Florida Keys is known as the “Major Leagues” of sight fishing
with fly and spin. Nowhere else are tarpon, bonefish, and permit
found in greater abundance or size.
Anglers the world over travel to
pursue the species that frequent the shallow waters of the Keys.
Prime times exist for each species, but all can be successfully
pursued nearly every month of the year.
Fishing the flats is more akin to
"stalking" or “hunting," as the guide quietly poles boat and
angler across the shallow flats in search of feeding fish. A
successful hunt requires a team effort of stalking the fish,
correctly positioning the boat, making the cast, and feeding the
animal. It’s an extremely rewarding experience for both the
angler and guide when this process comes to fruition, made even
more so with the release of the quarry. The perpetual pursuit of
the successful hunt beckons anglers back year after year in
hopes of reaching this pinnacle of fishing success. Though not
successful every time out, the pursuit of wild fish in natural
surroundings has its own rewards.
What You Need to Know to be Successful
Experienced Florida Keys anglers
would tell you that the most important key to fishing success
will yield the same answer: having the right guide. If an
angler would like to pursue Tarpon, Bonefish, & Permit in the
shallows, having a patient, experienced and hard working guide
is a must. Weather and tides change daily, and fish react and
follow different patterns as a result. Guides who have spent
years on the water chasing these fish understand these factors
and adjust their methods accordingly.
Ask any of the top Keys guides
what the most important factor to angler success is and they
will all give the same answer: the ability to cast a
reasonable distance, quickly and accurately. This can not be
stressed enough. Practice prior to your trip. If you wish to use
your own tackle, make sure it is well suited for the quarry and
in tip-top condition. And don’t forget the personal items! A
dark brimmed hat, quality polarized sunglasses, sunscreen and
non marking shoes are essential.