Monthly Archives: December 2014

Colt Creek State Park 12-27-14

This park is situated on an old limerock pit lakes near the Hillsborough River in Polk County Florida. It has 3 small lakes that were dredged, and are very deep. The main lake called Mac Lake, and has a pier at the end of the park where the pavilion is located.

I had to fish there since the rest of the shoreline was flooded due to all the rain we have been having in Florida. This lake is 50-80 feet deep in some places. The shoreline does have some cover, but I did not have much of that I could cast to.

colt

I did get a bream bite or two on a finesse worm, but that was it. I did however get to see a rare site as it was happening. A mud fish had moved into the bank to spawn. I did not realize that these prehistoric fish, do not spawn like a bass or a bluegill and make a bed. When these fish are ready, they swim in and blow out millions of fry. I was fortunate to see this happen, and take a few pictures.

It did not last very long, and the big female slowly moved back out into the weeds and deeper cover. The fry cling together in a mass and follow mama as she moves out. What a sight!

I think if you hit the park right, these deep lakes should produce some large bass, but timing was just not that good for me on this two hour trip.

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Suwannee River Area State Parks 12-6-14

It looked like we would get a break in the weather on the first weekend in December, in fact the weatherman were calling for highs in the 70’s, but as it normally goes, they got it wrong again…… We barely made it to the 60’s!

The first stop was Troy Springs State Park near the town of Branford Florida. We found out quickly, this spring on the Suwannee, is a scuba divers haven. A scuba club had taken over most of the park, and even had some live music to enjoy. I found a shoreline on the river past the picnic area as I traveled along the trail. It presented a few opportunities to cast a worm and a crank bait, but did not pan out. I fished off the dock they have at the mouth of the spring, but that too was quiet. A nice park for the scuba crowd, but I would not bank on it for fishing.

We went to Peacock Springs next which also did not offer much area to fish, but I was able to find a quiet spot away from the divers. Peacock Springs is unique in that it has miles and miles of underwater caves to explore for scuba divers. This is not my cup of tea, since I am a bit claustrophobic, but to each his own! I had several bites on a plastic worm and fluke, and ended up catching two small bass.

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Sharon and I had reservations at a cabin at Lafayette Springs near the town of Madison. It was a very nice cabin, and the park has a boat ramp on the Suwannee. I had a nice bass bite on the first cast by the ramp, but missed him. My goal was to catch the infamous Suwannee bass on this trip, but so far, I had not come across one. These bass are real fighters from what I understand, and have the look of a smallmouth. They do not get much bigger than 2 pounds, but I understand they will put up a super fight.

The next park was Madison Blue Springs near the town of Madison. The ranger station here was just a trailer, and this park gets very little traffic. We only saw one other family, and had the park to ourselves most of the time. The spring run is small, as it empties into the Suwanee. There was a sandbar out in front, and I could see bass swimming from the river into the spring! I worked the edge of the river before you get to the spring, and caught a feisty bass on a Zoom Trick worm.

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After an hour or so, and just a few bites we were about to go when Sharon spotted a nice bass swimming down the bank. She pointed to the area, and I made a short pitch. Bam! it sucked it down and the fight was on! It jumped as Sharon was getting the camera, and came off throwing the trick worm back in my face. That’s what keeps you coming back for more!

Stephen Foster State Park is a very well-kept park with a dramatic entrance way. It has a beautiful old tower, and a nice overlook over the river. I found it fairly easy to walk the river from the canoe launch area, and had a few bites, but still no Suwannee bass. The last park we visited was the Suwannee State Park, and it had a nice boat ramp similar to Lafayette State Park. I fished the area around the ramp and walked the bank. I had a total of 5 bites on a shaky head worm and a Senko, but could not connect! It was definitely not my best trip for catching fish, but we got to see an area of Florida that we had never been to before, and it was a very enjoyable trip.

St. Augustine area State parks 11-29-14

Another blistery weekend in Florida…. Well to you in the North, it may sound like summer…..

Wind was coming out of the Northeast at 10-15 and it was in the 50’s all day on Saturday. We first stopped at Faver-Dykes at Pellicer Creek. They had a fishing dock on the creek in the picnic area, so I decided to fish that stretch first. It was shallow, and the tide wasn’t moving much, but it was going to pick up according to my tide calendar. No bites, so I moved to the small boat launching area, and still no bites on the Berkley Gulp or the Yo-zuri. I went back to the dock and a gentleman was trying out a new rod he just purchased. On his second cast, he landed a nice flounder!  That’s fishing!

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Next, we went to the Anastasia State Park. This park is along the beach in St. Augustine, and also has an inlet area to fish. The beach had massive waves, and was not what I was looking for, so I tried the inlet. It was shallow, and I tried wading a bit but no luck. 0-2 for the day, not a good start in St. Augustine…..

Sunday we started out at a very interesting park called Washington Oaks. I highly recommend this park for the gardens, and the massive oaks, and dolphin watching. They have a nice seawall along the inter-coastal, and the channel comes very close to shore. It looked like a decent area to fish, so I started with the Yo-zuri. I lost my favorite lure in a tree, so things were not shaping up to well. I had a few bites, on the Gulp, but went back to a blue back Yo-zuri and caught this nice trout right on the corner of the seawall which made a great ambush point for the trout.

washington oaks

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The last stop on our list was North Peninsula State Park that is just south of Palm Coast. It had a beach area, but it was super crowded. I decided to fish the inlet called Smith Creek where the drawbridge is located. Be prepared for the horn! The first time that went off, I almost jumped in the water!  I had a few strikes on a Bass Pro Shops Shrimp lure on a jig head, but could not connect. A family of 4 fished close by, and we did get to watch the mother catch a nice black drum that almost destroyed her spinning outfit. Drum can really pull, and if you do not have the right equipment it can be a battle to get them in….

All in all I would recommend the Washington Oaks park if you are in the Palm coast/St Augustine area, and if you like the beach Anastasia.