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Fly Fishing the Sarasota Bay in Florida

Sarasota Bay summary

Sarasota Bay is a fly fishing location in Florida.
                   

Sarasota Bay reports

Rick Grassett (Capt. Rick Grassett) reported - 2 - Good fly fishing: Capt. Rick Grassett’s Sarasota, FL Fishing Report for 9/4/2017 Anglers fishing with me, out of CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had some action with snook around dock lights and trout on deep grass flats of Sarasota Bay during the past week. This is a great time of year to beat the heat, by fishing dock lights before dawn, which is the coolest time of day. In addition to snook, you may also find juvenile tarpon, trout and reds in the lights as we head into fall. Labor Day weekend is often “family time” on the water and this weekend was no different as kids had some fun fishing with family members. Fly angler Randy Ritzenhaler and his daughter Elise, from TX, fished a predawn snook/flats trip in Sarasota with me on Thursday. Randy had some action before daylight catching and releasing snook and a nice trout on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly fished on a sink tip fly line. They also had some action catching and releasing trout on an Ultra Hair Clouser fly and a CAL jig with a shad tail on the west side of the bay. Despite all the rain we’ve had, except for tannin stained water, deep grass flats of Sarasota Bay looked good. I had a couple of trips on Saturday and Sunday and the best action was with trout over deep grass flats. Al Ribas, from Miami, FL, and his grandson Michael, from Port Charlotte, FL, had some action catching and releasing trout on CAL jigs with shad tails. You may find juvenile tarpon, trout or reds mixed with snook in dock lights. You should also find juvenile tarpon in canals and creeks and adult tarpon in upper Charlotte Harbor and some areas of Sarasota and Tampa Bay. Fishing lighted docks and bridges in the ICW for snook with flies and DOA Lures should be a good option. This is also a good time frame to sight fish for snook in the surf. Snook season reopened on Sept 1st on the west coast of Florida. Bag limit is 1 fish per person, per day between 28”-33”. Full regulations can be found at . Personally, I will continue to ask that snook be released on my boat. They are a magnificent game fish that hits hard and fights strong and smart. If continuing to release them now means more and bigger snook later, I’m all for that. Tight Lines, Capt. Rick Grassett FFI Certified Fly Casting Instructor Orvis-Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters Orvis Outfitter of the Year-2011 Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc. , and (941) 923-7799 (09/04/17)
Rick Grassett (Capt. Rick Grassett) reported - 2 - Good fly fishing: Capt. Rick Grassett’s Sarasota, FL Fishing Report for 8/26/2017 I was away on a family vacation recently, so I don’t have much to report locally. However, I did get out for a trip after we returned. A fly angler fishing Sarasota Bay with me, out of CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had some action catching and releasing snook, jacks, mangrove snapper and ladyfish on flies on his first ever saltwater fly fishing trip. Greg Whitledge, from IL, fished a predawn snook/flats trip with me on Friday morning. That trip, which gives anglers a good chance for snook and tarpon on a fly around dock lights before moving to the flats at the best time of day, is a great option this time of year. He did well, catching and releasing several snook before daylight on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly. Just as we were wrapping up the snook fishing, a school of jacks erupted in a frenzy, trapping bait along a seawall. He added a few more species to his tally by catching and releasing mangrove snapper, jacks and ladyfish out of the fray! You may find juvenile tarpon mixed with snook in dock lights or in canals and creeks during the day. You may also find juvenile and adult tarpon in upper Charlotte Harbor and some areas of Sarasota and Tampa Bay. Fishing lighted docks and bridges in the ICW for snook with flies and DOA Lures should be a good option. This is also a good time frame to sight fish for snook in the surf. Remember that snook season is closed on the west coast of Florida until Sep 1st. Please handle them gently and release them quickly. Tight Lines, Capt. Rick Grassett FFI Certified Fly Casting Instructor Orvis-Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters Orvis Outfitter of the Year-2011 Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc. , and (941) 923-7799 (08/26/17)
Rick Grassett (Capt. Rick Grassett) reported - 2 - Good fly fishing: Capt. Rick Grassett’s Sarasota, FL Fishing Report for 8/5/2017 Fly anglers fishing with me recently, out of CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, continued to have some action with tarpon. Despite poor conditions with the passing of Tropical Storm Emily, we got out for a couple of trips. When fish were high in the water column and visibility was good, we had the best action. We had about a dozen shots and jumped one tarpon on one of the trips. Tarpon fishing in the gulf should still be an option depending on conditions. You should find juvenile tarpon in creeks, canals and turning basins. This is also a good time frame to sight fish for snook in the surf. However, snook season remains closed on the west coast of Florida until Sep 1st, so please handle them gently and release them quickly. Fishing lighted docks and bridges in the ICW for snook and tarpon with flies and DOA Lures should also be a good option. Tight Lines, Capt. Rick Grassett FFI Certified Fly Casting Instructor Orvis-Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters Orvis Outfitter of the Year-2011 Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc. , and (941) 923-7799 (08/05/17)
