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Bonefish, Tarpon, and other Obsessions Turquoise water, silver demons on the fly

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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-12-2013 10:43 PM
sadler91 New to fly fishing in salt but not to saltwater fishing. I am a Florida native and one of the best places to fish for snook is the inter-coastal down in Englewood, FL. Plenty of places to stay with dock access. We stay there on the beach every year. There is a pass from the inter-coastal to the Gulf called Stumps Pass. Narrow little channel through there but there are some big fish down in that area. Look it up
06-18-2011 06:24 PM
Captiva/Sanibel Snook

Definitely recommend this - I've only been in November, way off season, and I've still been able to sight cast to snook 2 feet off the beach. Just a blast. White flies (shminnow as mentioned above). Minimum 25 lb bite tippet.
06-18-2011 05:09 PM
Paxton Bruce...supposedly tarpon have been caught off the beach...but not by me. I was told that they are usually at the drop off of the bars about 200 yards out (no, can't walk out unless you want to drown). One option is to rent the kayak for a week.
The guy will deliver and pick up.

Tarpon are in Pine island Sound (the other side of Sanibel) all late May/June and part of July. It's a whole 20 min. drive. In the winter months I rent a kayak and drift....usually lady fish, sea trout and reds...snook are very cold sensitive.

Last June I went to Captiva Kayaks to rent a yak and try for tarpon.....after some wise words from the owner, I chickened out. Seems that 100s of hamerheads follow the tarpon in Pine island Sound......I invisioned being in a 12 ft yak...hooking a tarpon...bringing it to the boat (if I wasn't pulled to France) and then.............................

Snook fishing was so great...I decided to just enjoy what I was already enjoying and live to fish another year.
06-18-2011 03:44 PM
bruce.campo Wow - just Googled Sanibel and Here's a guy with a fly rod in the wash with a tarpon. I've NEVER hooked a tarpon and is becoming my obsession. Ron... What am I doing in Pennsylvania.
06-18-2011 03:38 PM
bruce.campo Ron - sounds awesome! I'm going to push to go there, although I'd prefer to go when fishing (snook I guess) is good. Any chance for beach tarpon, or, what else can be caught from the beach. Hum... Kayak... rent a kayak with the fly rod.... This is getting really interesting.

OK Ron - I'm in... so how do we juggle Chatham and Sanibel in June...
06-18-2011 02:43 PM
Paxton shelling is in winter, best fishing for snook is June/July and it is hotter than hell..was the first time I stood still in water and sweat every ounce of liquid out of my body. Mid 90s and humid.
We have been going for a few weeks in the winter..been there 15 yrs in a is heaven....clean, quiet, bike trails, wildlife ...endless things to do, yak rentals in Captiva....we have not gone anywhere else in 15 IS what we want..why go elsewhere.
06-18-2011 10:30 AM
Eric There's a lot to love about Sanibel/Captiva. Plenty for the whole family to do; great fishing you can walk and wade to. Lots of cool wildlife up close and personal at the marinas. Definitely recommended. World class fly shop in Sanibel run by a snook specialist (in fact he wrote the book on fly fishing for these beasts).

-- Eric
06-18-2011 10:24 AM
bruce.campo you know, my wife always wanted to vacation in Sanibel... Snook is a whole new species for me. Hum... Sanibel... yea...
06-17-2011 08:01 PM
Paxton Eric...the part I don't understand is that they see you casting...then stand directly behind you to watch you cast???????? What part don't they get?

Of course, one day I used an intermediate line and had my stripping basket...I was asked at least 4 times if that is what I used to put my fish in

That comment goes along with an experience my fishing buddy and I had at North Monomoy last year...there we were casting into the channel at the north end of the island and a " large hatch of kayakers" came by 10 ft in front of us and asked "are you fishing"? We responded..."not any more".

We put an "X" in the sand at low tide so that we could come back to the productive spot later in the tide :hihi

Ron (Amazed with humans)
06-17-2011 03:16 PM
Eric Avoiding snagging those standing behind you...excellent point! I've come close on more than one occasion. Shellers and other beach folk seem absolutely oblivious to the perils of 60 feet of high speed string with sharp hooks attached whizzing past their sunglasses.

They seem to gather most frequently when there's a longed-for target just coming into casting range.


06-17-2011 12:10 PM
Paxton Excellent point Jr.Spey!!! Will do next time. My general leader is 3 ft of 50 lb followed by 2 ft of 38 lb...followed by 4 to 5 ft of 16 or 20 lb. As I was getting hacked off with the 20...I just took the 38 lb spool out and used it. never thought about getting snagged...duh!!!!
Sad to say that I saw quite a few females in the 30 to 40 inch range..all I caught we the 18 to 28s...but they were fun! Large females tended to be caught by the "bait chunkers". I must learn to bring a chair and a 6 pack, toss the bait out and sit.................nah!!!!!!
Ron I gathered was that the best time to snook fish in Sanibel was from early June to the end of July....but avoid July 4th week as it is reportedly wall to wall people on the beaches. Even the 2nd week of June required getting away from and large water front condo/resort areas to avoid snagging the folks who like to stand behind you when casting.
06-17-2011 10:33 AM
Eric Many thanks, Ron. I think I've been too early in my times at Sanibel/Captiva (late April, first part of May). Maybe next year I can sneak over there at the right time.


06-17-2011 07:37 AM
Originally Posted by Paxton
Last yr I started using a 20 tippet, and all I did was feed them flies. then I used successfully (but checked for abrassions each fish) Orvis fluro 38lb. Did not find them leader shy at all. That size tioppet lasted on ave.of 2 fish, then I retied.
FYI...most successful fly was a Crystal Sminnow in about 2 to 2 1/2 length. Simple full piece of white marabeau extended behind the fly the length of the shank.....medium sized bead chain eyes and wrapped white estaz on the shank........easy tie...5 minutes at best and it even works on stripers in the surf when they are feeding on anchovies.
My leader set up was 5ft (loop to loop to line) of 50 lb butt section...then 5 ft (loop to loop) of the 38 lb. Fly turned over well. 10 ft is overkill..but after a few fish it was 9 ft
Personally, I'd put a section of 16# or 20# between the 50# butt and 38# tippet. There's a safety factor there, but it also helps to be able to break off if you end up getting hung up on something you can't reach.
06-17-2011 06:36 AM
Paxton Eric.....last mid June, my wife and I went to Sanibel Florida...........for approx a month they migrate/spawn right along the beach........saw 200 to 300 fish a day....most right in the trough 2 ft off the shore. had to stand back 30 ft on the sand and cast parrallel along the trough. Best spot was a location called "The Rocks". PM me and I'll give you the exact location.
Most fish were caught were under huge bait balls some up to 30 ft in diamenter. Fished the edges and parallel to any hole in the bait ball (the hole was an indicator of a snook under the ball.
it was my first time snook fishing....fortunately a guy with over 20 yrs of snook fishing experience...adopted me fo rthe day and gave me more info/knowledge/techniques than I would ever achieve on my own.
06-16-2011 11:55 PM
Eric Jeez, Ron, where were you fishing? I haven't been able to find a decent snook fishing the last several years, and I've looked from Belize to Florida.

Man, I love those fish.

-- Eric
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