Islamorada Florida Keys Tropical vacation

Islamorada Florida is referred to by many as the"Sportfishing Capital of the World" and rightfully so. More world record fish have been caught from our waters than any other location on earth. Where else can you fish for Bonefish, Tarpon, Snook, trout and Permit in the the Florida Bay and then go for Marlin, Sailfish and Dolphin (Mahi Mahi) with just a short run offshore?

What makes Islamorada such a hot spot for fishing? There's something in the water. the Gulf Stream of the Atlantic Ocean, the Florida Bay and and the Gulf of Mexico all surrounding this chain of islands off the southern tip of Florida called the Florida Keys. Every warm water gamefish that swims in our hemisphere can be found here at one time of the year or another. charter boat captains and guides in Islamorada and the surrounding Keys are some of the best in the world. They are professionals and have usually spent many years on the waters off the Florida Keys learning the local fishing spots and the techniques necessary to catch fish in our clear waters. In fact, some of today's guides and captains are children of charter boat captains who grew up fishing this area and learned these techniques with their parents or grandparents.

Experienced fishermen know that there is no substitute for local Knowledge and this is why chartering a local captain and guide is so important. No one can make the fish bite but being in the right place at the right time with the right tide and the right bait can make the difference between just having a relaxing day fishing our beautiful waters or catching the fish you dream about.

Saltwater Fly fishing has become an extremely popular form of fishing in the Florida Keys. Here in Islamorada they fish for everything from Spotted Trout to Blue Marlin on fly. Tarpon and Bonefish are two of the more popular targets for fly fishermen in the Florida keys. In fact, my neighbor, Craig Brewer, a native of Islamorada and long time, second generation Backcountry guide took one of his clients to a world record 14 lb.plus Bonefish on fly. What a thrill to hook one of these guys on a fly!

Tips on saltwater fly fishing is usually a part of the charter service but make sure to ask your captain ahead of time if this is the case. Some Captains welcome anglers new to fly fishing and some will only take experienced fly anglers.

Offshore Fishing

You will find charter fishing the offshore waters around Islamorada to be easy and enjoyable. No long, time consuming runs out to the fishing grounds. In the winter months you can fish for Sailfish right after you get past the reef and in the summer months when waters are usually calm it might take a little longer run out to the weed lines for Dolphin but I can tell you after fishing the Carolinas, this is cake. Some guides even come in for lunch at some of Islamorada's restaurants! From Sailfish and Marlin, reel-smoking Wahoo and Dolphin, to delicious Yellowtail, Mutton Snapper, Grouper and Kingfish, there's something to catch year round here in the Florida Keys.

Backcountry fishing

Backcountry fishing is fishing "outback" or in the beautiful Florida Bay. Here Redfish, Snook, Sea Trout, Tarpon, Bonefish, Permit and many other fish are sought after by anglers from all over the world. White Herons, Egrets, Pelicans, Roseate Spoonbills, Ospreys and many other species highlight the skies over the green waters of the Bay and Everglades National Park. The seas are usually a light chop to calm which make for a comfortable ride on the guide boats. These boats are open outboards which vary in size but usually run between 17 and 21 foot and are designed to run in very shallow water. They comfortable carry a captain (guide) and two anglers.

There's a category of backcountry fishing in the Florida Keys is called "FLATS" fishing. The major sportfishes sought with this technique are Bonefish, Permit and small Tarpon. This type of fishing is really a cross between hunting and fishing. Most times after running out to a likely spot, considering tide and conditions, the guide quietly poles the boat along the flats (very shallow water) trying to sight the roll of a tarpon or the tail of a feeding Bonefish. These fish are very spooky and care has to be taken not to scare them off. Once your prey is spotted, you must work your way to them and present your bait or fly with care. When they hit hold on.

When it comes to water, this is one of the most beautiful areas of the US. The captains are the best available anywhere so saddle up. It's a great adventure with some of the best fishing you'll find anywhere in the world.