strong north wind and beautiful blue skies.

1-888-557-1885

Fishing Report – New Port Richey – Still a Little Cold

By Fishing Reports

Friday was one of those days that looked like a perfect day, off of the coast of New Port Richey the sun was just starting to shine the tide was still going out and the wind was light and out of the south. My charter for the day wanted to target Speckled Trout and Redfish, on artificial lures. We started fishing the potholes and troughs off of Anclote island and started to catch a few Bluefish and Trout, but the bite was not fast and furious like earlier in the week. The tide was at it’s lowest around 9 a.m. and that is when we started to look for the redfish, again we targeted potholes on the flats and we could actually see the fish we were catching. The day was not going to bad when the conditions started to change on us, the wind began to increase to a solid 15 to 20 mph. and the warm sun disappeared behind a thick mat of clouds, and the temperature began to fall. This defiantly affected the fish we were after, we could still see them but they wanted nothing to do with our bait. We went back out to Anclote Island to see if we could find some more Trout and Blues, and they did not disappoint us. As the temperature dropped we decided to call it a day around 1p.m. and go find a warm place to have lunch. Although we did mange to catch a good number of fish, they did seem to be a little sluggish from the cold water they have had to live in the past week or so. If we can get a little warming trend I think it will send our fish into a pretty good feed on the next moon phase.

Fish On,

Capt. Greg DeVault

1-888-557-1885