In Capt. Rick Grassett Sarasota Florida Fly Fishing Forecast for June 2018 he explains how to target Snook, Redfish, Tarpon, and other species when Fly Fishing near Sarasota FL.
Tarpon should be plentiful in the coastal gulf this month as big schools of fish migrate along our beaches. Also look for cobia, tripletail and false albacore (little tunny) in the coastal gulf. Catch and release snook fishing should also be good in and around passes and in the surf. Fishing for trout and reds should also be good on shallow grass flats.
May was a tough month for tarpon in the coastal gulf for me, either conditions were bad (rough and dirty water, rain and clouds) or when conditions were good, fish weren’t happy (deep and fast-moving). Tarpon were there, just a lot of variables that need to come together to be successful with tarpon on a fly. However, Tarpon fishing should be good during June as schools of fish increase in size and numbers. They will head offshore to spawn, close to new and full moons. I use 12-weight rods and large arbor reels capable of holding a minimum of 300-yards of backing. Leaders consist of a 60-pound butt section, a 40-lb mid-section, a 25-pound tippet section with 2 Bimini twists, to add stretch to the leader, and an 80-pound bite tippet. I’ve done well with Lefty’s Deceiver and my Grassett Flats Bunny fly patterns fished on floating or intermediate sink tip fly lines. Stakeout or anchor in travel lanes to get shots at them. Tarpon are creatures of habit and will travel on the same edges and depth contours. The shallower the water, the easier it is to get you fly in front of a fish when fly fishing. Since fish may be moving both north and south, setting up too close to another angler may negatively affect their fishing.
Snook season remains closed this month, so also use tackle heavy enough to catch and release them quickly. You should find them in the surf, in passes and around docks and bridges in the ICW near passes. You can walk the beach and sight fish them in the surf with fly tackle. Small baitfish fly patterns, like my Grassett Snook Minnow, should work well. The same flies that work in the surf will also work well at night. Snook will congregate in passes around the new and full moons to spawn, so docks and bridges close to passes will usually hold more fish this time of year.
Fishing for reds should also be good in June. Look for them over shallow grass, along mangrove shorelines or around oyster bars when the tide is high. You’ll find them in potholes or edges of flats when the tide is low. Fly anglers should score with baitfish fly patterns like my Grassett Flats Minnow or Gurglers. You’ll also find big trout in the same areas where you find reds in shallow water. You can use the same flies to catch them although first light in the morning will be prime time to catch a “gator”.