Tampa Bay Sight Fishing
Pinellas County - Chassahowitzka
Inshore Light Tackle, Fly Fishing

Now Offering Night-Time Dock Lights
Hunting Shuttle in Chassahowitzka
Welcome to TampaBaySightFishing.com

We offer Fishing, scalloping, gigging, photography, and wildlife viewing charters in Tampa Bay and Chassahowitzka Florida.

It's Always a good time to visit the Tampa Bay area! With 115 bridges, 35 miles of sandy beaches, and 588 miles of coastline; fishing is the first thing that comes to mind.

Tampa Bay is the largest open-water estuary in Florida. It encompasses nearly 400 square miles and borders three counties: Hillsborough, Manatee and Pinellas. On average, the Tampa Bay is only 12 feet deep and there are more than 100 tributaries that flow into it. Tampa Bay’s beaches are always ranked in the top 10 on the list of best beaches in the nation. Clearwater Beach has even held the record for "most days of sunshine" in the Guinness Book of World Records.

More than 200 species of fish are found in Tampa Bay, including our targets: Snook, Redfish and Spotted Sea Trout.  Mangrove islands in Tampa Bay support the most diverse colonial waterbird nesting colonies in North America.

Just 65 miles or so north of Tampa Bay rests Chassahowitzka. It's one of the few places left in Florida that you can explore all day, and never see another boat. The fishing is world class! We offer overnight wilderness trips on special weekends of the year.

Fishing Calendar

I recently spoke to one of the local high school fishing clubs about seasonal changes in the fishery and what and where to target. I put together the chart below to for them, and wanted to share. It's very general, but works for me.
Fishing Reports

SUMMER 2014 - Pinellas dock lights & nature coast scallops

Fishing is always outstanding during the summer! This year is no exception. Two of my favorite games this time of the year are night-time dock lights in Pinellas County, and Scalloping/fishing in Chassahowitzka.

The dock lights have been on fire! This year has been a little different than last year. There are a lot more BIG snook, baby tarpon, and silver trout, but less redfish and speckled trout. All species have been feeding heavily on live, artificial lures and flies! Snapper and sharks have been fun too!

Scallops in Chaz have been a blast! We’ve been averaging about 1.5 gallons per person in 2 hours before heading off to fish. The outer Islands have held nice trout, reds, and a mixed bag of other species. The best trips have included early scalloping, LUNCH in the shade of John's Island, fishing in the early afternoon, and swimming in the springs!


April 2014- DIY roadtrip Miami/Big Cypress

I kept reading reports about peacock bass in South Florida, a sp
ecies I’ve never caught, so it was time for a DIY road trip. I drove down the side of one of the urban canals in the Miami area that was suggested by another guide. Being that this was my first time I have ever been there, I was hesitant to park on the side of the road because I didn’t see any cars or fisherman. Could I possibly be in the wrong spot? Finally, board and frustrated I stopped. I grabbed a rod, my fanny-pack tackle bag and walked directly across the street. I made a short cast to make sure my setup was ready, then BAM! A peacock bass drilled my lure at the edge of the water. My first cichla ocellaris, and on a bucktail jig that I smelted, painted, and tied myself! I went on to catch several more beautiful fish, in the middle of the city!

On the way home I made a loop on Tamiami Trail through Big Cypress National Park. I only stopped for about 2 hours, but I lost count of the number of fish I caught. Included were largemouth bass, spotted tilapia, Mayan cichlids, snook, gar, and something else that I still don’t know what it was…

I can’t wait to go back, anyone want to split gas?

Spring 2014-Ready to Go!

The water has quickly warmed to the 70's, bait is coming back, gator trout are here, snook are in transition, Let's go Fish!
FALL 2013-Closed for Winter Months

I don't offer many trips during October-Feburary because I spend most of my time coaching high school wrestling. Trips are still available on a limited schedule during Thanksgiving and Christmas break. I will be back in action the first week of March. Thank you for your understanding, please come support our athletes.

I've been working on something new during the winter months! During my down time, I realized that there are some additional sportsman opportunities available in Tampa Bay and Chassahowitzka that can be done by boat. I am developing back country hunting drop off in Chassahowitzka, and Duck Hunting in Tampa Bay.

Chassahowtizka Wildlife Management Area offers a back country hunting area that is only accessible by boat or a ridiculous 3 miles wade through the swamp. I scouted it over Christmas break with my friends and found Hog and Coyote sign within sight of the boat! The Chaz local hunters tell me that the area is loaded with big animals and nobody hunts them because of accessibility.


Late October-Steelhead Fishing in Michigan

Finally! I got to take a mini-vacation to fish with family on the Big Manistee River, Michigan. What an amazing trip! We landed double digit steelhead using multiple techniques!

October-Happy 4th Birthday to my Daughter!

Late August- Tailwater Trout on the Chattahoochee River

I took a short weekend to fish the closest freshwater trout steam I could find. It just happened to be the famous Chattahoochee River that runs directly through Atlanta. I was put in contact with River Through Atlanta Guide service, www.riverthroughatlanta.com. The owner, Chris Scalley proved to be world-class guide. I caught double digit rainbow and native brown trout. Here are some photos for you. Contact him if you are in the Atlanta area and are looking for an outstanding fishing opportunity!

August-Sight Fishing Around Mullet Key

Sight Fishing with Danny

July-Tampa Bay Dock Lights on the fly

Summer fly-only trip with Blake. We double slammed with redfish, snook, and trout!

July 1 Report-Tampa Bay-Chassahowitzka

Scallop Season is OPEN! Book your trips NOW before it's too late! Most of the Homosassa Guides are completely booked for scallop trips for this season, We still have dates available out of Chassahowitzka. Scallops are currently in 4-5 feet of water, and the redfish, trout, jacks, mackerel, and bluefish are feeding at the outer edges of the marsh system.

Fishing in Tampa Bay has been awesome! We have fished for Redfish, Snook, and Trout in the dock lights, and fished for Tarpon, Cobia, and Mackerel off the beaches and in the passes. We even had a couple of days tailing redfish around Ft. De Soto.

We even had one day on a local pond were I caught 22 bass in 2 hours one the fly rod.

June 12 Report-Tampa Bay Snook, Redfish, Trout, Tarpon

Fishing has been awesome! We have had lots of luck fishing dock lights with slots sized snook, redfish, and trout on nearly every trip! Summer rain has slowed down the bite a little, but we are still having a lot of success after the storms pass. 

I had my first Tarpon trip this year today Jumped two in the 150-175 pound range. One fish pulled me around for an hour and ten minutes, two miles, and kicked my butt.

May 20 Report-St. Pete Dock Lights

We have been fishing dock lights in St. Pete the last couple weeks. Fishing has been fantastic! We have landed multiple inshore slams, and have had a few days were we looking for either slams on live bait and fly, or one fish short of slam.

I am going to offer these dock light trips for the rest of the summer at a discounted rate. They are such a nice way to fish; the weather is very comfortable, boat pressure is almost zero, it's very quiet & relaxing, and the fishing is outstanding!

Shark fishing has been fun too! I added a couple pictures of Kymmy, who caught her first 2 sharks, first redfish, and trout May 20th on a combo afternoon shark fishing & dock light trip.


May 1 Report-Tampa Bay is on Fire!

I had the chance to fish several days since last week. They were all great!

  April 24 : I fished with Capt. Randy Cribbs. We put in in St. Pete and crossed Tampa Bay to fish Cockroach to fish a few hours in the afternoon. We ended up with 10+ trout, redfish, and snook for  an Inshore slam.

Friday April 26:
I fished St. Pete dock lights for a couple hours on fly. I had serious follows from snook, trout, and redfish. Ended up with a few snook, and several large trout... but couldn't find a redfish to complete the Inshore Slam.

Thursday May 2:
Heavy rains kept nearly everyone off the water, lucky for me. I fished St. Pete dock lights again, but with spinning gear and live bait. Caught 5 reds, (Largest was 26 3/4", 3 snook (largest was 27"), and one trout for the an Inshore Slam.
April 6 Report

It's Hot, then cold, then windy, over and over again...Even though winter is trying it's best to hold on with weekly cold fronts, spring is here. The water is colder than we want, but the fish seem to have had enough. The breeder sized snook are feeding at their spring staging areas at the mouths of the backcountry, Chaz Redfish have moved into their spring feeding zones in good numbers, and I have seen a few tarpon at the Skyway Bridge, in Pinellas backcountry, and even a couple in Chassahowitzka.

I fished with Mike and Elizabeth today. Northeast winds really slowed down the tide and kept water really low in the bayou. We fished the creeks and managed 7 snook on artificial lures.


March 22-26 Report

Spring Break!...but Mother Nature had a different plan. The wind blew 20-25 knots for several days, temps dropped to the mid 40's. We decided to  hide from the wind in the protected bayous. Conditions were tough, but we still caught a few snook. My Tuesday guest, John from Ohio, caught his first snook on spinning gear, and his first on the fly.

Most important, the big snook have moved to their spring staging areas in preparation for warmer weather. Spanish mackerel are starting to show up in the local channels in Tampa Bay and Chassahowitka. Tarpon and Kingfish will be here soon!


March 16 Chassahowitzka Report

Back in Action, got the new motor dialed in on my 1860 MVT Sea Ark!

We fished Chaz starting with cold 42 degree morning, but it quickly warmed up to mid 70's with bluebird skies. My guest, Mike, was really taken back by the natural beauty of the ecosystem. We were lucky see manatees, wading birds, several bald eagles, and watched dolphins feed on trout. We found trout in the creeks feeding in moving water, and spotted a few redfish on the points.

As if on que, my friend Captain Randy Cribbs showed up in the afternoon. We got to watch him hook & land a nice 33" redfish by himself. It was like watching a fishing show live. I got a few good pictures, and a couple minutes of video on the GoPro...will post soon.

December 29-30 Chassahowitzka Report

Fished Chaz with friends the last couple days of 2012, We stayed at Capt. Randy's Cabin on John's Island. It was a cold weekend with 39 degree lows, and 20 knot winds. We still managed to catch 7 reds and 10 trout. Some pics to prove it.

October 18-21   Michigan Steelhead Report

I took a quick vacation to Michigan to visit family and fish for Steelhead on the Big Manistee and Muskegon Rivers. What an amazing experience! It was cold, wet, and addicting! I learned more in a couple days about this fishery than I could have learned from TV for years. My cousin and uncle proved to be outstanding hosts. We put 9 or 10 "chromies" in the boat, the largest was 11lbs.

october 13-14 2012   Secret Bayou Report

Fished the "Secret Bayou" over the weekend, and caught 13 snook, 2 reds, trout...my Saturday Angler caught his first Inshore Slam. Lots of big fish in the back country right now. We saw several oversized redfish, snook, and a couple schools of juvi tarpon. I can't wait for the first real cold front!

September 17-18  2012 Chassahowitzka
Photo Report