Coastal Angler Magazine | January 2019 | Lakeland

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LAKELAND & SUMTER EDITION

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Deep-Drop

Grouper Destination:

Los Suenos,

Costa Rica PHOTO COURTESY OF MICHAEL L. GRANT VOLUME 23 • ISSUE 287

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O P P O R T U N I T I E S

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GETTING HOOKED BEFORE CASTING THE LINE.

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By Team Three Buoys

Photos by Michael Grant

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hile mystic grouper can be caught year-round in the Bahamas, the winter months are our favorite time of year. Whenever a weather window presents itself, we point our bow east across the Florida Straights in search of these deep-water bottom dwellers. Mystics are one of the lesser-known grouper species, simply because anglers don’t fish deep enough to target them. Like all grouper, they are excellent to eat and usually weigh from 15 to 50 pounds, although they can grow much larger. It takes special gear to fish the 800- to 1,200-foot depths where we find mystics. Armed with Shimano Tiagra 80 WAs and Shimano Tiagra 50 WAs equipped with Hooker Electric Autostop drives, we string up 65- to 100-pound Power Pro braid on Crafty One Custom’s Deep Drop Rods. We begin by paying close attention to our Humminbird Solix sonar with CHIRP HD digital technology to locate bottom structure. We look for cones, holes, drop-offs, ledges and deep-water ridges. Once viable structure is located, we position the boat above it with engines out of gear to judge how wind and current will manipulate our drift. Then the

boat is repositioned up-current from the structure and the deep-drop rigs are readied. When targeting mystics, we use our www.ThreeBuoysFishing.com grouper deep-drop rigs made with three 8/0 VMC 3x Circle Hooks on 100-pound branch lines off of 12 feet of 150-pound main line. For bait, we prefer fresh-cut 8-inch strips of dolphin, tuna, wahoo or barracuda. Many deep-drop anglers claim, “no light, no bite,” but our experience has proven that, especially with mystics, we catch more and bigger fish without lights. We deploy two rods on opposite sides of the boat. Lead weights in the 10-pound range are the rule of thumb, but weight can be adjusted to the current. After the weights hit bottom, the reels are left in freespool to lay the rigs straight down on the bottom. The engines should be used to decrease the boat’s drift to a standstill, if possible. If the boat drifts, let out line to keep the rigs on bottom. When the rod tip bumps and shakes, resist the urge to lock up the drag and retrieve line. Wait a minute or two for additional fish to sense the commotion. They’ll often eat the remaining baits. When it’s time to strike, lift the reel’s drag to strike (pre-set to 20 pounds of drag) and slowly start your retrieve. Big mystic grouper put up quite a fight at first, and you might even think you’ve hung bottom. Be patient and slowly gain as must line as possible. When fish are about halfway up, their air bladders expand and create lift. They will begin to float your rig up to the surface. For more tips and tactics on deep-dropping and the tackle and rigs to get tight, see www.threebuoysfishing.com. Also, keep up with all of the offshore action @ Team Three Buoys on Facebook and Instagram.

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EDITOR IN CHIEF : Ben Martin • camads@coastalanglermagazine.com COO : Tracy Patterson • tracy@coastalanglermagazine.com ART DIRECTOR : Rebecca Snowden • graphics@coastalanglermagazine.com EDITORIAL COORDINATOR : Nick Carter • editorial@coastalanglermagazine.com WEBMASTER : Nick Barna • webmaster@coastalanglermagazine.comw ADVERTISING INQUIRIES: Corporate Headquarters info@coastalanglermagazine.com • 888-800-9794

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Finding bait becomes more important than at any other time of year. Goebel likes to get out well before dawn in search of shad or herring flickering near the surface, especially when a big moon keeps baitfish active all night. Diving birds are also a dead giveaway. They are likely feeding on baitfish pushed by stripers from below. “A lot of times if there’s bait there, I won’t even worry about marking fish on the graph,” Goebel said. “I’ll just put out my lines and start fishing where the bait is.”

By Nick Carter

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here aren’t many anglers willing to endure the frigid early morning temperatures of winter on a large reservoir. But for those who can handle a little discomfort, right now is the best time of year to hook up with the striper of a lifetime. Around the Southeast, in reservoirs where striped bass were introduced, falling water temperatures spur changes in behavior that make the largest fish in the lake susceptible to anglers. Those 30- to 50-pounders are feeding up right now. They’re storing up reserves that will take them through the spring spawn. “It’s trophy striper season,” said Shane Goebel, of Big Ol’ Fish Guiding Service. “The bigger fish are participating a little better. This time of year, we start going after those big ol’ hogs that are chasing the big baits.” The large summer schools broke up months ago. Stripers are spread out and on the move, following baitfish into the creek mouths and up into the backs of the creeks. Big fish move shallow when water temps hit the mid to low 50s on the lakes Goebel guides in the mountains of north Georgia and western North Carolina. It might take some searching to find them, but the rewards can be huge.

Because the stripers are continually moving with the bait, covering water is crucial. Goebel said to troll as many baits in as wide a spread as you can handle. Herring are great on lakes where they are present, but this time of year you should also work some big gizzard shad or trout into the spread. Sometimes it takes a big mouthful to convince big fish to eat. Goebel runs baits 30 to 40 feet behind planer boards. He’ll drop freelines 100 to 150 feet behind the boat. If the area where he finds bait isn’t too shallow, he’ll put a little bit of weight ahead of the baits on the inside boards to cover more water vertically. He slow trolls at about half a mile per hour. This is a pattern Goebel fishes all the way into May, when stripers have moved into a pre-spawn phase. It might not produce the numbers of fish that downlining into summer mega-schools will, but the fish are generally a lot bigger than those 5- to 10-pound summer schoolies. If catching an enormous striper sounds like fun, zip up your parka and get out on the lake. It’s trophy striper season. Check out Big Ol’ Fish Guiding Service at bigolfish.com.

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By Tom Schlichter

Capt. Carlos Arguedas (left) shows off a huge cubera snapper caught aboard the Los Suenos charter vessel, Wingman, with Lindor Jimenez. Photo courtesy of Wingman Charters, Los Suenos, Costa Rica.

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Los Suenos roosterfish come big aboard Capt. Carlos Arguedas’ charter vessel, Wingman. Photo courtesy of Wingman Charters, Los Suenos, Costa Rica.

f Costa Rica isn’t already on your bucket list, it should be. Famous for both inshore and offshore fishing, it’s also a country with incredible biodiversity and exciting eco-tourism opportunities. In short, there’s something for every sportsman and adventure seeker here. From a fishing perspective, the west coast of this Central American country is most favored with several significant cities and ports including Jaco, Quepos and, of course, Golfito. It’s Los Suenos, however, where

my wife, Felicia and I found outstanding action on a trip last April. We worked the inshore grounds, catching huge roosterfish, rainbow runners, grouper, jacks and even mahi. We also decked a big cubera snapper. Of course, we did have an edge. Coastal Angler’s very own Costa Rica inshore reporter Capt. Carlos Arguedas and his first-mate son, Christopher, were our charter crew. “This really is a terrific place to fish,” said Arguedas, “We have access to a lot of different spots ranging from very close to the marina to 50 miles away. The roosterfish action is unbelievable here but we also catch big cubera snapper, amberjack, groupers and huge red snappers, too.” Arguedas loves to take clients for roosterfish because they fight so hard, are found close to port, and grow big. He’s had a 90-pounder grace his deck. For these, he’ll slow troll live baits like blue runners, herring, sardines or bonita. All of these baits, impaled on size 8 circle hooks, also attract other large predators; so you never know what to expect when the rod doubles over. “Roosterfish are very impressive when you first see them,” said Arguedas. “They are exotic-looking with big dorsal rays, a huge mouth and striped flanks. They are stunning to see for the first time. They are also exceptionally strong. Fight a 20-pounder and you’ll think you have a 40-pounder at the end of the line. They jump, too, and shake their head, so remember to lower your rod tip when that fish comes up or you’ll tear the hook free.” Among the other big fish that hit the deck for Arguedas’ crew on a regular basis are goliath grouper that can top 400 pounds. These are targeted around local reefs. If you want to run offshore, sailfish, tuna and marlin abound within 10 miles of port. Dorado, sometimes topping 30 pounds, can be tempted within sight of the coast. Costa Rica’s tropical climate makes it a year-round destination. Most travelers prefer to visit during the dry season, which runs from December through April, but you’ll find lighter crowds and lower travel prices during the “green” or rainy season from May to November. Whenever you visit, it really helps to work with a travel pro that deals frequently with Costa Rica to customize a trip here. Blue Water Sportfishing Charters (http://bluewatersportfishingcharters.com) specializes in setting up trips to Los Suenos. They can put you in the right place at the right time for the fish you want to catch, sights you want to see or adventures you want to experience. They’ll also book you with Capt. Carlos—or you can contact him yourself at www.wingmancr.com.

