January water is at some of the clearest times of the year and site fishing and Redfish can be at an all-time high. I like to fish the last couple hours of the outgoing tide on days where we have high pressure low winds and a lot of sunshine. If you can get the last couple hours of the tide between 11 and 3 o’clock in the afternoon you can generally see very well through the water with quality polarize sunglasses. I like to pole the edge of mud flats or oyster bars where fish will be very shallow in schools or you may catch a backing fish. I fish a black TBS bucktail or a dark colored weedless soft plastic if I am in heavy shell. I like the dark bucktail, when they are wet they throw very accurate and far. Staying far from the fish, Helps to ensure you will not spook him. Many people are too loud and rough in the boat and these fish will not eat when you make your presentation because they are aware of your presence. I like to pick a fish make one long cast, about 3 to 4 feet in the fishes path . Remember, your first cast in any situation for fish is going to be your best. My two favorite Lures for this is my black TBS bucktail or a dark colored weedless soft plastic. The bucktail is my first choice as when it’s wet it cast far & accurate and land soft, and with the slightest movement the undulating hair looks very alive and you usually get the strike. If I know I’m going to be fishing in heavy shell on top of oysters or weeds etc., I will then go to a dark colored soft plastic. I do not try to use a lot of different type lures. These are the two lures that I go to in over 20 years of guiding, they have by far been my two most successful Baits, especially if you learn to use both properly. When the fish approaches the lure, a very subtle bump or twitch usually gets the strike!! Bait fisherman, will have the same results throwing shrimp or mudminnows on the latest jig you can get away with. I normally throw an eight to quarter round TBS black nickel jig and I find that to be absolutely adequate for sticking big fish!!! A couple key pointers to be successful on site fishing is fish Leeward side of islands and shorelines, make sure the sun is up in the sky high so you can see through the water, and a good pair of polarized glasses with an accurate casting rod. I generally use a 7 foot medium heavy spinning rod with 15 pound braid and a 15- 20lb fluorocarbon leader and a loop not of some sort connecting your jig head. I like to use a Bowline knot. Fluorocarbon is best because it is abrasion resistant and it does not reflect light so it makes the presentation the best. Use a 30 inch piece for best results including casting. Too long of a leader could possibly hinder your Cast remember we want this outfit to cash 30 to 40 yards if needed most times Cast will be 15 to 30 feet. OK get out and fish winter time is wonderful back country red fishing. I don’t talk about too many other fish because I mainly Hunt Redfish at this time of the year however Fishing shrimp around the same places of the redfish you’ll catch black drum trout sheep head and an occasional flounder. Do not let the cold weather for you, get out and get some of this excellent back country action!!
Capt. Tony's expert insight on what you should look for on the water and how to get the most out of the current fishing season.