Fishing Report - Florida"s centeral West Coast

From: Tarpon Springs to Crystal River, Fl.
Date: 22 Sep 1999
Remote Name:


9/22/99 Fishing Report for Tarpon Springs to Crystal River, Fl. By Capt. Dennis Royston


Boy have we had weather lately. Lucky for us hurricane Floyd stayed well offshore on the east coast and tropical storm Harvey, that was predicted to come ashore here in west central Florida made a U tern and crossed over south Fla. around Naples. We received minor rains and no wind. The official water temperature in Tampa is 82 degrees, down from 90 degrees.

The arrival of fall finally got here. It has been a long HOT summer. With the decline in water temperature the fishing will improve week by week. Cooling water and shorter days will start the fish into a fall pattern.

Snook will start to feed up in preparation for winter. Look for these fish to be around points, river and creek mouths as well as along Mangrove shore lines. This is a great time to cast noisy top water plugs like the 5-m Mirror-O -Lure, Bagley-SP-5, Devil Horse, Pop R or any other plug that makes a splash when retrieved. Top water plugs are worked best this time of year when fished early in the morning , late in the evening or at night. During daylight hours when the sun is high I like to cast light jigs in the 1/8 to 1/4 once heads with root beer, dull green or motor oil colored grub and shad tails. All of the above will work for Trout and Redfish as well. With the water being off-colored from the high temperatures and the winds, this is a good time to use the gold spoons to attract any of the above.

Trout will start to show up in greater numbers as the water cools. Larger Trout from 18 to 24 inches will start to be common place. Look for these beauties to be holding anywhere good grass is located. Last spring we had good results with 1/4 oz. Jig heads with a 6 inch floating worm attached. Allow the bait to settle to the tops of the grass and retreve in yo-yo up and down fashion.

Spanish Mackerel are showing up all along the coast. Move out to 6 - 10 foot depths and again cast jigs with bright tails. When quality fish are found, try anchoring and placing a chum bag in the water to hold the fish. Jigs, Live or cut bait should keep you busy. The best is yet to come.

Good fishin - For more information call - Capt. Dennis Royston