Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Report, August 20, 2016
Capt. Tom Van Horn
August 20, 2016
Indian River Lagoon - Saltwater Fishing Report
Before I dive into this week's report, my apologies for my lack in updating my blog. You see, I was off of the water on vacation with my lovely bride visiting North Georgia enjoying some bluegrass, cool weather and BBQ.
This past week I shared days on the water in two completely different location and experienced excellent fishing at both.
My first adventure was with father and son team Bob and Hank Wolverton from Orlando for a day of flats fishing on the Mosquito Lagoon. We launched from Bairs Cove around 0530 and we were casting to tailing redfish at first light. Water levels were just a bit lower than normal and the water clarity still remains poor. Bill and Hank started out throwing top water plugs, but floating widgeon grass kept fowling the hooks, so I switched them over to 4" DOA CAL jerk baits on a Daiichi Butt Dragger Bleeding Bait Hook rigged weedless which did the trick. In the predawn darkness we found a large school of tailing redfish mixed in with a very large school of mullet and it was game on for the next hour catching both redfish and sea trout. The weather has been slick calm in the mornings, so get out there early and enjoy the sunrise.
My next adventure was out of Port Canaveral with another father and son team, Kellen and Gordon Murphy, and our plan was to snook fish at first light and then target tarpon and kingfish later in the morning. Again, the weather was perfect and the water outside the Port was very clean and flat as a lake. After leaving the ramp at 0600 we were casting to busting snook before the sun cleared the horizon and within a few minutes Gordon was hooked up to what turned out to be a 4-foot nurse shark. Although it was just a shark, it was the largest fish Gordon had ever caught. We continued getting bites breaking off a few fish until the Coast Guard ran us off due to navel activity, so we headed down the beach in search of pogies (Atlantic menhaden).
You never know how tough catching bait is going to be until get start looking, and as my luck would have it, we did not find any notable pogie concentrations until we reached Patrick AFB Beach. Once I managed to catch live bait and get a few out on a slow troll, Gordon was hooked up on a nice 100- pound plus tarpon. Gordon was quick to comment that this was hands down the largest fish he had ever pulled on. Gordon put up a good fight, but the tarpon won as it chewed through the leader as I attempted to land it. This was again the largest fish Gordon had ever hook into, that was until he hooked into his next tarpon. Gordon's second tarpon was a very respectable 150 class fish, but after a 30-minute battle, it too chewed through the leader boat side as I attempted to land the fish. In the sport of catching tarpon, a leader touch is considered to be a catch, but again no pitchers for the blog.
Surprisingly, the water temperature outside of Port Canaveral was 82 degrees, so the cold water upwelling seem to be holding off and as long as the tropical weather systems stay away the fishing and conditions should remain good.
As always, if you have any questions or need more information, please contact me.
Good luck and good fishing,
Captain Tom Van Horn
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