Crystal River Fishing Report

Crystal River Fishing Report
Crystal River Fishing Report for March 19th 2019

Fishing report for March 19th for the Crystal River area waters of the Nature Coast. It has been generally warm and the fish have been biting well with the abundance of small bait fish bunching up in the shallower waters. The bite has been really good for redfish and trout the last few days with reports of some monster gator trout. Some nice Snook have made it to the boat and they are a blast to catch.

Crystal River Fishing Report for March 14th 2017

Fishing report for March 14th for the Crystal River area waters. It has been really warm and the fish have been going crazy with the abundance of bait fish gathering in the shallows. The bite has been really good for redfish and trout the last few weeks. However this is probably going to change a bit.

Now we have a very strong cold front getting ready to hit the area for the next few days. Temps are supposed to dip down in the upper 20’s to the lower 30’s for the next couple of days. The high temperatures are only supposed to be 50’s and 60’s. We will see how this strong cold front affects our fish’s habits.

Check back next week and lets see how things went and are going.

Crystal River Fishing Report for October 19th 2016
October is the month when we usually start to cool off a little bit. This October has been a little different with temperatures ranging from the upper80’s in the daytime and mid 70’s at night It is also the beginning of fall on Crystal Rivers Nature Coast. The first real North Easterly winds will start blowing in the cooler temperatures, and the water temps will starting to cool off. Fish will start to move. This means Trout move on the shore line, Spanish Mackerel will start migrating South, Snook will be moving into the back country, and schools of Red fish will be abundant. October in Crystal River is a very productive month for anglers. It is not uncommon to limit out on Trout and Red Fish this time of year. I recommend trying a Cajun thunder popping cork, 18 to 24 inches of 15 pound leader, to a jig head with a white Gulp or a live shrimp. For years this method seems to have been the best for the Trout while fishing Crystal River spots I fish.

For Red fishing I still use and suggest you try using a 10 pound test braid line, tied line to line, to 20 pound leader. For the hook I use a 3/0 circle hook baited with a piece of cut mullet.

Remember to fish when you can. Bent Rods and Tight Lines.

June 2015 Fishing Report
May 11th 2015 Crystal River Fishing Report
May is one of the best months to fish here on the nature Coast. Fishing is way hotter than the weather. All the migration patterns are in full swing. From Tarpon to Spanish mackerel ,all of the palagic fish are heading back north for the summer. The red fish bite will be hot. With full bag limits and plenty of over slot fish released alive. Red fishing has to be my personal all time fish to target.
Mary and Lisa with an over slot red The main reason being, you can fish for them here all year long, with the warmer months being the best time to target them. Red fish can be targeted with many different kinds of bait. Live pinfish, shrimp, cut bait, to almost any kind of artificial you can imagine to throw. Anything that will work for bass on your favorite fresh water fishing hole will work for the Reds. Top water in the first couple of hours in the morning is about as much fun as you can have. Reds primarily feed on the bottom. Their mouth is designed that way. This is why they “tail” when feeding on the flats. Head down and tail up rooting around on the bottom for small crabs, shrimp and other shellfish. When they feed on the surface it is a whole different ball game. Red fish have to come up over the top of their prey, this makes quite the show on the surface. The biggest mistake most people make is setting the hook when they see the “blow up”, and end up pulling the bait away from the fish, you have to set the hook until you can feel the pull on your line.
Then the battle is on. Enjoy your time on the water, take time to enjoy the pristine waters of the Crystal River and Ozello area.
Capt. Kelly Kofmehl

352-302-5861Inshore and flats fishing Www.young-boats. Com

April 2015 Fishing Forecast and Report
April is a month that most of the fish on the Nature Coast are on the move. Big Trout will be dropping off of the shore line to the deeper flats off of Crystal River. Snook are on the move as well. Leaving the warm waters of the spring fed rivers to the back waters of Ozello and the Mangrove creeks. As the water heats up Red fish are getting more aggressive.