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Center sp Sheri Daye

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he first time I saw someone spearfishing, I was intrigued and wondered out loud how hard it would be to load a speargun. A friend heard me and said, “I’m sure you can do it. It’s probably more about technique than brute strength.” He was right. It’s not uncommon to struggle to load your first speargun, and you might suspect they made the bands too short. If you give it some time and use the right technique, it will become easy. First, some safety tips: 1) Never load a speargun out of the water. 2) Keep the safety on until you intend to shoot a fish. 3) Even with the safety on, treat it like a loaded weapon, never let the tip point at anyone. 4) Use tip protectors when not in use, so you don’t scratch anything. Some spearguns are loaded by resting the butt of the gun on your hip and pulling the bands toward the shaft notches. Others are loaded by resting the butt high on the middle of the chest and pulling the bands toward your sternum. Hip-loading spearguns are commonly used by scuba divers, as chest loading can be difficult when wearing a buoyancy compensator vest. Freedivers are less constricted by gear, so they normally use chest-loading spearguns. These have longer range because the shaft tabs sit closer to the butt of the gun. Now, some loading tips: 1) Wear gloves and wetsuit to prevent slips, scrapes or bruising. Some wetsuits have a loading pad built into the chest. 2) Don’t look down and hunch over when loading the bands. Push forward with your chest and pull the band swiftly with your arms, so the shaft tabs are pushed forward to meet the incoming

band. 3) Use a loading tab (if using a wood gun). This simple device makes things much easier by allowing you to first hip load the band to the loading tab and then raise the butt to your chest for the final pull. Although it’s a two-step process, it can be done quickly and will feel much easier. 4) If your bands are still too hard to load, use three longer bands. 5) Work out, lift weights, work on core and upper body. Try bench presses, seated rows, bent over rows, pushups and pull-ups. Bands and dumbbells can be incorporated into your workout routine, whether at the gym or home. If you want to see a band loading video, check out Coastal Angler online. And remember—you can accomplish anything you set your mind to! Sheri is a world-record holder, host of “Speargun Hunter,” and producer of The Blue Wild Ocean Adventure Expo in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Follow “Sheri Daye” and “The Blue Wild” on Facebook and Instagram.

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he action in northwest Costa Rica has once again been off the charts as FishingNosara celebrates its 10th season of charter fishing. All five boats are in the water and scoring big for their clients, with 51 trips logged in November. Big dorados are the staple catch this time of year, but it was a welcome surprise to see swarms of billfish in the mix. The team nabbed 12 marlin releases, 24 sailfish releases, 217 dorados, and five roosterfish releases. One of these roosters was a nearworld-record at 72 pounds. On Nov. 19, Capt. Alex on the Harvester posted the best trip of the month with Terry and Julie Edwards’ group. They loaded up the trophy case with excellent releases. A 300-plus-pound blue marlin was the headliner of the trip for these Texas anglers, and shortly after that battle, the 32-foot mega panga nabbed a wonderful sailfish release. Team Edwards came inshore to finish the day, and saved the best for last… that massive 72-pound roosterfish.

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The IGFA All-Tackle Record for roosterfish is 114 pounds, and the second-place fish is 85 pounds. This fish caught by the Harvester wasn’t far off the second place catch. Most impressively, the above-mentioned IGFA record catches were posted in 1960 and 1954 respectively. This size of roosterfish has not been seen in more than five decades. On the same day, other members of Julie Edwards’ family had a big time on the 32-foot Discoverer with a blue marlin release of their own. Capt. Carlos estimated this fish at 250 pounds upon release. Also in November, FishingNosara Hall of Famer Bill Harris took to the 28-foot bar-room brawler Explorer and opened up her season with a billfish grand slam! A big blue marlin was the highlight of the morning, and it was followed by a late-day striped marlin. Bill nabbed the first marlin, and Mark Scott scored the second. A nice Pacific sailfish caught by Diane Turner completed the grand slam for these Tampa, Fla.based anglers. They didn’t go home empty handed, either, thanks to five big tasty dorado catches spread throughout the day. On the Discoverer, the team of Eli Bedran, Andrew Lipps, Kelsey Harry and Laurie Harry report a fantastic blue marlin release, the first of the year for the big battleship, plus six lovely dorados. John Purdy, John Van Diver, Mike Pickelsimer and Dale McElroy fished in early November and reported 11 sweet dorados on ice. The Harvester has been itching for action, and found what she was looking for as these monsters topped out at 60 pounds. The action was so hot that Capt. Alex chose to release the biggest cows so as not to hurt the stocks. Naturally, we have full reports of all these catches and more archived at Blog.FishingNosara.com, including videos. January and February will be super-busy and the spring months are already filling up fast. Get your plans together so we can secure your fishing adventure with FishingNosara, some of the best sportfishing in Costa Rica.

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oel’s Distributing in south Florida has reached a milestone—40 years in business. Not many operations can make that claim, and so a look down memory lane seems appropriate. Tom Noel, aka Paddleboat Tom, moved to Florida from Michigan in 1979. He closed his grocery store, loaded a pickup truck with three paddleboats, his wife Joy, two sons, a daughter and the family dog and headed south. Tom set up shop in his garage in their Lake Clarke Shores home. After a few years, Joy put her foot down and insisted that he find a warehouse. Tom rented a space next to their current location, just off Forest Hill Blvd in West Palm Beach. A couple of years later he bought the 3,000 square-foot warehouse. Tom’s sons Rob and Tom are also involved with the business. Noel’s Distributing sells safety equipment, fire extinguishers, flares, rope, anchors and a warehouse full of other boating supplies to their clients, predominately in the Keys, along the east coast and in central Florida. They will ship anywhere. Many of their clients search them out for their custom rope splicing and then discover the realm of equipment they carry. If you are looking for anything marine related, it’s worth a phone call. They are generally a better value than the larger chain stores. Tom and his sons are very thankful for their longtime clients. Check out Noel’s Distributing at noeldistributing.com or give them a call at (561) 585-2387.

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• Reward Partners - Barracuda Tackle is pleased to be a rewards partner with Mastry RePower Owner’s Edge program. New Suzuki outboard owners receive a 25% discount certificate on a Barracuda cast net or other Barracuda Tackle products. • The Owner’s Edge Card - You receive an Owner’s Edge card which is your passport to discounts on product and services at any of the Mastry RePower Centers throughout Florida.

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JANUARY 2019

FLORIDA

7

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W

Team Who’s Your Daddy took first at Wahoo Smackdown X with 16 fish that weighed a total of 231.5 pounds.

