July is a very hot month and fishing should be done very early or late into the evening for the best catches. Fish are more active at these times. Although there are exceptions, like Mary Beth Williams catching a trophy 8lb gator trout with me in the hot mid day sun on a BiteABait Fighter!! " Congrats Mary Beth." Not common, however, we do get them occasionally. I like to fish the clean cooler incoming water for trout. Best if the tide falls in the early hours. All traditional methods will work. However, lure fishing will be best early, as the sun gets up go deeper. If the tide is low or close to low, usually the wind is calm and I like to look for tailing or backing red fish. Once mid morning comes it brings the afternoon sea breeze and conditions diminish. When fishing this style, the lightest TBS Jig, usually an 1/8 or 1/4 oz, will do the job. Quiet & patience is a must. If you see a backer, lead the fish and cast just beyond, as the fish gets closer, make sure the presentation crosses the fishes path. Subtle movement on the lure. Less is generally better. If you dead stick baits, mullet, crab, shrimp, do the job, just remember, there are a lot of pin fish and they are hard on the shrimp and can be frustrating. Also the bull reds will be cruising the channel edges of the river. A fish finder rig with a crab or cut bait on 20/30lb tackle will be a ticket. Please take the time to return them in good shape, they are our future fish. Other good bets are fishing the beach in the pogie pods. A TBS Jig and a pogie rigged through the lips and cast to the edges of the bait pods could results in a bull red, tarpon, shark or a big Jack crevalle. No table fare, but, a lot of fun. As we all know North Fl. Is seasonal and I try to do what is happening best at that time of year. Until next report, get out and experience north Fla. Fishing!!
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.