Features

Redfish Homosassa

Kayak Bar-Hopping

There are no overpriced drinks, no shaky sound systems, no shallow conversations. But when inshore anglers long for entertainment seasoned with diversity, many turn to bar-hopping.

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Phosphate Pit Bass Fishing

Not too long ago if you wanted to fish for largemouth bass in one of Florida’s reclaimed phosphate pits, you had to be a V.I.P., trespass, or visit Tenoroc. Some new waters have been made available recently, though (see sidebar). If you want to fish in a pit you now have more options than ever. It’s still not a bad thing to be a V.I.P., though.

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Blue Wave 2400 Pure Bay

Performance meets style is the best way to describe the Blue Wave 2400 Pure Bay. Computer engineering combined with over 40 years of boat building experience has produced a bay boat that meets the needs of the most demanding angler and looks good doing it.

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Fish a Paddleboard

Maximizing for the minimalist. First, the legal requirements for outfitting a standup paddleboard, or SUP: For most fishing waters, you must have an approved Personal Flotation Device (PFD) and a noise-making device.

Some courses authorize, or even encourage, fishing.

Golf Course Bass Fishing

Any way you slice it, golf course ponds can be prime sites for hooking largemouths. I learned to enjoy the best of both worlds long ago as a caddy at the Doral Open in Miami. After lugging around the bag for Julius Boros during a practice round, we small-talked a bit until the conversation swung to our mutual fondness for fishing.

Jenna Helfferich, of Oak Hill, landed this Mosquito Lagoon redfish measuring 22 inches.

Lighten Up on the Lagoon

Paddle, pole or troll your way to world-class flats fishing on the Mosquito Lagoon before it’s too late. Heighten pressure from reckless boaters may trample a once-glorious seagrass estuary.

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Fishing for Juvenile Tarpon

Find a dark, stagnant pool or stream tucked way back in a mangrove swamp and there’s a good chance you’ll spot little silver fish rolling at the surface. Odds are they are tarpon, very small ones, only 1 to 3 feet long, and they are gulping air—a survival tactic that enables these fish to survive in habitats that repel most others.

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DIY Kayak

Build a wooden boat for fishing. Catching a fish on a homemade lure or rod is a real thrill. How about catching a fish from a boat you’ve built for yourself?

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Lochloosa on My Mind

A story about passing time, cracker style. The beauty here is unique: 1.5 miles of black, deep creek water curving through swamplands. The water seems to flow at about the same pace as fingernail growth. Such is Cross Creek, capped by Lakes Lochloosa and Orange.

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Fishing the No Motor Zone

This is East Central Florida’s fabled No Motor Zone, 10,600 acres of water nestled in the Banana River, east of the Indian River Lagoon. It was established in 1990 to protect the manatee population. Merritt Island forms the west bank of the N.M.Z.; the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station is the barrier from the Atlantic Ocean.

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Maverick HPX-S

Maverick Boat Company raises the bar again by adding another technical poling skiff to their popular HPX line. The new HPX-S sports an all new hull design that has exceptional performance in super skinny water and addresses some of the running issues associated with other shallow water craft.

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Reds Love Flies

Around the state, redfish on the flats provide a nearly perfect target for flycasters. As a fly fisherman’s meat and potatoes, you could hardly dish out anything to improve on the redfish.

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Triple Trouble

Tripletail offer a curious challenge to the fly angler, and they are available around the state. Days and nights of stiff northeasterly winds had hampered our attempts to venture into the windblown Atlantic for more than a week. But now the long wait had ended with the arrival of calm winds and moderate ground swells.

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Matanzas Kayak Fishing

Sketchy low tides and a minefield of oyster shell? No problem for these Northeast Florida kayakers. Edward Abbey once said if you want to see the desert, get down on your knees and start crawling. Kayaking is the boating equivalent, with fish and other wildlife only inches away.

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Skipcasting from Kayaks

Fishing mangroves and docks requires being able to cast your presentation underneath overhanging structure using a method called the skipcast.

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Sterling 180TS

The Sterling 180TS uses all composite construction with Sterling’s exclusive “HPI” Double Hull Foam Core Injected Process that produces a chemically bonded hull filled with structural flotation foam.

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Pedal Drive Maintenance

How to care for state-of-the-art foot-propulsion systems. Florida has thousands of miles of coastal shoreline to cover, not to mention a few lakes here and there. Paddling can be strenuous, even if the rewards are many.

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Stick it to a Drum

Cedar Key residents seem resigned to having so many big black drum in their backyards, waggling their tails in broad daylight during summer months.

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Bluegill Fishing on the Fly

Tricks to take big bream on fly. Several years ago, I caught a mixed bag of four dozen bluegills and shellcrackers during a single, glorious afternoon. While that was practically all the law allowed, the real kicker is that these fish weighed close to a pound apiece.

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Small Lake Bass

Within minutes we boated a fat 3-pound bass, and that was the start of a steady parade of fish. By the time an early afternoon thunderstorm ended our day, we had tallied over 20 bass. The best was pushing 7 pounds.