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ahoo Smackdown X, hosted by the historic Bimini Big Game Club Resort and Marina on Nov. 8-12, saw 23 boats competing for more than $25,000 in cash and prizes. Out of the 23 competing boats, 22 teams landed fish, bringing 152 wahoo to the scales in the process. Team Who’s Your Daddy took top team honors with 16 fish weighing a total of 231.5 pounds and took home $15,000 in cash winnings. Second place was Team Blitzsea, which earned $7,500 in cash for their 21 fish and a total catch weight of 206.4 pounds. Team Murderize, out of Freeport, Grand Bahama, finished third, taking home $2,500 in cash winnings for a catch of 11 fish with a total catch weight of 193.6 pounds. Team Little Giant caught the largest wahoo of the tournament at 50.7 pounds. Tournament festivities included live local entertainment nightly, a cocktail reception poolside for the captains’ meeting, a cookout on day one of the tournament, and a closing awards party on the great lawn, featuring a buffet, live entertainment and a full open bar. Sponsors for this year’s tournament include American Beverage Marketers (www.masterofmixes.com) as the Title Sponsor, Bahamian Brewery and Beverage (Sands), artist David Dunleavy, Tropic Ocean Airways, Caza Offshore, Live Wire Tackle, Flanigan’s, CS Custom Lures and Bimini Big Game Club. With more than 50-record-setting catches in the waters around the island, Bimini has often been referred to as the Sport Fishing Capital of the World. The Big Game Club opened for business in 1947. Owner Neville Stewart saw the promise and allure of fishing and personally developed and encouraged tournaments. He sold his interest to Bacardi, which over 30 years grew the tradition with many memorable tournaments. The current owners, the Southern California-based Hankey Group, put the iconic fishing resort back in play in 2010 and are completing a multi-million-dollar renovation, that includes numerous capital improvements to the rooms, restaurant and lounge, landscaping, new pool and a renovated 75 slip marina, including docks and seawall.

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

12/13/18 10:49 AM


By CAM Staff

I

n 2007, when Andy Kent opened shop at Beach Blvd Motorsports in Jacksonville, he had no idea how immersed in the fishing world he would become. Beach Blvd began as a pure powersports dealer, selling and servicing ATVs, motorcycles and dirt bikes. With a company-wide ethic of doing right by the customer, it grew into the area’s leading motorsports purveyor. But things really took off in 2012, when Beach Blvd took on fishing boats. “Everyone seems to have something in common when it comes to talking fishing, it doesn’t matter if it’s inshore, offshore or freshwater,” Kent said over the phone while drowning a shiner in the St. Johns River. “Good people fish, and most people who fish are good. It’s just a good kind of customer to have. Fishermen are enjoyable to be around.” Today Beach Blvd sells about 45 Tidewater and Ranger boats a year.

NOW BOOKING

FALL FISHING CHARTERS INSHORE LIGHT TACKLE FISHING RETAIL GUIDE SHOP • CUSTOM FLATS SKIFF FULLY RIGGED KAYAK TRIPS • KAYAK RENTAL

They service Mercury and Yamaha outboards and provide the kind of ongoing support that earns loyalty from their customers. The dealership got involved in the fishing community, sponsoring inshore tournaments, and this ethos allowed them to expand. In 2018, Kent and his partner Greg Lingris purchased St. Johns Powersports a few miles off the St. Johns River in Palatka. They took a struggling powersports dealer and turned it around. Now Kent is looking forward to providing freshwater anglers with the same customer experience that grew the mostly saltwater customer base in Jacksonville. With a 15-year-old son, Carson, who fishes the Bassmaster High School tournament series, bass fishing is built into family life for the Kents. They understand the wants and needs of freshwater anglers, whether it’s for serious bass tournaments or weekend outings to load a cooler with speckled perch. Obviously, Ranger Boats are a good way to begin filling those needs. Kent envisions a separate building dedicated to fishing boats and accessories, with the most fishable aluminum boats on the market as well as the high-performance fiberglass bass boats every angler covets. “We’re bringing Ranger to Palatka,” Kent said. “We’re looking forward to getting involved by bringing Ranger pros down for open houses and the Ranger Cup Program, which pays tournament anglers for winning if they’re fishing from Ranger boats.” Beneath it all is the desire to earn the trust and friendships critical to a community dealership, and especially in the fishing industry. Kent tipped his hat to his staff for their success. “I owe it all to our staff,” he said. “Customer service is No. 1, and everyone on staff knows it. Each one of them operates as if they owned the place. “It’s not always about price,” he continued. “We always want to give everyone the best deal on the best boat for them. And part of that deal is the support. We want to provide the kind of service that makes customers want come back when it’s time to upgrade.” Check out Beach Blvd Motorsports at beachblvdmotorsports.com. The website for St. Johns Powersports is stjohnspowersports.com.

GREAT FISHING REQUIRES GREAT REST!

Boater’s Welcome! Capt. Mike McNamara

(850) 510-7919

or email redfish@stmarksoutfitters.com

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JANUARY 2019

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2 NORTH FLORIDA

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LAKE PANASOFFKEE • BUSHNELL • WILDWOOD • SUMTERVILLE • WEBSTER • THE VILLAGES • OXFORD MULBERRY • BARTOW • LAKELAND • POLK CITY • AUBURNDALE • EAGLE LAKE • WINTER HAVEN LAKE ALFRED • HAINES CITY • DAVENPORT • LAKE HAMILTON • DUNDEE • LAKE WALES HILLCREST HEIGHTS • FROSTPROOF • FORT MEADE

Owner: CAPT. MARY BRASHER

352-598-4219

MaryF@CoastalAnglerMagazine.Com

If you have a suggestion for a distribution location for Coastal Angler Magazine, please let me know. You can view all 35 magazines in the U.S., including The Bahamas, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico/Virgin Islands at www.CoastalAnglerMagazine.com Please feel free to send me any fishing photos and comments about the magazine-I would love to hear from you!

E dition Highlights & Business Spotlight

Page 2 Photo Of The Month Contest Winner

Page 6 Walden Shores Fishing Tournament Page 7 Fly Fishing 101

Page 8-9 Map Pages

Page 10-12 Local Business Page 16 Find Us Here

Welcome

ParGas Stretch Outdoors Discount Outfitters Oxford Mower & Repair Polk & Sumter Edition Staff: Sales, Editing & Production- Mary Brasher Graphic Arts & Design - PPP Graphic Design Distribution - Mary & Larry Brasher, Joyce & Capt Dave Ochs Media Mgr - Patrick Powers Contributing Writers - Capt Keith Mixon, Jim Veal Jr, Capt Dave Ochs, Ron Schelfo, Capt. Scott Taylor, Capt Eddie Perry, Capt Rick Burns, Chris O’Byrne, Capt Bobby Woodard, Hunter Towery

Facebook -CoastalAnglerMagazineLakelandVicinity • Twitter - @camlakeland • Instagram- camlakeland • Youtube- CAM Sumpter Lakeland Each month I will bring you the latest and best knowledge for you to put to good use. I also invite you to share my passion for this area and if you would like to become a contributing writer contact us. You can read our magazine online anytime or sign up for a free digital subscription. Just visit our website and never miss an issue! CoastalAnglerMag.com.

Best Fishing Days 1/9- EVENING 1/19 EVENING 1/20 EVENING

1 POLK & SUMTER | JANUARY 2019 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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INDIAN RIVER LAGOON FISHING FORECAST Happy new year! To begin with, I would like to wish everyone a safe and happy 2019. Living in this great state of Florida, we were blessed with so many opportunities to get out and enjoy the outdoors. One way to do this is to go fishing. Typically, the month of January can be one of the coldest month of the year according to most Floridians. As the cooler months are upon us, anglers will want to dress a little warmer before going out for a fun day on the water. Are you looking for some explosive top water action? Then look no further than the spotted sea trout. Large gator trout can provide some exciting action year round. Typically, these fish can be caught along the flats during the early morning or late evening hours when conditions are calm. Many of these trout will be in search of an easy meal such as small bait fish or shrimp. Typically, trout feed along the flats in 3 feet of water or less. Angler’s will want to fish their baits near schools of baitfish as well as near potholes. Did you know the trout have excellent eye sight and can be easily spooked? One way to overcome this is to make a long accurate cast to a targeted area. According to the FWC, spotted sea trout can be caught and harvested in our region year round. sea trout must be more than 15 inches in less than 20 inches total length. Angler’s may possess one over 20 inches included in the bag limit. Also Angler’s over to possess up to for trout per day. In addition, the redfish and black drum bite should be good. Redfish and black drum can be caught along channel drop offs, the flats, or even structures such as docks. One of my favorite areas to target black drum is the northern end of the Banana River. When targeting these fish anglers will want to use fresh cut bait such as mullet or ladyfish rigged onto a circle hook or live shrimp ridge on to a quarter ounce jig head. When conditions are calm several of these fish can be caught while casting to them. This is especially true along the flats. When targeting black drum anglers will want to keep their bait in front of a feeding fish. This can be done by casting the bait in front of the fish or allowing the bait to rest on the bottom along channel drop offs. The average length of black drum during this time of year is around 15 inches with an occasional larger fish. Submitted By: Capt. Keith Mixon Mixin' Work With Play Fishing Charters 321-212-8484

2 POLK & SUMTER | JANUARY 2019 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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LAKE ALFRED / AUBURNDALE / WINTER HAVEN FISHING FORECAST HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Believe it or not . . This is one of the BEST times of the year to go fishing. The months of January – February – March offer the best time of year for Speckled Perch. We are already seeing a lot of limits from ALL of our area lakes. As the weather continues to get colder, the recommended baits to use are Live Minnows and Yellow or White Jigs. In the Auburndale area our best reports are coming from Lake Juliana. Our Lake Alfred Lakes Haines, Rochelle, and Alfred are also reporting great results. Over in the South Winter Haven Chain our best reports are from Lakes Cannon, Shipp, May and ALL canals on the Chain . . The time to fish is NOW!! Even though this is prime Speckled Perch season . . Don’t rule out Bass fishing. NOW is also the time for those Big Bass we like to see. When going after Bass, our top (3) recommendations for baits at this time are . . Bass Assassin Boss Shiner Swim Baits in Assorted Colors – Fish Head Primal Vibe Swim Jigs – Booyah Lipless Crank Bait in Royalty Color. These are the baits that will make your day!! To zero in on those Big Bass, we recommend fishing along the shore line – not toward the shore. As the water gets colder you need to fish slower. We are seeing signs of Bass beginning to stage . . Looking for a place to bed. Inside “Tip from Ron” . . This year’s record of the most Big Bass in the 8 – 10 lb range has been reported from Lakes Rochelle and Alfred right here in Lake Alfred! Year after year with the cooler temperatures and higher water levels, Central Florida offers some of the very best fresh water fishing in Florida!! The 20th season of Ron’s Tackle Box Weekly Bass Tournaments has now ended. Our Bass Tournaments, whether weekly or special events provide for great fishing and fun!! . . Stay tuned for future developments DON’T FORGET . . Ron is always available for up-to-date fishing reports and locations, so come see him or give him a call! . . HAPPY FISHING IN 2019!! Submitted By: Ron Schelfo Owner RON’S TACKLE BOX, LLC 380 S. Lake Shore Way • Lake Alfred, FL 33850 863-956-4990 • www.ronstacklebox.com Check us out on FaceBook and “LIKE” our page. “Catch” my Weekly Fishing Report every Saturday (6-8 AM) on WFLA 970 AM

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JANUARY 2019

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PANA VISTA LODGE FISHING REPORT Looks like we are kind of in the middle of seasons. With the above normal temperatures this Fall the Shellcrackers and Bluegills continued a little later than usual. Late November and early December we had some pretty nice ones come in but the cooler weather in mid December put a little bit of a slow down on them. But, with the cooler weather we started seeing a few specs so hopefully by the first of the year they will kick in. The bass fishing has been pretty good lately with some fish in the 5 to 6 lb. range starting to hit. Plastic baits in the Watermelon and June Bug flavors seem to be doing good. I look for the live bait fishing to start picking up soon. The water has really cleared up and is looking good. With some normal Winter rains I’m expecting levels to be in good shape this year. Submitted By: Jim Veal Jr. Pana Vista Lodge • Lake Panasoffkee, Fl. 352-793-2061

Oxford Mower & Repair 3185 E Cty Rd 466 • Oxford Fl 34484 352-748-7485 M-F 8-5

Meet all your lawn care needs from power hand tools to zero-turn lawn mowers, stand on mowers, and walk behind mowers. Servicing Oxford & The Villages. Always Loyal Always Ready

CENTRAL FLORIDA FRESHWATER FLY FISHING REPORT Fly Fishing Heavy Cover Conditions: Good Surface Temp: 68f Clarity: Slightly Tannic 18-24-inches Guide Tip: For the most part the streamer bite has stayed hot with white size 6 Clouser Minnows or E.P brush flies in the shad color also with a size 6 hook. These are a year round staple in my fly box they are the perfect sized fly as they can catch everything that swims here in our lakes such as bass and bluegill to the more unique catches such as catfish and tilapia. All have been caught on these flies recently. The Clouser can be fished on either a floating or sinking line, but the E.P should be fished on a sinking line as the synthetic material repels water slowing the sink rate. Techniques: When the fish begin to school less as the water temp drops I begin to focus on what I call hard cover. This encompasses a variety of habitat that a lot of fly anglers overlook. Partially submerged timber warms quickly and this is especially important coming up when the water temps drop and the bite becomes more sporadic. There are limitations when using a fly rod in heavy cover, such as lifting power. My gear selection for this specialized type of fly fishing isn’t a whole lot different than fishing sparser cover like thinner grasslines, just slightly beefier. I prefer using a fly with a good weedguard like a mono loop or a v shaped guard. Throwing an open hook is a risky proposition just asking to get snagged. Also I like to run at least 1x tippet when targeting bass in these areas. The flies I use are usually pretty heavily weighted since I’m maintaining bottom contact the best I can. Some good flies are Clouser minnows or crawfish patterns in darker color patterns like black/purple, red/black, or purple/brown. Docks always hold fish and seem to be overlooked by some fly anglers, but they almost always hold active fish throughout the year. I recommend fishing them the same way as the submerged timber. Also focus on the dock post and remember to fish different angles on the dock, a couple cast isn’t usually enough. The topwater bite for bass has been ok when they are schooling or when fishing during the warmer days. The top producing colors have been orange and electric blue. I like to throw the poppers at the base of trees and slowly strip it back making sure to pause for several seconds during the retrieve.The bluegill have still been munching on worm flies and tungsten nymphs slowly crawled on the bottom. Topwater sprogs have worked well on warmer days fished near bullrushes. Yellow and chartreuse poppers have also been working especially when accompanied with a Hare’s Ear nymph as a dropper about 30 inches below. When fishing a popper dropper rig I like to use a lighter tippet usually 4x or 5x on the dropper fly so if you get hung you’ll only break off one fly instead of two. Tilapia have been being caught on small nymphs as a fun bycatch when panfishing. They are sticking close to the shore near the heavier grass and are a fun fight, they also like to eat worm flies Local Lake and River Levels: The fishing should stay good even through the weather shift. Lake levels are still dropping slowly. The Peace, Myakka, Hillsborough, and Withlacoochee Rivers are all at above average levels. With levels on the Econ and Kissimmee Rivers at below average levels. Submitted by: Hunter Towery Peace Creek Guide Service 863-837-7028

