Tuesday, April 8, 2014

April Fishing Action Getting Better

After running a full schedule for the last few weeks, I am taking a day off as another strong frontal system barrels its way down the coast of Florida.  Windy conditions and the threat of heavy thunderstorms mid-day forced our decision to stay on land today.  These fronts have been disrupting our activity on a weekly basis, as we keep assuring ourselves that this is the last one of the season.

When the weather has been stable, my anglers have been getting a taste of some great spring fishing as snook and redfish action continues to improve.  I might add that with spring break in full swing, I have enjoyed many great trips with young anglers cathcing some nice fish!

Many trips have been scoring on multiple redfish to 30 inches along with plenty of slot size fish.  I have encountered more schooling fish during the last week with double hookups common.  Live sardines have been getting the bites, however it is interesting to note that several of the fish I have filleted have been engorged with crabs.  NCM_0058NCM_0061
The snook bite has really improved with warmer water temperatures now approaching 80°.  The snook are scattered all over the backcountry with most of the action being along mangrove points that are either facing the wind or tide or both.  Again the live pilchards are candy to these fish, although we have had success with  Mirrolure plugs with green backs also.
Young angler Nick Seitz and dad, Mike with a nice double on snook during a recent April trip.
Young angler Nick Seitz and dad, Mike with a nice double on snook during a recent April trip.

Springtime brings big jack crevalle to the backwater channels.  I have been having great success with jacks ranging to 18 lbs. recently.  These bruisers will eat anything that moves and put on a great battle on light tackle!
Mike helps Nick with a giant jack crevalle!
Mike helps Nick with a giant jack crevalle!

There are plenty of big sharks in now as well as a good number if tarpon for those that want the tug of a lifetime.  My recent outings have been opting for action fishing, but I do look forward to tangling with some giants in the next week or two.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Spring Transiton Fishing in Naples Backwaters

Spring transition continues on the local waters as we continue to successfully target a variety of fish through out the week.  With mild fronts still moving through each week, it has been a roller coaster of conditions from one day to the next controlling where we can fish with some strong winds and what we fish for as water temperatures fluctuate.
Over all last week was great.  Early in the week, my clients enjoyed some of the best pompano fishing so far this year.  We used 1/4 ounce jigs tipped with shrimp outside of area passes to catch limits of these tasty fish on several trips. Inshore, live sardines provided some great action with snook, redfish baby tarpon and jack crevalle while fishing along mangrove edges.
George and Ilsa Gibson with a beautiful back country redfish last week.

After the passing of a cold front on Friday morning, I fished a group of anglers from St. Louis not quite knowing what to expect with high winds and cooler conditions.  We had a great morning fishing with live shrimp around creek mouths in Rookery Bay.  We ended up with a limit of mangrove snapper to 15 inches, some hefty black drum, sheepshead and goliath grouper and snook also in the mix.
Large tarpon and plenty of big sharks are also in the area, but we did not invest any time in them last week as clients were interested in other quarry.  I’m looking forward to another week of good fishing ahead.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Chilly Weather Fishing Can Be Rewarding

The coolest weather since last March blasted through SW Florida early last week bringing dreary days, gusty winds, and temperatures into the low 40's for a couple of nights followed by chilly days. While nothing to cry about compared to what the northerners endured, this is a sub-tropical zone and the fish quickly switched behavior as water temperatures fluctuated dramatically during a four day period. Water temps went from 72 degrees last Sunday to 62 degrees on Tuesday, then back to the 69 degree range by Saturday.

While the weather forced a couple morning trips to cancel early in the week, we did run afternoons as well as double half days Thursday and Friday. We had success with a variety of fish coming aboard during the colder weather, while action got tougher as it warmed up. Weak tides late in the week contributed to the slow down in action.

During the colder period, we concentrated on deep holes in back country. Rigged with a 1/4 ounce jig head with half of a shrimp, we managed quite a few black drum, loads of sheepshead, a few pompano, mangrove snapper, sea trout, gag grouper, flounder and a few redfish.

I fished for the first time with Kirk and Vicki Strand along with daughter Valerie on Thursday afternoon. The family caught a bunch of fish consisting of most of the previously mentioned. Vicki caught the largest fish, a 12 lb. black drum.

