From: Capt. Bob Smith
Date: 17 Sep 1998
Remote Name: 188.8.131.52
Sarasota Florida Fishing Report.
By Capt. Bob Smith September 17, 1998
Due to the choppy conditions offshore, I spent my time inshore fishing the grass flats and passes. We had splendid conditions for fishing on the bay with cooler temperatures, a nice breeze and not many people out. Our mainstay in fish was permit, trout and pompano. I found the permit in New Pass just west of the mouth and along the north side of the channel. The permit were hot during the change of tide. They would run under the boat in schools hitting all our jigs and breaking some 8 pound test lines due to over reactions with a short line :).
New Pass is loaded from bank to bank with small bait fish no more than a half to one inch long. The birds are feeding well on the surface and every once in a while, you can see a boil in the bait as a large fish feeds on them from underneath. I have also been watching schools of small tarpon in the 20 to 40 pound class rolling around the fenders of the New Pass bridge. From time to time, large schools of small jacks would froth the water feeding on the small bait fish. We were only fishing with pompano jigs tipped with a bit of shrimp. The largest fish was an occasional jack about 8 to 10 pounds. I am sure you could hookup with something bigger if you have the right bait or lure and of course patience.
Spotted seatrout were still on the Ringling grass flats and taking live shrimp as well as jigs but the action was not as good as last week. The pompano were on the grass flats and in the passes.
No matter where we fished, the action was very sporadic and we had a lot of down time but we were able to take some nice fish home. The large schools of baitfish are a good sign for the future of the bay and coastal waters. We may see a good run of Spanish mackerel, kingfish and cobia soon. The grouper and snapper fishing should also pickup around the "I" reefs. At this time, the "I" reefs have some nice snapper, an occasional keeper grouper and cobia being caught.
Enjoy and Protect!