On The fly!

    The Fishing and weather has been Great!  Fly fishing this time of year is great because the water is starting to clear up, making easier to sight fish. Although you can see them better, they can see you better!Lol! So taking a stealth approach is a must. Match the hatch with your fly, and make sure its the right fly for the water column you are fishing. I have been Catching tons of trout in the 3-6ft depth.  Snook and reds  have been in super skinny water, which I have been catching most of them on top water flies. Keep an eye out for huge Jacks coming through.  They can be a lot of fun on the fly rod! Till next time... Fish On! Fish On!

Perfect Weather and Big Fish!

      We launched out heading north because the wind was blowing from that way, and we wanted to ride it all the way back. As we got to our first spot, we started seeing groups of redfish ,of about 4-5. We began casting soft plastics and suspension baits at them. Next thing you know another charter captain decided to pass right where we were staged up at and spooked all of our fish. So we moved on.I started seeing lots of trout everywhere in about 4-6 ft of water. We threw soft plastics at them and started picking up small trout but, they were getting bigger each cast. Ended up catching a few nice slot trout and moved on for the hunt of redfish.  When we came up to where the reds hanging out I told Vick, to start casting in the sand holes. No more than five minutes he hooked into a monster redfish! After dragging his kayak around for what seemed for ever, he decided to get out of his yak to land the fish. Finally I got a net on him, and threw him on the measuring board. 30 inches! The biggest redfish Vick had ever caught.!:) There were a bunch more redfish but, they became very spooky after the big red dragged him all through them. We decide to head on to try and get Vick a snook to finish his slam. While on our way I seen some fish sitting in a hole that was in about a foot of water. I told Vick to cast and BOOM! He hooked a Huge trout well over 20 inches! Little bonus Trout, and also his biggest trout ever:) Paddling on we came up to the mouth of the creek and started casting but, no bites. We started trolling baits behind the yaks looking for a bit but, still no love! We ended up seeing a couple of snook but never got them to eat our baits. Still it was a wonderful day on good ol Sarasota Bay!


Whitfield hold'n strong!

                    We launched out early that morning knowing the tide wasn't that great but we finally had a break in the weather. The tide was only moving one inch in a 6 hr. period:( So we paddled on our way. The water was calm as a lake so we decided to start out throwing top water lures. Matt had one blow up but, no love. I had nothing even look at at mine so I switched up to the ol jerk bait. Still not even a pin fish nibble! While we were drifting,I told Matt that a nice trout hole was coming up. Seconds after saying that, he threw out his jerk bait and hooked into a decent size trout. That gave us some confidence, that the fish might turn on. We paddled over to where we could see tons of mullet working the edge of the oyster bars. I stand up and start poling around on the look for redfish. Immediately I see one but it was to late , he was spooked. We decided to anchor up and start fan cast towards the mullet. Not long and boom FISH ON! The red was peeling out line like it was a monster.When we got him beside the yak was a healthy 24-25 inch fish but as big around as a football. Been eating good!lol!  Picking up anchor and heading towards the next group of oysters and mullet, I knew it was game on. I casted out,got nailed but it came unglued. I casted right back at the same spot and BAMMM fish on! When it hit ,I thought I hit bottom because it didn't move at first. Then I think he realize he was hooked and line started peeling out line. Thats when I knew I had a over slot redfish! We get him in,snap some picks and released him.Well the released wasn't very graceful because I didn't realize how heavy he was. He shook his head and he kinda feel into the water! oops! He swam off in a hurry! Now it was time to look for a snook. We headed back into the creeks. Soon as we entered one of them I saw a monster! I casted into the direction of him and I got smashed! As I saw the head come up I realized it was slightly a smaller snook than I had seen. None the less it was a great fight as they usually are. We had our snook and now it was time to start heading back. We picked up some more trout on our ventures back to the launch. It ended up being a decent day after all. Few fish,warm weather, and no wind! What else can you ask for!lol!

red big2.jpg

Fishing on fire in Sarasota bay!

