Captain Van Hubbard fishing report for 26 April 2014.
It looks like our crazy weather is over and Spring fishing is fine.
Gulf and inside waters have cleared up finally and fishing is improving. The Gulf is still a little cooler than it normally is in almost May but we could see bottom in 40 feet of water from Venice Beach to Boca Grande Pass; so prospects look bright for our fishing future. We even saw several large flying fish last week; a sure sign of clean waters. Inside has cleared up also since we have not had any rain recently..
On inside trips we are getting a few redfish, some snook, and plenty of trout. Bait minnows are almost impossible right now and this has hampered our backcountry catching. Plenty of pinfish but almost no whitebait and that’s tough on us all. Many of us have discussed this problem and God only knows what will change and when. The little bit of minnows around are not responding to chum this year? Even Captain Van’s Magic Chum has not enticed the whitebait into range of my deadly cast net. Fortunately we have options.
Outside is much better with some king and plenty of Spanish mackerel to please anglers. They pull hard, have liberal bag limits, and make great meals; that’s making my folks happy. We got several permit last week and expect to see some cobia but none so far. Sharks are missing with the big black balls of baitfish but I hear some are just south of me now. I’m excited about the big Spring fish migration that has not materialized here yet. We also have had some nice mango snapper to enhance the dinner plate. Everything seems to be coming together both in and out side and I’m ready to tangle with all of them; come help.
I do have a few days open next week Wednesday the last day of snook season also May 1 &2 if you can get away on weekdays. Also the 14 and 27 this month and several days in June prime tarpon or catch and release snook action. This has been a very busy year so far and it’s wonderful.
Tarpon are beginning to show up around Boca Grande Pass and should start moving up towards Venice on the Beaches soon. It’s time to get out and enjoy our beautiful waters and great fishing! Let’s go fishin’ now! Captain Van Hubbard <www.captvan.com>
Finally our winds back off a few days to allow access to great near shore Gulf fishing.
We had a couple days we could get out and enjoy the mackerel bite on the near shore artificial reef systems. The action was almost too fast for me to keep up with the Makowski Family Wednesday morning. They wanted to enjoy some family time saltwater fishing. We got lucky on the weather; so they had the time of a lifetime. Older daughter Abby actually suffered a sore arm from reeling in so many fish, seriously, lol. Brother Noah stayed on his game and even had a big barracuda thrill as the three foot fish chased his big blue runner right beside the boat. It even jumped alongside and had everyone excited. Kylie was the youngest but caught so many fish she lost count; but did claim all if them at the cleaning table on Little Gasparilla Island after out trip. This Michigan family went home with a mess of fish and some wonderful memories. It was a pleasure to help Kyle and Katy share quality time with their awesome children.
The inside/bay fishing is still up and down with no minnows yet? Our waters are warming back up again; so I have my Captain Van’s Magic Chum handy and ready when minnows do show up. Trout and macks save or trips inside but I do expect to see more snook soon. We are getting a few on shrimp but minnows will help here as the pinfish are back. We are catching fish most of the time but not like I’m used to; I could be a little spoiled?
We trolled blue runners awhile up by Venice for king mackerel again yesterday but none yet. Bait outside is available but not showing at the surface. The warmer water should help here too. Predictions are for continued warming so Spring appears to be arriving here now. Birds are headed north and flowers are blooming.
Boca Grande tarpon and snook action will pick up soon don’t miss the action. I have limited openings so don’t wait to make your reservations please. If I’m already booked I can usually help you get hooked up with a good guide. Also note that you may want to give me the chance to talk with you before you book because the captain fishing during the day is on top of the fish while the guys at home answering the phone is, well at home! Book with local guides and get the experience you desire and pay for. Thank you Captain Van Hubbard
Fishing forecast for 24 March 2014, by Capt Van Hubbard.
We are enjoying some good fishing when winds allow us to go where we want. Business is amazing so get your reservation request in ASAP if you want to fish with me. Our recent catching has been directly correlated to the wind speed and direction; good weather has allowed us good catching. We have been able to catch a mess usually on the windy days. We should be getting into April weather soon and I’m expecting the bite to light up very soon when ever it calms down and warms up slightly.
