Southwest Florida - Naples, Marco, 10,000 Islands
Capt. Jeff Legutki
February 24, 2005
Ten Thousand Islands - Saltwater Fishing Report
Insore Report: Feb.24 Pine Island Prize
If you been reading my past report's you know I have been spending alot of time in Pine Island preparing for ESPN's Red Fish Q-Series.
Pine Island is my new found paradise! A sight fisherman's dream come true, water so clear, you can see the red's coming far before you could cast to them! Lush healthy grass bed's, with white sandy potholes everywhere. With the past four hurricanes, there is knock down's everywhere holding fish at the higher tides. Make sure you use caution when traveling from spot to spot.
The tournament was Feb. 19th on a blustery Saturday, with a blow out low tide, wind's steady at 20 mph! All the area'a we have spent pre fishing were out of the question on game day, forcing us to fish new area's. Plus thr Red Tide seemed to be consentrated farther south.
Day started out real well, aside from the weather, the first shore line with a lee I chose produced our first fish. A fat 25 1/2" red weighing at about 5.5lbs. Quality start, We also caught another rat red, a small snook, plus a juicy 31" snook. On to the next chosen spot, Wes takes the front and we begin searching for the next chunky red. Not half the way down the bank anf I spot four red's milling around in a snady pot hole surrounded by grass. Wes make's the hale mary cast and position's the jig right in the path of the oncoming reds. Water being so clear, you could see one red spot the jig and break away from the school. We could see him light up and inhale the jig."Boom" 26" almost six pound's!! It's now 10:30am, and we are carded out. "YAE"!!!!!!!
There was a world of talent here, some of the best on the water, TV personalities, along with seasoned pro's from distant destination's! There was fancy tournament shirt's covered with sponser's, along with your highly decorated boat's of all kind's. The staff at Red Fish nation, put on an incredible show, everything went as smooth as silk. And the local's treated you as if they've known you your whole life. It was an incredible turn out all the way around!
To make a long story short, we did well. Better than we expected, Hoping to finish with a respectable place, we did just that, third to be exact! "YAE", completely stoked!!!
First place went to Capt. Carl Smith, and Authur Price with 13.34 lbs. Second went to Capt. Chuck Jenks and Capt. Tim White with 11.89 lbs. We, Capt. Jeff Legutki and Capt Wes Bedell brang third home with 11.44
Who know's, maybe we will soon have some of those fancy tounament shirt's covered with sponser's!!! I know the few sponser's I do have are happy to see us do well!
Down south, the mighty tarpon are starting to trickle in. The wind's are shifing to the south bringing warm water with it, the northern migration is about to start bringing everything from the silver king, to the famished snook from their winter hibernation inshore, to the king fish and cobia off shore.
Today, team member, and local offshore captain Wes Bedell, told me of large school's of giant black drum are off the beaches, some up to 50". Find the fish by searching for large mud's and diving tern's. All fish are being caught on jig's off the bottom. Tommorrow I have a trip with a father and son and will give it a whirl with the fly rod, maybe luck will stike again?
Along with the drum, there are big school's of pompano in the passes. Pink tube jig's tipped with shrimp are doing the trick, getting your limit on these tasty platter size permit is not a problem(remember now have to be 11" to the fork).
I beleive we have another approaching front this weekend, hopefully the last!! I don't think it's that severe.So until the next time tight lines and screaming drag's to all!
Capt. Jeff Legutki
Angler's Addiction Guide Service
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