Its not very that I will brag on a specific bait, but there is a lure out on the market now that has been slaying Big Trout. Unfair lures PAR70SU 01 live glow and PDG70SU 11black orange. When I do a fishing seminar the first question that I get asked, what are you throwing! Well there it is. Red fish and Trout are hitting this bait like a freight train on the flats from Steinhatchee to Ruskin, This I can speak from personal experience. Talking to some of the guys from Texas they are loving it too. Snook find it just as irresistible. So there is part one to the most frequent asked question that comes up in most conversations I have with fellow anglers.

When fishing for Trout on the flats in 6 to10 foot range, it is a good idea to keep a rod that is a little heavier for the migrating Cobia that might pass by. I keep mine loaded with a Savage Gear soft eel, they can’t resist it. Spanish mackerel, another one of the many species that is likely to take a bait while fishing in this area. They have razor sharp teeth making it hard to keep your hook on the end of the fluorocarbon leader. Instead of wire line I use a 2x long hook, this produces more strikes than the wire while giving some protection against those chompers. All of the fish that I mentioned are great at dinner time. Nothing is better than wild caught seafood, except the wild caught seafood you caught yourself.

Spring has sprung, get on the water and enjoy a day or just a few hours. With family, friends, or just a little quite time. Slow down and enjoy our back yard.

Capt. Kelly Kofmehl

inshore and flats fishing

October 2014
The cold fronts have started pushing their way down into Central Florida. Bringing some much needed relief from the heat of summer. The water temps continue to slowly drop,and the trout and redfish bite is heating up. Trout have moved on to the flats of the Nature Coast. Spanish mackerel and Bonita are on the move back south for the winter. As as they head south they come close to the shore following the baitfish. I have been seeing pods of Spanish mackerel off of the Crystal River channel bars and along the edge of the spoil banks West of the power plant.
I Will be targeting trout and redfish in the month of November. I can target the Trout when the tide is not right for Red fishing. This time of year I like to use a popping cork with about 24 inches fluorocarbon leader to a 1/8 ounce Jig with a soft plastic artificial bait. Live shrimp is also a good choice under the popping cork. Look for patches of the yellow bottom with kelp Grass scattered throughout it. Work around the edges of this bottom for Trout with the popping cork. I like to drift fish this way to cover more bottom. Trout Will be in pods. You might drift for 10 minutes without catching a keeper trout then you will hit a spot where you catch two or three keepers in a row. After you have drifted through the fish and don’t get you anymore for a few minutes go back around in repeating your drift. You can expect to catch Mackerel, Sea bass, Cobia and other fish while drifting. When the tide reaches the point to go and fish your favorite redfish hole hang on because they are very aggressive with the cooler water temperatures and get ready for some drag screaming runs. November is a very good month to get your limit of trout and redfish in one day.
Stone crabs season has been open for about 20 days. The claws go very nice when you have company and for Thanksgiving. Call the Crab plant in Crystal River to order them for your feast. 1-352-795-4700

Capt Kelly Kofmehl


Brent and Tharin with some of the Reds and Trout on a recent trip
An over slot Red Fish that we released unharmed
Back deck of a Stone Crab boat
April 2014
I met Gary Yackel and his family at the dock at 8 on a Saturday morning. We took off, down the river. I knew that the CCBA fishing tournament was the same day. I headed straight to my pinfish traps, when I slowed down at the first trap I looked behind me and there were 2 boats following me. I thought to myself, I know how this day is going to turn out. We took off through the mangrove littered creeks ran about a mile, a wake popped up on the North shore line of the creek that we were in. Gary saw it also, he has fished enough with me to know that their was something to the wake. I shut the boat down and let the fish settle. Put the Minn Kota in the water and slowly eased up the narrow ditch that the fish entered. Slowly and quietly we pushed forward until I could see about 40 big Reds in the back of a pond that ditch opened into.
I launched 2 live pinfish into the middle of the school. It was only about 3 minutes, it felt like 30, before the drag started screaming off of the reel that Gregg was holding. The oversized Red put up a hard fight, then it decided to head out the creek where the boat was anchored. As the Red came towards the boat it turned and went under 3 mangrove roots. I told Gregg to open the bail on the reel, to give the large fish a free spool. I quickly slipped my shoes off and the wallet out of my pocket and into the water I went with rod in hand. I was able to slide the rod under the roots as the red shot under the the boat and out the creek. As soon as the line was free from the mangroves I handed the rodback to Gregg , so he could finish the fight with the 32 inch Red. The dayturned out to be a good day fishing with some big Trout for dinner.

