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Where we Fish

Nobody can predict for sure what kind of fishing will coincide with your trip, but I can give you some general guidelines of what we typically have come to expect. The bottom line is, “It really depends on the weather…the water temperature, to be specific.”

I fish the Backcountry, the Gulf, and the “Patches”…truly fortunate to be at the crossroads of multiple ecosystems.

Backcountry — Everglades National Park
The Backcountry is the mainstay of my business. Backcountry fishing is in shallow water, usually no deeper than 10 or 12 feet, oftentimes as shallow as a foot or two. You don’t have to worry about getting seasick in the backcountry. Target fish include the backcountry slam — tarpon, bonefish and permit. Then there’s the other backcountry slam — redfish, tarpon and snook. Take your pick.

Tarpon like warm water. We’ve seen tarpon show up as early as February, and stay as late as December…it really depends on the water temperature. Springtime usually sees the best tarpon bite.

Bonefish like warm water, too, but you can catch them on a cold, windy day. Most of my bonefishing is in the fall and spring because of the water temperature, but it is possible to fish year-round for them.

Snook, Redfish are year round fish — we fish for them in the winter when the others are laying low. Trout is year round, the season is closed November/December. You can catch them, but you can’t harvest them.

Permit like the warmer water as well, we see them in the spring, summer and fall, but not so much in the winter months.

The Gulf (of Mexico)
When it’s calm — and not so cold — we’ll head out to the Gulf for some action fishing…Snapper, Grouper, Cobia, Giant Jewfish (Goliath Grouper), Bluefish, Pompano, Mackerel, big Shark (and not so big shark), Cobia and Permit. These last two — Cobia and Permit — are two of the main targets when we’re fishing in the Gulf.

The Patches
When it’s really calm and the water is like glass, we’ll head out on the ocean side and fish the patches. Usually fall through spring (not so much in the hot summer months), fishing 10-30 feet, the water is crystal clear and you can see straight down to the coral heads, or wreck or rock formation that attract the fish. I’ve seen days where we catch 10-15 species of fish in a single day. Yellowtail snapper, mangrove snapper, lane snapper and mutton snapper…hogfish…sometimes a special cobia appearance — all the makings for a great catch to bring to a favorite local restaurant.

Other species include grouper — red, black, gag, goliath — porgies, cero mackerel, kingfish and shark. My good buddy, Justin once caught a sailfish — in my skiff! Here’s to Justin!

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