4 POLK & SUMTER | JANUARY 2019 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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CHARLOTTE HARBOR FISHING FORECAST The Snook bite has been fantastic on the warmer less windy days. These fish are feeding and moving towards their wintertime haunts. We’ve been catching them on live whitebait and have been targeting transitional areas from flats to the backwater and residential canals. Speaking of residential canals one of my favorite targets this time of year is Sheepshead. I fish for them using live shrimp or fiddler crabs on small circle hooks with just enough weight to get the bait down to the fish. When fishing residential canals, I look for the pilings that have the most growth on them. Those are the oldest ones and typically will hold good numbers of fish. I also fish for Sheepshead around seawalls, rock piles and bridges. Anchoring up current and drifting a live shrimp or fiddler crab back in the current is a productive way to get a bite. Another Winter target is Speckled Trout. I like to drift grass flats in the 3-6ft depth range. I especially like flats that have a mix of grass and white sand potholes. I like to use live shrimp under a popping cork although a soft plastic lure on a jig head or a white bucktail jig are also productive. This month’s focus is on rod and reels, so I would like to share with how I outfit my boat for general flats fishing in the Tampa Bay and Charlotte Harbor estuaries. To keep it easy to understand we’ll go from light to medium to heavy. My light combos are 8ft 8-17lb spinning rods with Daiwa BG 3500 reels spooled with 15lb Daiwa JBraid 8x and 20lb fluorocarbon leader. My medium combos are 8ft 15-30lb spinning rods with Daiwa BG 4500 reels spooled with 30lb Daiwa JBraid 8x and 3040lb fluorocarbon leader. My heavy combos are 8ft 20-40lb spinning rods with Daiwa Saltist 6500 reels spooled with 50lb Daiwa JBraid 8x

and 60-80lb fluorocarbon leader. I usually also have at least one conventional rod on the boat which is 7.5ft 20-50lb rod with a Daiwa Saltist LD50 2 speed reel spooled with 50lb mono and 80lb fluorocarbon leader. However, you choose to outfit your boat it will be beneficial to have a variety of rods and reels available and rigged for whatever fishing opportunities are presented to you that day. I have select dates available for spring inshore fishing charters and have begun to book tarpon charters for the upcoming season. Tarpon dates are filling quickly. If you’d like an opportunity to fish in the Tarpon Capital of the World for the greatest inshore fish that swims call me now. Capt. Bobby Woodard www.Captain-Bobby.com 863-224-1418

1916 US Hwy 98 N Lakeland, FL 33805

9003 E. St Rd 44 Wildwood, FL 34785

Sales: M-F 9-5:30 • Sat 9-4 PARTS-SERVICE: M-F 8:30-5:30 • SAT 9-4

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Enjoy Winter Fishing In Our Newest & Best Produced Line Of Boats 2019 Sea Pro 228 DLX Bay

863-802-0543

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WWW.OLDSALTMARINE.COM COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JANUARY 2019

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CENTRAL FLORIDA REGION FORECAST First, Paula and I would like to say Happy New Year and wish everyone the very best for 2019. We truly hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas or Hanukkah with family and friends. This year was different for us, for the first time in a long time we did not have any of our friends or family in town trying to escape the cold, so it was quieter than usual. But the bonus was we ran a lot of trips so new guests Our latest Trophy Catch qualifier with an and friends could enjoy the incredible bass fish- program 8lb 15oz bass. ing that we have to offer here. It seems that this December was unusually cold compared to recent memory, but maybe that’s just the arthritis barking at me more. We had more arctic cold fronts blow down every 3-5 days lasting roughly 48-72 hours each time, and it kept repeating, and repeating, and repeating... It was like our own personal version of “Ground Hog Day” each week, and it got old fast. It made me reminiscent of Christmas ‘15 when it was still in the 80’s, lakes were low-to-mid 70’s and the bass were on a HUGE feeding frenzy... The good ol’ days. So, on to January and what we’ll be facing here trying to catch these beautiful Florida black bass. First, the Farmer’s Almanac is calling for a slightly warmer weather pattern this month. If the temps just hold consistent and stay around the upper 60’s to low-mid 70’s in the day without regular big swings and ditches at night, the fish will be “Happy.” On the Winter Haven South Chain and other lakes around town I’m going to spending a lot of time around the intermediate grass lines in 6’12’ of water finding staging fish that are actively feeding. I’m not saying this is the only place to fish, but this is the zone I focus on and catch a lot of fish which makes guests “Happy” when they go home with awesome memories and lots of pictures of fish & smiles. Trips, as usual, will consist of throwing artificial baits on the front deck of our 220 Viper while giving shiners swimming lessons off the back of the boat, actively searching for feeding fish. Artificial baits will be the usual allotment of senkos, flukes, swim-baits, grubs, jerk baits and Pop-R’s. Fishing out of Camp Mack, a Guy Harvey Lodge, Marina & RV Resort on the Kissimmee Chain of Lakes we’re really hoping for stable temperatures and a lack of winds out of the North. If we can have those two simple conditions then the fishing should be great up on the multiple flats with vegetation and adjacent to “deeper” water drop-offs. I’m going to have gear to cover all situations out here from Gambler EZ-Swimmers, to swim jigs I can flip or cast long distances, to senkos & speed worms. Unless you see fish busting bait up really shallow, set down on the outside grass and work your way until you find the fish.

KISSIMMEE CHAIN FISHING FORECAST The new year is upon us once again and like most of us I have made a resolution to FISH MORE and WORK LESS! I doubt that’s going to work out too well, but a little WISHFUL thinking doesn’t hurt a thing. One thing I am sure of is that this is going to be a harsh Winter for cold fronts- count on it. This is very good news for the Crappie anglers- for Bass anglers, it is not going to be so good. Look for the Crappie to bunch up into large schools this Winter and to stay in deeper water. During daylight hours, longline trolling beetle spins and roadrunners tipped with minnows at 7-9’ of depths in 10-14’ of water. White or chartreuse or a combination of red and white should be pretty consistent colors to use this Winter. Canals are your best bet, but on days when you have winds over 15mph a slipcork rigged set at 7’ with a minnow should be fairly effective. For the Fall Bass anglers this Winter on the Kissimmee Chain, Ihave two words for you, “Good Luck”. There are so many variables this Winter, to accurately forecast the movement and spinning pattern of the Bass is going to be nearly impossible. Low water levels, rapid changing water temperatures, multiple cold fronts, windy days, bad water clarity and constant spraying of aquatic vegetation is all an ugly equation! My best guess would be the Bass will move offshore in open water or to the deeper water in the canals. It would not surprise me if the Bass spawn in 6-10’ of water this Winter. Crank baits and shiners should be your best bet this Winter. Slow falling soft plastics in the canals should work pretty good under the forecast conditions. Submitted By: Capt Dave Ochs Waters Edge Fish Camp 10730 Camp Mack Rd • Lake Wales, Fl 863-589-6295

Submitted By: Capt. Scotty Taylor TMC Guide Services, llc • 855-354-8433 Scott@TMCGuideService.com • TMCGuideService.com Capt. Scott is the official guide for VisitCentralFlorida.org & Guy Harvey Camp Mack Lodge, Marina & RV Resort

6 POLK & SUMTER | JANUARY 2019 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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Souvenirs 2

(See the Nov. 2018 column, Souvenirs 1)

Bits of the Fantasy We Left By: Chris O’Byrne

This is connected to the November 2018 Destinations piece. However we define it, souvenirs become prized companions. Here are favorites of several fly fishing notables. Allen Wyatt with inscribed editions from fly fishing heroes.

This vintage gear is part of Bill Reynolds’s impressive collection My happy distraction

Recipes hold memories for Drew Chicone

Phil Pope treasures flies by Jack Gartside

Chicone’s travel journal/cook book/autograph book Dave Whitlock supplemented his book for Wyatt

The author is grateful to Allen Wyatt and Phil Pope of the Andy Thornal Co., Drew Chicone of Saltyflytying.com, Bill Reynolds of LeadFeather Guns & Archery, and Mary Flaitz Brasher of Coastal Angler Magazine.

