Capt. Ric’s Reel Simple Fishing Report

Dec 24, 13 Capt. Ric’s Reel Simple Fishing Report

It’s hard to believe that we are closing out another year already. The saying “the older you get the faster time fly’s” is true. Time is starting to hit a pretty rapid pace for me now as I am approaching the big 50. With another year behind us I want to thank Linda Atkinson and her staff at the Farmer and Rancher for allowing me to share what’s happening on the water.
One of the email questions I received this month came from one of our winter visitors. The questions was “how much effect do the cold fronts have this time of year on the fishing?”  This is the time of the year in the Tampa Bay area that you really don’t know what you are going to get when it comes to weather.
You can always depend on heat and afternoon showers in the summer. In the spring and fall we will have a little more wind than normal with the fronts moving thru. But this time of year the range of weather is at its widest. It can be 80 degrees with no wind or it can be 40 degrees with winds cranking at 30 knots. The weather always plays a significant role in the success of our fishing, but when the weather is changing every few days and we are always needing to adjust as the fish will not fall into any predictable pattern as conditions change.

Capt. Ric and George Kommick Jr. with a nice overslot snook caught on a recent fishing trip in the Tampa Bay area.

The fronts bring high pressure and high pressure makes anglers work harder. A high barometer will push fish down, I try to fish my baits closer to the bottom when the barometer is high.  What adjustments we make from trip to trip will be dependent on the species of fish we are targeting. It’s a big puzzle and as anglers we have to try to piece it together. For me that is the attraction to the sport. If you were to catch a fish on every cast on every fishing trip you would most likely tire from the lack of a challenge.
The best advice I have for fishing in the winter is to pay closer attention to the water temps and the barometer. Fish want to be comfortable like any other creature. Inshore anglers do a lot of fishing in the rivers, canals, and creeks during the cooler months with water temp, other than tide, being the main driver in our success. If you are new to fishing in tidal effected areas you will want to know that our winter tides are our lowest tides of the year.
That is good for fishing but not so good if you do not know where the sand bars an shallow flats are in the area you are fishing. Its always good to do a scouting trip on a low water tide to make a mental picture of the trouble areas.
They are very seldom marked with caution. Hopefully this is useful information. Until next time, good luck and be safe on the water. Remember: don’t let your kid be the one that got away, take them fishing.
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