Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report March 7, 2017

Conditions: Strong east winds drained a lot of water out of the backcountry over the weekend. Conditions will improve by mid-week as the wind subsides. Water clarity is very good. Water temps are from 65*-72*.

"Many of my redfish and snook spots are not holding bait or fish because of the low water conditions. Working potholes and deeper grass flats has been very productive..."

03-07-17 Fishing Report
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Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report February 27, 2017

Conditions: Late morning low tides, hot and sunny. The dry conditions continue. Water temps will rise into the mid to upper 70s this week. Bait the fish are feeding on: Shrimp, crabs, pinfish, some glass minnows and sardines. Not much whitebait (threadfin Herring and scaled sardines) around.

7 day outlook: The coming week will more like April than the start of March


​02-27-17 Fishing Report Capt. Dave Pecci
Target species right now: Redfish, Sea Trout, Snook, Ladyfish, Jack Crevalle, Spanish Mackerel, Cobia and Bluefish. Fishing tactics....
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Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report February 20, 2017

Conditions: I fished the East Wall, Matlacha Pass, Gasparilla Sound, Bull Bay and Turtle Bay last week. The water clarity was very good throughout the Harbor and it should be the same this week. There's a red tide bloom along the beaches from Boca Grande to Manasota Key but it hasn't entered the sounds or bays... 

Water temps are now in the mid-low 70s. Salinity remains high due to the lack of rain. Fishing conditions are excellent.

Capt. Dave Pecci - Obsession Sportfishing
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Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report 02-13-17

Conditions: We continue to have very good water clarity and quality due to the dry conditions throughout Charlotte Harbor. Water temps are in the low 70s. Average tides this week will provide for good flats fishing. The bite in Matlacha as well as Bull Bay and Turtle Bay has been good. Pine Island Sound's grass flats have been producing seatrout and redfish, concentrate on the deeper portions of the flats. The Keys along the East Wall of the Harbor are holding redfish of varying sizes and a few snook. If you're looking for trout in that area they'll be on the outside of the bar in deeper water.

The mid-day ebb tides will move the fish off the flats. Work the holes and edges until the water level increases.

02-13-17 Obsession Charters Fishing Report
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Sight Fishing Tips and Tactics Seminar This Sunday

I'll be doing a seminar at the Florida Sportsman Expo in Ft. Myers on sight fishing tips and tactics this Sunday. The Seminar covers ways to catch more snook and redfish on both spin and fly fishing gear. I'll share some of the things I've learned while fishing on Charlotte Harbor the past 8 years like reading the fish's movements, finding productive water dealing with weather changes and more.

​My Seminar is at 1pm on Sunday. It's full of cool pictures and videos of fishing action from Matlacha, Pine Island sound, Charlotte Harbor's East and West Walls, Bull Bay, Turtle Bay and more. More info on the Expo including other seminars

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Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report February 1, 2017

Conditions: Water clarity is good. The water level is very low due to the winter tides. As long as water temps are in the mid-60s or above the fishing will be very good. Lots of snook around. The redfish have been a bit elusive (for me anyway). The fish have been moving back onto the flats with the incoming tide. Work the oysters and holes at low tide.

Bait the fish are feeding on: Shrimp, Crabs, Pinfish, some Threadfin Herring.

Lots of snook around. The fish have been moving back onto the flats with the incoming tide. Work the oysters and holes at low tide.

Fishing Report February 1, 2017
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Wrigley June Striped Bass Fishing

Steve Wrigley and his son had a great morning on the Kennebec. They caught a ton of schoolie stripers and some good ones too. We were fishing the rips on an incoming tide. Bait was being driven to the surface and gulls were diving while tons of stripers stacked up on the ledges. Caught most of them spin fishing with white bucktails fished slow. 

Great meeting you guys! Safe travels home and I hope to see you again!


