Palm Beach Florida Kayak Fishing Report for November 2019. Offshore, Inshore & Freshwater. Sailfish, mahi, kings and wahoo. Peacock bass and clown knifefish.Continue Reading
Inshore Kayak Fishing
December will start to bring a few cold fronts our way. During the winter months, when water temps drop, targeting areas that warm quickly like docks, mangroves, mud flats and potholes will be the best bet. Getting out a little later in the day to allow those areas to warm will help you put more fish in the kayak. Sheephead are a favorite of mine to target during this time. These fish are easy to catch on just pieces of dead or live shrimp around docks, bridges and channels while kayak fishing Delray Beach.
Offshore Kayak Fishing
Offshore Kayak fishing during the winter months are heavily weather dependent. With our usual heavy winds out of the Northeast try to find a day with a little less wind to pick catch your favorite pelagic species. Sailfish, mahi, kings and wahoo should be your targets. Frisky google eyes and blue runners will be your best options. While offshore kayak fishing Delray Beach, trolling the 90-200ft depths will give you the best shot at a bite. Finally don’t neglect the nearshore bite for spanish mackerel, bluefish and others. These fish can be a lot of fun on light tackle when maybe the other big pelagics are not cooperating.
Freshwater KAYAK FISHING
Depending on how cold it gets the peacock bass, largemouth bass and clown knifefish bite should continue to be great. Live shiners and or shad are your best bets. All 3 of these fish will be looking for deeper water when the water temps get colder. Find the right depth and you will find the fish.
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Inshore Kayak Fishing
November will bring on the cooler weather and give the fish some relief from the heat. Snook, redfish, trout, bluefish and spanish mackerel should be on your radar. Kayak fishing the inlets, docks and seawalls will produce most of the inshore species. The bluefish and spanish mackerel will prefer a fast presentation like ripping a spoon or jig across the upper water column. Snook and other mentioned species will be holding on the bridges and seawalls looking to pick off glass minnows and mullet. Kayak fishing can be challenging in some of these high current areas, but using Hobie kayaks like the ones we provide makes the experience a breeze.
Offshore KAYAK FISHING
Last month we had the worst weather I can remember, most all days kept us inshore. Now with November coming around we again get into our normal windy season. Northeast winds will start to push through this month making the surf an issue for each trip. When you hit the beach to go on an offshore kayak fishing trip, take some time and watch the waves. Most of the time you can see there is a pattern of a few big sets and a calm period. Time it out right, pedal that Hobie kayak hard and stay dry. Fish will start to move in shallow as the cold fronts push through. Look to target mahi, kings and sails in the 80-120’ area trolling a Sealime Lure to pick up a few fish. Don’t forget about the bottom fishing as well. Muttons and yellowtails will be lurking in the 60-100’ reef patches. Frozen sardines, live mullet and frozen gogs will work best.
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The mullet bait run is upon us. Snook, tarpon, redfish and trout will all be cooperating this month. Matching the hatch will be your best bet during this time. Super spooks, DOA bait buster’s and anything that has the shape of a mullet will be the go to baits while kayak fishing. With the presence of so much mullet bait, the thought then goes to how do I get my lure the one that gets hit. I like trying to go with colors that stand out in the pack. Try dark or bright colors to get the attention away from the group of bait. Focus your cast on the edges of the mullet bait schools and you will do well.
The shallow fall dolphin run should start to take effect this month, giving anglers kayak fishing a better shot at them Look for them to start to move into the more attainable depths from 250-100 foot of water. Another thing to get excited about is the snapper bite. Look to target Mutton snapper and yellowtail snapper in 60-100ft of water. I love using mullet this time of year for both bottom fishing and trolling. It is readily available and a great hardy bait to keep alive while kayak fishing.
The peacock bass and clownkife fishing will really be taking off in the coming months. Look to fish structure like bridges to find the bite. Live shiners are always the go to bait, but during this time don’t overlook a finger mullet as well. Mullet will survive in the freshwater long enough for them to be crushed by a hungry peacock bass or largemouth bass. Finally as an artificial option try using DOA jerk baits or rattle traps to entice a bite.
In 1984 the Florida Wildlife Commission of Florida introduced the Butterfly Peacock Bass to the South Florida canal system with the thought of the bass taking control on the other exotic species already present in the system. After 3 years the Peacock Bass did help with the other exotics, but also flourished to become a staple in the South Florida canal systems.