Capt Kelly


March 15 2014
I was poling my Gulfshore 20 into a narrow Mangrove creek, when a school of over slot red fish started pushing a wake 40 yards up the creek. I told my client, Robert, There thy are, get ready. I knew where the fish were going to settle, so that’s where we placed the large, live shrimp that
Robert was using for bait. 60 seconds later the fish spook and come pouring out the creek like a bunch of Texas long horns on stampede. I tell Robert there they go look at all of them, as they blast out the creek 10 feet from the side of the boat. I’m looking at the fish as they rocket by, That’s when iI see it, Robert’s line is going with them! I start shouting out of excitement, REEL! The bull on the other end of Roberts line took him around the boat 3 times. All I could hear, besides screaming drag, was Robert. ” Lord please don’t let this line break. When we got the fish in the boat it was 33inches and weighed 12.5pounds.
We have also been able to do some sight fishing for Trout getting our limit on most of the trips over the last 30 days. Fishing has been on fire, and will be as water temps are warming up. Book your adventure now.

Capt Kelly


Nov 15 2013
Oct 15 2013
The night time temps are starting to drop just a few degrees, giving us here on the Nature Coast the hint that fall is just around the corner. October is the month of several changes here in the small stretch of paradise that i get to call home. First Stone Crabs are back in season. They will be on the market and ready to be consumed on October 15. With the Crystal River Stone Crab Jam the first Saturday in Nov. Another change is the opening of a new store here in Crystal River, Sodium Fishing Gear. I had the opportunity to sneak a peek in the store the other day. Brandon and Casey not only have fishing apparel from head to toe, but they also have rods, reels coolers, a full line of Carbon Marine products, Fly fishing gear and much more. Stop in and support one of the “local” businesses.
On my trip yesterday I was polling my clients down a shoreline, I could see fish working in front of the boat about 150 yards. I told my guys to get ready to throw. When I was able to maneuver the boat into casting position I told Bo and Jordan to throw in front of the school of Reds. One
guy made a perfect cast and the other was behind the school. About 2 seconds after the first bait hit the water, drag was rippin off the Okumareel. We were able to catch 3 Reds out of that school before they just blew out on us, the first one was 30 inches, the second 31 inches and the third was 32. What a awesome bunch of fish. They defiantly had all of our hearts pumping for a while.
Trout will be back inshore once again in some larger numbers making it possible to catch a limit without having to run way out into the open bay, as the water temps begin to drop a few degrees. I have been eagerly awaiting this event to happen. I typically fish with a popping cork rig this time of the tear. Last October we did very well on the Trout and I have already noticed some early arrivals.
Capt. Kelly Kofmehl
Sept 15 2013
Aug 15 2013

As July begins to rap up and we roll into August the biggest thing going is still the hunt for Scallops. I have watched as many boats as I can remember seeing coming to the pristine grass flats of the Nature Coast to hunt for these tasty treats. I’m not sure where all of the scallops keep

coming from but there seems to be no end to them. On a recent charter, my clients were able to gather their limit in an hour and a half. Some days it takes a little longer. I have also noticed a considerable difference that a mile can make in the size of the meat. One of the best pieces of advise that I can give is to make sure that you have a good mask. I was standing on the bow of my boat today looking down in the water, I counted eight scallops in a ten foot radius, I called one of my divers over to the boat and watched as he swam over them and only saw one. I started pointing them out him. This is the same crew that did so good a couple of days before. He
had started having trouble with his mask leaking a little and was having a hard time seeing them. I started to wonder how many he had actually swam right by and not seen. This is one of the reasons that you not only need a good mask but one that fits well.

