Tropical Storm Fay Fizzles

Tropical Storm Fay looks like it may put a crimp in my offshore plans. At least it made a clear miss of the Tampa Bay area, except for some overcast cloud cover. But the wave heights are pretty high offshore. Looks like another Merry Pier weekend ahead.

Last weekend was all about the gag grouper. I must have landed a few dozen, all undersized. Most were in the 12-18″ range, although I did see a tagged 21″ caught (and released). Some guy landed a small cobia, and there were a few snapper around, although they weren’t particularly inclined to bite after gorging themselves under the full moon.

2 Responses to “Tropical Storm Fay Fizzles”

  1. schwa82 Says:


    Hiya, good to hear you weathered the storm. Just 8 days left and I’ll be in P-A-G losing bait and tackle but hopefully landing a few nice ones ocasionally. I need a good pole or two to keep down there for when I visit. I’ve just been using junk poles put together with spare parts.

    I’ve been reading and doing some research as to what type of rods & reels are desirable for the type of fishing I’ll be doing (around the pier and surf). Unfortunately I’ve ended up more confused and clueless than when I started…So many choices, afraid of going cheap and ending up with a crap R&R but don’t want to spend too much $ if I don’t have to… Any suggestions?

  2. Steve Says:


    8 days? Cool! As far as rods go… if you want to go the cheap route, just rent ’em for the day at the bait shop on Merry Pier.

    I generally bring two rods- one will be a medium action with 15 lb mono or 20 lb Spiderwire on a Shimano Sedona reel. This does the trick on the snapper, sheepshead and flounder, and provides a little sport for the grouper. It also provides plenty of casting distance if the Mac’s, bluefish or bonita show up.

    But, it’s no match for a snook, tarpon, shark, cobia or a keeper grouper. So I generally bring a second, sturdier rod, with 20+ lb mono and a Shimano Baitrunner (4500 or 6500) reel for the serious work. I can toss a big pinfish out to the rock piles, or drift one under the dock, and wait for the baitrunner to sound. That way, I can comfortably fish to rods simulaneously unless the bite gets hot.