So we hit it early at 7am and I being a student of the
T & C, (tides and currents of the St, Johns) I already knew what I was in for.
Care of the F.S. fishing planner book that never lets me down, and I refer to as the "Guide Book to good days".
For instance; Yesterday we had 4' of water height between high and low tide. Per the tide book. And when you're heading up river far away from the source of the tide (the Ocean at the inlet) as I have been doing, 4' is the absolute minimum that will produce enough current to #1: make float fishing a viable technique, and #2: produce enough flushing action to make the fishing good. BUT....I went down there this morning anyhow, because it was a Friday and I didn't want to be out in the open to the N.E. winds blowing 15 knots.
Today's tide height was a 3.7' tide......and man did it make for a no current kinda morning on my spot where I've been catching Trout & Drum.
4'.o" versus 3'.7", you may say "what's the big whup?".....But please think about the BIG picture. 3 inches of water across the whole tidal region you are fishing is a lot of water. Not to mention what wind direction can do and atmospheric pressure also does.
We did catch Trout...they were small and the yellowmouths were active. Plus the Ladyfish were also there. And then later on the incoming we caught some small and medium Jacks, some more small Trout, a big fat Seabass and the pictured 24" Redfish. Henry was so upset his dad hooked that Red, because he wanted to catch it.
Want to know the difference between yesterday and today? Lets look at what the tides were in the same area on some previous trips.
6/20 - low tide Mayport time 7:30am, on this spot: 8:45am falling tide height 4.4 feet caught a lot of fish due to lots of current and approaching front. (see Blog entry for that day!)
6/15 - went up river "solo" because I knew it was gonna be kick-azz on my spots and it was! Mayport low tide 3:00pm, this area 4:45pm tide height 4.7 feet....means great fishing and lots of flushing action on my areas I like to fish up river. I caught loads of fish, and had a BALL....just re-read my entry for that date.
I think those two days are evidence enough that TIDE HEIGHT which equates to the amount of flow of current, is self explanatory. Learning to read the tides correctly and understand the out come, means a lot.
(If talking tide heights and current flow in the river is something that's unfamiliar or out of your realm of knowledge....YOU NEED A CHARTER WITH ME, if you're serious about learning this topic)
Here's this weekends falling tide height's:
Saturday - 3.3 feet = no flow
Sunday = 3.3 feet = no flow
(there's certainly no reason for me to go with those tides Trout fishing this weekend)
-remember during May, June and July the strongest tides are around New Moon's. Then hang on to your dock lines August 27th thru 31st. We're gonna have some big time tides then.
I may be obsessed with all this but since it is what I do, I think my freakishness with tides and currents is justified. We still caught fish today, and you can too. Lots of great big and wonderful fish can be caught during a slow tide. But I use these tide measurements to give me a clue of the difficulty level I will encounter during the day. AKA: Frustration Level, especially when I have kids aboard, who have no idea about what we're doing. All they want is a great big pull of that same fish they saw on TV or read about in that fishing magazine.
That's why Henry was upset today. Dad caught the one nice Redfish as we were talking and dad wasn't even watching his float. And Henry saw that dad's float was gone, and alerted him.
Henry was on his way to being a Great fisherman. He was a pleasure to have aboard at the prime age of 13 years old. I hope to have him aboard again some day.
I may hit the jetties Monday on a solo R&D to try for some 'poon action on the float-rig. This time two year's ago I hooked 5 during a light tropical storm. I could see them coming as they surfed thru the waves, and sat and waited till they rolled and pitched big Live shrimp to them or a pogie on the float rig,. and they ate it up like a Snickers bar! And each one broke me off. But unlike some people, I admit that I never actually caught a single one. Hmmmmm...to some, hooking means catching when it's report time. For me, the word "catching" is when YOU see the photo here! There's a HUGE difference in my book.
This is the size I'm looking forward to hooking/catching at the inlet.
They are harder to catch, actually.
"They all eat.....SHRIMP"