01 Jan Everglades fishing report
The Everglades fishing report for this week is about the arrival of winter time to south Florida and all the fishing opportunities that come along with it. As now, it is safe to say that we are in full winter time mode! About 2 weeks ago, we were greeted by the first substantial cold front of the season. Dropping the air and water temperatures in the low 60s for almost a week, this cold front triggered some great fishing in flamingo.
Days catching over 40 snook , 20 redfish along with loads of trout, sheepshead and black drum were the norm. These fish were mostly bitting on live shrimp, gulp shrimp, grub tails and buck-tail jigs.
I made a few trips deep into the backcountry and also found some big snook and redfish warming themselves up in the shallow mud during the middle of the day. That is a great a choice this time of the year if sight-fishing and flyfishing is your thing.
The fishing out in the gulf has also been on fire with lots of tripletail, Cobia and mackerel. I really enjoy this kind of fishing and it is a great choice when you want to take some tasty fish home. Also, a great opportunity to take your kids fishing and put them on some solid rod bending action. Few things compare to the excitement of watching a big tripletail or Cobia escorting a marker, wreck or bouy, waiting to go nuts after your bait, give you the fight of your life and then ride along with us inside the cooler! That’s some really good stuff the park has to offer this time of the year.
The big tarpon have also been around when conditions are right. We’ve been on them and have been lucky to catch a few nice fish. The fishing for these big fish is a matter of taking advantage of the opportunity whenever it presents. Totally weather depending, the window of opportunity to catch these big girls usually lasts for only a few days….sometimes just 1 or 2….. long story short, you need to be readily available whenever the fish are around.
Some days call for perfect flyfishing conditions…. some days are more suitable for plugs or live bait. Regardless of the tackle used, the winter time tarpon fishing can be some of the best of the year, with some fish topping 180lb or better.
I usually have some “on call” clients that make themselves fully available for me this time of the year, and patiently wait for my call to let them know when the fishing is about to go off. Would you like to join this “on call” list? Give me a call and I will happily keep you in the loop.
I’m also starting to get very busy for tarpon season. The spring is busy work season in the Keys and I fish almost everyday during April, May and June into mid July. My clients during that time of the year are primarily “fly Tarpon junkies” but I’m also happy to accommodate conventional tackle in between. As today, Got the following dates open:
-May 21st through 26th
-June 3rd through 10th
-June 25th through 30th
If you want to experience some of the best tarpon fishing of your life, give me a call and I’ll be happy to put you in my agenda. flyfishing or conventional. Don’t wait long because dates fill up very fast.
That’s all for now. Tight lines, Merry Christmas and happy new year.
Capt Alex Zapata
Flats fishing guide
IFFF certified fly casting instructor
Miami, Everglades and the keys
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