I’ve been on the water 6 out of the last 7 days and it’s getting difficult to catch up with the reports. Great to be busy though and even better that the fishing continues to get hotter and hotter. The passing cold fronts are changing the bite daily, but were seeing glimpses of spring patterns during the warming trends. I had several charters this week in Estero Bay and the fishing was off the hook. On low tides and while family fishing with kids, we had no trouble catching lots of mangrove snapper, small jack crevalles, sheepshead, and a handful of spotted sea trout.

As the days have warmed and the tides flooded the back of Estero Bay we have caught redfish on just about every trip, including a monstrous fish well over 32” caught by a very nice lady with exceptional angling skills.

I also had a half day trip out of Punta Rassa 1 day with a nice father and son team. The fishing was tough a day after a cold front pushed through, but we managed to catch a bunch of small spotted and sand sea trout, whiting, jacks, and one nice big pompano.

I finished the week with a cold Friday morning charter in Estero Bay where we caught a bunch of sheepshead, snapper and jacks before we called it a day. Then it was off for some fun fishing. As soon as I got off the water Friday and got my boat and stuff cleaned up, I headed to my good buddy Scott’s house where we loaded up his brand new bay boat for its first serious fishing trip. We both had a 24 hour pass to join my dad and a group of our best friends for their annual Everglades fishing sabbatical. Scott and I arrived early enough to splash the boat and head down the Barron River out of Everglades City for some fishing in the park. We ran across 1 group of the guys as they were headed in, as we fished our way out to the Gulf of Mexico. The bite started immediately as I threw my favorite lure, with a couple of jacks and snapper. At the next spot we caught some ladyfish and jacks, then a decent redfish on a top water plug that made my day, before Scott got a nice trout to finish our day. The cocktail hour and dinner did not disappoint on this trip, it never does, as my ribs hurt the next day from laughing so hard. Fishing the next day was awesome, putting the new 22’ bay boat to the test. First thing was to figure out the livewells because of the perfect large sized whitebait Scott waded to and netted for us. Then it was off to a well-known wreck offshore where we caught huge Spanish mackerel, a few snapper, and some nice sheepshead. A quick stop a very near shore wreck gave up the same, and one small goliath grouper. Then it was time to fish under the trees as we worked the now flooded mangrove shorelines, where we caught spotted sea trout, a few nice redfish, a big flounder, and a bunch of jacks.

Scott ended the day with a football sized goliath grouper before it was time to head to the ramp where we quickly loaded up and said our goodbyes, and were back at our homes in time for dinner.