Florida Trip E-mail
Wednesday, 23 March 2011 15:29

peacock

My Florida trip started out like all my trips, with some weather issue – this time a nasty cold front that was determined to hurt the fishing.  I guess as cold fronts go, this was pretty mild especially compared to the record cold temperatures that Florida had last winter, which resulted in fish kills all over the state. By some estimations they are stating that up to 80% of some species have be decimated – pretty scary stuff.

I was lucky enough to fish with a couple of the best kayak fishing guides around; my trip started with meeting up with DC Bienvenue in Sarasota.  I know many people who have fished with DC over the years and I have never heard anybody say this guy cant find the fish, and he promised me a trip up to “Snook Country” and he thought that the front wouldn’t effect the fishing that much.  The path to his spot was about a 3-mile paddle up river, it was nice to get a little outdoor workout after a long NY winter. The “cold front” of 60 degrees felt great.  I had my doubts about this place we were journeying to as the river just kept getting skinnier and narrower.  We fished along the way and picked up some small bass and DC jumped a 15 lb. snook right in front of my yak.   We finally got to the area where DC said you should start seeing snook and we did, they were crashing some small bait that I think he said were shad. The area actually got too tight to fish from the kayak and we ended up wading.  I missed one fish and then the snook had the bait trapped and I figured I would have a good shot, but of course it was right under this overhanging tree, I buried a cast into the tree and I was snagged, DC fired and caught a nice snook. (I’ll call it my snook). We tried for a while but we were running out of daylight and headed back.  The area is truly amazing and I was able to see lots of snook and nothing looked less than 10 lbs.  We had planned to fish the next day also but DC had some family stuff to attend to.

DC with my snook

I then made my way down to South Florida to fish with the Bonefish Whisperer.  One look at his site and you will be certain that name has been earned. Anybody who knows me knows that if I had to pick only one fish to pursue – it would be the bone.  I am just addicted to their power and evasiveness. Cordell had told me that the week before I got there that the Biscayne Bay flats had come alive with big bones but he was certain that the front was a going to put an end to that for a while.  He suggested a trip to the Miami canals for peacock bass, he said he has gotten them up to 7 lbs so off we went. Again, the cold had really hurt the numbers of fish but I was able to get some shots and with using the Freedom Hawk stand up kayak to sight fish for them as they lay up in the shallows of the canals it was a blast.  Cordell explained that fishing for them is more about finding them and then casting on their head to piss them off, this was pretty much the only way to get a reaction strike.  This proved right.

Ready to launch

We did manage to get out one day to look for some bones but Cordell was not optimistic as he said the cold East winds would cool the flats off but we would give it a shot. For me bonefish success is measured in 2 ways how many fish you can find and of course how many you can catch, We were able to see a few fish but they didn’t seem to be on the feed and the strong winds made it tough to get any decent shots. Biscayne Bay is an amazing place with some of the largest bonefish anywhere in the world. It is also one of the best places for big permit.  According to Cordell it is also the only place where redfish and bonefish share the same flats, which I found really interesting.

All and all it was a great trip that only got me on the water 3 days but I think I am heading back soon. For more information on these kayak fishing guides visit

D.C. Bienvenue
Sun Coast Kayak Fishing Tours
www.fishwithdc.com

Cordell Baum
Bonefish Whisperer
www.bonefishwhisperer.com

 

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