Week of 10/15/19
Surface Temp: 79f
Clarity: Slightly Tannic 27-inches
This is an all day event to learn the basics of fly fishing. For the last 25 years, we have taught over 100 students the art of fly casting and how to catch fish on a fly rod. Head Instructor, Chris O'Byrne will lead casting instruction for Mountain stream, Saltwater Flat, and pond/ lake. Inside, we hav instruction on flies, knots, and equipment. We supply the gear and cater lunch. Register now, seats (and rods) are limited.-> https://www.andythornal.com/products/fly-fishing-school
The shad will begin to school in the mid areas of the lake. It will be obvious as there will be action on the surface. Bass will find these schools. Fish the edges of the schools with patterns from 1 to 3 inches. You will need to motor up to the schools as they appear for only a minute or two before diving for submerged hydrilla. You will find this action in the mornings and early evenings. Frog patterns are still good in the shallow weeds and lilies. Push as close to shore from a boat, or fish from shore. Get out a stiff rod, stout leader and make sure you use frog flies with a weed guard. This is the time of year when some of the old-timer-live-bait anglers start net dipping grass shrimp. Blue gill can key into grass shrimp and become selective. Try grass shrimp (scuds) in a dropper rig, a tandem rig, or a tripler. This will be a go-to around Kissimmee grass for Bluegill.
Best techniques for the week include 1) Popper/dropper tandem rig for panfish. Using foam body poppers or hoppers, attach a dropper underneath- Grass Shrimp/Scud pattern or beadhead pheasant tail-these should hang 3 to 5 feet off the floater. Technique 2) The smaller bass are cruising with the moderate weather. Anglers should work the edges early and late in the day. Clousers in white, baby bluegill, baby bass, olive, or black, should be worked as far into the weed lines as you dare. Cruising crappie (Specs for the locals) are taking small baitfish patterns next to weedlines. Technique 3) Sinking lines with deep baitfish (EP Everglades Special, EP Shad, or Choklett's Game Changer) should be fished 20-30 ft off the weedlines during the day as Bass are staging for shallower water in 5ft - 8ft of water. This is an opportunity to air out your longest cast as it is all blind casting.
Cruising bass and specs will be shallow and near the weedlines. Small black and small white minnow patterns will be good. In addition, watch for schooling shad in the mornings and late afternoon. Buck size bass fishing should be excellent. Try grass shrimp in the Kissimmee grass and cattails. Bluegill should continue to be excellent. Winds will be moderate, increasing in the afternoon. Chance of rain is low for several days, then scattered showers on the weekend. Pressure will fall until the weekend. Waning from a full moon (Oct 13th.) Spec fishing is going to be good as they are cruising grass lines. They will push to mid lake for spawning when the weather cools. Lake levels are still high. We expect lake levels and river levels to fall through the week. At the time of this report: the Peace River is below average. Econ River is near seasonal average. Myakka River is at a trickle, far below seasonal average. Hillsborough is average but the Withlacoochee is flowing above average. Kissimmee River near Frostproof is below average. This week should be excellent for paddle craft on the lakes and rivers.
Next meeting is Oct 29th, Fly tying is regularly at Andy Thornal Company on the first and third Tuesdays at 6pm-7:30pm. We usually tie two patterns including bass, saltwater, and small flies, too! This club atmosphere is friendly for beginners and experts, ages 10-80. Bring your own tools or borrow some of ours. The class is free, but we ask everyone to make a $10 to offset costs. Next club meetig is Oct. 22nd.