Jump in one of our boats and take a trip back in time. The Everglades is a magical place to spend a day (or week) on the water in search of snook, redfish, and tarpon.
The Everglades is a vast area of South Florida where the freshwater that flows down the state meets the saltwater of the Gulf of Mexico. Tidal mangrove estuaries comprise a large portion of this area and are home to many different critters. On any given day, you might see alligators, crocodiles, manatees, dolphins, white tailed deer, black bears, wild boar, and even flamingos.
We primarily target three species of fish on our charters; snook, redfish, and tarpon, but many other species might be encountered on a typical charter. You never know when you might catch tripletail, black drum, goliath grouper, mackerel, cobia, permit, false albacore, pompano, or sea trout while fishing the Everglades.
There are many different ways to fish the Everglades. We prefer to fish shallow water with either fly rods of conventional tackle while poling a skiff and looking for fish to present a fly or lure to. When sight fishing is not an option due to conditions, fish can be caught blind casting in likely areas.
The weather in South Florida can dictate the quality of the fishing. Ideally, the warmer, calmer, and more stable the weather is, the better the fishing will be. We basically have two seasons in Southwest Florida - Summer (hotter and wetter months) and Winter (cooler and drier months).
The summer months, May-October are the hottest and wettest months of the year. Temperatures generally average 90 degrees during the day and rain is in the forecast more often than not. The heat and abundance of moisture has a tendency to darken the water and congregate the fish closer to deeper cooler areas with strong current flow. We also receive our highest tides of the year which will bring in fish from offshore to feed. On our guided fishing trips, we focus our efforts closer to the gulf edge and at lower tides to find the best fishing.
The winter months, November-April are the coolest and driest months of the year. Cooler temperatures, blue skies, and north winds clean up the water and send fish into the shallows to warm up in the sun. The tides are generally their lowest of the year which brings the fish out of the creeks and ponds they seek refuge in as the water levels drop. The winter months are usually the best time of the year to catch fish in the backcountry.
The Areas We Fish:
Everglades National Park
10,000 Islands National Wildlife Refuge
The Cities We Fish Out Of:
Everglades City, FL
Marco Island, FL
Bonita Springs, FL
Many anglers will agree that fly fishing is at the pinnacle of the sport. Most saltwater fishermen and women didn’t start their fishing “careers” with a fly rod. Saltwater fly fishing is usually something that people progress into from conventional tackle, and they don’t do it to simply catch more fish. Lets face it, fly fishing is tricky, but it is gratifying. It takes years to become proficient with a fly rod in saltwater, which can mean less fish in the boat. If numbers is your game, then you should probably be fishing with bait.
Fly fishing in the Everglades is one of the most enjoyable fly fishing trips on the planet. The mangrove shorelines provide calm waters on the windiest of days where even beginner fly fishermen are able to cast efficiently without having to deal with 20mph loop crushing winds.
There are two main ways that we fly fish the Everglades, sight fishing and blind casting. While sight fishing, we push the boat along in shallow water looking for clues and ultimately seeing fish before presenting the fly. When visibility is poor, we are forced to blind cast in areas that might be holding fish. The shorelines in the Everglades are covered in mangrove roots and branches that provide safe cover for snook, redfish, and tarpon but can make for some challenging casts. Whether we are sight fishing or blind casting, being able to cast proficiently gives you an advantage. Long casts aren’t always necessary, but accurate casts are. Generally speaking we try to get the fly in front of the fish as closely as possible and move the fly in such a way that it triggers a reaction strike. Simply put, an accurate cast isn’t enough to get the job done. Being able to effectively fish your fly is a skill that can only be learned by spending time on the water.
We encourage new fly fishermen and enjoy helping them grow as anglers. The Everglades is the perfect place for fly anglers of all skill levels and we are sure that after spending time on our skiffs, you will be a better fly fisherman.