Fished yesterday in Islamorada with the Mikes. We had more wind and things were not perfect but we still caught fish. We had mutton snappers, jacks, blue runners, and a nice gag grouper. The fish of the day was Big Mikes grouper that was about five pounds. We also had a shark on the flats and broke another off. Pro Tip: Don't overfill reels with braided line. Fill them less than you did with mono. This lessens wind knots and other tangles. You need less than you think!
Fished with the Mikes in Islamorada today. We had the usual wind to deal with but we found fish anyway. Big Mike caught his first permit today. It was a beauty and weighed 17 pounds. We also had jacks, cero mackerel, mangrove snappers, and mutton snappers. The flats fishing was slow today due to very murky water. Pro Tip: It helps to fight fish close, especially with light tackle. We had to chase the permit today and staying with the fish prevented us from surely being broken off on structure.
Patty and I fished yesterday afternoon in Islamorada. We hooked up a tarpon on the second cast and the action continued until dark. We released four tarpon, jumped three others, and broke off two more. It was very good. Pro Tip: When fighting fish, the amount of pressure should always change relative to the fishes behavior. Examples would be more pressure when a fish is coming at you and lessening pressure on strong runs away from you. No matter what, line should either be coming in or going out. The static bend in the rod without line coming in or out does nothing but give the fish more time to get off.
Fished yesterday with Shane and Rich in Islamorada. We started out the morning on the flats. Shane started us off with a 50-60 pound lemon shark on the flats. We moved to the reef and caught cero mackerel, blue runners, yellow tail, and we broke off a huge barracuda. We made a move and caught snappers, jacks, look downs, and a few more blue runners. It was a good day. Pro Tip: Live bait needs to be lively. If your bait is tired, put on a fresh one and hang on!
Fished today with Rich, Shane, and Patty in Islamorada. We had an epic day! Shane had a grand slam and caught a bonefish, tarpon, and permit in a single trip! A day to remember for sure! We also caught and released bonnet head sharks, lemon sharks, gag grouper, Spanish mackerel, jacks, lady fish, black drum, moonfish, and speckled trout. Patty also had her first permit that weighed in at 15 pounds (also released.). More pics to follow. Pro Tip: In order to effectively hook fish with circle hooks, there can be NO bend in the rod at all. Only lift the rod after the fish pulls drag.
Patty and I arrived in the Keys yesterday and we fished today. We had a great day. We started off on the flats and caught three bonnet head sharks and broke off a nice lemon shark sight fishing. We changed tactics and moved. It turned out to be a great idea. We had seven tarpon bites. We jumped four tarpon and released a fifth. We also caught lady fish, mutton snapper, jacks, and Spanish mackerel. It was a great way to start off my Keys fishing season. Pro Tip: Current is important to success. Too little and nothing happens. Too much and presentation is difficult. Finding the productive window of just the right flow makes all the difference.
Captain Joe Hughes -USCG Licensed 100 Ton Master-IGFA Certified
Joe Hughes has been working in the fishing business since he was eleven years old. Starting at Gibson's Tackle at that age, Joe's passion for the sport of fishing has steadily increased. Joe is a versatile angler who is comfortable poling a flats skiff as well as at the helm of a
sportfisherman competing in big game tournaments. During his years as a professional fisherman Joe has been featured in books and
magazines. His main passion is for salt-water fly-fishing. A teacher by trade, he enjoys sharing his knowledge about fly-fishing, fly-tying, and
fly-casting with his clients.