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Rick Grassett (Capt. Rick Grassett) reported
on the Southwest, Florida
Capt. Rick Grassett’s Sarasota & Gasparilla Sound, FL Fishing Report for 2/27 through 3/11/2017
Anglers fishing with me, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, caught and released snook, blues and jacks in the ICW at night, trout and bluefish in Sarasota Bay, snook and trout in the Terra Ceia Bay area and snook, redfish and trout in Gasparilla Sound on CAL jigs with shad tails, DOA Shrimp and flies during the past week. The best action was with snook and bluefish at night on flies.
Jerry Poslusny, from Rochester, NY, and Rich Hunter from Longboat Key, FL, snook fished with me on Sunday evening, 2/27. We fished dock lights in the ICW near Venice and they had good action catching and releasing snook on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly. Martin Marlowe, from NY, and Tim Hearon from Siesta Key, FL, fished the same area with me on Monday evening, 2/28. They also had good action catching and releasing snook and some hefty bluefish on the same fly.
Tom Lamb, from Geneva, Switzerland, and Diane Muhlfeld and Roy Glah, from Sarasota, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Wednesday, 3/1. We worked deep grass flats on both sides of the bay and they had steady action with trout, including several in the slot, on CAL jigs with shad tails and DOA Shrimp. One of the most productive techniques was drifting a DOA Shrimp behind the boat.
Keith McClintock, from Lake Forest, IL fished the Terra Ceia Bay area with me on Thursday, 3/2. With a front approaching, we found snook plentiful on shallow flats and he had good action catching and releasing them on CAL jigs with shad tails. The following day I had a great fly angler on board, but behind the front with a 15 to 20-mph north wind and a bluebird sky the fish shut down.
Martin Marlowe, from NY, snook fished with me on Monday evening, 3/6. We fished dock lights in the ICW near Venice and he had good action catching and releasing snook on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly.
Alan Sugar and Ray Hutchinson, both from MI, fished Sarasota Bay with me on Wednesday, 3/8. We worked deep grass flats on both sides of the bay and they had steady action with trout and a bluefish on Clouser flies fished on sink tip and intermediate fly lines. Alan caught and released a 23” trout, his personal best! These big trout are usually females, so I feel it is important to the health of our trout fishery that they be released.
I gave a presentation, “Spring on the Fly in Southwest Florida” to an enthusiastic group at the Charlotte Harbor Fly Fishers in Punta Gorda on Wednesday evening, 3/8. It was good to see some old friends and new faces, too.
Dave Reinhart, from VA, and Will Patterson, from Tampa, FL, fished the backcountry of Gasparilla Sound near Boca Grande with me on Thursday, 3/9. They fished hard and it paid off for them late in the day with numerous snook and some very nice trout, including several over the slot, caught and released on CAL jigs with shad tails. Keith McClintock, from Lake Forest, IL fished the same area with me on Friday, 3/10 and caught and released a slam including several snook, trout and a red on CAL jigs with shad tails.
Trout, blues, Spanish mackerel, pompano and more should be a good option on deep grass flats of Sarasota Bay. You should also find larger trout in shallow water along with snook and reds when conditions are good. Action in the coastal gulf should take off with king and Spanish mackerel, cobia and tripletail. Fishing lighted docks and bridges in the ICW for snook with flies and DOA Lures continues to be a good option.
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.
Conditions that day: