Skyway Pier Advice

Hey All,

I normally fish the east coast but the water has been so bad due to the algae bloom a buddy and I decided to take a last minute trip over to Tampa tonight. The plan is to soak some live baits (shrimp and pinfish - apparently that is all that is available at Gandy Bait Shop so if anyone else knows of any other bait shops open late please share) because that the kind of fishing my buddy likes to do. I was going to throw some jigs, swim baits, and diving plugs. Any advice/tips would be greatly appreciated? How heavy weights are needed? Can you use float rigs/free line live bait? Can you still drive out/park on the West pier? Also, can you catch bait with a Sabiki rig? It has been awhile. Thanks in advance!! We'll be sitting behind a green camry in lounge chairs having a beer sometime after 8PM so if you see us feel free to stop by!!

Tight Lines All!
There are only so many casts in life, so shut up and fish!!

Replies

  • winderbillwinderbill Posts: 285 Deckhand
    do a google earth search..will show the rock piles...freeline live baits
  • gettinwetgettinwet Posts: 1,366 Officer
    Thanks! That's what I surmised from searching through the forum a swell. Also said work small baits around the pilings for mangroves. Was going to give both a shot. Leaving in a few minutes.
    There are only so many casts in life, so shut up and fish!!
  • johnDjohnD WC FLPosts: 6,391 Admiral
    missed this thread somehow..

    my advice - use the restrooms at the rest areas.

    good luck next time.
  • KortsmanKortsman Posts: 266 Deckhand
    Had I seen this last week I would have chimed in. I fish the south pier all the time. Ping me next time you go and I can give you some tips.
  • I'm here for 2 more days.. fished the south skyway and nothing.. free lined some nice live mullet out there on a good outgoing tide and couldn't get anything to go. Baits got really nervous a few times it seemed but that was it. What gives?? I'm from michigan and just wanna hook something that pulls back harder than anything I can find back home.... I'll be stuck ice fishing in a few days and would appreciate any tips. I'm staying on Anna Maria island and need to hook something up!!! Help please. Thought I had it dialed but turns out I know nothing
  • Try the Rod and Reel pier on Anna Maria
    THERE SHOULD BE NO COMMERCIAL FISHING ALLOWED FOR ANY SPECIES THAT IS CONSIDERED OVERFISHED.
  • suprastevesuprasteve Posts: 110 Deckhand
    Ditto on Mackeral Snatcher's advice: if you are staying on Anna Maria, fish either the Rod and Reel or City Pier on north end of the island instead of the Skyway.
  • When should I fish it and what time/tide is best? Thanks guys. Really appreciate it. Feel free to meet me out there if you want I'll have live mullet
  • Fishing flat out blows here I take it?? Absolutely nothing happening besides sheepshead. I guess I could stay up all night and try for snook but that is anout it. I guessing if I had a boat things could be different
  • AMcGeheeAMcGehee Posts: 2 Greenhorn
    It is kind of a transition time right now and inshore fishing is slowing down for a lot of stuff. You could try dropping pinfish down at the skyway for grouper, or some cut bait on the bottom for a shark, but really, as far as pier fishing goes, its sheephead time. Snook are moving into the backwaters as the water cools, mackerel are thinning out and tarpon are long gone. The offshore fishing is great this time of year and wading flats on low tide can produce some reds and trout.

    I am originally from Michigan also, it took me a few years of logging a lot of hours to get things dialed in, and I still learn new stuff every day. Saltwater fishing is a lot more complicated that river steelhead : )
  • makobradmakobrad Posts: 32 Greenhorn
    Fishing flat out blows here I take it?? Absolutely nothing happening besides sheepshead. I guess I could stay up all night and try for snook but that is anout it. I guessing if I had a boat things could be different

    Yes it does blow. That's why FL is called the "Fishing Capital of the World". Not sure why you did not get your limit on several species after posting on a forum and fishing two whole days.

    At least it was warm.

