This week brought some unseasonably warm weather to central Florida. During the middle of the week, the winds were calm, the water temperatures were in the mid seventies, and the redfish were happy and tailing. If you were unable to get out on the water this week, you missed out on some near perfect conditions. Friday, that all began to change. By the middle of next week, we will be experiencing overnight lows in the 40's.
Monday, I fished the Mosquito Lagoon alone hoping to catch some redfish on fly. I found some finning and tailing fish but had no luck with the fly. The fish were spooking at the sound of the fly line landing on the water. I switched over to a DOA shrimp and caught a red on the first cast. By late morning, the wind cranked up and the clouds moved in making sight fishing much tougher. I landed four more redfish on a DOA crab and four trout on a 4 inch CAL tail.
Tuesday, I fished Mosquito Lagoon with my friend Paul.He had steady shots at fish throughout the day but they were not very aggressive. He tried various size and color jerkbaits but most of the fish just turned away. I caught the first fish on a DOA crab and Paul followed up with a redfish of his own on a chartreuse jerk worm. Just as we located a school of black drum, clouds moved in and made them impossible to see. We did not break any fish catching records but we were happy to be fishing in shorts in late November.
Thursday, Capt. John Kumiski and I went fly fishing in Mosquito Lagoon. We saw no less than twenty schools of redfish that held between 10 and 50 fish. After having multiple fish spook off of or refuse his first crab pattern. Capt. John switched to an unweighted bendback style fly in chartreuse and white. This fly made a much softer presentation and was soon hooked in the jaw of a redfish.
We took turns poling and fishing throughout the day. My turns at fishing were not as successful. I spooked a few and had some good casts refused. John caught another redfish on a crab pattern for the only two fish of the day. We spent the last hours sight casting the fly to some large trout in shallow sand holes. There were a few follows and a few half-hearted swipes at the fly but no takers. We saw a lot of fish throughout the day but did not find many that were very hungry.
On Friday, I would have been happy seeing half as many fish as we had the day before. The weather, though, took a 180 degree turn and it was windy with solid cloud cover. Sight fishing was hopeless so we fished some areas I had seen fish the day before. Regular clients Dan and Greg cast 5 inch DOA cals in greene back. We ended up catching 5 redfish and 5 trout.
Next week's cold spell will cause a significant drop in water temperature. As the temperatures begin to moderate a day or two after the front, look for the fish to be sunning themselves in the shallow sand holes. Use smaller baits and slow down your retrieve if you are not having success.
Capt. Chris Myers
Central Florida Sight Fishing Chartershttp://www.floridafishinglessons.com