The pompano run we were enjoying for the previous week or two slowed down as the tides became less favorable. We did catch a few last week, just not in the numbers as the previous weeks. I expect that to improve during the next few days.

- Capt. Todd Geroy

Thursday, November 21, 2013

November Fishing Delivers Some of the Best Action of the Fall

November 21, 2013

The month of November has continued to deliver fantastic weather and along with it some great days of fishing on the inshore waters of SW Florida!

There have been plenty of snook around from numerous fish in the 20 to 24 inch range to some impressive snook catches with fish ranging to 38 inches.  Live baits have provided the best action, and several trips have released as many as 30 snook on half day trips.

Dave Thoresh boated and released this large snook with Capt. Ben on 11/19/2013
Dave Thoresh boated and released this large snook with Capt. Ben on 11/19/2013

Redfish also continue to please anglers with plenty of nice fish caught in the last week or two.  The reds are running from 23 to 28 inches.  They can be caught sight fishing in the shallows at low tide or in pockets along mangrove edges on the flood tide.  We have been catching reds on live baits as well as jigs and flies.  The redfish action should continue for the next several weeks.

Brothers Bill and Jack Forte' doubled up on 30 inch snook and 30 inch redfish in one backcountry hole!  Released 11/14/13
Brothers Bill and Jack Forte’ doubled up on 30 inch snook and 30 inch redfish in one backcountry hole! Released 11/14/13

I have found an increasing number of sea trout showing up on trips.  I expect the trout fishing to really take off once cooler weather finally settles into our area.  Along with trout, pompano and bluefish are due to make a strong appearance as well.

I am looking forward to some fine fishing for the remainder of the month and into December.

- Capt. Todd Geroy

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Fall Fishing Snook, Redfish and Tarpon in Naples, Florida

September is winding down and while we have had a great month of fishing in the Naples area, I expect October to only get better. October and November are in my opinion, the two very best months to fish the backwaters of Southwest Florida. The slight cool down of water temperatures provide action all day long and push more fish into the back bays from the outside beaches and passes.

The last week had a few challenges with weather in our region as periods of heavy rain showers forced us off the water on a couple of occasions. I did manage to fish a few half days and those anglers were rewarded with some nice catches of redfish and snook as well as baby tarpon action on each trip. The "baby tarpon" are juveniles ranging in size from 12 to 30 lbs. We have been finding them with great success in the last month for the first time since the fish kill caused by freezing temperatures during the winter of 2010.

One notable trip was Friday morning. I fished with long time client John Shroyer of Naples and friend Dr. Paul Richards. The duo enjoyed the best weather of the whole week and boated numerous snook and redfish. The reds ranged from 23 to 25 inches while the snook ranged from 22 to 32 inches. John managed a "Grand Slam" with a tarpon release along with his snook and redfish.
Dr. Richards with a nice 32 inch snook...
Click to Enlarge Photo

I am looking forward to some better weather conditions during the upcoming week. Tides are going to be especially favorable as we approach the new moon phase.
Get out and enjoy some great fall fishing in SW Florida!

- Capt. Todd Geroy

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fishing Naples Backwaters in September Is As Good As It Gets!

September 20, 2013

As mentioned and expected in my previous report, the fishing has really broken loose the last week or so in our area.  Scores of bait fish have moved in and the fish have really been feeding up.
Redfish have been on the top of the list with schools reds showing up both along the outside along beaches and passes as well as all over the back waters.  We have had several trips where the redfish have been hitting every cast when a school is found.  A majority of the fish have been in the 24 to 27 inch range with some running to 30 inches. I can say that so far, the redfish action has been as good as I’ve seen it in several years.  It should continue for through October into November.

Capt. Ben Geroy with a hefty September redfish
Capt. Ben Geroy with a hefty September redfish

Snook action has also been hot and heavy.  We are still hooking up with some large fish ranging to the 16 pound range.  Several half day trips have boated as many as 25 snook while using live bait.  There a loads of juvenile snook in the area now, a good sign that the future population is growing.  We urge catch and release as these great fish recover from the massive fish kill that resulted from the cold winter of 2010.

