Most of the Key West charter boats use downriggers while others use planers. Both these methods require special equipment and heavy tackle because the baits need to be moving fast. State License Fla. The high-speed planer rigs require pretty stout drags, so the smaller fish simply tripped Hunter’s planer and never really took out any line. Key West’s flats and mangroves are full of fly fishing favorites like Bonefish, Tarpon, and Permit. First of all, this is a prized catch and no one wants to keep it in the water while I snap some photos. Live music on weekends. It also helps if you have calm waters—a brisk wind seems to put them down. They do in fact live up in the mangroves, as well as grass ledges, channels, and around structure in the shallows. Key West Fishing Report for Fishing in Key West and the lower keys! RT prefers to use lighter tackle, so his favorites are the Mag Bay Desperado and the purple Rapala X-Rap Magnum 40. ABOUT US | CONTACT. Fall is a lovely time in Key West and Key West fishing in November is perfect for those who want to spend all day on the water without fighting the heat. The first run was awesome and the colors of the fish in the water at the end of the fight were brilliant. Some days they are everywhere and other days, you can’t rent one. Dropping a jig down below a large weed patch or floating debris provides a good opportunity for a summer wahoo. Both had blackfin tuna in their stomachs. RT usually checks with the commercial yellowtail fishermen to find the most active spots, but even that scheme isn’t foolproof. Mangrove Snapper Mangrove snappers (other names: gray snapper, mangos, grovers) are probably one of the most prevalent Key West fish species in the backcountry waters. I’ve seen wahoo come right up behind the boat and gobble up chunk after chunk. Captain Patrick Cline, another Key West expert, was deep dropping for tilefish in 800-plus feet of water one day when a wahoo simply appeared behind the boat. Flats Fishing Species. Today, wahoo are as unpredictable as ever. Reserve a table at Seven Fish, Key West on Tripadvisor: See 2,240 unbiased reviews of Seven Fish, rated 4.5 of 5 on Tripadvisor and ranked #54 of 358 restaurants in Key West. At Fish Key West, you can browse through an extensive collection of Key West Sport Fishing Information, learn about Key West waters and the legendary Key West fishing action, then conveniently book Key West charter fishing trips online. Local freedivers simply drift the edge of the reef, hoping to swim into a school. Red Fish Blue Fish is a hidden gem tucked away next to Key West's famous Mallory Square. Tucked away in Safe Harbor, Stock Island, the Hogfish Bar and Grill is a true “locals” spot that avoids the pretension and hype of more touristy areas.The freshest seafood straight from the boats to your plate... Panoranic waterfront views and outdoor dining, fresh local seafood. We have great flats fishing year round the species vary from time to time. As expected, the trick is finding the speedos. We’ve racked up the local knowledge to make this fishing experience one you can’t forget! I’ll never forget it. He’s convinced that if you can find the tuna, there will be wahoo following them. Reef Fishing Is Great In The Summer Fish the reefs just off Key West with us on board our state of the art 36' Yellowfin center console. RT Trosset has a collection of chunk flies that he uses in Bermuda and he is itching to catch a wahoo on fly in Key West. Key West is home to the third largest barrier reef in the world and the largest in North America. My friend Hunter Ledbetter links wahoo to the schools of small blackfins that appear off Key West in early fall. Anglers can chose to fish the flats u to 2 persons on our flats fishing skiff or use a bay boat for up to 4 persons to challenge themselves in the shallows. White Street Pier: Key West’s fishing pier (officially Edward B. Knight Pier) is a tried-and-true place to find Tarpon, Jacks, Snapper, Snook, and even Redfish. From humble beginnings over 20 years ago, Seven Fish has earned its place as a Key West … I’d really never used planers before and learned a lot that day. Almaco Jack. A short section of wire is always a good plan, but it can’t be too light or too long… those plugs are expensive so using straight mono has its downside. Barely a stone’s throw from shore, the shallow waters play home to plenty of fish feed, such as shrimp and crab, making it a hotspot for the larger fish to prey. As the temperatures drop up north and the baitfish migrate south, the numbers