Kayak fishing for these fish is a great way to get access to areas that boats cannot. With the kayak you are able to pull up to almost any section of a canal system and drop right into the best spot before anyone else. Peacock Bass love to hang around structure like bridges and docks. Targeting these locations will sure lead to a hook up. The best bet to landing a few fish is using live bait like shiners. Artificial baits like rattle traps, jerk baits and poppers are also a great way to catch a few. The average size Bass is two to four pounds, but larger ones up to 7 pounds are available.
Peacock Bass are not the only thing you will find lurking in these canal systems. The Clown Knifefish is another non-native species that is highly sought after. These fish were illegally released into the canal systems by residents that didn’t want them in their aquariums anymore. Just like the Bass these fish have thrived in their wild new home. Clowns are best caught on live bait, but a true trophy is when one is taken on artificial. Trolling rattle traps is a great way to pick one up while kayak fishing.
Kayak fishing for Peacock Bass in South Florida is a great experience that can only be done in this area of the country. There are plenty of fish of all different species to be caught. Get out there and knock a new species off your bucket list.
Kayak Fishing in Florida provides many great opportunities. We are lucky enough at Pushin’ Water Kayak Charters to be located in the southeast coast of South Florida. From inshore and offshore saltwater to inland freshwater kayak fishing we got it all. Here are some of the best areas to fish in South Florida throughout the year.
It is called the sailfish capital of the world, but for us kayak fisherman it is more known for its nearshore and inshore fishery due to Stuart’s proximity to deep water. There is a wide range of species that can be caught in this area depending on the time of year. Let’s look at your best bets by season.
- Spring – Large Seatrout are my favorite to target this time of year. The spring is their breeding time and they are plump and hungry. Mangrove lines, channel edges and docks will hold a few of these pigs. Offshore kayak fishing the shallow water wrecks will yield Cobia and Permit. These two are always on my mind during this time.
- Summer – marks breeding season for Snook. Look for these big girls to stack in the inlets and bridges near them. Live bait is always best, but trying jigs and other bottom bouncing lures work as well.
- Fall – will bring on the mullet bait run. Fishing the beaches for Tarpon is a blast when these big bait balls start to come through.
- Winter – kayak fishing in Stuart is all about pompano and Spanish Mackerel. I enjoy fishing for pompano in the Indian River Lagoon instead of off the beach. Fishing the flats near the inlet is a sure bet to catch a few. Finally, the Spanish Mackerel stack up just off the beaches for their spawning session. These fish can be caught cast after cast and are a blast on light tackle.
Palm Beach County
Has one of the most beautiful inlets on the east coast of Florida ad is topped off by the Historic Jupiter lighthouse. The scenery is spectacular, but the fishing is even better. Let’s get into your best bets.
- Spring – west of the inlet and closer to the mouth of the Loxahatchee River can produce some really good Tripletail fishing during this time. Channel markers and crab pot buoys will hold these guys looking to pick off a live shrimp or baitfish.
- Summer – Jupiter is the capital of inlet Snook fishing. The big breeders stack in this inlet to feed and find a mate. Live bait on incoming tides fished near the bottom will put a few in the kayak.
- Fall – This area is also hit hard with a mullet bait run. Big Jacks, Sharks, Tarpon and Snook will all be focused on the large schools that come down the coast.
- Winter – Spanish Macks, Pompano and Bluefish are a lot of fun kayak fishing just off the beach. Light tackle and small bucktail jigs will give you a chance to bring a few fish home.
Singer Island provides great beaches and resorts all right next to the Palm Beach Inlet. There are many kayaking activities in this area. Snorkeling Peanut Island is a favorite of mine. Many species of reef fish inhabit the islands snorkeling rock piles. Here are your best bets for kayak fishing Palm Beach.
- Spring – Mahi will start to make their way into offshore kayak fishing range. Tolling your normal live bait like google eyes and blue runners will entice these guys to bite.
- Summer – Palm Beach Inlet is another great place to target the breeder Snook. Fishing lures like a DOA Terror Eyz and live bait near the bottom will work great.
- Fall – My favorite thing to do during the fall is bottom fish offshore for mutton snapper and yellow tail snapper. The reason being is that there is so much finger mullet bait around. These baits are like candy for any snapper.
- Winter – Barracudas and Sharks will keep the rods bent during the colder months. Fishing around Peanut Island is a great place to start looking for fish.