On the fishing side of things, we have been able to scrap a few Red Fish along. They have been a little slow to bite, I have been able to catch just as many on top water and spoons as I have on bait. Throwing the artificial has allowed me to cover more water faster with my clients. The Black Drum bite has stayed strong all summer and should stay that way until we start to get some cold fronts this fall. My clients have caught good numbers of drum in the 50 pound range. It is an awesome site to see them tailing on the some of the many oyster bars that litter our coast line. To see that massive tail come out of the water while they are feeding on top of the bars, then to sneak up on them and place your bait right next to a 50# fish is quite the rush when your line comes tight. The battle is on. These are just a few of the exciting fisheries that are going on on the shore line off of the mouth of the beautiful Crystal River. A place that I am truly blessed to call home.

Capt Kelly Kofmehl

Inshore and Back Country fishing 352-302-5861

June 15 2013
Nothing goes together like the 4th and Scalloping! Diving Scallops during the day then coming in and watching the Crystal River fireworks after dark form the boat is one of the traditions that my family has kept to as long as I can remember. This is a tradition that I have been sharing with my kids as well, and they love it. From the teenagers to the youngest at the ripe old age of 3. My little guy loves to go and get in the water with the rest of the family. He is not big enough to dive the scallops yet so what we do is we get a float that he can set in and tie a string to it and Dad drags him along as he dives. Remember safety first while on the water this summer and always keep an eye on the weather. There is one thing that I have learned out of all these years on the water, you may have the experience of a lot of years operating a boat but the boat you are passing, it may be their first time on the water.
On the fishing side of things. The Trout bite has stayed strong as the water temps have gone from warm to hot. The Trout have moved from the shallow flats to the flats of the Nature Coast that are in 6 to 10 foot of water. The two methods that have been working the best for me are: popping cork with 3 feet of leader, and a jig with a soft plastic bait with some scent on it. The other that has worked so far is a jig with a soft plastic with scent like a Gulp, bouncing it along the bottom. This all works the best when the tide is moving. The fish don’t seem to be biting
when the tide is slack. A lot of small Trout mixed in, makes me feel good about the Trout fishing In the future.
Black Drum and Sharks are two of the big fish that will be here for a drag rippin summer. The largest Black drum that some of my clients have been able to land has just been over 40 pounds, with 30 pound fish very common. The size limit on the Black Drum has slot of 14 to 24 inches with 1 over 24 inches and a bag limit of 5. The slot Drum are very tasty, they have a meat comparable to Red Fish. However the over slot fish tend to have worms in them. The big ones fight hard and make a great picture for a trophy to remember them by. When targeting the large Drum I free line a blue crab with a circle hook. I have also caught them on shrimp and gulps. A good leader is necessary as they feed around and on live oysters which are very sharp and will cut your line.

