Cranking For STAR Reds

Have You Heard of The Gulf Tsunami Threat?
June 10, 2024

Crankbaits are an overlooekd tool in the arsenal of angler’s pursuing redfish.

Anglers focusing on the tagged redfish division of STAR might consider using crankbaits as they are not only highly effective but allow you to cover lots of water.

Channel Reds

The Intracoastal from the just past the Gulf and upwards of two miles north are great places to fish crankbaits. If you run this area on your depth finder, you will notice large pods of baitfish that sort of stack up. Most of the time it is menhaden but often it can be mullet. Both will draw in these big reds, which tend to suspend below the bait.

Deep diving crankbaits are the key here as these reds will suspend as deep as 20 feet of water. Anglers can cast smaller crankbaits or use trolling plugs ran through the baitfish schools at a medium pace.

If you do not want to troll for these fish, drifting is a viable option. Drop some marker buoys around the baitfish schools and then drift over them while throwing the diving crankbaits. Be very mindful of the depth you are getting struck and mark. Most of the times these reds will be in a very specific area and may not deviate even a few feet.

Jetty Reds

Jetties are magnets for redfish and should not be overlooked in your pursuit.

Angler Bill Killian said he starts his fishing around the boat cuts in the jetty systems to take advantage of reds foraging on baitfish dispersed from the bays after big cold fronts.

“The boat cuts are a good place to start because during tidal movements you have a lot of baitfish moving through. The boats cuts in a jetty system are the point with the most intense tidal flow because they are a small opening. You will get lots of shrimp, shad and crabs pushing through and the reds will move lie in wait.”

jetty rocks

Jetty rocks are often covered in slippery seaweed.

Killian said this is a great spot to throw large lipless crankbaits.

“Do your best to anchor up current of the cut and work the lure against the current. Let it sink down and then reel it in as fast as you can. The pressure of the current will allow the rattles to work really well.”

“Something else you can do is simply lower the lure down and let it flow back with the current. You can get strikes like that too.”

Another great spot to find bull reds at the jetties any time are the deep holes usually found around the southern tip of the rocks and back about 50 yards. These spots are where the current wraps around the rocks and carves out large holes. 

The reds in these areas tend to move through in small schools or hold over one piece of rock in large numbers.

TF&G Staff

 

 

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