BY CAPT. DOUG HEMMER
GREAT TRIP: Last Tuesday was spent trying to find my client's wife a snook that would top her previous three-pounder. We loaded the livewell with large threadfins and started working our way toward the beach. The first few stops produced a few strikes but no hook-ups. We then moved out to a pass and idled along the drop-off until we saw a school of snook hanging in two foot of water. Her first cast got slammed as soon as the bait hit the water. I started screaming, 'Don't set the hook, just reel.' She turned the handle as fast as she could until the rod bent double. A nice 12-lb snook broke the surface with a short tail walk and burned a hundred feet of line off the reel. She slowly worked the snook back to the boat for a few pictures and a quick release.
The rest of the trip was spent trying to outsmart the egret, terns and sea gulls that showed up to feed on our bait. The egret would stand on the shoreline while the terns and gulls hovered over the school. Every time a bait was cast to the snook, the birds would attack the bait and spook the school.
We then came up with a plan: Get a bait ready to cast, then toss a few baits in the other direction. When the birds went after the tossed bait, we would then cast a bait to the school. Sometimes it's hard to fool Mother Nature, but this time it worked out to the tune of five snook in the 10- to 15-pound class.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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