Key Largo to Key West
Includes Islamorada and Marathon
Hello everyone! If you can take the hot temperatures in the Florida Keys backcountry, you will be rewarded with some great catches. The fishing on the Everglades National Park has been phenomenal. Mostly every island flat in the park will have redfish lurking on it. The mainland shoreline from Key Largo to Flamingo has been holding redfish, snook, trout, jacks and some tarpon as well. Live baits have been best but plenty of action can be had with artificials. Flamingo has been typical for this time of the year. Schools of redfish are patrolling the shallow areas with snook and tarpon not far behind. Work with the tides and you will be more successful. If you want something big to tug on your line, a dead bait on the bottom around the deeper channels will get your workout going. Look for the mainland shoreline as you head west towards the Cape to be productive as well with a great snook and redfish bite. Fish the creeks and shorelines in the East Cape Canal area for snook and reds with plenty of sharks and a few tarpon as well. Anglers fishing the shorelines from Cape Sable North keep encountering a great bite of snook with redfish mixed in. Live baits like pilchards and pinfish will be deadly, but Berkley Gulp! baits and D.O.A. soft plastics will also get the job done.
The snapper bite has been great while fishing the grassy bottom from Sandy Key all the way to Sprigger Bank around the park boundaries. We have been bouncing white half-ounce pompano jigs on the bottom while drifting for a mixed bag of big trout, snappers, ladyfish, bluefish and many more. The boats that have been venturing to fish the wrecks in Gulf waters are reporting great action with big sharks, snappers, goliath groupers, permit and a few cobia. On a recent trip with a great family from England we had a blast catching big trout, sharks, cobia and many more.
The tarpon bite around the local bridges and channels remains good around sunrise and sunset. We had a live well full of pilchards on a recent trip and had a blast with the local tarpon. The bonefish bite remains best early morning with the cooler water temperature with some permit around the deeper edges of the flats and banks. Concentrate on the deeper edges of the flats and banks where the water temperature will be the lowest. It’s very hot out on the water so make sure you re apply sunblock often and drink lots of fluids to keep hydrated. Good Luck on the water!
Hello everyone, and welcome back to this week’s report! Some pretty nice weather down here this week, and even though the fishing was a little tough early on with the moon, it has picked up nicely toward the end of the week. Mahi fishing is mainly what I’m talking about as a couple current edges have set up in 700 and 900-feet and the fishing is right back on track. The swordfish ledge offshore has remained good this week with still good numbers being put up, but not a lot of size. A 140-pound fish was the best I heard this week, but a bunch of them were caught, so pretty good. The tunas and AJ’s were good on the humps all week too, so offshore fishing should be good for the weekend. The wreck fishing remains the same this week with lots of sharks and jacks mostly. A few kings this week, and a couple muttons. Nothing to write home about on the wrecks or the reef. The water temperature today was 91 degrees, so this could be a long summer on the tablefare side of the reef. I’m sure with a storm or two, some wind, or just something to dirty up the water things could change with some good current. We will have to wait and see I suppose as it is that time of year. All in all fishing is good, so no complaints here. Wishing everyone a great and safe weekend!
Welcome back to the Lower Keys Fishing Forecast, we have had some calm weather this week and it looks like more of the same over the weekend. The wind is picking up to around 15-mph, but the sun will be out. The afternoon storms have been a regular occurrence down here, so if you are out on the water over the weekend, make sure your paying attention to how the storms are forming. There have been plenty of small mahi mahi offshore, but finding a keeper size fish was difficult this week. The scattered weeds and small birds gave away the dolphin. We have been trolling a little to find the fish, but once we find them we have been throwing live baits, flies and artificial lures at them.
The backcountry fishing remains consistent and has been better than the offshore fishing. There are less lobster boats around now too, so the fish have settled down some. The wind picking up this weekend may help the fishing in the backcountry. We have had such calm weather, the fish seemed to be extra sensitive at times. The wind will help disguise the boat and cover the sound of the fly or lure hitting the water. There are still plenty of bonefish around, both on the Atlantic and Gulf side flats. We have also found a few big tarpon rolling in some of the backcountry channels and basins. The best time to target the tarpon has been early in the morning.
Capt. Jamie Connell