    Brad
  • New2FlNew2Fl Posts: 76 Greenhorn
    Sarcasm aside, makobrad is right. Pier fishing definitely takes some specialized skill and knowledge to be consistently productive. Personally, I think it is one of the more difficult fisheries to master down here. Next time a better approach would be to focus on wade fishing the flats with live shrimp. You might not catch a monster but your catch rate would be much higher. You're simply not going to master any fishery in two days. If you sent most people on these forums to Michigan for ice fishing for two days it would probably take that long to figure out how to cut a whole in the ice. LOL
  • ~~Mutt~~~~Mutt~~ Posts: 478 Deckhand
    Advise you ask?? Ok.. When fishing seems slow...try going back in time..click on this link http://forums.floridasportsman.com/forumdisplay.php?20-West-Central-General-Fishing-amp-The-Outdoors and go back several years of threads at this same month and day.. Look at the reports people have posted.. I have done that many times and hardly get skunked either by land or boat.. TuN's of valubale fishing tips and spots in those pages
  • FusionZ06FusionZ06 Posts: 966 Officer
    Fishing flat out blows here I take it?? Absolutely nothing happening besides sheepshead. I guess I could stay up all night and try for snook but that is anout it. I guessing if I had a boat things could be different

    Good attitude. Michigan ice fishing must be so much more fun :)
  • Lol no ice fishing is as bad as it sounds. And to be brutally honest our salmon fishery offshore on Lake Michigan is the most technical fishing there is. If you don't believe it let me know if you're in the M and I'll take you out on my Pursuit. The ocean doesn't change overnight from 71 degree water to 38 degree water... imagine how hard that makes finding fish let alone anything with gills. Until you have emerced yourself in that sort of fishing you haven't a clue the challenges and techniques that come into play. We have to be so detail oreinted where I'm from.. your eyes on the water are key in the sunshine state, polar opposite on Lake Michigan. Thats why I know guys with money who infish salmon tournaments with in michigan that buy houses and boats in florida and within a year they are putting on a clinic and laugh how easy it CAN BE. Another thing, steelhead fishing is something that can take years to understand. Saltwater fishing is actually quite basic for the most part.. Having good bait is key cause it's as simple as there's always something that literally eats something else. A hook and leader are about all you need... I'm a knot fenatic amd have always taken pride in learning the best... I can tie anything from a Bimini twist to the FG (I trust the FG knot more than anyone or anything on this planet) you can make things more technical by flying a kite or staying up all night working on a swordfish rig that finally doesn't twist to hell on the drop or any other thing you can come up with. From what I've figured out the biggest thing is your tides that move water in and move water out. Other than that there are times of the year when the water is warmenr and when the water isn't and that means certain fish won't be around. I was just totally lost because I had never been to the Tampa Bay Area before in my life and had no clue where to fish. And to make matters worse I was staying on Anna Maria island surrounded by moron tourists. I know there wasn't **** going on where I was on those piers because I didn't see a single person both days who was hardcore or that didn't have a walmart setup.. if I'm back on the right time of the year I found some good cuts on google earth that has to allow for some beach/pier tarpon action. Only thing I saw were a few 31 contenders pull up to that rod and reel pier and net some white bait and then disappear into the distance while I was stuck looking down at sheepshead while trying not to kick some foreigners *** for almost stepping on my gear. I didn't plan on mastering any fishery in 2 days I just thought I should have hooked into something.. one thing I know and love about the fishing addiction is you never stop learning or adapting no matter how much you know! I'm not trying to come across as arragant, I just know what people perceive when a guy from Michigan is on a Florida form bashing the fishery talking about ice fishing lol.. and I really only had about 5 hours each day... limitations put on me by my soon to be wife (that is if she doesn't realize how much I actually fish, and that the only reason I work is so I can fish) so all in all I was just frustrated as all get out knowing I was leaving back to the frozen tundra in the morning. Salt water is in my veins. If any of you guys met me you wouldn't know I'm from michigan. Trust me when I say it... I'm the only guy in my state who contatly day dreams 7 days a week about getting back to an ocean or anything salt related... I make an okay living.. I sacrifice a lot of things because I'm addicted to fishing in the worst of ways.. my worst nightmare is having a family and kids and never having time or money to fish. it's sickening. When I was a young kid I'd spend 2 weeks in Florida staying with my grandma in Juno and that's where I learned the ropes and was doomed for life with the saltwater dream. I've experienced a lot of saltwater action all over the county from islmorada to the Oregon coast... and figured it out all on my own when I was 11 years old till now. It's probably a blessing I'm stuck in michigan due to my career, because it'd be a safe bet to say I'd be one of those guys hanging out under the dock lights with a snook tattood on my leg! My most favorite thing and fascination in life is fishing reels. Still remember being one of the first people to read Alan Hawk's review on a spinning reel and messaging him while I was in college at Central Michigan about what reel I should spend my life saving on, because I was sure I'd end up moving to Florida but it never happened.. and here I am today just trying to get rich so I can have a **** CC with trips. Somehow something went wrong in my brain when I was little visiting Florida cause all I've ever doen is save up for a new reel. I have a Van Staal, Daiwa saltiga expedition, Daiwa Exist, Shimano Stella's,, baitrunners, Accurate Twinspin, Penn internationals, Trinidad's etc.... that was a lot and I'm sure many will think I'm borderline crazy after that rant. Had to give a little BIO on me since all I can do right now is ice fish and none of you will meet me in person but I guarantee that will all change cause I'll be back sooner than later and will need some hardcore fishing buds.
  • RennieRaeRennieRae Posts: 717 Officer
    our salmon fishery offshore on Lake Michigan is the most technical fishing there is.