  The day started out good because one of my best friends and I were on the water ready to catch some fish! We headed out early in the morning with a beautiful sunrise in the distance.  We were blessed with great weather- wind was blowing hard the day before.  We headed down the intercoastal searching for some big snook.  Casting towards the mangrove lines we managed to catch a few monster jacks.  They put up big fights- my buddy's yak was spinning in circles- we had a good laugh about that one- got a great video of it as well.  I will post that video on my youtube channel (search eric henson casting kayaks on www.youtube.com to see it) in a few days.  We paddled on and picked up a couple of huge 'doormat' flounders- kept a fat one for dinner. : )  As we came up to a grass flat we started picking up lots of trout- a couple over 20inches!  My friend (visiting from TN) really wanted to hook a redfish and the day was almost over.  I took him to a hole where redfish hang out- he casted and BOOM- redfish on!  Over 27inches- put up a great fight!  What a great way to end a wonderful day.  We didn't manage to catch any snook, but we caught a ton of fish and ended up with a great fish dinner! : )

stevo 2.jpg

Longbar in Sarasota!

    Started out the morning heading the opposite direction than I normally go do to diving birds.  Tide was low and the bird were going crazy after all the bait in the water. There had to be 15 different types of birds feeding in one spot! My favorite of them are the all white pelican ,that are only down for the winter. They come all the way down from Canada and are twice the size of our normal pelicans! Beautiful, almost prehistoric looking. Anyways, as we headed towards the bait we realized they were diving in a foot or two of water. We start throwing top water and immediately we pick up a beautiful slot size redfish. Tail was lit up so blue. After catching a few more fish we decided to head down long bar heading north. I thought if we headed that way we could hopefully get sheltered from the wind a bit. Its laid down a little bit so I throw out the ol top-water again and BOOM a snook crushes it!  Thinking he was a keeper ,I got him to the boat as fast as possible which wasn't easy. I could see the hooks barely in his mouth. I get the fish grips in his mouth. throw him on the board and he is a half an in shy of 28":( so I had to release him. Then we continued on our way picking up some decent trout. As we head back in we notice that the tide was so low that we were going to have to take the long route back. Even to skinny for kayaks! Oh well darn more fishing. Lol!  We ended up catching a couple of more nice snook and few smaller trout. Despite all the wind and obstacles we had a great day! Got some cool pics of birds and also got some good video footage of a manatee that wouldn't leave my kayak alone!:0 will try and post video soon!

mike redfish nov..jpg
mike and e snook.jpg
white pelicans.jpg

Winter low tides have arrived!

 The winter low tides have Arrived!  The winter trout are starting to arrive also:)  Started  out the morning throwing top water. Caught a couple of med. size snook and a gator trout right off the bat!  The other guys caught a couple of nice size trout also. Then the dead tide hits and it takes the tide over an hour to start moving again. finally the tide starts moving and the fishing pick back up. I picked off a couple of jacks in the super shallow water looking for reds. After a bit we decide to make a move into the deeper water.   Soon after we began picking up trout after trout. We caught ,not even joking over 50 trout with in an hour!  The other guy managed to sqeek out a nice redfish at the end.We had our limit so we decided to head in and clean all our catch. Another great day on the water in Sarasota bay

warren limited troutski.jpg

40+ inch redfish in Sarasota Bay (The Hunt For Red October)


