Snook fishing 101

I’m going snook fishing with some friends, and I want to make sure everyone has a good time. What’s the best strategy/bait/rigging for catching snook?

Snook are a schooling fish that definitely prefers to feed at night. They can be best found near docks if they are available in the areas you will be fishing. Much of my experience Snook fishing comes from the Cape Coral area. The Caloosahatchee River and canal system of Cape Coral is a haven for large amounts of Snook. I also have a great deal of experience fishing the areas around Sanibel and Captiva Island for Snook. We have established fishing at night and near structures such as docks is your best method of catching Snook. You can also spend time fishing near mangrove patches. You will perhaps see more Redfish than Snook in these areas but will catch both species. Snook do not have sharp teeth so you can use Fluorocarbon leaders that are lighter than for other species. They are a very wary fish so keep your line light and compensate for it with a reel with plenty of line and a good drag. For bait you cannot beat a large jumbo shrimp. I like to use no weight and hook the shrimp once through the tail. I will then either bottom fish or if fishing structure sometimes use a very small bobber and allow the current to bring the bait into the area I suspect will hold fish. Shrimp will catch the most fish, but if it is a trophy Snook you are after a large pinfish is your best bait. Hooked once through the top of the back a Pinfish will catch the bigger Snook that may take a pass on a shrimp.

Daniel Eggertsen
Dan Eggertsen is a fellow saltwater fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on saltwater fishing since 2004.

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