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JANUARY 2019

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1-Capt. Keith Mixon 321-212-8484 290 Marine Harbor Dr. • Merritt Island, FL 32953 www.MixinWorkWithPlay.com

22- Off The Wall Adventures 863-709-9253 2055 Shepherd Rd. • Lakeland, FL 33811 www.OffTheWallAdventures.com

2-Capt. Rick Burns 352-201-6111 8975 W. Halls River Rd • Homosassa, FL 34448 www.RealBurns.com

23- Erwine’s Marine 863-635-4492 250 S. Scenic Hwy • Frostproof, FL 33843 www.ErwinesMarine.com

3-Capt. Shawn Ralulerson 863-860-8502 CaptShawnFishing.com

24- Canada Meds 352-569-1484 512 N Main St • Bushnell, FL 33513-5112

4-Capt Dave Ochs Waters Edge Fish Camp 863-589-6295 10730 Camp Mack Rd • Lake Wales, Fl 33538

25- Action Watersports 863-967-4148 402 Progress Rd • Auburndale, FL 33823 www.ActionWatersports.net

5-Capt. Scott Taylor 855-354-8433 Official Guide for VisitCentralFlorida.org & Camp Mack’s River Resort Scott@TMCGuideService.com 6-Overdue Adventures 863-559-4480 Auburndale, FL 33823 7- Pana Vista Lodge 352-793-2061 3417 Co Rd 421• Lake Panasoffkee, FL 33538 www.panavistalodge.com 8-Champs Sports Grill 863-647-5900 6645 S. Florida Ave • Lakeland, FL 33813 www.ChampsToGo.com 9-Stone’s Bait & Tackle 863-940-4898 2049 E Edgewood Drive • Lakeland, FL 33803 10-Hurricane’s Grill& Wings 863-324-5157 6370 Cypress Gardens Blvd • Winter Haven, FL 33884 www.HurricaneWings.com 11- Waters Edge Of Lake Wales 863-678-6800 10 W Grove Ave • Lake Wales, FL 33853 www.watersedgefishcamp.com 12-Fun Bike Center 863-688-3333 1845 E Memorial Blvd • Lakeland, FL 33801 www.funbikecenter.com 13-Guy Harvey Camp Mack Lodge, Marina & RV Resort 863-696-1108 14900 Camp Mack Rd • Lake Wales, FL 33898 www.GuyHarveyCampMack.com

26- Marine Supply of Winter Haven 863-297-7003 1700 3rd St SW • Winter Haven, FL 33880 www.MarineSupplyBoats.com 27- Hoppy’s Marine 863-439-7616 31499 Highway 27 • Haines City, FL 33844 www.HoppysMarine.com 28- Gary’s Boating Center 863-638-0537 15520 Highway 27 • Lake Wales, FL 33859 www.GarysBoating.com 29- Jimbo’s Restaurant & Fish Camp 965 County Road 439 • Lake Panasoffkee, FL 33538 30- Polk Tractor 863-967-0651 3450 Havendale Blvd NW • Winter Haven, FL 33881 www.PolkTractorco.com 31- Spurlows 863-635-0240 1264 N Broadway Ave • Bartow, FL 33830 SpurlowsOutdoorOutfitters.com 32- RKY Seafood 863-294-2300 175 Ave A NW • Winter Haven, FL 33881 www.RKYSeafood.com 33- Interstate Battery 863-666-8787 2855 US Hwy 92E • Lakeland, FL 33801 www.InterstateBatteries.com 34- Jeffords Airboats 863-956-3030 1850 Hwy 92W • Winter Haven, FL 33881

14-Bridgemasters 863-676-1009 2131 FL-60 • Lake Wales, FL 33898 www.Bridge-Masters.com

35- Cypress Inlet 855-449-7666 2600 W Lake Eloise Dr • Winter Haven, FL 33884 www.cypressinlet.com

15-Catfish Johnnys 863-793-2083 2396 N County Rd 470 • Lake Panasoffkee, FL 33538 www.CatfishJohnnyRestaurant.com

36- Millers Fiberglass 863-551-1551 1505 Lake Shipp Dr, Winter Haven, FL 33880 www.facebook.com/Millers-Fiberglass-Repair-157407427716301

16-Phillips Bait & Tackle 863-666-2248 3780 US-92 • Lakeland, FL 33801 www.CentralFloridaTrollingMotor.com

37- Big Fish Bait & Tackle 863-815-9492 6908 US Hwy 98 North • Lakeland FL 33809 wwww.CentralFloridaAngling.com

17-Peace Creek Guides 863-837-7028 336 Magnolia Ave • Winter Haven, FL 33880

38- Whirly Bait 352-443-0245 Lake Panasoffkee FL 33538 www.whirlybait.com

18-Lake Panasoffkee Realty 352-568-0568 P.O. Box 1099 154 CR 470 • Lake Panasoffkee, FL 33538 www.lakepanrealty.com 19-Ron’s Tackle Box,LLC 863-956-4990 380 S. Lake Shore Way • Lake Alfred, FL 33850 www.ronstacklebox.com 20-Fly Em High Charters 863-224-1418 Capt Bobby Woodard 6499 Gasparilla Rd • Placida, FL 33946 www.Captain-Bobby.com

39-Hillman Motors Inc. 863-967-4628 2701 Havendale Blvd. NW • Winter Haven FL 33881 www.hillmanmotors.net 40- LineX Of Lakeland 863-581-9173

3000 State Road 37 S. • Mulberry, FL 33860 www.linexoflakeland.com

21- Old Salt Marine 863-802-0543 1916 Us Hwy 98 •North Lakeland, FL 33805 www.OldSaltMarine.com 8 POLK & SUMTER | JANUARY 2019 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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Support Your Local Businesses!

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Boat/Personal Watercraft/Canoe/Kayak/SUP Dealers Manufacturers/ New & Consignment Sales/Realtors Hillman Motors Inc. 2701 Havendale Blvd. NW Winter Haven FL 33881 863-967-4628 • www.hillmanmotors.net M-F 9-7, Sat 9-5 Closed Sunday

Millers Fiberglass Repair 1505 S. Lake Shipp Dr. Winter Haven, FL 33880 863-551-1551 bobby.mfr@gmail.com We Now Have A Certified Marine Technician Offering Service Repair On Outboard Motors. Your ONE STOP-SHOP For All Your Fiberglass Needs! . Family Run & Operated Since 2003 . Our Team is Certified In Gelcoat & Polyflake Repairs. No Job Is Too Big Or Too Small.

Our Family Serving Yours Since 1989 Central Florida’s Official Stingray Boats Dealer Factory Authorized Suzuki Marine Dealer Financing Available Gary’s Boating Center 15520 Hwy 27 • Lake Wales, FL 33859 863-638-0537 • 863-638-0527 Fax www.GarysBoating.com Carolina Skiff Mercury & Yamaha Outboards Bennington Boats Hewitt Boat Lifts & Dock Systems

Central Florida Trolling Motor Sales & Repairs

3780 Hwy 92 East • Lakeland, FL 33801 863-666-2248 • Fax 863-667-0213 cftm3780@yahoo.com www.CentralFloridaTrollingMotor.com

COME CHECK OUT OUR NEW ROUNDABOUT BOATS!

