Richburke03

New guy help (gulf shores)

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I just moved to gulf shores and have never salt water fished in my life. I would like to fish off the pier here for drums and sheepshead. The guy at the store convinced me to buy a Penn Slammer III 4500 which now I think is overkill, but I’m just going to keep it. What would be a good rod to match this reel for what I want to do? 

 

Thanks 

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Pier Fisherman fishing 0ff of Pier in Panama City/P Cola for the most  use a 7ft Med  Heavy, and many  use Penn 704/706z models looking for 250 270 yds of 20 mono as lot of sharp debris on pilling's, if you have a  West Marine in area stop in and talk to staff,visit a  pier and talk with the people fishing there most should help you get  started

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I fish from a kayak so my tackle is different in itself. Because of style of fishing I do, anchored and casting into mangroves or other structure the gear is smaller. 

 

I fish 2500/3000 series spin reels 

rods are ML rated. 

10-15 lb braid and 20 lb mono bite tippet

Size 1 hooks and 1/8 oz egg sinkers. 

Jigs are 1/8 to 3/16 oz. 

 

gear will certainly change based on conditions and locations. I wouldn’t use what I use in a kayak on a pier. The pier would be a larger rod, reel and heavier line plus heavier tackle all around. 

 

 

Most tackle shops will help too. The smaller ones close to the places will have the better info of the day to day going on. I use the same tackle shop each time out for shrimp. I get some info from them and I in return give them info on how I’ve been doing. The info to them is a week old, being it was last week out. But, they do know fish species caught and bait used. I do give them general info of location. They give me the same info. The location is general in the sense of, a given Pass or overall location but not super distinctive in nature. A tackle shop on the pier will have a tide, weather and fish of the time of year being caught. 

 

See if there is a guide around and speak to them as to what you are looking to break into. Use them for a half day trip. Cuts the learning curve down quick. Plus, you get to see a spot or two for another time out on your own. 

 

Lastly, leave the rod home. Walkthe beach, or set up a chair on a pier and just sit back. You’ll learn a lot by observing others. You’ll see the same person or two being consistent. These are the ones you ask for help. Don’t become a bother just simple what style of rig is that. What’s that lure called. How are doing that, boy are you consistent as heck.  Simple little phrases to break the ice and compliment their ability. Be sure to end with thanks a lot/ I learned so much/Greatly appreciated. Shake their hand. 

 

 

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4 hours ago, saltfisherman said:

I fish from a kayak so my tackle is different in itself. Because of style of fishing I do, anchored and casting into mangroves or other structure the gear is smaller. 

 

I fish 2500/3000 series spin reels 

rods are ML rated. 

10-15 lb braid and 20 lb mono bite tippet

Size 1 hooks and 1/8 oz egg sinkers. 

Jigs are 1/8 to 3/16 oz. 

 

gear will certainly change based on conditions and locations. I wouldn’t use what I use in a kayak on a pier. The pier would be a larger rod, reel and heavier line plus heavier tackle all around. 

 

 

Most tackle shops will help too. The smaller ones close to the places will have the better info of the day to day going on. I use the same tackle shop each time out for shrimp. I get some info from them and I in return give them info on how I’ve been doing. The info to them is a week old, being it was last week out. But, they do know fish species caught and bait used. I do give them general info of location. They give me the same info. The location is general in the sense of, a given Pass or overall location but not super distinctive in nature. A tackle shop on the pier will have a tide, weather and fish of the time of year being caught. 

 

See if there is a guide around and speak to them as to what you are looking to break into. Use them for a half day trip. Cuts the learning curve down quick. Plus, you get to see a spot or two for another time out on your own. 

 

Lastly, leave the rod home. Walkthe beach, or set up a chair on a pier and just sit back. You’ll learn a lot by observing others. You’ll see the same person or two being consistent. These are the ones you ask for help. Don’t become a bother just simple what style of rig is that. What’s that lure called. How are doing that, boy are you consistent as heck.  Simple little phrases to break the ice and compliment their ability. Be sure to end with thanks a lot/ I learned so much/Greatly appreciated. Shake their hand. 

