With a cold front moving in late today and a negative tide it made the perfect recipe for lots of Redfish on the long rod. I was so excited about going to throw the fly with fellow Capt. Harrison Hodges that i got up at 4am and head to the ramp to check out the bridge for some late season Tarpon. I put in and made the short run to the bridge and got setup just to find a few Tarpon moving up and down the light line and got a few shots at them but no hookups so i went back to the ramp to pick up Harrison and head to the flat to chase a the Redfish around at low tide and after a hour of poling down the flat where we have been having killing the Redfish on fly only to get a few shots and 1 24in redfish. We picked up and headed south to try a different flat on the west side of Tampa Bay and stared poling down the shore line in a foot of water and found a steady flow of big Redfish going by so i put down the Power Pole and tied on a small crab fly on that has been working great.
I made 10 good shots with no takers so we started to change up flies from different crab and shrimp patterns and finally found one that worked a new shrimp pattern that my friend Ron Cavalier just tied the other day and after a few more shots i connected to a nice tournament size Redfish 26 3/4 inch’s long and than the wind stared to pick up and made sight casting hard so we made the run back to the ramp and put the boat on the trailer and get ready for the next few days.
Capt. Jim Lemke
813 917 4989
Trout and more Trout with a some poor mans Tarpon The Capt Jim Lemke Hot Report
This is the first hot report, an e-mail hot off the press to keep you current on the great fishing here in Tampa Bay.
WOW! with all the cold fronts rolling in at an average of one a week the trout bite has been great, as has the Redfish and the “poor man’s tarpon” aka the Ladyfish. I like to use a Clouser or small Baitfish pattern fly on light tackle like a 6 or 7 wt G Loomis fly rod with a sink tip Cortland fly line for the Trout and the Ladyfish. Match the gear to the fish and they are great sport.
We have had a fantastic redfish season so far, with big schools close to the boat ramp. We can be fishing for tailing 30 inch plus fish within 5 minutes of leaving the boat ramp. they should keep schooling thru the end of May.
Back to The Ladyfish -they got me dreaming of the upcoming Tarpon season that’s right around the corner. As the days get longer and warmer “Thank God” we anticipate the exciting invasion of the Silver King starting in mid-April. In the meantime if you just want to go out and have fun catching loads of fish on fly or spin then Ladyfish and Trout are just the ticket. Last week The client I fished said that back north there was 3 feet of snow on the ground and he just wanted to bend a fly rod so I told him “great I will see you around 10 AM and we will go have some fun”. As we started to idle out from the ramp John ask what he should rig. I said “rig it like you were going trout fishing back home”.
As we jumped up and ran to the first stop and sat down the incoming tide was moving good and the Ladyfish were hitting fry bait on the surface, so I tied on a bait fish pattern on John’s leader and literally one min later the ladyfish bite was ON! They were jumping and flipping and coming unbuttoned just like its namesake the Tarpon. As fast as I could unhook them John would hook another one. I had my work cut out for me, and after a good 75 Ladyfish and a few leaders and flies we switched to fishing for a trout in the next creek over. I gave John my 7wt with a sink tip and the first throw more Ladyfish! After a few more throws I said “try dragging it slow across the bottom to get under the ladyfish- the trout might be under them. It worked! Up started coming the trout you just had to get down hrough the Ladyfish. We drifted down with the current , catching Trout every drift and after 4 or 5 drifts and around 15 trout from 14 to 18 inches John said “great day, lets go home” so off we went. For a memorable day fishing for trout, ladyfish and redfish, or to book for the upcoming tarpon season please call me on 813 917 4989 now.
Tight lines from Tampa Bay where the bite is bigger and the bigger fish bite,
Capt. Jim Lemke