Rick Grassett (Capt. Rick Grassett) reported - 2 - Good fly fishing: Capt. Rick Grassett’s Sarasota, FL Fishing Report for 7/23/2017 Fly anglers fishing with me, out of CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, continued to have some action with tarpon recently. We had numerous shots at tarpon each trip, jumping several fish. Conditions were good some days, however we dodged thunderstorms and fished windows of good conditions on other days. When fish were “happy”, high in the water column and moving slowly, we had the best action. Days when fish were deep or moving fast, combined with poor visibility were tough. Tarpon fishing should be good next week as many fish are post spawn and should be aggressive. This is a good time frame to sight fish for snook in the surf. However, snook season remains closed on the west coast of Florida until Sep 1st, so please handle them gently and release them quickly. Fishing lighted docks and bridges in the ICW for snook with flies and DOA Lures also continues to be a good option. Tight Lines, Capt. Rick Grassett FFI Certified Fly Casting Instructor Orvis-Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters Orvis Outfitter of the Year-2011 Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc. , and (941) 923-7799 (07/23/17)
Rick Grassett (Capt. Rick Grassett) reported - 1 - Excellent fly fishing: Capt. Rick Grassett’s Sarasota, FL Fishing Report for 6/26 through 7/8/2017 Fly anglers fishing with me, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had good action with tarpon during the past couple of weeks. With the weather in a normal pattern of an east breeze in the morning, an afternoon sea breeze and plenty of sun, fly anglers had lots of shots at tarpon each day, jumping numerous tarpon and catching and releasing several. I had a real treat on Mon, June 26 when Rusty Chinnis, from Longboat Key and I had an opportunity to fish the backcountry of Pine Island Sound for juvenile tarpon with our friend, Capt. Joe Harley of Snooktown Charters out of Matlacha, FL ( or 239-443-7412). We had great action jumping numerous tarpon in the 15 to 30-pound class and leadering a couple of them on 8-wt fly tackle. Great fun and a change of pace from beach tarpon fishing. These fish usually jump higher and more often than their larger brethren! I also fished with Rusty back in Sarasota on Wednesday, 6/28. We had numerous shots at tarpon and Rusty hooked up, getting numerous jumps and runs during a 20-minute fight before the hook pulled. Hal Lutz, from Parrish, FL and Jeb Mulock, from Bradenton, FL, fished with me on Thursday and Friday. 6/29 and 30. Hal was the first to score when he hooked up on Thursday and fought his fish to the boat. Jeb hooked up twice on Friday, jumping one tarpon and fighting the fish for about 30-minutes before we had an unexpected break off. He immediately hooked up again fighting the second tarpon through several jumps and runs before it was leadered. Great job! Steve Gibson, from Sarasota, fly fished for tarpon with me on Wednesday. 7/5. Steve hooked up and fought the fish for several jumps and runs. Rusty Chinnis, from Longboat Key, fly fished for tarpon with me on Thursday. He also hooked up, getting numerous jumps and runs before bringing the fish to the boat in about 20-minutes. We jumped another tarpon that day and had lots of shots and a brief hook up on another trip. Tarpon fishing should be good next week as many fish are post spawn and aggressive. This is a good time frame to sight fish for snook in the surf. However, snook season remains closed on the west coast of Florida until Sep 1st, so please handle them gently and release them quickly. Fishing lighted docks and bridges in the ICW for snook with flies and DOA Lures also continues to be a good option. Tight Lines, Capt. Rick Grassett FFI Certified Fly Casting Instructor Orvis-Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters Orvis Outfitter of the Year-2011 Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc. , and (941) 923-7799 (07/08/17)
Rick Grassett (Capt. Rick Grassett) reported - 2 - Good fly fishing: Capt. Rick Grassett’s Sarasota, FL Fishing Report for 4/15/2017 Anglers fishing with me, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, caught trout, bluefish and flounder in Sarasota Bay on flies and CAL jigs with shad during the past week. Ed Nordgren and Bob Mozurkewich, both from Ft. Myers, FL, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Monday. We fished skinny water where they caught a couple of nice flounder and trout on CAL jigs with shad tails. Bill Morrison, from Anna Maria Island and Gary Marple, from Sarasota, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Wednesday. It was their last trip of the spring before heading back north and they had some action with trout to 18” on Ultra Hair Clouser flies. Mark Wayde and Steve Dornbos, both from MI, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Thursday. They had good action catching and releasing trout to 21” and bluefish on Ultra Hair Clouser flies fished on intermediate sink tip fly lines. They finished strong as the action got fast at the top of the tide with some quality trout. Trout, blues, Spanish mackerel, pompano and more should also be good options on deep grass flats and passes of Sarasota Bay. You should also find larger trout in shallow water along with snook and reds when conditions are good. Fishing lighted docks and bridges in the ICW for snook with flies and DOA Lures continues to be a good option. Tight Lines, Capt. Rick Grassett IFFF Certified Fly Casting Instructor Orvis-Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters Orvis Outfitter of the Year-2011 Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc. , and (941) 923-7799 (04/15/17)
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