Bishop's Harbor - A Tampa Bay Gem

Launched out of Bishop's Harbor with Dave (stormy) at 6:45am on Saturday. I had been there before with Hondo and Secret Spot and thought I would give it a try with Dave. The water temp was right at 80 degrees. The tide was incoming for a few hours, then kind of flat with a strong outgoing later. We eased out towards the mouth and the mullet were everywhere. We came up on a point with mullet jumping all around it. On my second cast with the Spook Jr in bone, my lure got crushed. I couldn't tell what it was for a long time till it surfaced. It was a nice red. She fought very well and I got her in the rubber net at 7:08am. She measured 25 3/4". An excellent way to start the day. Twenty-five minutes later I caught a small 17 1/2" snook on the spook. I fished topwater all day off and on and caught fish, but I lost the best snook of the day on it too.

We had made it to the mouth of BH and I picked up a 20" snook on the RT mullet 3" in redfish color at 8:18am. Just two minutes later Dave caught a 17 1/2" snook on the Zoom Super Fluke in white, but he had lost a better one moments earlier. Just outside of BH now and I caught a nice 19 1/2" trout to complete my slam at 8:40am on the spook that absolutely inhaled the lure. Ten minutes later a small 10" trout on the spook for me. Another small trout for me at 8:58am on the same lure. Caught a small jack at 9:30am on the spook. Going north towards the Skyway, I picked up a 17 1/4" trout on the spook at 9:42am. Four minutes later, Dave caught a small trout on the DOA chugger. At 10:09am, Dave caught a 14 1/2" trout on the fluke.

The bite began to taper off as the tide was flat. Dave caught a small jack on the fluke at 11:02am. I picked up a 16 3/4" snook on the redfish mullet again at 11:09am. I lost a nice snook on topwater and then caught a 16 1/2" trout on the spook at 11:34am. We were not doing much heading south towards the Skyway so we headed back towards BH. We began to work the point going in and Dave caught a 20" snook in the mangroves with the fluke at 1:27pm. Dave caught a nice 21 1/4" snook on the fluke at 1:41pm. The technique he was using is deadly looking. Flip it into the mangroves and twitch it back to the boat. He was walking the dog with it just inches below the surface. He had a number of follows throught the day and had some swimming along side it eyeballing it all the way back to the boat. I will be getting some of those Super Flukes soon. I did have some large DOA flukes in red/gold flake and I tied one on. On my first cast, I caught a nice snook of 24" at 1:45pm, which Dave took pics of. I put my rod down to record my catch and Dave had gotten hung up. He got it off and I turned on my trolling motor to get us away. The tm sucked up my lure/line and my rod flipped into the water. I got it out, but my rod was snapped near the top. It was my favorite rod.

We worked a few hours back in BH and along the infamous snook bank. I finally picked up a 22" snook on a Bass Assassin paddle tail in purple at 3:30pm. Two minutes later Dave caught a 12" trout on the fluke. Over the next couple of hours I caught two small trout and a flounder while Dave caught a small snook. That was basically it for our day. The topwater bite appears to be much better in the morning than before dark, but topwater was productive all day.

We saw some incredible sights and Dave took some really cool pictures. The dolphins were out and wreaking havoc on the mullet. We saw one playing with a mullet and then throw it at least 15 feet into the air and probably twenty yards away. The first pic is of the dolphin holding it in his mouth and the second is him flinging it. The fishing was pretty good but the wind picked up and blew us around pretty badly. We probably should have stayed near BH all day. We worked the north side of Joe's Island but had little success. We went towards Port Manatee but the wind made it difficult to work. Bishop's Harbor is one of the most beautiful areas I have ever fished, but it does get pressure.
Improve Our Fishery - Practice Catch and Release

Replies

  • EggsuckindogEggsuckindog Posts: 1,528 Officer
    mullet pic is too cool
    1976 SeaCraft master Angler - Merc 200 XRi
    dscf1243-1.jpg
  • JRBJRB Posts: 33 Deckhand
    Dave,

    Thanks for a great report. Bishops Harbor is just another of so many great spots on our East Coast of Tampa Bay...great access to Joe's Island, and Miguel Bay...and you need a shallow draft boat to launch from there...so less boat traffic. How were the bugs...

    Thanks

    John
  • Bassin AssassinBassin Assassin Posts: 1,248 Officer
    The bugs were no problem in the morning. Make sure and have bug spray at dark as the noseeums were biting well. The mosquitos were also vicious and it seemed that the spray made little difference as they were feasting on us both.
    Improve Our Fishery - Practice Catch and Release
  • flatsjunkie88flatsjunkie88 Posts: 1,364 Officer
    Tight work. BH is very Snooky right now.
    ......
  • secretspotsecretspot Posts: 377 Officer
    bishops is what made me famous..but it just gets pounded too hard now. been fishing there for 25 yrs. lots of monsters if you know where to look...huge snook on the mangroves and oyster beds on the right tides
    Jon Brooks Wade Fishing Guide Service/Consult Trips
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/wadefishermancom/196439137047692?__req=5
  • SJCSJC Posts: 2,562 Captain
    Always look forward to your reports, good job as always
    The Beatings will continue until moral improves!
  • Bassin AssassinBassin Assassin Posts: 1,248 Officer
    Thanks guys. BH does get a lot of pressure, but if you get there early, it is well worth it. I guess the tide does have to be good too. It really rolls out of there on the outgoing. The fish back there are smart and I believe live bait is the key to getting the bigger snook. Just an incredible amount of bait fish, mullet and other fish activity. It is a great area to fish.
    Improve Our Fishery - Practice Catch and Release
  • PescadoPescado Posts: 76 Greenhorn
    Great report. Where did you put in at?
  • Bassin AssassinBassin Assassin Posts: 1,248 Officer
    There is a small ramp at Bishops Harbor. It is hard-packed sand but launched my little 12' jon with no problem. Apparently can be a problem at extreme high tides. Awesome place to launch cause you can be on the fish within minutes.
    Improve Our Fishery - Practice Catch and Release
  • stormystormy Posts: 364 Officer
    secretspot wrote: »
    bishops is what made me famous..but it just gets pounded too hard now. been fishing there for 25 yrs. lots of monsters if you know where to look...huge snook on the mangroves and oyster beds on the right tides

    you're famous?? lol jk
  • CATTLE MANCATTLE MAN Posts: 129 Officer
    who?
  • secretspotsecretspot Posts: 377 Officer
    stormy wrote: »
    you're famous?? lol jk

    lol. if i make a post it will hit 1k in views in 2 days max. too bad all my old post are gone from the old forum.....
    Jon Brooks Wade Fishing Guide Service/Consult Trips
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/wadefishermancom/196439137047692?__req=5
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