Florida is renowned for many things; white, sandy beaches, crystal-clear, spring fed rivers, and the Everglades, just to name a few, but what Florida is known for more than anything is its fishing. The Atlantic coast boasts opportunity for monster billfish, big bull reds and more, but the shallow flats of the Gulf of Mexico is an inshore flats fisherman’s paradise.
Homosassa, Florida is just that paradise. Homosassa, which is a name derived from the Seminole Indian name meaning, river of fishes is situated along the Homosassa River with Crystal River to its north and the Chassahowitzka River to its south, all of which are spring fed rivers. These rivers offer year round warm water that just teems with wildlife at all times of the year making it a hotspot for inshore fishing. Once outside the river mouths, the area is riddled with oyster bars, seagrass beds and sand bars that offer up ample feeding opportunities for redfish, snook, trout, flounder and much, much more. The Ozello area is a popular spot to target these inshore game fish. Ozello is a vast network of mangroves, creeks and islands that plays an important role in the lifecycle of all marine life.
Spring is an excellent time to target the inshore area in and around Homosassa. The trout get fired up and throwing topwater plugs is a great way to cause some excitement. Once the heat of the summer arrives, the redfish bite turns up a few notches. Topwater, spoons and jigs can all be used to catch redfish as they patrol the oyster bars looking for their next meal. Fly fishermen from all over the country flock to Homosassa to try their luck at battling not only redfish and snook, but monster Tarpon in some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. Small skiffs or kayaks make for the best vessels to navigate the shallow and tight waterways that surround the area. World records have been broken in this area, which aids in the excitement for Homosassa. But that’s not all, during different times of the year; anglers can also catch cobia, Spanish mackerel, black drum, sheepshead and even grouper.
With plenty of areas to explore, and numerous wildlife such as dolphins, several species of wading birds and even manatees, Homosassa has a surprise waiting for you around every turn! However, the maze of islands, creeks and oyster bars can be dangerous. Be sure to bring along a GPS and leave a float plan with someone stating where you plan on going and how long you plan on being out for to ensure that you get home safely. There are also plenty of guides with the knowledge and expertise to put you on fish and get you home safely. Tight lines!