The heat and summer sun are right around the corner. Your body's largest organ is getting ready to take a beating.
Skin protection is something that many folks don't take seriously until it's too late. Anglers get a double dose of sun due to reflection off the water. Most of the things we wear are designed to give overhead protection, but not from reflected light from below.
Fishing guides really get intense and prolonged UVA/UVB exposure. Most now cover themselves from head to foot. Long sleeves, long pants, sun gloves, and even full face masks, as well as the standard big hat and sunglasses are now the norm.
Capt. George Tunison
One part of the face that gets more than its share of radiation and windburn is the nose. Even with a good hat, the nose remains unprotected. A good friend and long time Florida Keys guide recently lost half of his nose to skin cancer. Since I don't care for full face masks or "buffs" and my nose always takes a beating, I have been searching for a nose protection product.
I found a company on the internet and after giving their protector a try this past week, I am sold on their product. It simply attaches to the bridge of your sunglasses with a small Velcro strap and covers the nose perfectly. It is lightweight, comfortable and breathable, reasonably priced, stays in place at speeds over 60 mph. After 30 minutes I forgot that I was wearing it.
The product can be dipped in water for a cooling effect and will float your sunglasses if they fall in the water. Go to NozKon.com. Highly recommended.
Besides the liberal use of sun-blocking lotions, reapplied every couple of hours, protect your eyes with the best quality sunglasses you can afford. This is not a product to try and save money on. Quality glasses are not cheap, but worth every penny. When choosing fishing glasses always remember to get glasses that offer full side sun protection as well as UVA/UVB protection quality lenses.
While the water temps are headed into the 80s, fishing continues to improve. Tarpon have been arriving for some time now with some are being caught.
This past week, the trout, redfish, snook, jacks and ladyfish have been biting well and reds are getting bigger. The past three weeks we caught quite a few gator trout mostly on top-water lures or shrimp and a cork. This past week reds show one day on the flats and eat, the next day we spot them and they won't hit. Put in your time. Most are either under the mangroves or on open flats and potholes.
Shallow water reds are taking shrimp on jigheads casted and crawled in the deeper holes or still fished with shrimp, pinfish or ladyfish chunks under the bushes. If you don't get some action try switching to gold 1/4-ounce spoons and target points with some current as well as blind casting mangrove shorelines.
Right now, 20-pound fluorocarbon leaders are still putting fish on the hook when casting spoons for redfish. I always recommend using tiny, yet ultra strong Spro swivels, to connect your leader to your main line. They don't solve line twist issues, but greatly help with the problem. Do not use big swivels and unnecessary hardware.
This time of year many anglers using shrimp for trout are surprised to hear their drag sing as a shovelnose or bonnethead shark races across the flats at warp speed towing your cork. Many times I've seen sharks patrolling shallow water with an easy 200-pound bull shark in about 30 inches of water as the biggest so far.
Waders be warned and remember most problems occur in hip deep water or less.
Capt. George Tunison is a Cape Coral resident fishing guide. Contact him at 239-282-9434 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Flying Fins Sportfishing.