Sunday, November 22, 2009

Tight Lines: Fall's cooler temperatures create favorable fishing conditions

Every year, fall factors, like cooler water temperatures and fewer hours of daylight, change the way fish feed and the methods that anglers use to catch them.

This weekend's wind is going to be borderline for anglers heading out to their favorite reef. Northeast winds at 10-15 knots could put a damper on our offshore ideas of getting a good snapper or grouper bite.

These fish will be at your favorite drops, but cross your fingers for calm-enough seas to allow the run. Boston mackeral, cigar minnows, and squid are perfect go-to baits. FA, FC, RL ,HH, AH, BA, and FB are just a few local reefs to fish. Rock piles, natural ledges, wrecks and culverts are all good choices for fall bottom bumping.

Surf fishing continues to be good, especially when the seas lie down enough to make the fishing easier. Plenty of whiting of all sizes have been reported being caught, and in good numbers.

Good news for those anglers who enjoy pompano fishing - reports have come in that these tasty critters are showing up. What a great day it would be if you're out surf fishing and catch a mixed bag of whiting and pompano. Fresh, dead shrimp and clams will be your definite go-to bait when surf fishing in the fall.

The north and south jetties continue to bring good reports of bull reds, puppy drum and sharks at the tips of either side. Fishing on the bottom with shrimp, mullet and crabs will do the trick.

High tide is in the middle of the day, giving you a perfect incoming tide to fish the rocks. Fishing along either side on the ocean or river will produce trout, reds, sheephead, puppy drum, mangrove snappers and hopefully a slot red. Fishing a 1/4- or 3/8-ounce jighead with a grub like a Bass Assassin, Contender, Berkley Gulp or Cotee can be deadly with the cooler water temperatures.

'Tis the season for those anglers who love trout, reds and puppy drum fishing in the river. There's nothing better than floating a live shrimp or casting a 1/4-ounce jig with a rigged grub this time of year. High tide fishing against the bank can prove to be deadly this time of year.

Lanceford Creek, Egans Creek, Tiger Basin and Bells River are just a few of the many hot spots. Top water plug fishing can also be awesome early in the morning. Hope and cross your fingers for good weather. ... 'til next week, Capt. Jim

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