Capt. Kelly Kofmehl

www.Spottailscharters.comInshore and Flats Fishing


May 15 2013
It is May 14 the cold fronts are still rolling down from the North. It was 46 degrees here this morning. It is good news for the Trout bite keeping them on the inshore flats of the Nature Coast. We are still catching limits of trout most of the days that the weather will allow us to fish.
I think the best news that I can share with you is the arrival of the Mighty Tarpon! Yes the Silver King is back on their migration around the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. I have been checking areas weekly for the last 30 days looking for some early arrivals, and have been seeing one or two here and there. Today was the first day that I have found any groups with some real numbers to them. The first pod had approximately 40 fish in it. Then a few hours later the next group had a few less in it. This means that things are only going to get better for the next 30 to 60 days!
If you are interested in keeping up with a more up to the minute reports on what we are catching like my facebook page- Spottails Charters. I will be posting pictures and videos for you to view. If you would like to try your hand at catching some of these giant fish that put up huge, drag screaming runs, acrobatic leaps in the air, and just plan raw power give me a call 352-302-5861
Capt Kelly Kofmehl
April 15 2013
At the time of writing this fishing forecast report the Fishing with Mel Tournament has just been completed. I fished the same clients in the tournament that have fished with me for the last 3 years, Vic, Scott, and Randell Buttermore, form Ocala. We had a great day fishing, catching Trout, Red Fish, and Mackerel. First fish on the boat was a perfect 27in Red, then a nice Trout. as the day went on we caught several more Reds and Trout. we decided to run out in the bay and see if we could catch a Mackerel. We only caught 1 and several more small Trout. Time started to run short so we headed to the weigh in. Scott took 3rd in the Red Fish division , Vic took 1st in the inshore slam, combination of 1 Trout, 1 Red fish, and a Mackerel. Randell took 3rd in the junior division with a nice Red. It turned out to be a great day for the Buttermore family and Spottails Charters.
Looking forward to the month of May all I can think about is the arrival of the Mighty Tarpon. I will continue to fish for all of the other inshore species that the Nature Coast has to offer, but I can add the Silver King to the list. Also Shark fishing will heat up, with the big Bulls following the large schools of Tarpon. There are many options to try to target in the month of May, but the one that gets me the most fired up is with out a doubt is Tarpon. If you want to try your hand at Tarpon, Fly fisherman or bait, first time or old pro, give me a call and we will go on an adventure
of a life time on the Crystal Clear waters of the Nature Coast.
April 2013
April has to be my absolute favorite month to Trout fish. The mild temperatures make fishing an absolute pleasure this time of year, they also make the Trout very active, bringing bag limits of the tasty treats home for most fisherman. In April Trout will hit almost anything thrown at them form shrimp and cut bait, to the soft and hard plastic baits. It is also a prime time for Fly fisherman to try their hand at a bag limit of big Trout. Most of the Trout that I catch this time of the year are top slot to over the slot fish, not very many of under size fish, this is one of the reasons April is my favorite time to fish for them.
Also look for schools of Spanish Mackerel to start to show up out on the edges of the flats and out in the bay. Mackerel can be brought into casting range with chumming. Chum blocks can be purchased at most of the bait and tackle shops around Crystal River, and are very effective when
targeting them. Mackerel shrimp will hit, everything likes shrimp especially me, and small spoons. Most of the people that I know like to smoke their Mackerel and eat it like that or make a smoked fish dip with it.
The Redfishing will also be strong in April. They will be more active as the water temps are heating up. if you have followed any of my articles over the last couple of years you will know that I love to Red fish. The tournaments are all starting up this time of year from the Mel Tillis, April 13, to the CCBA ( Citrus County Builders Assoc.)April 27 and 28 so come out and join the fun both are a lot of fun for the whole family.

Hope to see you there.

Capt. Kelly Kofmehl

www.spottailscharters.cominshore and back country fishing

Capt Charlie Harris and Capt Kelly Kofmehl guided a group of 4 to their limit if Trout and a 6.5lb Pompano
Craig and Marsha with their limit of Trout caught while fishing with Spottails Charters
Carl Waldron brought his son Hunter to fish with Capt. Kelly and caught their limit of Trout and a several Reds
February 2013
On a recent trip fishing the crystal clear inshore waters of the Nature Coast the Trout bite was Awesome. We left the dock around 8:30 in the am. The fog was so thick that one could only see a about 100ft, as we idled down the Crystal River we passed about a half dozen Manatee tour boats headed up the river. We left the Crystal River and jumped into Salt River. The tide was extremely low and still going out, so I lifted the jack plate and jumped the Gulfshore 20 on top, still foggy but I could see 200ft now.
I ran into some pot holes that I have had been holding a few nice Trout. I get the boat shut down in the first hole and sure enough the first cast, boom Trout. When my client got him to the boat it was a 14 incher, 1 inch to small. We fished around that area catching about 35 Trout and some Blue fish, but only had about 3 keepers. By now the tide was starting to turn at one of my favorite “hot spots” so0 I told the guys lets go. When we got there, it was perfect, no wind and the tide just right. I jumped up on the poling platform and I could see Trout every where, and not just Trout but big Trout. My clients, Bruce and Mike, were ready for action. Making a slow drift, we got our baits in front of the Trout, we caught the other 13 Trout we needed to finish out our limit in about 20 minutes bringing the half day to an end with a bang. Everyone was happy and enjoyed the beautiful scenery of the Nature Coast on the ride back to the dock.
January 2013
December 2012
The first 6 days of December have been unusually warm, in years past we normally have a strong cold front in the first week of the month. What all of this means that the water temps have risen on the near shore waters of the Nature Coast about 6 degrees, this has triggered the Trout and Red fish to move back on the flats with a big appetite. Making the fishing of the mangrove creeks and the flats just off of the mouths of the creeks fantastic. With limits of Trout and Reds being caught most of the recent trips. We have also have been able to land some mixed bags consisting of Sheephead and some Mangrove Snapper while fishing for Reds and Trout. The weather man is saying that the warm weather will continue for at least another week or so. It is a great time to book your next adventure with Spottails Charters while the temps are unseasonable mild.
Capt Kelly Kofmehl