    Thats why I know guys with money who infish salmon tournaments with in michigan that buy houses and boats in florida and within a year they are putting on a clinic and laugh how easy it CAN BE.

    Saltwater fishing is actually quite basic for the most part..

    staying on Anna Maria island surrounded by moron tourists

    none of you will meet me in person

    Lol! The irony of this is great. I'm looking forward to your clinic on how easy it is... :rotflmao
    Bob 

    17 ft. Ankona Native with 40 hp Suzuki 4 stroke - Skini Rennie
  • ~~Mutt~~~~Mutt~~ Posts: 478 Deckhand
    Saltwater fishing is actually quite basic for the most part.. .
    Yeah..For catfish..... Zebco with a Walmart leader..line...hook..weight crimped with a box of squid... Just chuck it out there ..put rod down and facebook for 1/2 hour.. Basic for sure... Now when it comes to tournament wining Kingfish from land or sea.....Throw that basic right out the door...
  • Nope that can get get a little more involved but I've caught plenty of big kings by just simply free lining a mullet out or using a trolley rig to get my bait out, I've even used helium to get the job done and keep my gear outta the water. Now that's not cat fishing but sure isn't all that difficult either.
  • Way to copy and past only certain words from my post to create irony. You remind me of the liberal media! You're the buzzfeed of the Florida sportsman forums. Trash
  • KeepnitreelKeepnitreel Posts: 58 Greenhorn
    When I first moved here 7 years ago and fished the piers like you did, I thought the same thing. I've fished all over the world, most recently the GBR in Cairns, Australia. I've fished million dollar marlin tournaments, done some specialized stuff, even gone commercial. All egos aside, the inshore fishery over here on Florida's west coast is a challenge to learn and even more of a challenge to catch big fish consistently. To that point, I've kind of chosen to stick with what I know and I dont do it alot! I go grouper trolling and fish for kingfish and spanish mackeral with really good success.
    My point is, don't knock the area until you've really gotten to know it. Theres great fishing here, you just have to find what is right for you at that time of year. Hope you have a better experience the next time you come down.
  • ShedheadShedhead Posts: 37 Greenhorn
    Nothing worse than making plans and going fishing to find out fishing sucked.. except getting a bad report then not going and missing a hot bite cause you didn't go
    But hey dare, what do I know.. I'm just a Yankee salmon fisherman.. or no? See some of my pictures on instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BDMhg_NKD21/... search jamers_h
  • Agreed. Man that'd be unreal to fish the Great BR! I'm looking forward to coming back in the summer and seeing what I can get into. I'm trying to buy a cheap little center council to keep down there. Never know till you go, that's fishing.
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