You just have to love the Nature Coast this time of year. With beautiful sunny days, crystal clear water, great scalloping and even better fishing to look forward to now is a great time to plan a trip to the Nature Coast. August is typically a month entrenched in the heart of the summer, but with the recent AM/PM rains everyday leading to cooler temperatures, many of our days have been quiet pleasant especially with the presence of the sea breezes.
One of the highlights of our Nature Coast Action at the moment is the continued success of our 2012 scallop season. If you haven’t heard by now the Crystal River and Homosassa areas have the clearest and most productive scalloping grounds in the state as we speak. With the early rains of July truly affecting other normally successful scalloping grounds (Steinahatchee and Keaton Beach) the crystal clear waters of the Crystal River have become staging grounds for scallopers from all over the state. With a majority of the best scalloping action occurring around the crystal clear waters surrounding the Gomez Rocks and Rock Island channel area, Scallopers have been rewarded with great sights, viability and loads of scallops.
Another added bonus along the inshore waters along the Nature Coast is the Fantastic Redfish and Giant Black Drum Action that is occurring with in sight of many of the same flats where we scallop. Historically, Redfishing during the month of August can be phenomenal to say the least. With a majority of these fish feeding like crazy before they head offshore to spawn, banner days are here to stay over the next few months. Since most of these healthy Redfish are well over the 27” slot limit larger baits are a must to be successful this time of year. Live pinfish, cut mullet, ladyfish and lizard fish have provided my anglers with the most amount of success.
• A key this time of year is to bring enough bait just encase you need to chum. Chumming is an effective method of baiting large schools of fish that may be a little finicky to say the least. Cut pinfish, threadfin herring, sardines and crabs make great chum.
A true angling opportunity to look forward to that is limited to the waters on or around the Crystal River area is the targeting of the Giant Black Drum that roam our extreme shallow flats. With most of our waters featuring a plethora of oyster bars, rock flats and coral bottom huge schools of Black Drum migrate on these flats to forage for crabs, shrimp, small bait fish and any other food source that is readily available. With most of these fish ranging from 20-60lbs this time of year, this a great piece of action to look forward to this time of year.
So if you’ve ever been interested in enjoying the best of the Nature Coast now is a great time to think about planning a trip. With the Nature Coast featuring some of the best scalloping and fishing action in the state of Florida, why not plan a trip to the Crystal River/Homosassa area to get your outdoor fix in.
Capt. Kyle Messier