November 2012
With Santa on his way with all the gifts for the boys and girls, it is a wonderful time of the year to be fishing the Nature Coast. With the many Spring fed rivers of Citrus county there is always something to fish for. The water temperature of the springs at the head waters of the Crystal River are 72 degrees year round, making them a prime area for Red fish, Snook, Mangrove Snapper, Sheephead, and Trout on the cold winter days. Lady fish fill the rivers and are willing to bite just about any bait that you want to throw. This is prime time to take a kid fishing. Action filled trips with shorter amounts of time on the water are sure to put a smile on a young ones face. If you are into Fly fishing it is an excellent time to stay in practice for the rest of the year. Be on the look put for large Jacks while fishing in the rivers for some drag rippin action. I have to admit that December is a rod bending, action filled month.
The Spring feed rivers will also be full of Manatees, making a sighting of a few of these gentle giants on the top on any ones list of things to do. Migratory birds of all kinds can be spotted, form the Bald Eagle to many different species of Ducks.
Not many places on the Planet can compare with the fishing and the scenery , of the Nature Coast of Florida in the winter months. To book a trip filled with rod bending action and beautiful surroundings like no other give me a call.
October 2012
As Summer rolls out and Fall rolls in, the cooler Temperatures are most welcome after a long, hot, wet summer. The cooler temps have the fish of the Nature Coast on the move once again. November is a great month to fish for the fact that you may see schools of fish moving around the flats that you might not see any other time of the year. And if you can see them then you will have the opportunity to catch them. There are many species that move South for the warmer waters such as Pompano, Permit, Cobia, and Mackeral just to name a few… Mullet are in large schools fattening themselves for their journey offshore for their spawn, otherwise known as the Mullet Run.
Trout are back on the shore line and the shallow flats, feeding on shrimp and small fish. My favorite way to rig for Trout this time of year, is to use a popping cork with about 2 feet of 20 pound leader tied to a jig, and baited with a gulp or a live shrimp. Sometimes the Pinfish are still to aggressive for these baits, I will switch to a bait without as much sent such as a D.O.A. shrimp or a Zoom jerk bait. On the other end of the line I like a Okuma Citrix 7 foot rod and a Cedros 30 spinning reel. My Cedros reel is loaded with 10 pound test Vicious braided line. Fall Trout seem to feed the best on the young flood, or the beginning of the incoming tide to about half way in.
Redfish are also on top of the list of fall fish to target. On some of the low tides due to the Northeast winds this time of the year, they can be a little more difficult to find, but there are still plenty of them around and they will be hungry. I like to use the time proven Gold Spoon to cover a lot of ground while in search of the Red Drum with the spot on his tail. With the cooler weather it is a great time to get on the water and experience a Sunrise or a Sunset on the crystal clear waters of the Nature Coast.
September 2012
Big Trout have started coming shore just as I predicted in last months article. Limits have been reached on most days for the guys targeting them, and it will continue through October. It is so exciting for me to watch the changing of the seasons and the patterns of the fish change as well. Mullet are bunching in large schools fattening themselves for the fall run. I was red fishing on the flats and have also caught some Blue fish, what a great fight they are able to give you on light tackle. Pods of Jacks are moving in and out with the tides, striking at the bait fish on top of the water. With all of the different fish moving it is a lot to try and take in but it is nice to set back and try, and just enjoy a day on the water.
August 2012
July Scallop Report
Scallop season started with a bang, with most of the boats being able to dive their limits of the tasty muscles in the time frame of a couple of hours. There are still plenty of Scallops left on the shallow grass flats of the Nature Coast to be captured by those wishing to pursue them. The best time to dive for them has been at low tide, where even the youngest of hunters can help gather their dinner for the night. The water off of Crystal River has been surprisingly clear, after all of the rain that we had from Tropical Storm Debbie, making the turquoise-blue eyes of the scallops an easy target for the divers. Call to book an adventure that you will remember for years to come.
June 2012
I was running the trolling motor very slowly, being very careful not to make any noise. Looking in front of the boat about 40 yards I see a giant tail come out of the water, This fish is feeding. I new that I had a good shot at catching this fish. I maneuvered the boat in the best position to make the cast with the crab that I was using for bait. As the crab lay on the bottom my line was slack. Small taps started, feels like Pin fish. My line started coming tight, I slowly lifted the Okuma Cedros rod.
