September 17, 2018

Fall is here. Another long, hot summer is over (kind of). Next up “cold fronts.” A change in things would be good. Red tide is bad and isn’t going away. No hurricane, no help there. Battles ensue: Snook reopened in part of the area? That’s stupid. An open area lost nearly every snook there was to red tide this week. Already struggling, things get worse.

The slow season lingers. I did six days in a row. Strong tides. Pretty good action. John from Maryland, a regular all six days. I took him to the same location four times because on day 1 the amount of bait there was the most I have seen anywhere in years. Pompano were so-so. He caught fish all six days. The last two days were the toughest. The first four were pretty strong.

The key has been in location selection. Some areas are still in the doldrums but those are areas I expect to see bounce back to life within the next few weeks. The other areas have been where there is more “water switch” and lots of life on the flats. Stay away from red tide affected areas. Inside Tampa Bay has been safe.

Big trout, pockets of redfish, concentrations of flounder and as many jacks and ladyfish as you would like to catch. Strike Three Kayak Fishing clients enjoyed this situation using a lot of topwater lures for sunrise action then switching to 12 Fathom lures when the sun got up higher in the sky. The likelihood that fish would rise on lures dropped after 9AM UNLESS anglers were targeting trout. The topwater bite for trout was strong farther into the midday hours. But was also very good early, even pre sunrise.

Pompano have remained a regular target. Not as good as they were a month ago the ones we are catching are big. I have made my pompano tacos for people, very popular. Yellow jig, pink teaser. I sell the teasers. You will catch more than 90% of the fish on the teaser.

August 28, Paul Bristow passed away. This is a major loss for the fishing community. Paul was all about fishing. Former owner of Love Lure Paul was making pompano jigs. Paul was a constant at the Skyway piers. He worked a booth. He was a fun guy. I am sad that he is gone.

The fishing’s great, and only going to get better! Pushing into the second half of September, we are escaping summer. The summers are LONG. The months we have ahead are a delight. If we can escape this red tide things should get very good. In red tide enters Tampa Bay it is a catastrophe. The frustrations of the people are evident: No one tries anything. The hotels and restaurants would finance it. Try something… I mean, we don’t have the technology to at least try some solutions?

As always: Be careful out there!

Neil Taylor
(Cell) 727-692-6345

Neil Taylor

Neil Taylor

Full time kayak fishing guide, Neil was an advocate for conservation since before the time he started guiding.Outdoor writer, speaker and radio show host, Neil connected closely with Captain Mel Berman and did many positives with Mel to promote ethical angling. After Mel passed away, Neil managed and eventually became that web site’s owner.
Neil Taylor

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