 

 

Great advice.

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The good thing about people from Florida is they are friendly and don't mind to talk. like already mentioned what you can observe from your own eyes is probably the best advice for what you want to do. You may get a better deal from a big box store but sometimes shopping local pays off in the long run. the advice tips and spots to Target are worth the extra money in itself. You could always start out with a inexpensive Rod such as an ugly stick and upgrade accordingly

like said keep the questions simple and give it a shot

Good luck and have fun....

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I agree with Salt 99%....

 

99%...

 

the 1% being..

 

dont forget..."watching" is a double-edged sword.

 

watch for what "doesn't" work for others.

 

watch what locals "do wrong".

 

Here...

 

This is what DOESNT work on the gulf coast:

 

...tomato-red, sun-burnt surf fish aficionados...those fellows slinging 2oz of weight....spreaders....3-4 hooks of shrimp/sand flea....launching 100+yd out.......waiting......in agony......

 

..while snook, jacks, decent Reds, sheepshead & trout cruise by them inches from shore...in a foot of water--take note....

 

watching these guys struggle in absolute agony...

 

..just grab a medium Rod....10lb mono-10lb fluoro leader...no weight....smallest hook possible...live bait.....

 

....you'll land more snook in under an hour than those guys will in a year....

 

(Salt--tell me I'm wrong)

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11 hours ago, Mauru said:

I agree with Salt 99%....

 

99%...

 

the 1% being..

 

dont forget..."watching" is a double-edged sword.

 

watch for what "doesn't" work for others.

 

watch what locals "do wrong".

 

Here...

 

This is what DOESNT work on the gulf coast:

 

...tomato-red, sun-burnt surf fish aficionados...those fellows slinging 2oz of weight....spreaders....3-4 hooks of shrimp/sand flea....launching 100+yd out.......waiting......in agony......

 

..while snook, jacks, decent Reds, sheepshead & trout cruise by them inches from shore...in a foot of water--take note....

 

watching these guys struggle in absolute agony...

 

..just grab a medium Rod....10lb mono-10lb fluoro leader...no weight....smallest hook possible...live bait.....

 

....you'll land more snook in under an hour than those guys will in a year....

 

(Salt--tell me I'm wrong)

Nailed it. There are fish always at your feet. Don’t walk the exact waterline, step back and away from that edge. Walk on the crown of the hightide sand line, that upper high ridge. Look for different color of water, is that color moving. what could be a wind line is a bait pod moving, nervous water is a another sign of something is there, ripples in a calm day. 

 

Learned that years ago trout fishing with a fly rod. I caught so many fish at the bank edge. I didn’t jump right in, I also didn’t just start casting, take your time and look around. 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

"....Don’t walk the exact waterline, step back and away from that edge. Walk on the crown of the hightide sand line, that upper high ridge."

 

---------------------------

YES.

 

+2 

Edited by Mauru

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13 hours ago, Mauru said:

I agree with Salt 99%....

 

99%...

 

the 1% being..

 

dont forget..."watching" is a double-edged sword.

 

watch for what "doesn't" work for others.

 

watch what locals "do wrong".

 

Here...

 

This is what DOESNT work on the gulf coast:

 

...tomato-red, sun-burnt surf fish aficionados...those fellows slinging 2oz of weight....spreaders....3-4 hooks of shrimp/sand flea....launching 100+yd out.......waiting......in agony......

 

..while snook, jacks, decent Reds, sheepshead & trout cruise by them inches from shore...in a foot of water--take note....

 

watching these guys struggle in absolute agony...

 

..just grab a medium Rod....10lb mono-10lb fluoro leader...no weight....smallest hook possible...live bait.....

 

....you'll land more snook in under an hour than those guys will in a year....

 

(Salt--tell me I'm wrong)

Agreed.  I did a guided trip in Matlacha with the idea of using lures.  The guide said lets try a jig head with shrimp.  Caught all day on that set up.  Used it on Sanibel and caught there as well.

