Hogy TV: Kayaking for Winter Snook

 

Captain’s Log

Ahh Fridays, a Friday with perfect weather too boot. Decided to launch the kayak along the Caloosahatchee river today and search some shallow flats and residential canals for anything that wanted to bite.

Normally this time of year you will find a few large redfish, jacks, trout and ladyfish, but with our mild winter I was hoping to locate some feeding snook that were staged up in deep canals for the winter.

Well, the fish were there, decent numbers too after a harsh winter 3 years ago that wiped out half our local snook population. I probably spotted 30 – 40 snook over 4 hours. Most fish were large and some were super sized (pushing 40″) for our coast.

I was able to sight fish by casting a Hogy swim bait on a weighted swim bait hook into the shallows below the mangroves. The fish were laying tight to the shoreline warming up most of the day. The dark mud and limestone was perfect for gathering and holding heat.

Defiantly not a day of numbers, but the quality was there. I was able to hook up on 5 fish, all in the mid 30″ range. Unfortunately, in the kayak I was drug into the trees (literally) by 3 of these fish, two of which parted the line on oyster and barnacles dangling from the mangrove roots.

I did land three though, largest fish went 36″ smallest went 33″. Over slot and out of season, so they were released to continue our decimated breeding population.

Overall, pretty satisfied with an afternoon kayaking in the river.

Gear List:

Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120 Kayak
7′ TFO Heavy Spinning
Saragosa 4000
Suffix 832 20lb
25lb Flourocarbon
Hogy 5″ Bunny Swimbait (Silver Halo and Blue Back Herring)
Hogy 5/0 Weighted Swimbait Hook