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October 08, 2009

Homosassa's Crystal Waters

Trout and redfish share the spotlight along Florida's Nature Coast

Homosassa, Florida Tackle Box

For targeting Homosassa trout, Capt. William Toney's go-to setup is a DOA 512-inch CAL Nite Glow jerkbait.The shape and weight of this larger lure allow you to cover more water and attract larger fish. Toney ties a 3/0, offset live-bait hook to 20-pound fluorocarbon leader using a loop knot. The hook is inserted under the chin and through the nose to maximize the darting action. Few strikes are missed with the hook exposed, and it is surprisingly weedless.

Capt. Dan Clymer adds the element of scent when focusing on redfish. Using a loop knot, he ties on a 18-ounce chartreuse jig under a float with 18 to 24 inches of fluorocarbon leader, depending on the depth. He then pinches the head off a live shrimp and threads the tail onto the jig. As a variation, he'll substitute 2-inch strips of filleted mullet, small chunks of ladyfish or a quartered section of pinfish tail pinned to a 2/0 hook.

Rods: 7- to 712-foot medium-action spinning rods with fast tips.
Reels: 2,500- to 3,000-class spinning reels.
Lines: 10-pound-test braid.
Lures: Soft plastic jerkbaits in glow or root beer colors, shrimp imitations in natural hues, scented lures, spoons and walk-the-dog topwater plugs.
Baits: Live or fresh shrimp 1 under a clacking or popping cork 2 for trout. Small mullet strips, chunks of ladyfish, or shiner (pinfish) tails cut at a 45-degree angle are effective for redfish.