Panhandle Fishing Report - Pensacola Bay & Choctawhatchee Bay
Capt. Eddie Woodall
August 21, 2007
Pensacola - Saltwater Fishing Report
It's back to school time for the kids and young adults, and its break time for me. I want to take a minute to thank all the clients that booked me so far this season. I hope to see each and every one of you again next year. It's been one of my best years so far and I'm looking forward to the best part of the fishing season that is just around the corner, the fall fishing.
July went out with a bang and brought in August with record setting high temperatures. The coastal and near shore fishing is still your best bet. On these blue bird sky days it's just hard to catch fish, they can see you up there on the surface along with the weights, lines and leaders. My best luck comes with timing the tide movements and downsizing my gear to the lightest possible and still able to land the fish. I'll go after King and Spanish mackerel with my ten pound spinning outfits that I use for Speckled Trout fishing. I will drop down to the lightest wire (18 pound test) and go with # 6 treble hooks. I'll lose a fish now and then but, to lose one, one has to hook one. If you thought fighting a fish on 15 pound tackle is fun then just wait till you're on with a 20 pound king on 10 pound tackle. As for the tides just like I've always said "I don't care which way the water is moving just as long as it's moving". I seem to do better on the outgoing tides for the Kings and Spanish, but as for the rest of the targeted fish this time of the year it doesn't seem to matter.
In and around Pensacola Pass there's an early show of Bull Reds, I've caught some in the bay as far up as the 3-mile Bridge and as far east as Navarre in Santa Rosa Sound, I'm sure there are some to the west also, I just haven't been in that direction looking for them yet. I also saw a nice school of Bull Reds just off the beach to the east of Pensacola Pass a couple of days ago. I've been catching most of my Red Fish in Pensacola Pass, bouncing SPRO jigs down close to the bottom along with drifting live baits; try a couple ounces of weight on a Carolina rig and a live cigar minnow or a nice sized pin fish this has been getting the job done for me.
I've still been catching a few nice Red Snapper on some of the close in reefs. They are defiantly hard to catch. I have had my best luck by using live shrimp and downsizing to 15 & 20 pound tackle with the smallest weights as I can get away with. Also don't drop your bait all the way to the bottom, if you do the small reef dwellers will take it away from you. Stop the bait ten to fifteen feet before the bottom. If there are any Snappers around it won't take long for one to find your shrimp.
The inshore fishing is not far away from getting good! I've had several reports from other guides and have found myself that the fish are doing better every day. The Red Fish on the docks are fairly reliably, and using big top water plugs are catching nice Speckled Trout early in the day.
I know one thing for sure - You ain’t going to catch’em sittin’ on the couch!!
So get out there, and take a kid fishing.
Tight Lines and Screaming Drags, Till Next Time! God Bless.
From Destin to Perdido Key Florida, this area has some of the best fishing along the Gulf Coast and its only a short drive from Orange Beach and Gulf Shores Alabama. While cruising from spot to spot in my 24 ft. Blazer Bay Boat you will be riding in comfort and style and with the 250 hp Yamaha four stroke, it won't take long to arrive safely at our next honey hole. Come along with Capt. Eddie he will work hard to provide a trip that will be full of memories that you won’t soon forget. God Bless