Best bet for fish would probably be offshore - either head or charter. Plenty of grouper, red snapper, amberjack, king macks, etc. If you want to try the surf, expect more trash fish than keepers. Catfish, ladyfish, blue runners, stingrays, along with redfish, whiting, blues, and an occasional pompano. Also king macks from the piers. Good luck and bring your sunscreen It'll be hot.
Capt. James Pic
Florida Fishing Report for:
Panama City to Destin
Updated: July 06, 2003.
Panama City/N.W. Florida Panhandle
The rain has finally stopped and there has been a bright orb in the sky, someone said it was the sun but I can hardly remember what it looks like. All indications are that the weather pattern is changing and things should pick up significantly. As stated in my previous reports we are still catching some big trout. I had a customer come in the store a few days ago with one that measured 29 3/4 inches. This is the largest trout I personally have ever seen and during the spawn would have easily hit 10 pounds. The fish was a little thin and weighed considerably less. Still a trophy in anyones book. Heres the clincher; the anglers name is Sam Trout--and that's no fairy tale.
Even though the water is stirred up and brown we have been catching a lot of fish. Some of my trips just want numbers and 100 ladyfish, blues and spanish in a four hour is not uncommon. With the cloudy days we have been able to fish topwater late into the morning. As the water clears I look for the fish to start filling back into the bay. We still have a tremendous amount of bait int he bay, bottom of the food chain. We should start seeing the big spanish arrive during the next few weeks and if the weather holds up fishing should only get better and better.
Reds are being caught for those who have the patience and time to spend working for them.
Offshore, the reports of big snapper and grouper continually are coming in. We are also hearing of big jacks, schools of mahi mahi and a lot of kings.
Even though we are getting rained on here and there the fishing is suprisingly good. Don't forget the fall run which can be the best time of the year.
Remember the fly fishing tournement coming up in October, call the store for details.
One last thing, I will be offering discounts on guide trips the rest of the year on the "Bite Me Too" for anyone mentioning they saw this on the fishing report.
Good luck and good fishing. Remember only keep what you need and release the rest for another day. JP
Hopefully the panhandle inshore waters will be back to the normal crystal clear conditions by August. August can be a good time for schoolie king mackerel and possibly a smoker or two from Dan Russell pier. It all depends on how all this nasty water and weather plays out. Theres lots of sargassum rafts inshore now, when the water clears there should be dolphin(mahi) around the pier. Spanish macks should be around when the water clears, along with a few pompano. If its dirty, you might get a big blacktip. In the last few weeks, when the water has been clear, there have been plenty of kings and tarpon. Several 30+lb. kings have been caught including a 41 and a 44 lb.er.
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