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Easter Sunday morning was clear unlike Saturday’s pea soup. It was a surreal run to the Skyway Bridge under the moonlight. White bait was easily netted; in fact I was way ahead of schedule as everything went smoothly. With time to spare I ran back to the marina and ran out for coffee. By the way convenience store coffee is no match for Starbucks.

Until the tide turned my plan was to get on the mix bag at Pinellas Point. Once again the area quickly produced, Mackerel, Trout, Jacks, Ladyfish and redfish which we did not find on Saturdays trip. With good size mackerel in the area I opt for a long shank J hook and 40 pound leader. Even with long shank hooks and heavy leader material we had several cutoffs. Saturday we got treated poorly by what I surmise was a shark. The bull shark, Carcharhinus leucas breeds in the summer months, birthing on average 13 pups. Tampa Bay shallow estuaries are a nursery for these babies. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>

With the tide coming in I set up on the potholes where just last week we scored redfish from 31-36”. Nearby was an angler wading, he was quick to point out he has seen numerous schools of redfish but had been unable to get any to play. Contrary to what the wader said I was not seeing any schools. And from atop my custom T Tower from Sanchez Brothers I had a great view. Finally I did find a school in very skinny water maybe 18”. We managed 2 reds 22” but could not get the others to chew. I saw no sign of the large 30” plus reds from this past week.

There are hardly any signs of schools of mackerel or Bonita crashing baits on the surface. Bird activity was sparse at best. The water is still churned up from the last cold front. The 10 day forecast (ever notice Captains are self proclaimed Meteorologists?) looks like highs in the 80’s and no cold fronts. All that said we should finally see the water temperatures head towards the mid 70’s and finally get the Pelagic Blitz underway.

Warmer day’s means getting on the water early check you onboard lights and flashlights. I promise you it’s 100 times easier to fix before getting on the water. If you have one of those mega candle power spot lights make it a point to never blind an oncoming Captain. Shinning water light on the water not another boat is the way to get noticed.

Last month I tested Woody Wax non skid deck wax and was very pleased, now after repeated washing is still is working great. Clean up is easier than ever especially dried on blood for a day of catching mackerel. The deck looks great and is not slippery. The Woody Wax boat wash is a pleasure to use. Check them out at www.woody-wax.com.

Capt. Steven

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