High winds and rain will change the conditions of the water in North Pinellas this weekend. The clarity had been good and I expect a couple of calm days will return conditions to normal. Cooler temps are creeping into the area, but the water is still in the mid 70s. With slightly higher than normal temps, snook are still hanging on around the passes and a few beach spots but most are starting to make their way back to the eastern shorelines. Often, the spoil islands in St. Joseph Sound are transitional hangouts for snook as they trek eastward. Redfish are starting to respond to the approach of the new moon as the tides get stronger. Higher incoming water is still my favorite phase to target redfish. The oyster bars get covered, allowing reds to forage all around them and the small baitfish tend to swarm the mangroves looking for cover, becoming an easy target for redfish and snook. Mullet schools are still plentiful, attracting reds seeking cover from sharks and dolphin feeding on the flats. Corking small pinfish or sardines into the mullet usually gets a hit. Trout are around the edges of flats in 5-7 feet of water. On outgoing tides, I find a flat holding bait for cast netting and set up along the deeper edge.
Brian Caudill fishes from Clearwater to Tarpon Springs. He can be reached at (727) 365-7560 and captbrian.com.