View Full Version : pre-hurricane fishing repor, Everglades

09-19-2005, 07:22 PM
This report is a bit early this week in case I get knocked off the 'net by soon to be hurricane Rita.... We've only been allowed back in the Park for a week now and I've been lucky enough to be on the water four days. I'm sure hoping that the Park re-opens quickly (they closed Everglades National Park at noon today) once Rita passes. As good as the fishing's been I'd hate to be locked out for another three weeks like we did with Katrina. Enough, now for some highlights of the past week.

We never seemed to find any redfish this past week, but I must admit they weren't missed... The snook and tarpon fishing has been great every day. We're boating snook that average 8 to 10lbs each day along Gulf shorelines. The fish have been holding around downed trees in at least three or four feet of water. Roughly half of the fish we hook tear back into the trees and get off, but we're bringing big fish to the boat every day. We've caught them on bait and lures using fairly light spinning gear. The most effective lures have been jigs and weighted soft plastic jerk baits, particularly by Exude. For anglers with fly rods the flies of choice would be weighted mullet patterns fished on intermediate or sink tip lines. Along the same shorelines every morning the small to medium tarpon have been eating just outside of the snook, topwater lures first thing in the morning, then bait as the day progresses. In these conditions a small popping bug on a light fly rod would be my first choice if fly fishing...On Saturday we jumped 7 and landed one of about 50lbs for a quick photo and release. It's been a bit unusual in one respect. We haven't seen the schools of baitfish that should be widespread along the coast this time of year. I guess that's why the fish have been so hungry. I suspect that a few days of settled weather will cure that problem. In the interior, the eastern side of Whitewater Bay is just now starting to show the very small finger mullet schools of fall. For the next month or so the schools of bait in the interior will grow and grow until there are literally acres of bait in some areas. Hurricanes aside, it's a great time of year to fish the 'Glades (even if I do lose a few charter bookings to minor storm warnings....)

Tight Lines
Capt Bob LeMay