 Well my day started out cooollllddd.... It was the first cold snap of the year. I decided to head out at sunrise like I normally do and it was not a good idea! lol! I didn't catch my first real fish fish till 11 am! Before that I had caught 3 lizard fish and 1 ladyfish. :( Once the water warmed up the fishing started getting a lot better. I picked up a few nice size trout. The jacks were everywhere I casted and my arms were tired from catching so many. So I started scouting out the area. Poling across the flats during the extreme low tides, you always find nice holes that you don't normally see on the higher tides.  Meanwhile as I'm poling along I see this huge red log laying in the water. I take a closer look and see that it is a monster redfish! I pick up my pole with the redfish pattern mirro lure and cast it right in front of its face. Twitch it once and out of no where a jack comes up and eats it right out of the reds mouth. Now I'm quietly trying to real this fish in without spooking the red as the wind is pushing me further and further away. I take the fish off the hook. Pick up another rod with a golden bream lil john. Lather it up with some pro cure inshore sent. Put the Go Pro on and go on the hunt for red October. As I'm heading back, I'm praying I hadn't spooked him? Finally I see him out of the corner of my eye sitting right next to 2 other smaller redfish. I pick up my pole. Make a short cast right in front of his face. He turns his head and sucks my lure right up! FISH ON! My heart drops into my chest and the fight is on. The first time he comes to the top of the water I couldn't believe how big he was. I was praying to myself. Pleaaaaasssseeee don't break or come off. As I was reeling him in, other redfish started following him up. If there had been someone else with me, there would have definitely been a double hook up! I finally land him. My heart racing like crazy! I quickly throw him on the measuring board . When I first measured him I thought he was 39 inches but when I went back and looked at the pictures, I realized he was almost 42! I was in all! I put him back into the water to revive the beautiful bull when two guys and a dog came out on the flat. They were nice and snapped a couple of more pictures for me. I then turned the Go Pro back on for the great release. It was truly beautiful watching the redfish head back to nature for another day:) 

Oct. 2013 40 redfish 1.jpg
Oct. 2013 40+ redfish tournament.jpg

Tearn' it up in S. Sarasota

  Headed out of the Vamo launch to see what was going on? The morning started out slow! Catching only one jack on top water in the first hour I was out there.  As soon as the tide picked up though the fishing picked up. While I was paddling to my first spot i see the water erupting about a half mile down. I new it was probably a school of reds but, I had to make a though decision. I decided to stay put and hit mt favorite spot and boy glad I did! The first cast i took as I came up to my spot I hooked into a big ole snook. Pulled me around like a rag doll. I finally landed it and anchored up. Bait was busting o top of the water so I decided to throw the ole skitter-walk. Boom! It gets crushed by another snook. After that I threw the lil john in the mix and boom a beautiful redfish! My day was getting better fast. Lol! I ended up jumping a couple of more snook and moved on to the next spot. I continued catching snook allllllll day and even caught a nice blackdrum of all things. I saw many more reds but they didn't want anything I had for them. lol! Also got into a couple of schools of big jacks that burned the ole forearms up.  I was done before 11:30 and caught over 15 snook!  Thank you Sarasota for another beautiful day!:)

Keeper Snook in Sarasota Bay


         Started out the morning in the Buttonwood area because of the heavy winds. They were blowing pretty good out of the WSW, but, where I put in it was glass! Before I even put the kayak in the water I could hear bait getting crushed on top of the water.Luckily I already had my Rapala Skitter-walk tied up ready to go. My first cast I had something follow me up all the way to the kayak. Second cast, Fish On! I continued catch trout after trout! I had just put in so I decided to start venturing further north. I saw large schools of mullet so decided to start casting both top water and jerk baits . Nothing! So I paddled on and saw birds diving on bait I hurried over there and pitched my line right in the middle of all the running bait. Immediately started ripping in good size trout and a couple of my lady fish friends. While working the school of bait I saw out of the corner of my eye a fin cruising across the top of the water. Looks like Mr. sharky wants some of the action also so I decide to paddle on. the sun was coming up further in the sky so i decided to go hit the lip of the channel. I ended up catching a perfect drift along the whole channel while catching lot more trout. They were so aggressive all I had to do was literally reel the jerk bait straight in!Lol! Meanwhile all the sudden a school of dolphins show up to mess my fishing up! They were acting very strange. Not sure if they were playing ,mating, or just trying to scare all the fish away in the area! So I got some good Go Pro footage because they were so close and acting crazy and then I paddled on. It was getting late in the day so I decided to start heading back to the launch. On my way back to the launch ,I was in about 1 1/2 ft of water so I stood up in the kayak to take a look at the water. I saw a few deeper pot holes in the middle of the super shallow grass flat  so I take a long cast at one. Bump, it lets go! I jig it one more time and BOOM it gets smashed! Line starts peeling out like a freight train! In the super shallow water the fish was kicking up so much mud, I had no idea what I had but i new it was nice! I turn on the Go Pro and the fight begins. Finally I turn the fishes head and see that it is a beautiful snook. After wearing the fish down and get a good look at him and I think to myself is this the first slot size snook that I've caught this year ? Anxious to get him on the measuring board. I carefully put him on the board and he is the perfect slot size! It has been over four year since I've had snook because of the ban on snook since the freeze and all of my snook have been either too big or too small so far this season. After being blessed with that fish I put the poles away and headed straight in. A great ending to a beautiful day in Sarasota Bay! I will be posting new videos on youtube  tomorrow of my today's adventures!

