Last Sunday 1/25/14, we launched our kayaks at the bridge in Placida. This is a pretty good launch but requires about 50 yards of carry or dolly transport. There are few rocks and a little mud but mostly sand on the shore. Getting the kayaks down the hill fully loaded was OK but we unloaded them for the return trip up the hill to the parking lot. This lot is small and the launch is heavily used so either get there early or plan on using your wheels from a more distant parking site.
From this launch, you can either fish your way up Coral Creek to the north or out towards Gasparilla Sound to the southwest. We chose to go southeast and fish the shoreline and grass flats at the entrance to Coral Creek. It was an overcast day which made visibility into the water challenging even with Polaroid glasses. There was a slight breeze from the south but the bay waters were nearly flat. We used 1/16 ounce chartreuse jig heads with gold tails to catch and release numerous trout. It was definitely “Kimball’s” day as she caught and released a nice snook on the way back to the launch. We found the best action just west of the two small islands visible as you head out towards Gasparilla Sound.
The surprise of the day was when Kimball hooked up a big pompano which she finally landed after a ride around the flats behind this hard fighting fish. Of course, pompano being one of our favorite fish, this one was invited home for dinner. I took a video of the fun but had to stop and resume the recording while I caught up to her after she was pulled out of camera range.
We always cook our pompano whole, on the grill. Just remove the head, clean out the body cavity, score the sides deeply and rub in some Cajun spice. An occasional spray of oil keeps it from drying out on the surface while the thicker parts cook. Cook them slowly over a low fire on the top rack for about 40 minutes or so. I also put an aluminum foil pan with a few wet alder chips under the fish for a smoky finish.
Check back for the low down on Coral Creek kayak fishing coming soon. We are continuing our research for the upcoming book, “Angler’s Guide to Kayak Fishing Southwest Florida-Sarasota Bay to Charlotte Harbor”. This third book in our series should be available in the fall of 2014. Keep up with our adventures on our website, https://www.anglerpocketguides.com/ and on Facebook. Get your copy of “Angler’s Guide to Shore Fishing Southwest Florida-Longboat Key to Boca Grande” on our website or from many fine stores in this area.