Archive for April, 2010

April 18 Fishing Report

Sunday, April 25th, 2010


Welcome to all who have ventured to the Florida Keys this week! At the beginning of the week the temperature had been hovering around 83 degrees although the winds were blowing strong.  These high winds made sight fishing the flats for Bonefish and Permit nearly impossible.  As the week rounded to a close the temperatures dropped a bit, in return the bonefish have been looking for the deeper waters encompassing the flats. On the upside the Tarpon bite has been strong especially as the tide changes just before sunset.


As most fishermen know winds can truly make or break your day in all aspects of fishing. Yes, the Tarpon were biting however netting the mullet has been the challenge.  The mud have been stirred up making it much harder to get a visual on the bait. To have a real chance of catching the “Silver King’ aka Tarpon you will need at least a dozen or more mullet to secured your chance.  After succeeding with bait we were off to the bridges.


Catching a Tarpon is the easy part, getting it to the boat is the challenge. My preferred set up is a 6 ½ to 7 ft medium to heavy rod.  Using lighter tackle can lengthen the fight harming the Tarpon. Catching a 100 pound Tarpon on a 6 ½ ft rod will give you a 1/2 hour of thrills. Anything over a 1/2 hour and you and the Tarpon may to too tired to go on! For the reel I prefer to use a Shimano Torium (non-level wind) reels.  They have proven to be durable, high-speed reels that cast well.  Depending on the size of the Tarpon I choose to use 30 to 50 pound braided line. Caution has to be exercised using braided line because it will cut your fingers clear to the bone.  There is no stretch so if you hand is in the way consider it gone. For the leader I use 5 to 6 feet and tied directly to my line using a Uni to Uni knot ending with a 5/0 to 8/0 circle hook.  Approximately 4 feet from the hook I secure an adjustable split cork or float.  This keeps my bait to the back of the boat.


This coming week you can expect the tarpon bite to remain strong during the evening hours. Make sure to be prepared because the big boys are here and what a thrill. My father in law got a taste of what it is like to fight a Silver King and I hope to do the same for you! So until next time, ask yourself this one question; Are you fishing yet?

April 25th Fishing Report

Sunday, April 25th, 2010


Welcome to the Florida Keys! It has been a busy week for guides and lots of action to be had by all! This was the week to be on the water! The winds were light, the sun shining, the waters warming, and the bite was strong! Great action included Large Mangrove Snapper, Bonefish, Permit, Speckled Sea Trout, Redfish, Jacks, Ladyfish and of course my ultimate favorite the Tarpon aka Silver King!


The last few weeks the Tarpon bite has been limited to the evening hours but now it is on night and day!  They are being caught around the bridges as well as in the backcountry.  On average the Tarpon we are catching have been in the 100 pound range.  Catching monster game fish like these takes some skill and knowledge. The main point I would like to make to all my new Tarpon anglers is when these fish jump out of the water bow your rod! We have lost over 20 large Tarpon this week alone due to anglers getting too excited and forgetting the rules, ALWAYS BOW TO THE KING! As the silver king begins to break the surface you will feel the slack in the line and then you need to immediately bow your rod or the king will break it. It’s important I get more Tarpon to the boat not only for you to have the lifetime memory, but also for research purposes.


Limited long term research has been completed on Atlantic Tarpon however; one program that all Captains and anglers can get involved in is the Tarpon Genetic Recapture Study being lead by the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute (FWRI). The research is to help biologists understand the Atlantic Tarpon’s migration patters and the success of Tarpon stocks. This kit is easy to use and puts very little stress on the fish. You can order the kit from FWRI by calling 1-800-367-4461 or e-mailing  You can also request a kit from some of your local bait shops. I have been using the kit for years and happy to help any research needed to sustain my favorite pastime, fishing!


If you are thinking of getting on the water your chances of catching a prize fish is high.  Find yourself a skilled guide but be aware more then 65% might already be booked for the time you want. My suggestion would to be flexible.  Many guides will go out more then once a day. This is always nice because they have already experienced what’s biting and where.

 So until next time, ask yourself this one question…  Are you fishing yet?



Easter Fishing Report!

Sunday, April 4th, 2010

Welcome to the beautiful Florida Keys, where fishing is living! If you are not on the beautiful turquoise waters then you better get yourself to the nearest marina and book yourself one of the many experienced local captains.  Things are heating up as I have had some wonderful luck catching, Mangrove Snapper, Sea Trout, Lady Fish, many species of Sharks, Spanish Mackerel and Goliath Grouper,  Best of all the Tarpon are filling my evenings with some rod bending, drag screaming excitement.  


The best tarpon bite has been at night just before sunset as the tide is falling. The bridges are holding “silver kings” ranging from 100 pounds to 200 pounds. On average we have been catching tarpon around 150 pounds. What a fight! As soon as the tarpon bites hang on because you are in for the ride of your life. Tarpon are known to run line the farthest during the initial hook-up followed by some jumping and thrashing.  Hopefully, after approximately an hour of your captain and you working simultaneously in hopes to land this massive creature, you get to relish in the sweet taste of victory! Tarpon to the boat tagged and freed for future generation to enjoy. After the excitement you maybe too exhausted to do it all again, but we all know you will try!


Fishing the bridges for tarpon takes skill, knowledge and experience. There are a number of objects to avoid and rough waters to contend with making night tarpon fishing dangerous even for the experienced.  I have seen many novice fishermen put themselves at risk as well as other fisherman. I’ve witnessed novice fisherman run over the fish causing the other fisherman to loose their chance for success. I have also seen fisherman hooked through the hand while de-hooking the tarpon. I highly recommend you learn from an experienced guide and not all guides are experienced, especially at night. Your boat drift and casting is important but even more important, if you hook a silver king they will run feverishly and if you do not understand there normal movements then you are putting yourself at risk, as well as other anglers.  Please respect the fisherman and know before you go! The last thing I want is for one of my fellow fisherman to be hurt do to the inexperience of another fisherman.


 Tarpon produce some heart pounding action so I hope you find yourself a reliable, capable, knowledgeable guide to help you experience this thrill ride! When done right you will never forget the thrill and fight a tarpon provides. Please be careful and considerate so all fishermen make it home safely.


Until next time, ask yourself this one questions, Are you fishing yet?