When you’re flats fishing in Key West, you have a great chance of a Grand Slam with either a spin or fly rod.
I have had a passion for fishing since catching my first trout when I was just 4 years old. Fishing WisdomI am firmly convinced that the ideal combination leading to a happy life is to have the time to both fish and read.
This past week I fished some of my favorites clients. Every day this week I departed Key west at 6am in search of tarpon, my results were quite mixed . The number of Barracuda on the flats is really down which is quite normal for this time of year, however Glen Struman landed 2 huge ones. The past  2 days I have fished for tarpon, sharks, barracuda, permit and a variety of other fish.
The barracuda is finally starting to pick up and we hook quite a few but only got one to the boat. We had a lull for a while but at the bottom of the tide and the beginning of the rise the fish really started moving. May is 1 of my favorites months of the year because I get a chance to fish with many of my long time clients.
After the tarpon we went in search of tailing permit, I took Phil to a flat that the permit tail heavily on the beginning of the incoming tide. The second day we left in the afternoon, we headed east of Key west to catch the falling tide out east. I have been fishing with Ted for 8 years now and each trip we are always 1 fish away from the slam.
Remember as in all National Parks, all life is protected and preserved for this and future generations. Tony has fished throughout the Bahamas, Mexico and Central America with both fly and spin rods.
Although I have fished both freshwater and saltwater throughout my life, the strength and speed of the saltwater species was what lured me to Key West fishing.
Most days my clients would jump or land 1 or 2 fish but the bite would slow down after the sun came up , Glen from Toronto was the exception, He jumped and almost landed his fish before breaking off boat side. Most of  these fish are still out spawning but Phil Jones and  Charles Taylor both landed Permit this week. The first one was while tarpon fishing with a pin fish and the second 1 was with a tube lure, the larger of the 2 was eaten by a shark so I did not take a picture of the half we got in.
77 degree water temp has brought the tarpon into Key west harbor, they were not feeding well but we did manage to get one bite on a pin fish.


We headed east of Key west to do some back country fishing, I hit several channels and the fishing was really slow. This was their first time flats fishing so we missed a few opportunities before Ed landed a nice 6 pound bonefish. I mostly targetedpermit and bonefish but my clients landed sharks, barracudas and ,strong>tarpon. Today I fished with Phil Jones from Canada and the weather was fantastic, clear skies and no wind.
This year I got the pleasure to fish with him for 2 days, day 1 we got quite a few shot at schools of tarpon.
My first flat was empty but we ended up finding a small group of bones on a white sand spot.
I poled numerous flats and we only got 1 shot, on my last flat of the day I spotted this very large permit in 5ft of water. Whether you are a beginner or expert, you can enjoy a myriad of colorful tropical fish and living coral. Although the fishing is excellent in these locations, nothing rivals Key West flats fishing. To really fish the backcountry, you’ll need an experienced Key West flats fishing guide with a shallow draft boat. While you are fishing for the big 3, there is a host of other species you will encounter and catch, including sharks, barracudas, snapper and jack.
I have lived in Key West for the past 20 years, and I’ve enjoyed world-class fishing in my backyard. We decided 7am would be the time to leave the dock so we loaded up and headed east in search of Bonefish, Sharks and Permit. The first sand flat was loaded with bonefish and we landed 2 before the clouds came over and we had to switch to tarpon fishing. We went in search of bonefish but did not find any so we headed back towards Key west in search of a worm hatch. We lost several barracudas and had several shots at permit but we were not able to get the slam. Ted made a perfect shot and we were hooked up, we fought this fish for around 10 minutes before we landed it for the picture. Snorkeling is in only four to seven feet of water, straight off a brilliant white sand beach.
The thousands of mangrove islands and other navigational obstacles that surround the Florida Keys make this an ideal place for the fly or spin fisherman.


In those years, I’ve sharpened both my fly and spin fishing, and I became a full-time Key West flats fishing guide in 1999. My client made a good cast at the second fish but he did not stop crab at the right time and spooked the permit. I drove about 30 minutes and stopped at a sand bar that I had been finding bonefish, this spot and my next 2 did not produce any fish. Neither larry or Kim had either sight fished before so I spent the first 30 minutes brushing them up on the intricacies of flats fishing. In Key West, we are surrounded by miles and miles of pristine flats, crystal clear water, mangrove islands, wading birds, birds of prey and an abundance of fish willing to take a well-placed fly or lure.
Tony has the experience and the boat to show you the ropes and an unforgettable day on the water.
I am Orvis-endorsed and associated with Sage, Winston, Abel, Rio, Scientific Anglers, Shimano, Star rods, Power Pro and a host of other great companies. Shark fishing has been the easiest and all my clients have landed black tips, spinners and lemon sharks. We went to another spot on our way back to Key west and landed a few blue runners that we used for shark bait. The 3rd flat was loaded with sharks and bones, we landed 2 lemon sharks and 4 bonefish in the 2 hours we had left on our fishing trip. The sun set and we headed to the gulf to catch the falling tide and fish tarpon busting shrimp. You’ll have the opportunity to explore Florida’s most pristine and untouched fishing grounds. It did not take long and a lemon ate the bait and shook the hook, the next sharks were spinners that cut our line, the last shark was a nice 5ft black tip that we released. The tide started to come in and we went in search of permit, we had 1 shot but all we hooked was a bone that unfortunately got eaten by a shark. I went a little further east and found plenty of shark and bone fish, larry landed 1 of each before we were chased away from a storm. When you fish with me, you will have all the best equipment and an experienced local fishing guide.



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