Just south of the Boynton Beach Inlet sits Delray Beach. The coastal city is known for its upscale shopping and fine restaurants, but we are here to talk about kayak fishing! Let’s check out the best bets.
- Spring – If the weather cooperates this is also a great area to kayak fish offshore for big mahi. I like using mullet if they are around, but any live bait or even dead will work.
- Summer – kayak fishing the beach will put you in line for Snook and big Tarpon. I like to slow troll with live bait and have another rod ready with a lure to throw at any rolling fish.
- Fall – is always going to focus around the mullet run. Fishing the beaches and anywhere close to Boynton Beach inlet will get you a chance at the many species feeding on the mullet. This is also a great time to head inland for Peacock Bass. Kayak fishing Delray Beach in the Lake Ida area can produce days of 50 plus fish.
- Winter – This time of year can also be amazing Peacock Bass Fishing, but all depends on how cold it gets. If we don’t have any long periods of temperatures in the low 40’s or lower the bite should be going off.
This area is an offshore kayak fishing heaven with its many artificial reefs just off the coast. The Pompano Beach Pier is located just south of Hillsboro inlet and is where the largest offshore kayak fishing tournament takes place every year. Let’s look at the best kayak fishing options.
- Spring – Blackfin Tuna is a sure bet just off the coast of Pompano Beach. Vertical Jigging and Live bait work well this time of year. The larger fish are usually around in May.
- Summer – Offshore kayak fishing is a home run for the Summer months. Snapper, kingfish, sailfish, tuna and wahoo are all available when you kayak fish this part of Florida.
- Fall – Mullet, mullet, mullet once again. Kayak fish the inlet, the beach and anywhere you find the bait; the big fish won’t be far behind. Try using baits like a DOA baitbuster and other mullet like imitations.
- Winter – Kingfish make their way south to Key West for the winter months. Try to kayak fish offshore for them come November and December to pick them off before they get down south.
5 Proper Gear
It all starts with having the right gear to be able to stand up to a big fish while kayak fishing. Choose gear that is reputable. The reel should have a quality drag system to be able to withstand a large fish whether it be inshore or offshore fishing. Choose a rod that will allow you to bring the fish in with ease. The longer the fish is on the line and not in your kayak the easier for something to go wrong and lose your trophy fish. Choose a kayak that is stable and built for fishing. Dropping $200 on a kayak at your local big box store is probably not the best route to success of catching a big fish.
Some research should go into your plan to catching a big fish from your kayak. Locating structure, weeds, drop offs and anything different then the surrounding area are your starting points. Next find the bait. Baitfish eat small fish, shrimp and other small creatures. Locating an area where these small creatures hangout is a sure bet to find larger fish. Once you have a list of areas that meet these prerequisites ask people that are out there fishing. Go to the boat ramps and ask online. There are plenty of people that are willing to help other kayakers out.
3 Time of Year
The time of year plays a big role in kayak fishing for a big fish. Spawning times are the best times of year for catching a big fish for any species. Gator Seatrout are always caught during their spawn in the spring, monster snook in early summer and smoker kingfish throughout the summer months. Learning where and when your desired species spawn will put you on the path to your trophy fish.
2 Big Bait
The old saying of “if you want to catch a big fish you have to use a big bait”. For most species this statement holds true. Using large baits will get the attention of a big fish looking to fill its big belly. Offshore large mullet, blue runners and speedos have proven to be tournament winning baits. Inshore big mullet, pigfish and ladyfish will give you the chances for big tarpon, snook, redfish and seatout.
1 Hire a Guide
If you want to go kayak fishing to catch a big fish you should hire a guide that knows the best times and locations to find the trophy fish you are after. Guides like myself take the time to teach you why we are fishing a certain area and provide tips on how to help you become a better angler and find big fish!
I can still remember the first day I went deep blue fishing in the Atlantic Ocean with my Hobie Quest. Rolling over the gentle waves of a northeast swell was a strange feeling for an inshore fisherman. As I paddled out to the depths and the sun rose over the horizon, I officially began a new chapter in my kayak fish career.
Kayak Fishing in 2011
After a year of learning artificial lure tactics, I wanted something more. I needed a sailfish. At the time, sailfish were not really being caught from a kayak and it was a big deal to catch one in the state of Florida. Also at the time, using live bait in the kayak was not a technique I felt comfortable with. So, I set out multiple times with dead sardines and had no luck. Months went by and still had yet to get my hands on a sailfish.
