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Thinking about moving to the Clearwater/Tampa area

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Thinking about moving to the Clearwater/Tampa area

Old 02-10-2019, 01:29 PM
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Default Thinking about moving to the Clearwater/Tampa area

My wife and I are originally from the mountains in East TN, we lived on the Eastern shore of VA for a year, where I fell in love with offshore fishing. I had a 23í 2008 mako center console with a 300 Verado. I we of went 10-50 miles offshore bottom fishing. Up there you really had to pick your days and would not of wanted a smaller boat. The fish species were lacking, mainly just sea bass, tog, flounder, and flounder.

We we now live in Nashville and are thinking about moving down there since I have good seniority there with CSX railroad.

How good is the bottom fishing there? Is it really hard to find the spots? Many reefs? How far out do you need to go to get in to good fishing? How big of a boat do you need to get out there safely? Iíve heard in the gulf you donít need near the boat that you need where I lived on the North Atlantic. Thanks in Advance!
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Old 02-10-2019, 04:04 PM
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Actually the gulf waters can get very "confused" and sloppy like a washing machine, with 1-3 second periods between waves. Having said that, when it is a flat day, yeah you will see flats boats 45 miles out.

Finding spots is not hard if you know how to use your sonar

You cant have too much boat, but the inshore fishery is so good that many folks get something that is more oriented for the bay, and then pick their days to run offshore.

You can get plenty of action within 20 miles, but many people like to run out to 100-150 ft when everything is in season. That is a longer run from Clearwater than from say Egmont Key. 40-45 miles to 150 ft
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Old 02-10-2019, 05:35 PM
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I too used to live in East TN (Maryville area, up off the Foothills Parkway surrounded by the Great Smoky Mountain National Park) and moved back to this area after 8 years. Currently in New Port Richey. LOVE this area - some of the best fishing and lifestyle in the world. I do a lot of spearfishing and bottom fishing. I have a 25 foot Cobia WA with a single Honda 250 - been out 50 miles on a good day. Tons of great fishing from 1 foot offshore out to 100+ miles (Middle Grounds). You can't go wrong if you pick the right area to live in and take things easy.

Easy to find spots, lots of artificial reefs as well as TONS of ledges and good rocky hard bottom.
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Old 02-10-2019, 05:43 PM
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Fishing sucks. Stay up north!
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:09 PM
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Thanks for the info! I need to be able to make it to CSX yard in Tampa in a hour so hopefully we can find a area thatís not to crowded but Iím not sure thatís possible lol. Thatís my only concern, I come from a rural area and just not sure I can handle the traffic everyday. How bad is the traffic really? Would like to live within 30 mins of a boat ramp and 30-50 minutes from Tampa yard with traffic considered.
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:28 PM
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Ruskin. Look within 10 miles of the yard. Traffic sucks. Look at Waze for the area on the days/times you’re on the road. That should offer some guidance.
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Old 02-10-2019, 07:44 PM
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Tampa is full and there are no fish here.

Best of luck elsewhere!
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Old 02-10-2019, 08:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Nate926 View Post
hopefully we can find a area that’s not to crowded but I’m not sure that’s possible lol.
Hahahahaha!! This area is the most densely populated in the state. We literally cannot get from point A to point B anymore ;-)
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Old 02-10-2019, 08:36 PM
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Lol yeah we are gonna come down and visit and see if I can handle the traffic. Thanks again guys!
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Old 02-10-2019, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Nate926 View Post
My wife and I are originally from the mountains in East TN, we lived on the Eastern shore of VA for a year, where I fell in love with offshore fishing. I had a 23í 2008 mako center console with a 300 Verado. I we of went 10-50 miles offshore bottom fishing. Up there you really had to pick your days and would not of wanted a smaller boat. The fish species were lacking, mainly just sea bass, tog, flounder, and flounder.

We we now live in Nashville and are thinking about moving down there since I have good seniority there with CSX railroad.

How good is the bottom fishing there? Is it really hard to find the spots? Many reefs? How far out do you need to go to get in to good fishing? How big of a boat do you need to get out there safely? Iíve heard in the gulf you donít need near the boat that you need where I lived on the North Atlantic. Thanks in Advance!

I live in N C and that area is MUCH too hot for me. Much prefer outer Banks n c which has the species you may be looking for, and much better offshore fishing than Eastern Shore.
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:02 AM
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FWIW...I had a friend here in Tampa who worked at CSX and he just moved to Savanah GA. He love's it there. He had been here for about 50 years.

How good is the bottom fishing there?
Pretty good.

Is it really hard to find the spots?
No - plenty of public numbers; get a good sonar and scan while trolling or doing recon. Watch video logs at home on larger screen.

Many reefs?
Plenty. Go look at Navionics for a free online map. Probably better sites out there, but you'll get the idea.