of wahoo off southern Florida increase dramatically. Gaffs come out quickly and the wahoo is promptly dumped on the deck from which location it tries to kill everyone on board. Come with me as I take you on some of my kayak fishing trips. We offer fresh local seafood, as well as options from around the world. A Key West offshore fishing experience is one you'll remember for the rest of your life. There’s no telling when you will run into a wahoo. Get the Top Stories from Florida Sportsman Delivered to Your Inbox Every Week. Find the best Fishing on Yelp: search reviews of 166 Key West businesses by price, type, or location. What was most impressive was that this was in early September. Key West Fish & Chips, 633 Duval St., is an ideal combination of food truck and traditional restaurant with an outdoor courtyard and table service. This trip is the true Key West experience. Seriously, wahoo can be extremely dangerous, if you’re anywhere near their razor-sharp teeth. Blue runners also work, but the speedos are wahoo candy. Text 1-786-847-3808 Voice 1 … Call us 305-292-7212. Hunter uses #6 and #8 planers and trolls a bonito strip behind a sea witch with 9/0 hooks. We fish anywhere from form 1 mile out for giant Tarpon to 90 miles out past the Dry Tortugas for a variety of exotic species. Almaco Jacks are strong fighters and good to eat, so they are always a welcome catch among Key West sport fishermen. We had a few cut-offs, caught some barracuda, but eventually started catching a few blackfin tuna in the 5-pound range. Wahoo are at the very top of everyone’s highlight list for fly fishing and there’s no reason that they can’t be caught in Key West on a fly. We will troll some of these plugs on almost all of our winter trips, just to see what happens. Fishing charters are another way to experience world class Key West fishing, but the price can run a bit higher, starting at about $500 for a half day trip. Known as the Florida Straits, this reef extends south from Miami and west past Key West for 170 miles. Every December I get calls from Key West captains with reports of amazing wahoo catches. I seem to get these reports only at times when I’m stuck doing something and can’t get down there the next morning. But by the end of the week the weather will start to clear up. Captain RT Trosset’s favorite live bait for wahoo is a “speedo”—actually a red tailed scad—which he catches by chumming in open water. There are also a number of skirt lures designed specifically for wahoo, most of which are long and thin or produce a lot of bubbles. Well, the southernmost tip of the US is overflowing with Tarpon, Permit, and Bonefish – the holy grail of Key West inshore fishing. Yellowtail snapper, mutton snapper, grouper and more.4,6 and 8 hour trips are available daily.. Most captains believe the best bites are four days before or after the full and new moons. I caught my first wahoo off Key West trolling for mahi in the summer of 1971, when I was a complete novice. Most of the wahoo plugs are huge and are used with heavy tackle and braided wire leaders. The waters off the Florida Keys are teeming with visually stunning marine life, and the crew of Gulfstream knows how to catch … RT rigs them on 58-pound wire with a hook in the nose and in the tail and either drifts or bump trolls them in 90 to 150 feet of water, just off the reef’s edge. Even the locals thought it was a big deal. ST39306. Sharp eyes and sharp teeth. These are the sight fishing species we chase on the flats. Here’s how to score. Seven Fish restaurant in Key West Florida. All of these fish are available in the calm clear water that the flats have to offer. Fish Key West Florida utilizes a variety of different methods of fishing, depending on the time of year, the sea conditions, water and air temperature, currents and other factors. Some more options wahoo will find sufficient. Wahoo are at the very top of everyone’s highlight list for fly fishing and there’s no reason that they can’t be caught in Key West on a fly. test Key West Web Design | Things To Do In Key West | Things To Do In Key West However, photographing wahoo is not all that simple. Remember to check out our Key West fishing Seasons guide to see what the fish are doing while you are here in Key West. Key West and the lower Keys are surrounded by some of the best flats in the world. Key West fishing charters make the most of this, tailoring trips for anglers of any age or experience level. “Cowbell” style high-speed lure took this winter wahoo off Key West. Wet your toes on