The Huge Black Drum was tugging and pulling my line. I finally landed the giant of the flats, Though these over sized Drum are not good table fare, they are certainly excellent fun to target for photos and memories. During the course of the day I saw many of the Drum, catching 3 of the giants. I was sure that I could have caught many more than 3, but I was on a mission for Red fish this day. The Drum in the picture was he first catch of the day, it weighed just over 35lbs. If you would like to catch one of thee Giants on light tackle, or have a different adventure that will produce memories that will last a life time, call and book a trip. 352-302-5861, and ask for Capt. Kelly
May 2012
I was reeling in a Rapala slash Xterme Action SlashBait slowly this morning just after Daylight. I felt the line tighten up on my rod, the first thought that ran through my mind was that the lure was bouncing on the bottom. Drag started to scream off the reel, my heart started pounding. Seconds into the fight the 100 pound Tarpon leaped 6 feet into the air. The drag was singing, as line ripped off my reel. The Silver King sky rocketed a total of 6 times, before he threw my hook! What an exciting start to very productive day. Tarpon season is in full swing here on the Nature Coast. They are being caught on Spinning tackle as well as Fly rods, Also the Redfish bite is still strong, catching limits of big Reds and then catching and releasing some on most of the recent trips. The bite has been strong through out most of the day. Most of the Trout have dropped out on the deeper flats, where one can still scrap out some very nice fish in the upper slot size, with lost of action from other species to go along with them.
If you would like to go on one of thee exciting adventures of a life time give me a call and book your next trip, it is not just a fishing trip when you go with Spottails Charters it is an Adventure.
Capt Kelly Kofmehl
April 2012
On Saturday, April 14 Capt. Kelly successfully guided Vic Buttermore for the 1st place win in the Redfish division, and Randell Buttermore for 1st place in the junior division, with large Redfish, during the Mel Tillis tournament out of Homosassa, Fl. The Charter was a huge success for the day. The Buttermore’s caught many Reds the day of the tournament. 3 of the Reds were over the slot limit with the largest of them being 33inches. Also caught were some Trout that made a tasty treat for the end of the day festivities.
If you want some Drag screaming excitement give me a call @ 352-302-5861 and book your next adventure.
Capt. Kelly Kofmehl
March 2012
The month of March means one thing to me, Trout and big Trout. In years past Trout have been closed for the month of February, so traditionally the month of March has been the time to start Trout fishing. Usually the cold fronts are starting to lose some of their punch. Days on the water are more easily planned without the the big weather swings.
The next couple of months have to be my favorite time to fish, not to hot not to cold. Lots of big Trout on the flats. The start of tournament season for Trout and Redfish. And limits of fish on the cleaning table at the end of the day. We are still having to measure the fish, but not as one might
think, in the Spring we must be careful not to get to many over the slot. Here on the Nature Coast you are allowed 5 Trout per person, 15 to 20 inches, with only 1 of the 5 allowed to be over the 20inch mark. When I target Trout in the spring months my favorite thing to use is top water lures. To see the strike and then to feel the line come tight, fish on! Many other techniques are just as effective such as live shrimp, jerk baits, and mid water lures. One of the most common mistakes that a lot of anglers make is to fish with their drag to tight when fishing for these larger Trout. Trout have a soft mouth that tears easily, making it easy for the Trout to throw the hook when giving those big head shakes.
It is already shaping up to be a record setting year with limits of big Trout being caught threw the whole month of February. Things will only get better as the Gulf water temperature warms up and so does the fishing. Call and reserve your back country and flats fishing trip on the pristine waters in the heart of Nature Coast here in Crystal River.
Jan. 2012
The last week of December the weather was warm and the fishing was hot! My clients were able to catch there limits of reds when the tides got right to fish for them. I took my son (Kelly jr.) fishing on the Friday before Christmas break was over. He caught several reds before coming in. He caught the 30in red in the photo on a 5in gulp jerk bait, nosed hooked with a smell live bait hook, with an Okuma C3x rod and an Okuma trio reel spooled with 10lb power pro line, and 15lb leader.
Now that we are in the new year the weather is in for a cold change. Cold North winds are being predicted for the first part of the week, with temperatures as low as the high 20’s for the first of the week. I will be fishing around the river and in the back bays near the warmer spring waters. Small shallow running plugs will work on trout as well as live shrimp. Fish the deeper channels and around the rocky points in the river. Mangrove snapper will be close to the warm water of the springs. When I target the mangos I use a small jig head with a live shrimp.
Dec. 2011
Another week of winter low tides and north east winds to come. Look for trout to be found in the deeper holes around the mouth of the Crystal river, St. Martians river, and Fish creek. Look for the holes with the hard bottom in them. This will be indicated by the kelp, or rock, grass in and around the hole. Some of these holes can be found between two oyster bars, or gaps in the bars. Zoom glow jerk baits nose hooked, twitching very slow has been very productive for me. Also using live shrimp works well.

