Key Largo to Key West
Includes Islamorada and Marathon
Hello everyone! Rain and wind prevailed most of last week in the Florida keys backcountry but for those who got out the fishing was good. Great action on the eastern areas of the bay while fishing mainland shorelines and island flats. Look for redfish, snook, blackdrum and others while casting DOA jerk baits and Berkley Gulp! Shrimp. The Flamingo area has been mostly spotty. Some anglers reported a few snooks, redfish and sharks but worked hard for it. It is slowly improving and with the lighter winds forecasted it should be ok for the weekend.
If you are looking for some good eating hard fighting fish look no further because the snapper bite in the Florida Keys backcountry and Gulf waters are fixing to be really good. Live pilchards or smaller pinfish have been getting the bigger snappers but artificial baits will get your limit as well.
Out in Gulf waters, the wrecks and rock piles are holding schools of permit, goliath groupers and the occasional cobia. The Spanish mackerel are slowly starting to show up and pretty soon it will be game on. The areas around park boundaries from Sandy Key to Spriger bank will have some rod bending action with snappers, ladyfish and some trout.
The bonefish bite throughout the Keys remains excellent around the Ocean and bayside flats. Working the strong tides right now has been proven very productive for many anglers. Keep an eye on the deeper edge of the flats or banks for a hungry pack of permit, a well presented small crab will get you hooked up. The resident tarpon have been enjoying the cooling showers and the decrease in boat traffic around the local island, bridges and channels. Live pilchards continue to be the bait of choice. The pilchards have been more abundant and fishing with them around the bridges and channels throughout the keys continues to be very productive. Take advantage of the great fishery we enjoy and take the family fishing!
Hello everyone and welcome back to this week’s report! Hasn’t been the greatest weather week thus far, but the good news is that there just might finally be some light at the end of this tunnel. A lot of wind and rain this week here in the Keys, but if the rain stays away this weekend, the wind looks great! The fishing this past week for those who made it out was pretty well-rounded as a little bit of everything was biting. From the sword ledge, humps, and offshore in general most everyone caught what they were targeting. A few nice swords, mahi, tunas, and even the deep dropping was pretty consistent. The wreck and reef fishing was exceptional with the yellowtail fishing absolutely going off! The dirty water and nearly perfect current speed made this fishing as easy as it gets. The muttons, groupers and kings were biting well on the wrecks too. Still a good bit of dirty water off the reef, so the snapper conditions are ideal. This should continue into the weekend.
We are still experiencing some crazy water movement especially on the outgoing tide, and this has remained since IRMA. Not surprising the water is high with all that has happened, as we have some of the biggest tides of the year in the fall months.Therefore, it looks like great conditions for fishing this weekend, and there are plenty of restaurants and hotels open, so no reason not to come down. The good lord knows the service industry could use a little “love” from our extended family of tourist friends and mainland weekend warriors! Hope you guys can make it down and enjoy the life we all cherish so much. Have a great weekend everyone and be safe!
Hey everyone, welcome back to the fishing forecast for the lower keys. We have finally been able to get out and fish more this past week. The fishing has been good around Key West, both inshore and offshore. There has been some dolphin offshore, we were out early in the week and we found a nice color change with a weed line and other debris on it. There were plenty of mahi and skip jack tunas out there. The reef fishing has been consistent as well. A couple days ago we had a good yellowtail snapper bite and the fish were good size. There have been a few grouper, mutton snapper and cobia on the reef too.
Backcountry fishing has been excellent as well. There have been a lot of small tarpon around and they have been eating well. We have been fishing close to the mangroves a lot recently, to hide from the breezy weather we had last weekend and the early part of this week. Mostly, we were live bait chumming with pilchards. We caught a lot of tarpon, sharks, jacks, snappers and even a few snook, which there are not many of around Key West. The wind is up again right now, but the forecast for the weekend looks nice with a lot less wind and sunny weather. Make sure you book your trip to the lower keys and get out on the water, we are up and running and ready to go fish.
Capt. Jamie Connell