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Kennebec River Casco Bay Fishing Report 6-13-16

Conditions: We are seeing some of the very best early June striped bass fishing in years. Lots of surface blitzes on both the incoming and outgoing tides. Water temp is between 60* and 67* and water clarity is good.

Bait the fish are feeding on: River Herring, Alewives, Mackerel, Sea Herring and Sand Eels

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Jerry Crosses Tarpon off Bucket List

Jerry Jamison from Bath, Maine hooks and brings this nice tarpon boat-side using spin fishing gear and a live crab. Great Job Jerry!

The tarpon have returned to the beaches of Boca Grande, Captiva and Sanibel Islands after last week's back to back cold fonts pushed them offshore.

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SW Florida - Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report April 11, 2016

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Conditions: Great weather this week will provide awesome fishing. We’ll have smaller incoming tides so the fish in the back country will be scattered. There will be moving water near all the passes which will help congregate fish making those areas better choices. Good water quality and salinity throughout most of Charlotte Harbor. Lower Pine Island Sound and Punta Rassa water conditions continue to improve.

Species to fish for this week: Redfish, Spotted Seatrout, Bluefish, Jacks, Ladyfish, Snook, Spanish Mackerel. There’s a few tarpon and cobia around mid-Harbor structure and the deep holes.

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Bait the fish are feeding on: shrimp, crabs, pinfish, ladyfish. Some whitebait in Matlacha Pass, Gasparilla sound, Upper Pine Island sound and on Bokeelia Shoals.

Fishing Tactics: Early morning low tides will expose the oyster beds and leave little water on the grass flats. Work the edges of both. Spotted sea trout and reds will be cruising there waiting for the tide to come in.

My fly fishing tip of the week: Look for moving water and bait. That’s where the fish will be this week due to lack of tide and current in their normal ambush spots. White bait and shrimp patterns are working best. Keep that 12Wt. rigged and ready for Mr. Tarpon - there here.

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My spin fishing tip of the week: The suspending twitch baits are still the hot lure. Keep some bite wire handy – the jacks and Spanish mackerel will cut you off. Have a heavy rod rigged with 60# leader and a DOA Baitbuster for that tarpon that just might roll next to the boat, it’s that time of year.

7 day outlook: Seasonal temps, light winds and sunny most of the week, there’s a chance of showers on Friday. Small incoming tides all week won’t provide much moving water in the back country.

2016 tarpon roll


 

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Great Back Country Fishing in Matlacha Pass with Keven and Jason

Keven Stevens and Jason Webber had a great day of back country fishing with me in Matlacha Pass Wildlife Refuge on the southern reaches of Charlotte Harbor. We were fishing with fly rods and light tackle spinning gear. Check out the nice redfish hooked in 14" of water on a MirroLure Twitchbait then watch a school of 10-12 pound jack cravale smashing bait in 2 feet of water on a grass flat. We also caught sea trout, ladyfish and snook. NICE!

Keven and Jason, it was great getting to know you, safe travels home and hope to fish with you again! Capt. Dave

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Jason Webber Light Tackle Fishing for Redfish in Matlacha Pass


Jason Webber and Keven Stevens had a great day of back country fishing with me in Charlotte Harbor's Matlacha Pass Wildlife Refuge. We caught sea trout, ladyfish, snook, jacks and this nice redfish on fly and spinning gear. This 28" red was staged up along the mangroves in 12" of water. Jason caught it on a MirroLure twitch bait. Great getting to know you guys! Safe travels home.

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Light Tackle Redfish Fishing in Charlotte Harbor's Bull Bay


Curt hooks into a nice redfish in 12" of water along the edge of a oyster bed in Bull Bay. Two laps around the boat later we get a couple good "grip and grin" photos and release Mrs. Red. Curt did a great job! Caught it on a 1/4 oz. jig tipped with a live shrimp using 12 pound spinning gear. Finished up the 4 hour trip with redfish, trout and snook.

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SW Florida - Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report February 15, 2016

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Conditions: Water temps are in the mid to high 60s and will warm as the week progresses. Lots of fresh water runoff in the lower Harbor and Pine Island Sound right now. Better conditions exist in the upper Charlotte Harbor, the West wall and over toward Placida.

Bait the fish are feeding on: Some whitebait in the upper harbor, pinfish, ladyfish, shrimp, crabs

Species to fish for this week: Snook, Redfish, Seatrout, Jacks, Ladyfish

Fishing Tactics: Mobility is the key right now. There’s lots of good fishing where you find clear water. You may have to run a bit to get away from the stained fresh water but when you do the fish will waiting for you.

My fly fishing tip of the week: Use bright colored bulky flies in stained water and natural colored smaller flies in the clear water. Strip slowly in the mornings, speed up as the water warms up.

My spin fishing tip of the week: Been having good luck with suspended twitch baits in soft rubber and hard plastic. Most of the hits have been during pauses in the retrieve. 

7 day outlook: Seasonal temperatures, with light to moderate winds. Chance of showers Monday night into Tuesday. Morning below average low tides will provide good bar and bank fishing. 

 

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SW Florida - Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report February 8, 2016

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Conditions: We will have extremely low morning tides this week. Water temps will be cool in the mornings but warm up in the afternoon. Pine Island Sound, Ding Darling, and areas around Sanibel and Captiva will have poor water quality due to the record level of discharges from Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee River. Even Matlacha Pass will see some water issues this week. The upper Harbor, East and West walls will provide better fishing opportunities.
Bait the fish are feeding on: Some whitebait in the upper harbor, pinfish, ladyfish, shrimp, crabs
Species to fish for this week: Snook, Redfish, Seatrout, Jacks, Ladyfish
Fishing Tactics: Typical winter tactics include taking advantage of extremely low water levels by fishing edges and structure. Cool water requires fishing slow and deep. As the water warms on the mud and grass you can speed your retrieves back up.
My fly fishing tip of the week: Slow presentations along the edges of oyster bards and banks with crab or shrimp patterns should produce this week. Use weighted flies or sinking intermediate lines to get down to the fish.     
My spin fishing tip of the week: Jig heads with soft plastic tail fished slow along edges and bars should work. Take advantage of this week’s super low tides by fishing structure and contours. 
7 day outlook: This week will be mostly dry with morning lows in the 50 warming into the 60s mid day. West – northwest winds will drop on Wednesday. There will be very large tide swings this week. Water temps will cool due to the nighttime lows. 

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Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report January 25th, 2016

Barb and I will be heading to Port Charlotte in a week or two. Thought I'd start my fishing reports now seeing that I'm checking the conditions daily. 

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Conditions: Water temps will rebound this week. Winds will drop too. There will be mid day low tides with good moving water

Bait the fish are feeding on: some whitebait in the upper harbor, pinfish, ladyfish, shrimp, crabs

Species to fish for this week: Seatrout, Redfish, Jacks, Spanish, some Snook

Fishing Tactics: Cold water tactics – fish deep water and banks until the mid day warmth heats up the flats.

My fly fishing tip of the week: Cold water requires fishing slow and deep. Might need to swap to an intermediate or sinking line. Maybe even weighted flies for the holes and edges.             

My spin fishing tip of the week: Still fishing with bait and popping corks or slow retrieved jigs in deep water early then move to the grass flats as the water warms.

 

7 day outlook: A cold front move out Monday and the winds will drop and shift into the southeast. The weather change will bring a few showers. Temps will rebound to seasonal levels allowing the water to warm up.

This week's forecast:

Monday
Sunny, with a high near 70. Wind chill values as low as 35 early. East northeast wind around 5 mph becoming south southeast in the afternoon.
Monday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 52. Calm wind becoming east 5 to 7 mph in the evening.
Tuesday
Mostly sunny, with a high near 77. East wind 5 to 8 mph.
Tuesday Night
A 30 percent chance of showers after 8pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 63. East wind around 5 mph. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.
Wednesday
A chance of showers, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after 8am. Cloudy, with a high near 72. Southeast wind 5 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
Wednesday Night
Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Cloudy, with a low around 62. East wind 3 to 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
Thursday
Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Cloudy, with a high near 69. Northeast wind 6 to 10 mph becoming west northwest in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
Thursday Night
Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm before 8pm, then a slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 50. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
Friday
A 20 percent chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 63.
Friday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 46.
Saturday
Mostly sunny, with a high near 68
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Punta Gorda - Trip Adviser's Most Affordable Southern Destination

This is something Barb and I already knew - Punta Gorda on the southeastern side of Charlotte Harbor is a great place to excape the cold. Trip Advisor agrees, it listed PG as its most afordable southern destination.

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We live just across the bridge in Port Charlotte but spend most of our time in Punta Gorda. Great restaurants and shops, We love the farmers market, I launch from two of PG's boat ramps almost daily and pick up my Florida fishing charter clients at the area hotels. PG hosts several festivals and fishing tournament throughout the year. Oh, almost forgot Barb's favorite ice cream shop Scoops is at Lashley Park right on the River Walk.

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And the fishing... PG has great snook, redfish, trout, cobia, jack and mackerel fishing minutes from their boat ramps. Spin fishing or fly fishing, you'll have a great time in Punta Gorda.

 

 

 

 

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Custom Rod Box Makes Florida Fishing Charter Logistics Much Easier

I retired the ol' Yukon Denali and have a nice (newer) GMC crew cab pickup. Problem - no secured rod storage with a 5'-6" bed... Enters my friend Fred Bogue, a beach and jetty angler who has struggled for years just such a problem. Fred sent me a link to Big Sky Rod Box in MT. Great product and really nice folks but, it only holds up to 6 fly rods... Next I contacted my buddy and sales rep at Hammond Lumber; Matt Stelzer for a bit of brainstorming on available materials. After three days in my workshop here's the result.

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Constructed from metal roofing panels and aluminum angle over a 1/4" plywood substrate

2016RodBox3

Weighs about 50 pounds and removes in minutes by undoing four U bolts.

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Holds 9 fully rigged rods up to 9'-6" long. Nicely cushioned cradles, watertight, ventilated and lockable. Even has enough room to accommodate my 8' one piece tarpon spinning rods.

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Charlotte Harbor / Pine Island Sound Fishing Report January 4th, 2016

Charlotte Harbor / Pine Island Sound Fishing Report January 4th, 2016 - Happy New Year Everyone! Welcome to the first of 2016 weekly Fishing Reports from Charlotte Harbor Florida. My guiding season kicks later this month and I'm looking forward to enjoying the sun and warmth of Southwest Florida through early June.

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Conditions: Typical January fishing conditions this week. Low water levels and dropping water temps.

Bait: Mullet, Ladyfish, pinfish, shrimp, crabs

Fishing Tactics: Cool temps and northeast winds will move the water and fish from the mangroves into the potholes and troughs. Concentrate on deeper water with slower presentations.

Species to target: Redfish, Snook Seatrout, Jacks, Spanish Mackerel and Ladyfish.

My Fly Fishing Tip of the Week: Cool water tactics, swap to a sinking or sinking intermediate line and weighted flies. Fish edges and holes.

My Spin Fishing Tip of the Week: Fish slow and low during cool water conditions.

 

7 day outlook: Average temps and northeast winds subsiding mid-week. 40% chance of showers on Wednesday. 

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Gulf of Maine Mako Shark on 30# Stand Up Gear

This 3 minute video captures some pretty intense action of a 15 minutes fight with a 150-200 pound mako shark. Several jumps and long runs ending with the shark leadered. We had hoped for a few boatside pictures but the mako wrapped himself in the outboard and broke off. We caught several blue sharks on spinning gear and fly rods during this trip also. Thank you to Erin and Jeremy Libby and Sumner Crawford for the camera work and colorful commentary!  

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