The Rain Has left Sarasota Bay Finally:)

  Today, I headed out for the first time since all the rain!  The water was a little fresh and really dirty. But, It was a beauuuuutiful morning! Light wind blowing out of the NE. I think the temperatures are finally starting to drop a little.:)  My second or third cast into the trip I caught maybe the smallest redfish I've ever seen! It was almost the same size as the jerk bait I was using. Lol! We continued on catching numerous amounts of trout. Most of them were really good size for this time of year. Soon the gator trout will be here. Caint wait!  In the middle of catching trout, we managed to catch a few medium size snook. Nothing huge but big enough to pull some drag and a couple of nice jumps! Headed in early to get ready for my trip to Chokoloskee .(10,000 Island) If You ever want to go to one of the best places to fish in the world, that is the place! Let me know and we can set up an overnight trip.

40" Snook and Schooling bullredfish in Sarasota Bay

 Started my morning off heading north in Sarasota bay on the east side, trying to stay away from the winds.  I was picking up a few small trout,when I looked to my Left and saw explosions on top of the water with birds diving on them. I paddled as fast as I could to get over to them. I turned the Go Pro on. Hoping for them to be the school of redfish I had been on the hunt for the day before, while fishing the IFA Redfish Kayak Tournament. As i got closer I saw the bronze bodies lit up everywhere!!! I take a long cast at them and my mirror lure jerk bait gets smashed! Now there are literally hundreds of redfish swimming all around me. While reeling the redfish in there were other reds trying to take the bait out of its mouth.lol! Trying to keep my eye on the school, I finally land the fish. It was lit up beautifully bronze, and had a big ol fat belly. I release the fish and paddle back over to them. This time, I take a cast at them with my top water plug. They were exploding all over it! After catching a few fish I ended up hooking into a monster size jack, that pulled my kayak around for what seemed like an eternity. I finally land him and when I look up to see where the school went they had vanished.  My arms were burning! I was thinking to myself, thank goodness for good reels and St. Croix Fishing Rods! I checked all my knots and bent all my hooks back into place. lol! So I start to paddle back keeping an Eye out for the schooling redfish. I pulled up to a creek and decided to check it out. The last time I was in this creek , I had about a 4 ft. snook follow my top water plug all the way to the kayak. At the last minute, it almost jumped in my boat trying to eat the lure! Anyways ,I am paddling hard because the current was ripping out. I get about half way up the creek and decide to start fishing. I catch one snook hanging around a dock and  just let the current take me down the creek. Fishing all the way down, I come to where the mouth of the creek opens up. I take a cast right on the edge of the mouth. I feel a thud which felt like I hooked the bottom. The current ripping me out. Then the fish realizes its hooked and my line starts peeling the opposite direction towards docks.:( I manage to turn its head and in the mean time wedge my kayak up in the bank of the mouth of the creek. Then remembered to turn on the Go Pro in the middle of all the craziness. Still not knowing what I had hooked, I see this huge head surface. Snooky Snooky! I thought to myself how am I going to land this fish in these circumstances! Finally I land the monster! So beautiful with that big mouth and long black stripe running down its body. Take a few pictures and release her. I start paddling back in thinking to myself that I cant wait to see the video footage when I get home.That was the end of another beautiful day in Sarasota Bay!

  By the way I'm still trying to figure out this whole Go Pro thing. Will be loading videos soon and I have started a YouTube page:)  

snooky 2.jpg