a half day trip or stay out longer and target all three for an Inshore Grand Slam! But the best place in Florida to target numbers is most definitely Key West! This was what Hunter was looking for, because the wahoo he’d been catching had blackfin tuna in their stomachs, so we stayed in that specific area. Key West Flats Fishing makes for unforgettable angling adventure as you hunt trophy game fish and Sharks in the crystal-clear waters of the Keys Backcountry. Captain Chris Trosset caught six one day between 40 and 70 pounds. (Priced by the pound) It’s rarely windy and seas are mostly calm, so it is easy to get out for some of the best fishing of the year as the Sailfish come in and action on the reef picks up with the bait … Welcome to my channel. Hunter trolls at 8 mph and never stops the boat even when a fish is hooked. The wahoo don’t seem to have a problem coming to the surface for a live speedo, but that might have a lot to do with the cooler water temps in the winter and the abundance of baitfish. Wahoo can be caught off Key West year-round, but the best time to chase them here is November through February when schools move in near the reefs. They can be trolled at high speeds, dive to almost 40 feet and can catch most anything that swims. Bonito belly strip with skirt is a charterboat classic that catches a lot of wahoo. Hello , my name is Steve. A globally distributed species favoring deep, warm ocean waters, wahoo are caught up and down the Florida coast. We will even cook your own fresh catch fish upon request! Simple. At times wahoo are so thick off Key West that bluewater divers can actually spear them, but the trick is always to find them. I caught my first and only wahoo on fly in Bermuda while chunking and throwing a fly that was just a big ball of dark red fur… it looked just like a chunk of bonito. Join us for our fresh, local seafood and friendly service in a relaxed island atmosphere. Cobia are a very scent driven fish, and they will swim a long way if they smell the … I rode along with Ledbetter last September after he reported catching wahoo when they weren’t supposed to be there. Nothing like a 50-pound wahoo to brighten up your summer day. For some reason the wahoo will quickly respond to chunks even if there is a bunch of live pilchards in the water. Make a mid-winter warm-weather escape – head south for some Key West fishing in December. Book Your Trip Wahoo like this frequently respond to chunk baits. You expect action and we provide it for you! Winter brings an excellent run of wahoo to Florida’s southernmost fishing grounds. Seller of Travel Ref. Key West Split Fishing Charters | #1 Service in FL Keys, Key West Party Boat Fishing Charter (Max 65 Guests), Fish Key West Premium Party Head Boat Fishing Experience (Max 10 Guests), Key West Private Inshore Light Tackle Fishing Charter (up to 14 passengers). The bite’s best at night, but you can catch … 4 Featured Trips. Wahoo tend to stay deep so getting down to their level is very important. In certain places and seasons, the odds of catching one increase. Dream Catcher Charters, is another popular tour company with competitive prices and … If you are lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time, the results can be spectacular with catches ranging from 15 to over 70 pounds. Of the two we boated, both had blackfin tuna in their stomachs. In just under an hour, travelers can reach Key West’s coral reef by boat located seven miles offshore. Captain Chris Trosset, a smoker, and his pup. This lit up wahoo couldn’t resist a lipped-diver. Good. Wahoo seem to appear in waves for several days, then disappear for a week or more. The plan is to anchor up at the end of the bar (an elongated, isolated section of the outer reef southwest of Key West) or on a wreck and live chum the pilchards for blackfin tuna and anything else that might swim by their floating buffet. Fishing Key West is your best most experienced resource for flats, deep sea, reef and backcountry fishing charters since 1994. At this stage of my life I’m more interested in photographing fish than I am in catching them, so I’m eager to hop on a boat on short notice while promising to never pick up a rod. This can be done on light tackle and is a lot more sporting than the heavy rods needed for the planers and downriggers. When a wahoo hit, there was no question that it was a wahoo… the drag screamed. The plan is usually to drag two of the deep diving plugs along with a skirt on the surface. 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