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The Snook Cowboy: Welcome Back, Everybody!!!!

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On: Thu, Feb 17, 2011 at 11:17AM | By: The Snook Cowboy

Wow, it was cold last month. I usually try to predict what the season is going to do, but this one is tricky. It looks like we are going to be back and forth with the temperatures. I didn’t even put the boat in the water since the last article.

The weather should be moderating now that we have blown through the solstice and the days are getting longer. The water should follow suit and keep getting warmer. I know I am going to eat my words in a month. Regardless, get out there and do some fishing or boating in between the fronts. It appears this season’s El Nino is really working on the Northern states. I’m sure you saw the report that every state in the continental U.S, except Florida, had snow on the ground. Crazy!!

After the freeze the Redfish bite picked up as they made their way into Pine Island Sound and Charlotte Harbor. Trout are always an easy catch and can be found in any grass bed of any size. Live shrimp and artificial baits are working just fine.

Trout are fun to fish for and can keep a family busy when in a school of them. Usually there are Ladyfish hanging with the trout and put on a show as grand for its size as the Tarpon. Fast retrieves will trigger strikes from Ladyfish when using an artificial bait. I like to grab a few before I get to my Snook hole just in case they are being lazy and want an easy meal.

As long as the water stays above 62 degrees the Redfish will continue to bite and as the water warms up in the late afternoons the Snook turn on. I like to get on the water two hours before and two hours after whichever tide is flowing. That way, I catch the optimum bite window for that day. You can apply this technique during evening tides too. Nighttime offers you the opportunity to fish lighted areas that attract a variety of fish including Snook, Trout, and Reds. Snook and Trout especially like the lights and the docks they are mounted on provide great ambush points for any bait-fish or lure that swims through the light.

The manatees are in the Imperial River in numbers right now and you can catch them cruising past the docks at the historic, Liles Hotel on Old 41 in Bonita Springs. You can rent kayaks and canoes or have a guide go with you on a Manatee Magic tour. No fences and no power plants in the background, it’s just you and 1100 pounds of nature, right beneath you. You can book tours with the contact information below and we are open seven days a week. We encourage reservations this time of year due to overwhelming guest traffic. That way you will be assured a space. I really hope this beautiful Florida weather holds out. At least on the river you are protected from the elements so wind isn’t a factor. As long as the water stays below 72 the manatees will be in the river, but don’t wait too long. Kayak fishing tours are offered seven days a week from Pine Island Sound. Estero Bay is too cold and doesn’t provide the cover that Pine Island Sound has to offer.

Well, stay tuned for this roller coaster of a winter and we’ll see what next month brings.

Til then,
Love & Light
The Snook Cowboy.


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