|Captain Dave Hanson
Location: Bonita Beach, SW FL
|Posted: Oct 08, 2013 at 11:41 AM
Redfish have been the best bet around here lately, with trips scarce overall, and with favorable bay tides trumping some sloppy conditions offshore. Monday morning, 9/23/13, I fished the backwaters of Estero Bay with Doug Duncan, Eric Bastion, and Randy Cummings. The guys had originally planned an offshore trip, but Monday was an unsettled day with abundant rains in the area, and the Gulf winds had picked up to 15 knots, with the promise of sloppy seas, so we opted to remain inshore and dodge the rains as best we could. The guys did well, using live shrimp. Dough caught a keeper redfish at 22? inches, and the group released two smaller reds. Eric caught a 14-inch, keeper sheepshead. Randy caught and released an 18-inch snook. The group also caught five keeper mangrove snapper to 13 inches.
We were stuck in an early-day rain pattern for days, with lots of moisture hanging over the gulf, until it dried out some on the weekend. The next trip I had was Wednesday, 10/2, and it was supposed to be an offshore trip with Bill and Michelle Severns. Seas were predicted to be about two feet, but as we approached the near-shore reefs, we could see that the further out we ventured, the rougher it would be. We decided to use our live shrimp near-shore and, even there at the reefs five to six miles off the beach, seas were pretty rough. Fishing was tough, but the couple caught a bunch of mangrove snapper, including three keepers. They also released a lot of lane snapper shorts, but managed one keeper lane. They released gag grouper shorts, crevalle jacks and Spanish mackerel too.
Saturday morning, 10/5, I fished inshore in Estero Bay with Clement and Evelyn Wong and Peter and Miranda Tai. The guys each caught keeper redfish, one 18 ? inches and one 19 ? inches. The group also released some sheepshead, along with a ten-pound stingray.