Capt. Ben Geroy with a beautiful snook released Sept. 16, 2013
Capt. Ben Geroy with a beautiful snook released Sept. 16, 2013

Naplesfishing.com had the honor of participating with two boats in the 4th annual Naples Take a Soldier Fishing Tournament last Saturday.  Over 60 boats donated their time to take over a hundred active duty soldiers  as well as a few veterans out for a day of fun on the water.  Other community businesses and and individuals donated their time and services to provide lodging, food, drink and prizes for these American heros.  It was a huge, successful event with a weigh in at the docks at Bayfront in Naples where hundreds of residents came out to welcome the boats and show support!  Proceeds generated are donated to the Wounded Warriors Project.  Fantastic!!!

Fishing was nothing short of fantastic for the tournament.  Both Ben and I were able to catch a load of nice redfish along with snook and seatrout to provide plenty of action and get into the competition.
I fished with Navy PO Eric Miller who had done very little fishing before. A very high tide in the morning proved to be challenging for casting under the mangrove cover, but it is also my favorite time to catch redfish.  Persistence paid off and after a few stops, we found a school of hungry redfish mixed in with snook providing action on every cast that hit the pocket.  Eric put redfish into the well for the weigh in later as well as releasing a bunch more redfish and snook.  We headed on to try for a couple of trout to go towards our combined weigh in of reds and trout.  We found trout working on the edge of a shallow flat as the tide dumped out and managed to put an 18 incher in the boat quickly. After that, Murphy’s Law caught up and every trout that bit and got hooked up managed to come off. All in all it was a great day of fishing with a fine young man.

Navy PO Eric Miller with one of many reds caught during the Naples Take a Soldier Fishing Tournament  Sept. 2013
Navy PO Eric Miller with one of many reds caught during the Naples Take a Soldier Fishing Tournament
Heading to weigh in at the Take a Soldier Fishing tournament
Heading to weigh in at the Take a Soldier Fishing tournament
Capt. Todd Geroy and Navy soldier Eric Miller at the Naples Take a Soldier Fishing weigh in.
Capt. Todd Geroy and Navy soldier Eric Miller at the Naples Take a Soldier Fishing weigh in.

Capt. Ben shared his boat in the tournament with Vietnam veterans Dave Revard and John Webb .  The anglers boated numerous nice redfish as well as a number of snook.  A great day on the water!

Another redfish comes to the boat at the Naples Take a Soldier Fishing Tournament with Capt. Ben Geroy
Dave Webb shows off a nice  redfish at the Naples Take a Soldier Fishing Tournament with Capt. Ben Geroy

Another notable trip was yesterday morning, Sept. 19.  I once again had Thursday regulars Bill and Jack Forte’ aboard.  We had a super morning with plenty of action including loads of snook and redfish along with Bill catching a “Grand Slam” with snook, redfish and tarpon all boated in a half day trip!  Congratulations Bill!

- Capt. Todd Geroy

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Mid August Fish Sampler in Back Waters of Naples

The mid summer doldrums are upon us with temperatures in the low to mid 90's daily along with less rain than in recent weeks to cool things off.  This is typically my slowest month for business and I take advantage of the slow down to get the boats and gear in shape for the upcoming busy season.

I have been running a few trips and enjoying some decent action with snook, redfish and baby tarpon. There have also been quite a few goliath grouper, snapper and small barracuda in the mix to add to the variety.

Snook fishing has slowed a little in recent weeks with the fish more scattered having finished their spawning activities. Warm water has also contributed to making them a bit sluggish.  The best activity is early in the day before the sun heats up.

Baby tarpon are all over the back country both along mangrove shorelines and around deeper creek mouths.
The average size we have been catching has been between 12 and 25 lbs. The small tarpon will take a variety of baits both live and artifical.
   Redfish are still biting on the higher tide stages.  Live sardines as well as cut bait such as lady fish chunks are taking most of the fish now.  1/4 ounce jigs rigged with Gulp shrimp in natural colors are also a local favorite and take plenty of redfish.

There is still time to take advantage of my summer shark fishing special through September.  I am offering a significant discount on 4 hour specialty trips.  We catch plenty of large bull, lemon and blacktip sharks in the shallow backwaters.  Please contact me to schedule one of these popular trips.

- Capt. Todd Geroy