Check out our weekly specials on facebook! Factory Warranty Service for Minn-Kota Cannon Downriggers- Motor Guide

Marine Supply of Winter Haven 717 6th Street SW • 1491 3rd SW (Sales) Winter Haven, FL 33880 863-293-1156 www.MarineSupplyBoats.com Fully Certified Yamaha, Mercury & Evinrude Technicians. Boat Acc. & Engine Parts - High & Dry Storage - Boat Detailing - Gasoline At Our Docks. Full Line of Yeti Products, Pontoon Rentals

Erwine’s Marine 250 S. Scenic Hwy • Frostproof, FL 33843 863-635-4492 www.ErwinesMarine.com Come in to check out our new line of Lowe's Jon Boats

Old Salt Marine 1916 Us Hwy 98 North • Lakeland, FL 33805 9003 E. St Rd. 44 •Wildwood, FL 34785 Ph: 863-802-0543 • Fax: 863-688-3954 See all our models on www.OldSaltMarine.com

Pana Vista Lodge 3417 Co Rd 421 • Lake Panasoffkee, FL 33538 352-793-2061 www.panavistalodge.com Cottages - Rv Camp Ground Hook-Ups - Camping - Boat Sales & Service. JohnsonEvinrude Motors Sales & Service. Boat Rentals Pontoon Rentals - Licenses - Bait - Ice - Gas Ramp

Sea Ark - Salty Boats - Stumpnocker - Sea Pro Misty Harbor Pontoons. Outboard Motors - Evinrude - Yamaha - Suzuki.

Stumpnocker By Salty Boats 1916 Us Hwy 98 North • Lakeland, FL 33805 Ph: 352-748-1161 • Fax: 863-688-3954 See all our models on Stumpnockerboats.com From Flat Bottom Models For Shallow Water Fishing To The Semi-V Series For Skinny Water Fishing, You’ll Find The Perfect Boat From Stumpnocker.™

Paddleboard Winter Haven 863-845-5307 www.paddleboardwinterhaven.com

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Action Watersports 402 Progress Rd • Auburndale, FL 33823 Ph: 863-967-4148 The brands we offer: Hobie • Jackson • RTM Perception • Feel Free • Wilderness Systems Ocean Kayak • Old Town • Hurricane • Kiwi • Solo Skiff • Evoke • Pau Hana • Amundsen are all leaders in the Kayak, Fishing, and Stand Up Paddle Board industries. Our accessories are sure to make your water experience more fun and safe.

LINE X

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LineX Of Lakeland 3000 State Road 37 S. • Mulberry, FL 33860 863-581-9173 WWW.LINEXOFLAKELAND.COM

• Truck Bedliners With Nationwide Lifetime Warranty • Marine Applications We are a mobile business with access • Industrial JANUARY 2019 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM Lessons • Tours • Rentals New & Used Sales

10 POLK & SUMTER |

Yamaha - Evinrude - Mercury - MerCruiser Volvo Penta - Avalon - Magic Tilt - Exide Technologies Power-Pole - Teleflex Marine Starcraft Marine - Engel Coolers & Tumblers

to the beautiful chain of lakes.

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Bait & Tackle Shops/Outfitters/Apparel

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Taylor Made Charters & Guide Service Central Florida & Great Lakes Bass Fishing Capt. Scott Taylor USCG Licensed Captian The Official Guide for VisitCentralFlorida.Org & Guy Harvey Camp Mack Lodge, Marina & RV Resort Scott@TMCGuideService.com 855-354-8433 Bridgemasters 2131 Highway 60 E • Lake Wales, FL 33898 Phone: 863-676-1009 • Fax: 863-679-1638 www.TheBridgmaster.com

10% Off

Quantum Reels • Reaper Rods Halo Rods

Stretch Outdoors Discount Outfitters 848 W Daughtery Rd. • Lakeland, FL 33389 863-608-1513

Come check out our new Lew’s and Abu Garcia fishing reels. Great selection of Why Not colors and all of your favorite Gambler lure baits.

Guy Harvey Camp Mack Lodge, Marina & RV Resort 14900 Camp Mack Rd • Lake Wales, Fl 33898

863-696-1108 www.GuyHarveyCampMack.com

Always Good Fishing - Airboat Nature Tours RV Camping - Trophy Bass Fishing - Cabin Rentals Liars Motel - Home Sales

Phillips Bait & Tackle 3780 Hwy. 92E • Lakeland, FL 33801 863-666-2248 www.PhillipsTackle.com cftm3780@yahoo.com

Ron’s Tackle Box The Old Angler’s Antique Gallery 380 S. Lake Shore Way • Lake Alfred, FL 33850 863-956-4990 • Fax 863-956-2525 imareellady2@aol.com

Live Bait: Cricket - Worms - Minnows - Shiners. Full Line Of Tackle - Tackle Boxes - Rods & Reels

Live Bait & Tackle - Cast Nets - Sportswear Gifts & Decor Mon - Th 6AM - 6PM • Fri & Sat 6AM - 7PM

Stones Bait & Tackle 2049 E Edgewood Drive • Lakeland, Fl 33803 863-940-4898 Instagram: Stones Outhouse Follow us on Facebook & Instagram

Rod & Reel Repairs - Fishing Rods - Reels Tackle Apparel & Accesorries - Costa - Yeti Coolers St.Croix - G-Looomis - OluKai - Abu Garcia Shimano - NEW Exage & Talavera - Bruiser Baits GRT Jigs - Zoom - Gambler - Power Pole Breathe Like A Fish

Big Fish Bait & Tackle 6908 US Hwy 98 North • Lakeland Fl 33809 863-815-9492 wwww.CentralFloridaAngling.com Bob Woodard-Owner Live Bait- Rod & Reel Repairs

Capt. Rick Burns Reel Burns Charters Homosassafishingguide.com 352-201-6111

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Wild Shiners • Minnows •Worms • Crickets • Fishing Tackle Trophy Bass Fishing Trophy Replica Mounts, Custom Rods & Repair Captain Dave Ochs 10730 Camp Mack Road . Lake Wales, Fl 863-589-6295 Overdue Adventures FL. “Cracker” Fishing Style Family Fishing, Shore Lunches, Waterside Dining Snorkeling Trips, Scalloping Trips, Egmont Key Day Trips Capt. Daryl Brown First Mate: Joy Brown 518 Main Street • Auburndale, FL 33823 863-559-4480 Fly’Em High Charters

Scalloping Charter

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Capt. Bobby Woodard www.Captain-Bobby.com 863-224-1418 USCG. Licensed Tarpon, Snook, Grouper

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JANUARY POLK & Trips SUMTER 11 Redfish,2019 Trout, Scallop

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CAM Polk/Sumter Top Picks For Best Places To Catch The Game Idlezone

Duke’s Brewhouse- Lakeland

44960 Florida Ave. S • Lakeland, FL 33813 863)647-9464

615 7th St SW • Winter Haven, FL 33880 863-875-7949 Mon- Thurs 11am–9pm-Fri & Sat 12pm–2am Sun 12pm–9pm

The Best Place For Wings & Beer. Check out our various types of locally brewed beer. Come try our “JUMBO” chicken wings in our signature sauces. Handcrafted premium beef Duke’s burgers. Just the simple laid back country atmosphere you’d expect. Now on Google. Follow us on Instagram.

Bar & Grill. Bar games. Happy hour food. Late night food. The perfect watering hole after a long day on the water. Both inside and outside seating.

Live music on most weekends. Gator’s Dockside

Brewlands Bar & Billiards 5733 S Fl Ave Lakeland, Fl 33813 863-646-2600 24 Beers on Draft. Over 50 Bottled Craft & Import Beers. Full Liquor Bar .”Hand-picked” Wine List Great Beer-Superior TablesIncredible Atmosphere-FREE Billiard Lessons (on weekends)-Darts-20 Big Screen TV’sFantastic Food!

5147 US-98 • Lakeland, FL 33812 863-619-7619 www.gatorsdockside.com Happy Hour M-F 3-7 20% Off All Alcohol & Boneless Wings .Lunch Specials M-F 11-3 .Best Grilled Wings In Florida .First Class Sports Bar .Biggest Big Screens .Scrumptious Entrees, Sandwiches, Burgers, Wraps, Salads, Ribs, Unbelievable Desserts!

