Our day begins with a journey to the areas we fish, Tampa Bay, Clearwater, Ruskin, Apollo Beach, or St. Petersburg. We may visit the inshore reefs of Tampa Bay or fish the Gulf of Mexico beaches. Depending on time, tide and nautical conditions we may start the day inshore with speckled sea trout, redfish and snook and finish on a nearshore reef catching snapper, cobia, shark or even tarpon.
Some of the species you may catch on a Tampa fishing charters are, but not limited to, Snook, Redfish, Spotted Sea Trout, Tarpon, Black Drum, Spanish Mackerel, Flounder, Mangrove Snapper, Sheepshead, Cobia and Sharks.
Tampa Fishing Charters are adrenaline filled, nature filled, and relaxing all at the same time. Sight casting to a tailing Redfish, watching a Gator Trout smash a topwater lure, or easing into Snook territory in the backcountry – These trips are second to none. Couple that with amazing scenery, clear waters and exceptional Florida weather, you will see why clients come back again and again on board with Light Tackle Adventures – Your best Tampa Fishing Charters service serving the Tampa area and surrounding waters.
If I’m unavailable for the day you require I will assist in finding a qualified captain to be of service. my sons Captains Mike and Mark and good friend Capt Eddie are three top qualified Tampa Fishing Captains working closely with me in accommodating clients.
When it comes to your Tampa fishing charter guide, no one can beat Capt. John O’Hanlon. With more than 30 years of experience on the water, Capt. John has the knowledge needed to serve as your offshore fishing, inshore fishing or flats fishing guide. He has piloted both large and small vessels for himself and other charter operators. Capt. John lives on the water and has extensive knowledge of how weather and water conditions affect fishing.
Sheepshead have already started to infiltrate the flats, shell bottom creeks, canals, and rivers. Most of the fish that we have been seeing are on the smaller side, but normally this means that the deeper rock piles and edges will be holding the big ones. The two locally known reefs, “Bahia Beach & Port Manatee” are great places to start looking for the bigger convicts. Deep water canals and bridges will also be holding them. Look for oysters or rocks and focus on fishing around structure. As far as the rig goes, I like about 24” of 15-20lb Ohero fluorocarbon leader paired with a No. 1 live bait hook. Depending on the depth and current, I will use Joyfish Split Shot weights to gently get the bait to the bottom. Live or cut pieces of Shrimp will work just fine, or if you can get some fiddler crabs they can’t resist them. The key to catching Sheepshead is “feeling” the bite. They are known for eating the bait right off the hook. Unless they are pretty excited, the bite is fairly soft and gentle. I always tell my clients, “If you think you got a bite, you did – Set the hook!” Once hooked, they are feisty fish and have tremendous power for their size. Sheepshead must be at least 12” total length to harvest, the bag limit is 15 per person, and they provide excellent table fair.
Wonderful day fishing with Captain Steve! He is a great guide and was extremely patient with my 6 year old. It was definitely worth the drive from VA! We had an amazing time and we are already looking forward to doing it again! Will absolutely…More
A wide assortment of lures will take redfish. MirrOlure’s Lil’ John soft plastic jerk bait rigged on a sixteenth or an eighth ounce jig head lands softly on the water, keeping from spooking wary fish. Redfish that will feed can usually be found in small protected coves that are sheltered from the wind, but have access to direct sunlight. A dark muddy bottom will heat up quickly as the sun rises and heads for the afternoon. Move these lures slowly with sharp, short twitches of the rod. Braided line with a 20-to 25-pound leader will suffice. When water is very clear, make leaders at least 30-inches long. Leaders that are at least this long will add a bit of stealth and put spookish redfish at ease. A CAL Shad is a favorite of mine for redfish in the shallows – an assortment of colors will work, from dark to light. These fish will get so shallow at times only wade fisher or very shallow drafting boat will get to them. Skinny water reds can be found sunning themselves with their backs exposed to the air. This is when you’ll find them easy to spook, so taking care to avoid noises and boat wakes is imperative if you want to catch reds. Avoid running outboard motors. Run trolling motors on their lowest speeds. A good motor can be used with care to avoid spooking shallow water reds, but some opt for a push pole for moving about in the shallows too. Either way, keep the noise off the water and you’ll have better success with redfish.
At the end of the day, fishing in Tampa Bay is always more than just the sum of its parts. The bay supports a vibrant ecosystem abundant with wildlife, endemic species and all sorts of unique natural wonders.
The Gulf of Mexico waters Tampa-side are home to some of the finest year-round fishing in the south. Hardly any angler could resist fishing in Tampa! The sugar sand beaches line countless miles of waterways, passes, open bays, acres of shallow grass flats, thousands of oyster bars, and dozens of rivers feeding into it. You instantly understand why Tampa fishing charters are so popular. This enormous natural estuary is one of the “Fishing capitals of the world”. But what makes fishing in Tampa so exciting?
Cpt Steve is friendly, kind and experienced. He’ll put you right on the fish and makes the trip enjoyable regardless of the catches. Great for couples, families or friends. Caight redfish, snook, catfish, trout, ladyfish and an awesome kack crevalle in just half a day….More