We have seen the cold, we have seen the rain, and it looks like we will see the cold and the rain for a few more days before we return to our usual winter pattern of sunny fair days and cool nights. These conditions have not slowed the hard core fishermen in our area who fish the back waters, the surf, or gulf waters in our area. They have had to adjust their presentations somewhat to the conditions they face, but it has not slowed down the action. If anything the cold has heightened the fishing action!

Inshore fishermen have shifted and concentrated their attention to targeting specks, reds, black drum and sheepshead along many of the deeper bridges and jetties in the area. Garcon Point, 3-Mile, Bob Sykes Bridges, and the Pensacola and Destin Passes will be especially productive. They will also find them periodically in the canals and deeper bayous where the bottom has a lot of decaying organic matter. Lastly the deeper holes in area rivers will be holding plenty of baitfish that will be attracting not only fresh water species such as pickerel, largemouth bass, hybrid bass and striped bass, specks and reds.

For surf and pier fishermen, whiting, pompano, redfish, and blue fish are the main targets, but black drum, sheepshead and flounder will also be caught. Pier fishermen will also be targeting bluefish, bonita, and sharks.

Weather allowing those heading offshore will be targeting flounder on many of the nearshore wrecks holding bait. These same wrecks are also holding a few blackfin tuna still so be prepared for when they make a showing. Trigger and amberjacks will be two of the main targeted species for those heading out into federal water through the weekend. Just remember that Trigger closes on the 16th. Scamp, red grouper, vermillion snapper and red porgies should also be available to those targeting bottom species.

If you have the right boat and the weather cooperates, now is the time to head out to the oil rigs. Yellowfin and blackfin will be the main targets for most folks, but until the 27th amberjacks will also be available for harvest. Day and night time sword fishing is also available for those who are so inclined. So don’t be put off by a little snotty weather or better yet hold off a little and get out there when the weather offers a better opportunity, because with a few minor adjustment this time of year you can get into some of the best fishing there is in our area!

Until next time layer up and tight lines!

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