Hurricane Grill & Wings

Wing House

6370 Cypress Gardens Blvd Winter Haven, FL 33884 863-324-5157 www.HurricaneWings.com Offering 14 Seafood Entrees Try Our New Havanah Cuban Sandwich. Add Your Favorite Flavor To Any Menu Item Including Our Wings! Tropical Drinks • Ice Cold Drafts & Import Beers • Local Craft Beers • Wine

4515 S Florida Ave • Lakeland, FL 33813 863-646-0303 www.winghouse.com Monday All-You-Can-Eat Wings 5- Close . Fantasy Football Draft Parties. Bottomless Bonesless Wings Wednesdays .Open For Lunch & Dinner With A Full Service Bar, Wide Selection of Liquor Cocktails, Major Domestic,Imported & Specialty Beers, Your

House For All WWE PPV Events!

Champs Sports Grill 6645 Florida Ave S • Lakeland, FL 33813 863-647-5900 www.champstogo.com Cold Beer • Great Food • Good Times Family Fun • Best Wings In Town • Dine In or Take Out • 23 TV’S Featuring: Nascar NFL Sunday Ticket • SEC ESPN Network MLB • CBS College Sports • Big Ten Network

Somewhere Sports Bar & Grill 5688 Cypress Gardens Blvd. Winter Haven, Fl 33884 863-324-7524

Davenport’s Ale House

MoJo’s Wings, Burgers, Beer

1260 Posner Blvd • Davenport, FL 33837 863-420-8000 www.davensportsalehouse.com $.69 Wings All Day Every Monday • Kids Eat FREE Every Tuesday • Hospitality Night Every Wednesday 9-close 15% Off Tab!! All Day Every Day: $2 Wells • $3 Doubles • $2.50 Landshark & Amber Bock • $3 Shock Top • Bud • Bud Light • Mich Ultra • Miller Lt • Coors Lt Drafts • $4 Stella • Goose IPA $4 Wine

Mon-TH, SUN 11am-12pm FRI & SAT 11am-2pm Take Reservations, Walk-Ins Welcome, Good For Groups, Good For Kids, Take Out, Waiter Service, Outdoor Seating

1853 E Memorial Blvd Lakeland Fl 33801 863-583-9119 facebook.com/lakelandmojos M-TH, SUN 11am-11pm • FRI-SAT 11am-12am Locally Owned & Operated EAT, DRINK & GET MOJO’D!

COLDEST BEER IN LAKELAND • BIKER’S NIGHTEVERY WEDNESDAY. Award Winning Wings 1/2# Ground Sirloin Burger • Indoor & Outdoor Bar Outdoor Patio • Best Daily Happy Hour • Great Daily Specials For Lunch & Dinner. Order online!

San Diegos Mexican Grill & Sport Bar All Star Grill 2019 State Road 60E • Lake Wales, FL 3388 1300 3rd St SW • Winter Haven, 33880 863-679-9689 863-268-6815 - facebook.com/House-ofWings-1185199374843017/ Hours: Sun-Thu 11am-11pm • Fri-Sat 11am-1am Draft Beer 2-4-1 All Day Everyday! A Family Sports Bar. We Look Forward To Seeing House Margarita and Sangria You! 2 For 1 3pm-7pm Everyday. Family owned. Full Sit Down Diningroom. Full Tuesday Wings $.79. Bar With Televisions. Full Menu. Pool Tables. Kids Eat FREE Every Thursday 12 POLK & SUMTER | JANUARY 2019 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM Darts. Games and even a Jukebox! With A Purchase Of An Adult Meal. CAM Jan 2019.indd 12

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Sales: M-F 9-5:30 • Sat 9-4 PARTS-SERVICE: M-F 8:30-5:30 • SAT 9-4 1916 US Hwy 98 N • Lakeland, FL 33805

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WILL THERE BE WILLFUL WINTER TIME SPECIES Happy 2019 everybody!!! And to answer the article title, sure there will be. A lot of folks think oh, here it is January, middle of the Winter, cold water, and no fish to be caught. Well, that couldn’t be further from the truth. These cold-blooded creatures still have to eat, just not as much. I know I’m beating a dead horse or may even be preaching to the choir, but practice patience and slow retrieves. Think about it, these fish don’t hop on an airplane when it gets cold or go extinct! They’re still around. Just maybe not in the same place as you found them in the spring or fall. And it can be better when you do find them because they’re schooled up. Along our Nature Coast area there are plenty of Jim Fredrickson, places with plenty of willing species to be caught (husband) wasn't to be outdone, showing his during January. Let’s take a few and see. trout as well. Trout They have come in from the surrounding deeper flats and have gotten into real shallow hard bottom water where it’s going to warm up the fastest. I’m talking 12”, 18”, to 24” of water. They will be concentrated in these shallow areas between islands and keys to protect themselves from the wind, get a few degree warmer water temp, and be on nearby bait supplies. Rig and utilize something weedless like jerkbaits in your favorite color, or just a jig and plastic worked on the bottom. You want something that’s not too bulky as to have a soft landing, so as not to spook your fish into another zip code. Particularly this time of year when the Jackie Fredrickson from water can be calm and crystal clear. Mangrove snapper Citrus County with a nice cold water trout. These awesome tasting little panfish of the sea will be up in the rivers in and around springs and warm water spots, like dock holes, seawalls and such. They can school up by the hundreds just waiting for somebody to toss em a tidbit of shrimp on a number #4 hook with some split shot pinched above it. Mullet This “chicken of the sea” will also be schooled up in the rivers by the thousands. They also seek the warmer protected waters of the rivers. Cast netting them where applicable or using hook and line will bring you in a mess of the fine cracker staple. For conventional, utilize a #4 hook with a sliver of white plastic grub on it. And a piece of very light split shot pinched above. Chum up the area where you’ve seen some swimming by with a mixture of oatmeal and laying mash. Toss your rig in the middle of the chum and what you’re doing is fooling them into thinking it’s the chum. Sheepshead Some sheepshead will also be meandering around in the same area like seawalls and dock pilings with the previous 2 species, but for the most part they’ll be congregated on and around the inshore oyster bars and near shore rock piles in anticipation of the spawn. Here again, the best bet for these jokers (notorious bait stealing convict wannabes) is to anchor up from a bar or rock pile and chum up the area a little with some cut up pieces of shrimp. Then, the rig as mentioned before, a short shank stout #2 hook with a half of shrimp attached and a heavy enough piece of split shot weight to ease it down to em. Like I’m sure you’ve been told before, if you think he’s looking at it, don’t take no prisoners, set the hook! These are a little harder fish to operate on at the fillet table, but well worth it. Excellent table fare! Reds These hard pulling bulldogs of the flats will be more than happy to oblige on your offering. They will also be lingering in small schools around the island points, cuts and little cove pockets. We will have a lack of rain, so the water will be clearer, the tides lower, and the red fishing will make for some of the best sight casting of the whole year. And when these fish like the others are in schools, and there is lack of bait food, and they are competing for a meal when they’re hungry, all you have to do is get it in front of em. They’ll usually crash on it. Best bet is a fresh chunk of mullet you caught earli-

er, or some fresh shrimp. Don’t forsake a good chunk of fresh lady fish either. They love it. And there should also be plenty of them to catch in the same surrounding vicinity. If it’s not unbearable on your planned trip, get out and enjoy some these good eating, hard fighting willing participants. See ya on the water. Submitted By: Capt. Rick Burns Reel Burns Charters Homosassafishingguide.com www.reelburns.com • 352-201-6111

Colorado resident, Bernie Ramanaskas fooled this beautiful Homosassa Redfish during this cold water time with the long rod.

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JANUARY 2019

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L E A S S E R V E E T NT IN W With Special Offers For the 2019 Boat Show Season Your Suzuki Marine Dealer has exceptional deals in store for you when you purchase a new Suzuki outboard from 25 to 350 horsepower during the winter Boat Show Season. Get Suzuki’s 3-Year Limited Warranty plus 3 years of Extended Protection at no extra charge.There are Instant Savings on select models, and Low-Rate Financing is also available. See your participating Suzuki Marine dealer for all the details.

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