My family trips are so much fun and Spring Break is into full swing. It is great to share time with the children, parents and even grandparents. The smiles, memories created, and family time are truly priceless. The manatees and dolphin keep us occupied when fish tease us.
The mackerel have come up to us in the Gulf but winds only allow us the get to them some days. We have enjoyed several tasty lunches of grilled mackerel for lunch after our trips recently at the Stump Pass Grille. A few larger ones add to our bay trips. Trout are active and tasty dinners for the fish hungry folks.
The larger kingfish should be here whenever this wind backs down to let us get to them. Several captains have caught a few in the deeper Gulf. Water temps are right for mackerel and almost warm enough for snook to get more active. Minnows are not available yet but any day this could change. I keep my castnet handy and got my Captain Van’s Magic Chum in a month ago.
Everything is shaping up for the best year in a long time what a blessing for all of us. Thank you, Captain Van Hubbard www.captvan.com.
Full Moon and a fast weather system blew though to restart our fishing cycle.
Getting a late start today allowing the wind to back down and temps warm up a little this weekend is expected to be beautiful. We caught some tasty trout, plump pompano, and speedy mackerel the last few days. Jacks and ladyfish helped keep the poles bent and anglers smiling. Was blessed to enjoy several family trips and the children are so much fun. They are happy catching a little bit of everything plus plenty of dolphin and manatees viewing.
I heard there were a couple of big king mackerel caught last week down at Boca Grande Pass. The Spanish and king mackerel are due to come ashore by Venice Beach as soon as the waters clear up after our west winds settle.
With the cold weather and spring break vacations up North business is great. If you want to set up a trip I have the 16th 28th, 29, 30th open right now so don’t procrastinate. I do have other captains I can help set you up with so please email me and we’ll hook you up ASAP! About half of April is still available and we can expect snook and red fishing to improve inside. While the near shore Gulf of Mexico is ready to light up with the baitfish and mackerel migration due to move into town any time.
This is prime time so make time to enjoy some family time and catch a mess of fresh fish for dinner. Thank you for your support and Let’s go Fishin’ Captain Van Hubbard <www.captvan.com>
Web post for 2-9-14
It’s great to get back on the water enjoying our great Venice to Boca Grande fishing.
The boat is looking much better with shiny exterior and our weather has even cooperated most of the last week. I was able to find some nice trout and pompano for our dinner table plus plenty of ladyfish and jacks for fun. The Spanish mackerel are already showing up but most are small so far. Waters are warming fast inside up to as much as 75 degrees some afternoons last week. The Gulf will require a little longer warm periods because it is a much lager body of water to heat up. We saw several spoonbills and plenty of dolphins as we rode between spots. Life is good you need to give it a try ASAP!
The phone and emails are starting to show many of you are feeling like fishing soon. Please consider planning your fishing adventures as soon as you can to lock in the dates. We both want you to share time on our beautiful waters together. Remember we are just now hitting prime winter visitor season! Spring break for northern kids is coming at us soon. Make you plans and show them our fine fishing.
Snook opens next month and I do expect to enjoy good action. We may have to work for a slot fish but catching snook is always exciting. Redfish and trout will help ensure your fresh fish dinners. Pompano and sheepshead are also around now if you want to try them? The mackerel migration can start up any time if it stays warm. I found a larger school of smaller sharks moving around last Sunday and Monday. Cobia and tripletails cruise the near shore Gulf if you don’t mind the ride looking for them. King mackerel are big fun fish and great on the grill too. We have tons of fun playing with kings from ten to forty pounds on twenty pound gear. The mackerel action can be every cast, it gets thrilling.
Tarpon will be here sometime in late April and peak from May through June. We will have silver kings through the summer but the big concentrations are May/June. Don’t miss the chance to fulfill a bucket list dream with your trophy tarpon this summer.
Thank you for your support and I look forward to sharing a fabulous fishing adventure with you soon. I fish from Venice Beach south to Boca Grande.
Captain Van Hubbard www.captvan.com ph 941-468-4017