I had a request to put up here on the Blog Page the rigging of the float. I can't remember who asked.....but someone did.
It's all on my Fishing Report page too, along with the weather links for Mayport, and season calendar.
But, you can also go hog wild with modifications, as I do. I use Salmon Stalker Floats, one ounce, Trout weights, very long leaders, and very small hooks, so the shrimp can "carry" the hook rather than being weighted down by it. (plus I also make adjustable rattling popping corks for shallow water applications)
But the rig is only one thing......using it is another. Have your bait about a foot off the bottom in which you are drifting. "How do you do that??" It's real simple. Take a 4 ounce sinker with a piece of wire on it and hang it on your float-rigs hook and drop it over the side of the boat.
The heavy 4 oz sinker will take the whole rig under water. Keep adjusting your "stopper knot" till the float is only pulled 12 inches under water, by the 4oz lead. Un-wire the 4 oz. sinker off your float-rig hook and now you'll be set up for your bait being one foot from the bottom. You should only have to do this if you want to be exact, or do not know the depth, or sometimes I do it in very deep water, just to really be perfect. But if you're in 8 feet of water and that's where your drift will be basically and you use a 7 foot rod......measure against your rod. It's that EZ.
But in fishing there is no "exact", or "perfect", so do not be afraid to go a tad longer after a few drifts with no bites or a drift a tad (6-8") shorter, if you're still not getting bit. Always play with your depth till you start getting Targeted species in the boat.
If I know I'm after Reds or Flounder I may set up to about drag closer to the bottom with my shrimp.
Reds are pigletts.....always rooting around on the bottom, and of course Flounder are there too.
Sheepshead, Trout, Yellowmouths, Drum, Flounder, Jacks, Ladyfish, Croakers, Tarpon, Sharks, Whiting, Pompano, and Porgies are a sampling of what I have had caught on this versatile rigging method.
And if you're doing it right, you hardly even loose a hook, or get snagged. That's the wonderful thing about it!
People stay busy, it's interactive, light tackle fishing where the angler has to always paying attention. To me it's similar to Fly Fishing that you can take it to many levels of expertise. And fishing areas that require a special touch, after mastering.
It teaches you to pay attention to the tides, currents, and velocity of the water movement. Underwater structure, hard bottom, and where the fish stage at various tides. Its a great learning tool, no doubt.
This traditional N.E. Florida method of fishing the St. Johns river, can be used in the creeks, the river, the ICW, the jetties, and the surf. It helps immensely if you know how to "cast" a Bait cast reel, and I laughing when I see the float-rig used with a spinning reel......"this person really ain't with the program or is from Miami", is what I'm thinking. I'm an ANTI-SPINNER.....I hate them aweful things! (I have my reasons!)
All casting is nothing more than a "pitch" over to the area...or away from the boat, not some long bomb cast. Because you should always be ahead or along side the area you're wanting to fish. I call the position of the boat the "point of origin". Because that's where you begin your drift from....not on top of the spot. This isn't bottom fishing. Stay clear of where you think the fish are. Do not disturb that area.
Gotta go get ready to do this afternoons charter. So I have to close up shop. But I hope some of this was helpful.
Report coming tonight.