Key Largo to Key West
Includes Islamorada and Marathon
Hello everyone and Happy Independence Day! I’m sure every angler that has braved the hot temperatures and bugs in the Florida Keys Backcountry got rewarded with some great fishing. We had some amazing fishing with lots of Snook and redfish on a recent outing. The snook and redfish bite, among others, has been spectacular in the Everglades National Park. Big schools of redfish are patrolling the many island flats, banks and mainland shorelines with lots of snook, as well. Flies, live bait or artificials are all working great. Captain Lain Goodwin reports a great bite of snook and redfish while fishing the mainland shorelines in the Key Largo area, live pilchards and soft plastics have been working great for him. Captain Brian Gwilliam has been getting in to a great tarpon, snook and redfish bite while fishing the areas West of Flamingo, live baits have been his bait of choice. Look for the good snook bite to continue in the Flamingo area with nice redfish, trout and a few tarpon as well. Live pinfish or pilchards is the way to go, but scented soft plastics like Berkley Gulp! will get the job done. Fish some dead baits on the bottom around the deeper channels for the big sharks in the area and the occasional tarpon.
Look for the snapper and trout bite to continue as you head West from the middle grounds towards First National Bank. The Cape Sable area continues to produce great catches of snook, redfish and tarpon. Working the shorelines with your trolling motor can be very productive while casting scented soft plastics like Berkley Gulp!. Take your time and work with the tides and soon enough you will start catching. Look for the bonefish to be more active on the early and later parts of the day around ocean side and bayside flats. Permit continue to patrol the deeper edges of flats and banks both ocean and bayside.
Out on the Gulf wrecks, look for a variety of species, from permit to cobia, big sharks and goliath grouper, plus all the rod benders that frequent those areas. Closer to the park boundaries the big trout bite continues to be phenomenal with some nice snappers, as well. Bouncing jigs on the bottom has been the ticket while drifting.
Captain Carlos Jimenez out of Worldwide Sportsman Marina has been getting in to a good tarpon and Jack bite really early in the mornings while fishing the Islamorada bridges. Live baits have been getting most of the action. Tarpon continue to be available around the local bridges and channels. The daytime action has been best while fishing live or dead baits. Live crabs at night continue to provide the most hookups. Snappers and groupers continue to be part of the action. Overall the fishing is really good in the Islamorada backcountry. Get one of the best guides in the business to take you out and experience the great summer time fishing Islamorada has to offer.
Hello everyone, and welcome back to this week’s report! Another week gone by of amazing weather, with some decent fishing after the moon. The offshore bite has been suffering since the moon last Sunday, but the wrk fishing has picked up a lot of the slack. The current, if any, has been really far offshore and not much of it. This makes for extremely unfavorable Mahi conditions. I thought it would be back on an upward swing by today, but the lack of wind hasn’t helped the cause. Therefore, other than small tunas and sharks on the humps, and a few Swords up and down the line, not a lot going offshore. The Reef/ wreck fishing has been the saving grace this week with a good mixed bag between the spawning mangroves, and kings, jacks, Muttons on the reef. Also, today (Friday) opens up American Red Snapper season for three days, so that should be fun. Still fish to catch, and plenty for the dinner table, and the Mahi’s will be back in full swing before we know it I sure. Good luck, and be safe!
Welcome back to the Lower Keys Fishing Forecast, the weather remains beautiful down here and the fishing has been steady. The mahi fishing remains decent offshore, there are plenty of fish around, but a lot of them are right around the legal size. I haven’t heard of too many big ones being caught recently. There were some thick weed lines offshore this week, look for them if your fishing offshore this weekend, that’s where the mahi have been. There are some blackfin and skipjack tunas offshore as well, look for the clusters of small birds and troll some small squid squirts way back in your spread. The tunas have been eating really small baits offshore and they like to eat baits trolled further back in the spread.
Fishing in the backcountry remains the same, the water temperature has been in the upper 80’s to low 90’s. There are still plenty of big tarpon around, but were seeing some schools of juvenile fish too. The bite has been best early in the mornings, the full moon has been out, its been calm and the tarpon have been rolling. Permit and bonefish have been around too, July is a great time to try for a slam. With the the light winds this weekend, make sure to be super quiet on the flats. Also, be aware of the storm cells, they have been popping up randomly throughout the day and there has been a lot of lightning in them.
Capt. Jamie Connell