I recently read about wade fishing the Halifax River for flounder and was wondering if you could point me in the right direction. I might bring a kayak. Could you give me some places to put in?
Funny you should ask. I know a fishing guide in Ormond Beach who mostly uses kayaks and he says the flounder bite around the Dunlawton bridge has been "pretty darn good" for the last couple of weeks.
He's named Capt. Eric Greenstein, aka "Flip Fishman." He says to hunt flounder you should fish shorelines where you find sandy, shell or oyster bottom.
The sandy beaches of islands in our Intracoastal Waterway are prime habitat. Give extra attention to the lee sides of any points.
Tactically, Capt. "Fishman" suggests covering ground for flounder. And retrieve speeds for flounder are usually very slow.
I've heard guides say stuff like, "Reel as slow as you think you need to and then go half that fast. Now you're flounder fishing!"
Instead of staying a bit back from the shore to avoid spooking any fish, sometimes Capt. "Fishman" will run right down the shore. It's a tactic this can work wading, kayaking or in a skiff. When you take a path that traces the shoreline and cast ahead, your retrieve searches the shoreline strike zone the whole time it's in the water.
Flounder have been known to hit top water lures, but the traditional baits are bottom searchers; light jig heads or fish-finder rigs and live shrimp or mud minnows.
And like any fish, tides, weather and the time of year will play a role.
Of those details, the variable fishermen can most reliably take advantage of is the seasonal migration of flounder.
During the spring, they move from near shore wrecks and reefs through inlets and up rivers into the estuaries.
Around Ponce and Matanzas inlets, this typically happens around mid April.
The flounder run back offshore sometime between late September and mid October.
Finding a place to put a kayak in the river shouldn't be too difficult. If you want tried, true and easy, hit the Dunlawton bridge or Granada bridge boat ramps. Islands are prominent in the river near both locations.You can access Ponce Inlet's back country from a dirt ramp on the south east corner of the U.S. 1 three bridges area that crosses Rose Bay, but be wary of the area's strong tidal currents.
Everyone should believe in something. I believe I'll go fishing!
12 Redfish 26 3/4 my largest