• Posted by Nick Honachefsky
  • On May 15, 2017
  • Comments
  •  3

Last week I explored the Crystal River waters along Florida’s panhandle and took a day to target redfish with Captain Danny Allen out of Cedar Key Florida.

I’ve fished for reds plenty of times in Mississippi, Louisiana and other such locales containing arenas of flat muddy bottoms, but this spot was a little bit different.

The Crystal River waters are a combination of sandy flats that lead into grassy banks, but with the added sticky structure of submarine limestone chunks and mussel beds in the muck. The snaggy structure required we utilize lures that would bounce over the rocks, thus we went for spoons. ” I’ll set the Power Pole down about 50 feet off the banks, it allows us to stay in one spot and work an entire area over well,” said Allen. “Make the cast right to the grassbanks, especially in the little cubby holes that have that limestone rock, that’s where the reds push up on the flats on the flood tides and hang.”

We launched Johnson Silver Minnow spoons in ¼ to ½ ounce sizes chartreuse/silver, black/sliver and straight up gold colorings. For gear, as Crystal River reds generally range between 2 to 15 pounds or so, go with a 7 to 8 foot medium power, fast action rod fit with a medium power reel to fit the bill, such as an Okuma EVX-S-711Mb, 7 foot 1-inch rod rated 6-12lbs matched with a Penn 2500 Battle reel or an Okuma Inspira 40B. Spool with 30-pound Yo-Zuri Braid, uni to uni knot a 6 foot section of 25 to 30-pound Yo-Zuri TopKnot Fluorocarbon Leader, to which a loop knot tied directly to the spoon.

Regarding method, Allen adds, ““I like to slow roll the lure, meaning I bring it in at a slow to moderate pace so it wobbles just above the seafloor. If I’m really bumping stuff, I will reel just a hair faster so as not to snag up.” The slow, mesmerizing flash of the spoon gets shellacked by redfish; they simply cannot let the attraction pass by unmolested. In a two hour session, we dialed in 15 redfish from schoolie size up to slot at 26 inches long, and left them biting. The spoons hit their mark, and are the perfect lure when hitting structure areas for reds.

Southern Salt Charters
Captain Danny Allen

Suggested Gear


BTLII2500 Battle II Spinning Reel

Battle II spinning reels have Penn’s HT-100 Versa-Drag washers keyed into the spool which allows both sides of each drag washer to be used. This gives the Battle II higher max drags, more range, and smoother start ups than the competition.



SuperBraid PE Fishing Line

Yo-Zuri SuperBraid PE Fishing Line is super strong & durable, provides maximum abrasion resistance, is easy to handle, and is extremely low stretch.



TopKnot Fluorocarbon Leader

Yo-Zuri HD Fluorocarbon is a brand new fluorocarbon leader that maximizes the advantages of fluorocarbon and a Disappearing Pink tint. Fluorocarbon is virtually invisible in the water and red is the first color to disappear in the water column.



ISX-40B Inspira Spinning Reel

Okuma Inspira Spinning Reels feature Okuma’s Cyclonic Flow Rotor, Centrifugal Disc Ball, and Torsion Control Armor.



Leave Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *