We’ll that’s what Steve aka Mr. Perfect would say on most days! When possible, he will hop on a friend’s boat, get in his kayak, on the paddle board or just walk right up to the water and drop a line. He doesn’t seem to care if he actually catches a fish. Don’t get me wrong, Steve wants to catch a fish…. he is just happy being on or near the water. He is as likely to give the fish a kiss and send it swimming on its way instead of bringing it home for us to eat.
Of course, Steve was meant to live in Florida where the waters of the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean surround the state, many beautiful rivers run through it and the aquifers run under the sandy ground. (Check out the Top 10 rivers of Florida)
Steve caught his first fish off the sea wall in Coffee Pot Bayou in St Petersburg – it was a Red fish. That was the beginning of it all! As soon as he learned to ride a bicycle, Steve and a friend would ride down to the Green Dock near his home in South Tampa, where the locals fished for mullet. Their system included chumming the water with a mix of stale bread and salt water…the mullet came swimming! The boys baited their hooks with a small piece of salt pork and caught fish all day.
Steve has many favorite spots to fish, here are a few:
- Mullet Key at Fort DeSoto. – This is an easy place to get to and the area is full of amazing nature to enjoy while you are fishing. It never gets old. While in the area, visit Tampa Bay Watch, what they do to conserve Florida nature is amazing. You may even find that you would like to become a member.
- Jupiter Offshore – It is incredible! The Gulf Stream is just offshore and brimming with fish. You should be able to count on catching a beautiful sail fish, dolphin, Marlin or wahoo to name a few.
- The Florida Keys – The water is crystal clear and provide some of the best fishing in the world. All the way from Key West to Islamorada there are great places to stay, lots of charter boats and beautiful water. If you do go fishing in the Keys, dedicate a half day to taking a trip out to Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary, 10 miles south of Ramrod Key in the Atlantic Ocean. No fishing here, but you don’t want to miss the opportunity to snorkel or dive to see the most beautiful protected coral reef in the world. This reef has millions of fish, lobster, moray eels, barracuda, shark, tarpon, turtles, rays; it’s like swimming in an aquarium. This coral reef contain the most diverse fish assemblages to be found anywhere on earth. You can see where the ocean turns from the many shades of green to the deep ink blue of the Atlantic.
Never fished before? Here are a few suggestions to help you get started:
- Visit any local bait shop – they will be happy to share what they know.
- Check out local fishing clubs like … O’Briens Fishing Club (they are on FB too) “You don’t have to be a member to attend meetings or fish in their tournaments.“
- Rent a boat on the Homosassa River at MacRaes! – From MacRaes it is easy access to the gulf, fish the grasslands and then come back up the river – to view manatees that reside there from October to April.
- Another option is to join a boat club, like Carefree Boat Club, Freedom Boat Club and Club Seaworthy to name a few in Tampa Bay.
- Charters boats are a great way to get out on the water and fish! The choices are endless.
There are people all over our great country, maybe stuck in a snow drift, that dream about coming to Florida to go fishing and we get to live that dream anytime we want.
By the way, if you love the water and are looking for a place to live in Tampa, Camden Bay just might be your dream come true. There are so many floor plans to choose from, an amazing staff to take care of you and drum roll please…fenced in boat parking, apartments on the canal, a boat ramp, and kayak racks! Camden Bay is surrounded by mangroves on two sides that are brimming with wildlife. You can take your boat from the canal through the mangroves, into Old Tampa Bay and all the way to the gulf.
Click on the links in this blog to get even more information about fishing in the Tampa Bay Area and all of Florida. Then post your best fishing photo in response to my blog!
Now go fishin’!