Panama City Fishing!
Capt. Rob Womble
May 30, 2008
Panama City - Saltwater Fishing Report
Right now fishing in the Panama City area is great. If it's worth catching we're catching it. The Redfish bite is really consistent right now and the trout bite for BIG trout is just outstanding. I want to post a lot of pictures this week so I'm going to keep this report short. I don't know what the other guys are using to catch whatever they are catching but if you don't have a couple good quality bone colored topwater plugs in your box, well than you might as well just go fishing in the bay for some mackerel.
This trout weighed in at 5 1/2lbs and hit a 1/8oz gold spoon. Joe had his hands full with this.
Not to be out-done Capt. Todd got in on the action with a couple trout over 20 inches.
In the backwater and up on the Flats the big redfish and the gator trout are mashing the topwater plugs right now. When the sun comes up, switch up to a spoon or a weed-less soft bait and look to the sand holes, prop scares, crab traps and potholes for those resting trout and redfish. If you want to catch one of the tastiest fish on the coast head to the outside along the beach and switch up to a pompano jig. If you want to put a bend in your rod and have a low impact fishing trip target the Spanish mackerel. They are everywhere and very easy to catch this time of year.
Not all Pompano are as aggressive as this guy. This big guy took a top water plug normally reserved for trout. We didn't mind the mix-up.
Redfish like these are pretty common up on the flats this time of year and an absolute blast to hook on top-water plugs and Cajun Thunder Popping Corks.
This is the time of year when we start catching very large trout and redfish. If you're not going to eat these fish please take care when handling them so they can be caught another day. If your wanting a picture of that fish here are some tips that will help you do just that regardless if you're a 35 year veteran or a beginner. When you hook that fish, land him in the net (requires the purchase of a net) and leave him in the water.
Notice Redfish in Net!
While the fish is in the net you can dig around in the boat and locate your camera. Now is the time to wet your hands, remove the fish from the net, take the picture and release the fish.
Notice we are holding the fish over the water. Not all of our pictures are like this. Its ok to stand up and move around with the fish, just let him go as quickley as possible.
This technique is approved by a variety of well known and respected fishing organizations such as Trout Unlimited. This technique will reduce the amount of stress and give the fish a better chance of survival.
Now it is getting to that time of year where the schools are getting out and the families are traveling down to our area. For those of you who travel to Panama City on vacation and want to hire a fishing guide I have a few recommendations. Check your guide out. Just because your potential guide has a website does not make him reliable. You can call the Department of Fish and Wildlife and ask if he or she has any fishing and or hunting violations. I would also contact our local tackle shops, Half Hitch Tackle 888-668-9810 or Howell Tackle 800-423-8954. They deal with the local guides around here on a daily basis. If they don't recommend your choice of guide, well you might want to think twice before hiring him.
As always, good luck on the water and watch out for the other guy.
Capt. Rob Womble & Capt. Todd Jones
Panama City Fishing Forecast:
The Trout, Redfish, Pomapno, Jack and Flounder bite is only getting better. Go back and take a look at some of our pictures and you will notice we fish the backwaters and flats that hold plenty of large fish and very few fisherman. The forcast looks good if your fishing in the right spots.
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