Hi Italo! I will be visiting south west Florida in mid February and want to do some fishing from shore. I don’t have much saltwater experience and would appreciate any advice you have on where to fish and the type of fish and techniques I should use. Thanks for the help

Posted on January 19th, 2016

You have several options to catch fish from shore. All you need is a medium-action spinning rod loaded with 30 lb. braid. I suggest you don’t take any freshwater tackle since it’s better (and pretty inexpensive) to purchase saltwater hooks and lures at Wal-Mart for you to use while you are there and to bring back with you.

italo_mackerel

You can have good bait-fishing right off any beach. The best fishing will be if the Gulf has been calm for at least 3-days and the water clears up. You don’t have to cast out far, 15-50′ from the beach and just bottom fish using a pyramid 1 oz. sinker on a 3-way rig, a 24″ leader and a #2 baithook. Good bait is frozen shrimp, pieces of squid, sand flies (small crustaceans that you can catch with a sieve whee the surf meets the beach), or if you have a cast net, baitfish. Fishing bait you should be able to catch; whiting, silver jennies, sheepshead and possibly even Spanish jackerel and snook. If you choose to cast lures, casting a 3″ gold spoon you are very likely to hook Spanish mackerel and bluefish if they are running the beach.

bluefish_xrap_countdown

You can also fish any outlets that connect the inter-coastal with the Gulf. Those areas are the most productive when the tide is moving, either flooding or ebbing. Same bait & spoon casting will work there also.

italo_Yamaha_snook

You can fish the inter-coastal waterway off any dock, or if you don’t mind, even wade up to your waist on firmer bottom flats and cast a 1/4 oz. jig/3″ plastic minnow grub, 1/4 oz. spoon, Rapala X-Rap, or Rapala Skitter Pop along the surface for spotted sea trout, snook, jacks, ladyfish, & snook. Hope you have a great holiday!

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