How far out do you need to go to get in to good fishing?
"Seven mile" reef, and "10 mile" reef are there - plenty of inshore and tarpon fishing. I go out 20 miles - sometimes 40.

How big of a boat do you need to get out there safely? I’ve heard in the gulf you don’t need near the boat that you need where I lived on the North Atlantic.
I've know people to go out in John Boats in the summer. Flat calm...pick your days and all will be good. That said I have a Glacier Bay 2670 and 15mph winds don't worry me as much as when I had a 17' CC.

Thanks in Advance!
You're welcome; last thing beware of googans - you've been warned.
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:28 AM
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I moved away from Tampa area a few years ago, had grown way to big for my liking. Im now in S Ga(Thomasville) about an hr from the water, great inshore and offshore fishing.Very laid back, nice place to live. One of my friends that fishes w me offshore a lot works for CSX here in Thomasville.
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:32 AM
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If you are on the barrier islands your trip into Tampa in the morning will easily be an hour or more.

I would rather live on the beachside and endure the traffic than live in Tampa and trailer to the beach when I want to go boating or fishing.

Our house in Madeira Beach is a 20 minute run to Johns Pass and out into the Gulf. Once there I can be fishing in 30-60 minutes depending on which spot I want to hit.

Used to do all of my fishing on the east coast. Get up at 4am, trailer to Pt Canaveral, put the boat in, get ice bait and drinks then head out to the fishing grounds. That's a good one to two hour run, usually in chop. Fish all day, run in, load the boat, clean fish, trailer home. Be done around 9pm. LONG day!

Now we leave the dock around 8, fishing by 9. Load the box with fish and be done by 2. Back at the dock by 3 and into the pool to cool off. Clean fish and the boat and all done by 4!

Yup, I love the West coast!
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Old 02-12-2019, 09:58 AM
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Check Ruskin / Apollo Beach out. Here we can hear the F’n train passing by at 04:00AM with its horn blowing full steam every night. It’s awesome if you dont want to sleep anyways. Fishing ain’t too bad either......
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Old 02-12-2019, 04:05 PM
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Guys I sure do appreciate it! Like I said we are gonna come down and visit. We are also gonna check out Savannah GA as I stand for work there. Thanks again!
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Old 02-13-2019, 07:20 PM
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Thumbs up Traffic nightmare.

Tampa , St. Pete traffic is a nightmare. We lived in Cumberland County, TN and moved to Crystal River and love it here. We have a 21' CC I pick my days to fish. I have never failed to catch a fish. Our daughter lived in the Tamp, St. Pete area and when we visited the area we ALWAYS hit terrible traffic jams. Crystal River is most likely too far north for your commute but the demographics here is very similar to TN. They call this area the "Mayberry" of Florida. We have been here over seven years and love it.
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Old 02-13-2019, 07:40 PM
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Thanks! Yeah the traffic is the only thing that bothers me. Really rather not have to commute more than 45 mins.
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Old 02-13-2019, 07:51 PM
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The local traffic has become even worse just in the last 2 years. Hurricane Maria sent at least 150,000 Puerto Ricans to Florida to STAY, and the impact was noticeable the first week. And it hasn't gotten any better since. This is one very major reason that I almost exclusively use Amazon or eBay to buy practically everything except groceries.

Last edited by GaryDoug; 02-13-2019 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 02-14-2019, 05:12 AM
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South shore (Ruskin/Apollo Beach) are about to be built out and congested. Get ready for it. There's 800 homes going in on Shell Point Rd and a new development east of Sun City centered around one of those giant man made lagoons. The development on Shell Point is really insane with the amount of dirt they've brought in. Waterset is also planned to be built out down to 19th Ave so solid area of houses between 75/41/Big Bend and where the Amazon warehouse is. Have fun getting on/off 75 at the Big Bend exit or taking 41. The amount of single family home construction is really insane with zero road improvements. What I can't figure out is where are all these people working.
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Old 02-14-2019, 06:07 AM
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Originally Posted by 23Dorado View Post
South shore (Ruskin/Apollo Beach) are about to be built out and congested. Get ready for it. There's 800 homes going in on Shell Point Rd and a new development east of Sun City centered around one of those giant man made lagoons. The development on Shell Point is really insane with the amount of dirt they've brought in. Waterset is also planned to be built out down to 19th Ave so solid area of houses between 75/41/Big Bend and where the Amazon warehouse is. Have fun getting on/off 75 at the Big Bend exit or taking 41. The amount of single family home construction is really insane with zero road improvements. What I can't figure out is where are all these people working.
Had a friend just move there from Chicago. We visited a couple of weeks ago. She is in a gated community. Nice but not my style.
There is no easy way to get there. She will be commuting to Tampa. Got to be an hour commute each way with the traffic. She's used to it coming from Chicago.

That area is is going to be a mess, especially when the supporting stores and shopping plazas start popping up along 41.

No thanks!
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