GO FISHING is a look at the area fishing scene through the eyes of local charter boat captains and fishing guides. Today: Billy Nobles, left, with "Reel Animals" partner Mike Anderson.
The beginning of the week started out promising. Highs were in the low 80s and upper 70s - you know, the way life is supposed to be here in Florida.
I had some people scheduled for a trip Monday, but thunderstorms were in the forecast so we moved our trip to Tuesday. The plan was to meet at 7 a.m., grab some bait and head offshore. The bait was a little tough to find, to say the least, but we finally got enough and headed offshore around 10 a.m. The winds were supposed to be out of the east coming northwest by late afternoon. But as soon as we rounded the lighthouse, there were northwest winds. We ran out a little anyway and we hooked a few big fish but were unable to turn them.
With conditions worsening, we changed gears and headed to O'Neill's Marina to grab some shrimp. After gearing up for some light inshore action, we looked for the large schools of drum that invaded the bay about two months ago, but we couldn't find them.
Next, we decided to hit some trout. I had purchased eight dozen shrimp and had two anglers using Berkley Gulp shrimp and two using live shrimp. In about an hour-and-a-half we burned through all our bait and had a limit of speckled trout. We caught two small ones 10-12 inches long. The rest were between 16 and 22 inches, and the action was nonstop.
Other captains are saying the offshore bite is on fire when you can get out there. Trout, black drum and redfish are in the bay in abundance, just as we have another week of cold scheduled. The key is to pick your day. When conditions are right, the bite never has been stronger.