The well-known and beloved Gainesville native, Dan Alford, was recently diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and is already under treatment. As their favorite fishing is for Cedar Key's red fish, Dan's friends have quickly assembled a GoFundMe page and a saltwater tournament called "Chasin & # 39; Reds for Dan", to leave Cedar Key on Saturday . Call James Stewart (352-328-7321), Randall Smith (352-275-1683) or Travis Lowe (352-317-1341) for more information.
Last Tuesday afternoon, Benjamin Dubery took young Ayden Fant on a fishing trip to Rodman's Dam. The 10-year-old boy had been fishing before but never caught one. Under Benjamin's tutelage, Ayden threw a red and white lure of Long A bomber into the water that runs beneath the dam. And in a short time, the young fisherman from Gainesville experienced his first fishing success, big time. His first fish was a good sized striped bass. The next was an impressive six pound largemouth.
The big bass that had determined the winners of most of the 2019 tournaments held at the Orange and Lochloosa lakes finally took a day off when the Gator Country Bassmasters visited the famous lakes last Sunday for their August club tournament . Now, it should be noted that there were not many members competing that day and that the fishing day was shortened due to the promise of hot days of fierce dogs, but Gator fishermen could not find a single bass of more than five pounds
Bob Heron took the victory with a limit of five lows that weighed 12.91 pounds. Very close was Sam Drake with 12.04, and the capture of Paul Braun's third place totaled six pounds, even. Drake's 4.92 Big Bass (captured on his last pitch of the day) was a good fish but far from the double-digit bass that these lakes have thrown in tournaments throughout the year.
The best news of Twin Lakes Fish Camp was the almost 10 inches of rain that fell on Orange and Lochloosa in the last week. Some fishermen ventured into the scorching heat of this week, but Jeff Septer was more focused on the recent floods that he thinks the lakes have put in good shape to make the winter pleasant and full. Anyone who has followed the chronic problems of little water here during the last decades can appreciate the train of thought of the owner of the camp.
But a blessing in one place is a curse in another.
The coastal fishermen of the gulf say that the dark and fresh water of the Suwannee River has spread southward and has slowed down the action of the coastal cedar key. In recent days, the best reports come from deeper places, in areas like Spotty Bottom and Seahorse Reef, where the water remains generally clear.
I have always thought that the weeks near the end of the scallop season offer better seafood than the previous weeks. The current season seems to support that notion.
On the one hand, crowds on boat ramps and in the water decrease considerably later in the season. Also this year, the water near Steinhatchee is being cleaned closer to the mouth of the river. Captain Nita Chester of Fin Action Charters said earlier this week: "I think they have been there all along, but now we can see them a little better. They are dark in color and are buried in the grass, but now we can see them."
And Captain Nita's parties are definitely finding scallops bigger and bigger than in July. In the Steinhatchee area, the 2019 bay scallop season will run until September 10.
Captain Don Heard, a Crystal River specialist, also tells us that the scalloping has improved in his footsteps.
"We are getting good numbers now on floors 4 to 6 feet deep," he said Tuesday. In addition, Captain Don reported a good hook fishing near the river. His parties had caught "Crystal River Slams" (red, trout, bass) four days in a row. On top of that, the guide said: "I am finding red-red schools and black drums in bars near the mouth of the river."
Shrimp reports from the St. Johns River this week were "unpredictable." A ship can fill a limit of five gallons of solid media, while another, not far away, can produce only a few small ones. Interestingly, the most impressive reports came from upriver, near Lake George.
Gary Simpson, a veteran tournament fisherman, operates Gary & # 39; s Tackle Box in L&S Auto Trim.