The red fishing has also been good. We have caught some nice reds in some of the same holes as the trout. The best results have been on shrimp. We also have been successful using cut mullet in strips, on a circle hook, and just letting the bait lay on the bottom. Mangrove snapper have started moving into the rivers. They can be found around the rocky points where the tide has washed out a deep pocket, and up in the bays around the springs. I use a small jig head tipped with shrimp, light leader (10 to 15lb test) and retrieve the bait super slow if I move it at all.

The forecast this coming week is for more strong northeast wind. So these are some tips to keep you on the water being as successful as you can and enjoying the time that you may have.

Nov. 2011
Warm days and cold days. Is it winter is it fall? Fishing in Crystal river with the Northeast winds and no water can be very productive. This has to be one of favorite times of the year to fish. Limits of reds and trout in the same day. With these low tides the fish fall into the small channels
and sand holes that are scattered all around the Crystal River area. No matter the bait of choice, the colder the water gets the slower you gotta work it. We are catching limits of reds and trout in the same day regularly. It is a good time to come and see what catching is all about.
Oct. 2011
October is the month of is the first real month of fall on the nature coast. The first real Northeasters blowing in the cooler temperatures, and the water temps starting to cool off. This means Trout on the shore line, Spanish Mackerel migrating South, Snook moving into the back country, and schools of Red fish. October in Crystal River is a very productive month. It is not uncommon to limit out on Trout and Red Fish in a full day charter. In the past few weeks I have found using a Cajun thunder popping cork, 18 to 24 inches of 15 pound leader, to a jig head with a white Gulp or a live shrimp to be the best for the Trout while fishing the Crystal River area.

Red fishing I will use 10 pound test braid line, tied line to line, to 20 pound leader. For the hook I use a 3/0 circle hook baited with a piece of cut mullet.

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201 Northwest 5th Avenue
Crystal River Florida 34428


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