March 16, 2011, I decided to try again. I went to kayak fish at dawn straight out of the Palm Beach Inlet with a fresh box of frozen sardines. The wind was blowing well with a stiff 10-15mph northeast breeze. I made my way out 130 feet, set out two flat line sardines on triple J hooks and started drifting. Thirty minutes went by with nothing to show, but then it happened. In the distance, I see a sailfish jumping.
I quickly looked back at my lines and saw nothing was happening. Confused and disappointed I sat and waited. One minute later, I hear that fateful noise of my drag peeling. I grabbed the rod, slightly tightened up the drag and there she was in all her glory, breaking the surface. I steadied myself and prepared for the fight as she greyhounded into the distance.
To my rear, I hear people cheering me on from a boat. I had the biggest grin on my face, but all I could think about was to keep tight. Nearing the midpoint of the fight and taking 3 foot waves over the bow, I felt I had a good chance to land this fish. The last half of the fight was within 5-10 feet of my kayak. She kept swimming like she had energy for days. I finally made the decision to put on the pressure or I would never get her within reach. After thirty minutes, I got her to start circling and I finally attempted to grab her bill. Once I grabbed her, she gave a good little fight in my grasp and finally settled down in order for me to snap a few pictures. After examining this beautiful creature for a few minutes, I gave her a good revival and off to the deep blue fishing depths she swam.
Summer time brings on the spawn for these fish. During this time Snook will move from the back waters and rivers to the inlets along the coast. Stuart Florida is one of the best places to go kayak fishing for one of the giant breeders that will spawn in the Saint Lucie Inlet.
Summer also means hot temperatures. Getting out early or late in the day will give you the best opportunity to hook into these fish. I generally like to start the day by throwing the cast net and catching a dozen or so 8-12 inch mullet in the bait tank. These mullet are for back up for the time 9 am hits and I want to make sure I am still going to get a bite. I love getting bit on artificial, so the first lure that is going to hit the water will be either a Super Spook or a large paddle tail swimbait. Some days the Snook want more of an erratic moving bait and other days a straight moving swimbait. Try both baits for a while and see what they are in the mood for.
Basic kayak fishing set up is a 7ft, 10-20lb spinning rod with a 5000 sized reel lined with 30 pound braid attached to 40lb Yozuri Fluorocarbon leader. This set up will give you enough backbone to pull fish out of structure, but at same time not wear you out casting all day.
My target location in Stuart is seawalls and docks in and around the inlet. These are easy ambush spots for Snook moving in and out of the inlet. When throwing your artificial lures get parallel to the seawall or dock making sure you get the lure as close to the structure as you can. If you are not having the luck with the lures bring out Mister Mullet. Pitch the live bait to the wall or dock and let him swim around freely. If he runs away from the structure, reel him up and get him close to it again. Repeat this process and by the end of the morning you should be hoisting a nice sized Snook.
Jupiter Florida is one of my favorite areas to go offshore kayak fishing. It has the best bottom structure of all the areas we fish. There is a lot of ground to cover and fish can be very shallow to very deep.
During the early spring and fall this area will see a good push a Mahi come through. I have caught dolphin in as shallow as 50 foot and deep as 180 off the Jupiter coast. Finding flying fish, current rips and floating weeds is very important. Locate one of these areas and fish it hard. The great thing about this time of year is that there is usually plenty of mullet around. I like using finger mullet in this area as I can also bottom fish for snapper at the same time fishing for Mahi. My bait tank holds 10 gallons in which I run two bubblers to keep the water oxygenated. With this set up I can hold roughly 40 finger mullet.
General set up for these fish is our normal offshore rods and reels. 6’6” medium live bait rod paired with a Shimano Spheros 8-10k lined with 30lb braid and attached to a 40 pound Yozuri fluorocarbon leader. I like using 4/0 circle hooks and run a light drag. This allows the bait to be swallowed on hopefully the initial strike if not the second attempt.
To start the day, slow troll live baits starting in 50 foot and make your way out to 180. Again this area off Jupiter is spread out so that journey is about 3.5 miles. If you spot weeds, rips or other bait, stop and set up a drift. If you are unlucky enough that there seems to be no signs of life, keep on the slow troll. Change baits out every now and then to constantly have a frisky offering and hopefully by the end of the day your offshore kayak fishing trip in Jupiter will send you home with a Mahi dinner.
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