The water is warm, but the fish are still biting if you venture into deeper waters. If you have a good breeze in the morning or evenings, there are big trout and reds to be caught in 6-8' water.
This time of year can make for tough fishing if the wind is not blowing and the water gets slick. You need some wind to help you drift and cover more water. And the ripple of the water helps make fish less likely to be spooked by the boat. The best fishing will be first thing in the morning and later in the day when the wind is usually blowing best. If the water gets slick, take a break and do a little scalloping until the wind starts blowing again.
We've had a significant amount of rain lately, which means the water won't be as clear as it has been this spring and summer. This means that the fishing around Spring Warrior might become tougher if the water is too dark. But it also means that the fishing south of Keaton should be great as that clear water now has a bit of a stain to it. If the water is too clear, fish are going to spook very easily. So we want to fish something between clear and murky.
We've had a little success with topwater plugs for redfish early in the morning. We're getting our best bite closer to the hill with these first thing in the morning. Once the sun gets bright, that's when we'll head to deeper water. Most of our fish have been caught in 6-8' of water lately using live pinfish. We have had a little success with soft plastics, but the fish caught on those baits seem to be smaller.
If you want to catch big trout, be sure to have some live pinfish on the boat. That's what the trout see every single day and what they're most likely to bite. When fishing in the deeper water, be sure to use a longer leader so that your bait can sit closer to the bottom. We'll use a 4-5' leader under a popping cork with a live pinfish hooked through the mouth. We've also had some success using an in-line rattler to help attract more fish in the deeper water.
As long as the tide is moving and the wind is blowing, a solid limit of trout and reds is possible. Plan ahead and catch some live pinfish to have the best chance at catching some big ones. If the wind dies, take a break and jump in the water.
This fishing report is brought to you by Captain Jason Witherspoon of Spoon Fed Charters in Keaton Beach, Florida.