Fly Fishing for Juvenile Tarpon

I had a single fly-caught tarpon to my name…that is until a couple weeks ago.  While visiting some good friends in Key West, I managed to sight cast and land a couple sub-adult (baby) tarpon from my buddies dinghy. The plan had been to do a few days from a mother-ship (my buddy’s “house”) in…

Fly Fishing Belize (Week in Review)

I just got back from a week in Belize.  While it was a spur of the moment trip (a friend had already paid for lodging and the guide service and gave me a last-minute invite), I had the opportunity to chase the big three (tarpon, permit, and bonefish) as well as barracuda and snook. My…

Bahia Honda State Park – Florida Keys

Last Monday, after my other friends left Key West, I headed to Bahia Honda state park to hunt for bonefish.  This park is a gem – gorgeous sand, great amenities, and generally is not too crowded for fly fishers to hunt the sand and grass flats for hours.  I armed myself with my 8wt and…

Fly Fishing for Tarpon in Key Largo

Last Saturday I fished with guide Duane Baker out of Key Largo for ocean tarpon.  I have wanted to do the ocean-side tarpon fishing thing for a few years, and finally pulled the trigger.  I was very lucky to get Duane – he’s accomplished, a relaxed yet precise coach, and an all around nice guy. …

Fishing Report – Eastern Shore of Virginia

Summer on the Eastern Shore of Virginia is what you make of it.  Want to float pin-fish for Tarpon?  Bottom fish for croaker?  Sight cast to cobia and red drum?  It’s all possible, and depending on the conditions, available to the angler with a little knowledge (hopefully of the local variety). I spent Thursday night…

Feeding Stock Island Tarpon

If you want to see dozens of 100+ lb tarpon behaving like trained dogs, throw the scraps from your catch into the water at the Stock Island marina.  These fish know an easy meal when they see it. I was talking to one of the boaters there at the marina, and he was remarking on…

Fishing Report – 10,000 Islands (Part 2)

Another day in the books here in the 10,000 Islands.  The wind did not help our cause, but we still managed to catch some fish on fly and spin, and see some of the wildlife this area is known for. With 15 knot winds out of the southwest, the passes into the gulf were lumpy,…

Fishing Report – 10,000 Islands (Part I)

Spent today fishing with guide Aron Blaisdell in the 10,000 Islands, catching snook, red drum, ladyfish, mangrove snapper, catfish, and had one of our crew jump a tarpon (into a tree).  Not a bad first day.  Tomorrow and Friday will keep us at it, flinging flies and throwing lures and live bait under mangroves, and…

Travel Fishing – Florida Everglades

In one week, I’ll be back fishing the 10,000 islands and the Everglades, south of Marco Island.  I’ve tied flies, read books, and dreamed of getting to tangle with ‘glades snook, red drum and tarpon again. Last time around, we fished on a small, shallow draft Dolphin Skiff, sliding into freshwater rivers far from the coast,…

Fly Tying – Rusty Punisher

I’m two months out from my Everglades fly fishing trip, and I’m beginning to stock my boxes with fly patterns for Snook, Tarpon, and Red Drum.  I’ve always loved Drew Chicone’s flies, and I tied up a handful of his “Peppermint Punishers” with one twist – I used a rust colored EP brush instead of…

Eight Rules for Fighting Big Fish on Fly

This article could easily be named “How to avoid breaking a fishing rod and pissing off your guide”.  Most fishermen do not run into fish with that kind of power on a regular basis, unless they are fishing in Florida, or for blue water fish (pelagics like tuna and marlin).  The average bass or trout…