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On 1/11/2019 at 10:24 AM, D_L said:

Agreed.  I did a guided trip in Matlacha with the idea of using lures.  The guide said lets try a jig head with shrimp.  Caught all day on that set up.  Used it on Sanibel and caught there as well.

What size jig head did you use?

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Posted (edited) · Report post

5 mins ago, Jay in the Bay said:

What size jig head did you use?

Pretty sure it was 1/4 ounce. You want a little weight. So you can bounce the shrimp off the bottom.  I can check for sure when I get home tonight.

Edited by D_L

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Also, while walking the sand line, remember, with the sun at your back in early morning on the Gulf Coast, if you're showing your shadow out from the sand line, the fish can see that you're there. Step way back until your shadow doesn't show at the surf line. Then start casting. 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

 

On 1/9/2019 at 5:41 PM, Richburke03 said:

I just moved to gulf shores and have never salt water fished in my life. I would like to fish off the pier here for drums and sheepshead. The guy at the store convinced me to buy a Penn Slammer III 4500 which now I think is overkill, but I’m just going to keep it. What would be a good rod to match this reel for what I want to do? 

 

Thanks 

 Here is a simple starter book by Capt Mel Berman called " Skinny "  you can buy it used or new . For a guy who NEVER fished the saltwater of the Gulf of Florida .  Its what you want to read before going to adventure this great sport . I have a copy it was one of my 1st . Helped me out greatly . Cover shallow ( skinny ")  waters , beach fishing AND PIER fishing .   tight lines as we say .

Edited by Hook I

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Keep it simple and don't over think it...the 4500 IMO isnt a overkill its a med setup and if you stay in this sport long enough you will just add to your setups..I have fish shoreline (thats everything) most of my life... Pier fishing is a great way to start out, make a habit of going to the same bait shop, spend some money and time talking to the guys/gals there and that will be a great start...Like was said earlier start out by watching... in fact leave your gear in your vehicle and just walk the pier... and as far as talking goes most of the guys that know... "Don't like to talk" its up to you to be friendly and start it off... and please don't ask "So what are you fishing for" we hate that LOL...also a good idea to carry a soft cold bag with some soft drinks/water or beer...beer goes a long way LOL...if the guys you run into become experts while they are talking to you and don't have anything in the cooler or arent catching chit... walk away and look for other people..and don't really go by what they are using... some of the best pier fishermen i ever knew has the worst gear you ever saw but they would catch fish like crazy... remember its not about the gear, but the person using it...oh as far as drinks go... don't give out the beer till someone come thru with great infor...:laugh:  I have even guys leader setup... just to get them started... it depends alot on how YOU get the conservation going...Also IMO You will have to put in your time, visit the pier as often as possible, during low and high tide, see what gear people are using (bait/leaders/line/lures and so on) also don't forget the pier will have it season when it hot and cold...depending on whats running...it will always hold some type of gamefish.. But also be aware of whats running for that time of year the locals/baitshops will know... another thing to get in a habit of doing... start writing down on a note pad what you did the days you went out... and i mean everything no matter if you caught something of not, 

here's a start put down "tide/weather/bait/lure/rigs/times you were there/part of the pier you fish/and also what other people caught and what they were using" this way you can always go back and check what work and what didnt...

Fishing isn't easy or fun at times, you make it what you want it to be...most of us here have been skunk more times then we can count, but fish have to win LOL and thats what make it fun...the more time you put in, the more time luck will be on your side...In other words we make our own luck when it comes to fishing....

And you are starting at a great place, but don't forget to visit your local fishing forums also...some piers have their own sites or just join a Florida fishing forum and check out your area...don't get me wrong i love this site and have learn alot...but i'm also a member to other sites and its great to have all that infor at your finger tips....

 

Good luck, keep it simple and enjoy every moment you are out there... we have a huge learning curve when it comes to all the amount of fishing you can do down here...so keep learning and above all have fun.... OH trust me at times you will want to pull your hair out and throw your gear into the water...LOL...but when you catch that first big fish,,, it will all be worth it

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