Surf fishing tourist

WalleyeSashimiWalleyeSashimi CanadaPosts: 24 Greenhorn
Hi folks, getting ready for ten days of surf fishing in the Madeira/Redington area (a couple miles up from the old long pier). Last year it really wasn't great, hoping things will be a bit hotter this year. In the past I've had great whiting feeds and hooked into some bigger stuff that I didn't have the right gear for or didn't play well enough. 

The general approach is a pretty standard pompano set up on a medium rod, 10 lb braid mainline and 15 or 20 lb fluorocarbon leader. I usually fish live or frozen shrimp (dug for sand fleas a lot last year but didn't find much... there just wasn't much of anything around, fish or bait) but I may vary it up a bit this year since I am there a bit longer with some DOA shrimp or scented Gulp... maybe fish bites or a plastic shrimp. 

I usually go to Ft. Desoto once and one of the Skyway Piers once... last year I caught a nice mackerel at Desoto and a trout at the Skyway, not great but also about the same as the locals seemed to be doing so I thought it was pretty good if grading myself on a curve.

Is there anything I am missing? Any land-based opportunities in those areas that you feel would be superior to Ft. Desoto or the Skyway? Based on time of year (will be there Mar 27-April 6) what kind of action can I expect on the beach and at Desoto/Skyway?

I'm likely to end up at Desoto during the day and Skyway at night... unless there's reason to think Skyway would be much better during the day? FWIW my dream target species there would be mangrove snapper, sheeps and mackerel, as I am not likely to run into those on the beach but won't have the gear to target kings or anything off the pier. 

Thanks all!


  • AnEnglishFishermanAnEnglishFisherman EnglandPosts: 107 Deckhand
    I fished in the area a couple years ago, I had a few snapper and the odd sheepshead, ladyfish, flounder and all the pinfish you could ever need all on shrimp from the Madeira beach side of johns pass. Also saw a guy get a few pompano on jigs from the same side. 

    On the treasure island side of the pass there was a guy getting good trout and snook on what looked like greenbacks and I also saw another guy do well on that side with trout, mackerel and snapper on shrimp. 
  • JettyparkJettypark Posts: 1,969 Captain
    The areas that you listed all give up fish...i prefer nite fishing... less people and less boat action... read up on the tides in those areas and pick out spot... with the gear that you are fishing.. keep everything small and you should be good to go on the skyway..and if you really want to hear your reel scream catch a few pinfish and lower them down (alive) and just be ready to hold won't be able to bring anything up, but you will have fun for awhile...again make sure to read up on the tides and try to fish moving water (incoming or outgoing) i havent fish that area in yearsssssss ...back when we were able to get away with all kinds of fishing... i heard it has change this my time... but fishing is fishing...since you are going to be fishing it for ten days.. try to make friends with some of the locals, let them know you are a tourist and plan on going back home... that way they will share more infor with you... a softdrink also goes a long way, always ask if somebody needs a drink and most of the locals will talk to you for awhile.... Not me i hate tourist >:) JK..... good luck have fun and look up a "fish finder rig" real easy to make and you can lighten it up or beef it up...again good luck
    aa13.gif"A ship without Marines is like a garment without buttons"
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