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-   -   Saltwater Fishing in Feb? (http://www.flyfishingforum.com/flytalk4/showthread.php?t=9096)

why1504 01-03-2003 11:42 AM

Saltwater Fishing in Feb?
 
Me and a buddy will have some free time around the first of February. We have never bonefished before. Where should we go this time of year?

Adrian 01-04-2003 09:03 AM

My choice would be Bahamas - Exuma, Eluthera, Long Island etc. Numbers of fish on the flats may be down in the cooler months but the ones that do show up tend to be on the larger side :D

capt_gordon 01-04-2003 03:08 PM

Think south
 
I would look at going as far south (i.e. close to the equator) as possible in February. The Bahamas are awesome. February is a bit iffy in terms of wind/weather. Take a look at Belize or someplace down there. Have a great trip.

Tony Petrella 01-10-2003 09:52 PM

Feb. bonefish
 
If you want to stay stateside because of cost, the further down the Keys you go the better off you'll be. Not so much because of air temps, but because of wind.

Prevailing winds down there are from the East. The upper and middle keys--Key Largo (mile marker 113) to west of Islamorada (mile marker 80)--geographically are situated as east-west land masses. The lower keys, from Big Pine Key (mile marker 30) to Key West, geographically run north south. That means that you can tuck into the lee of the mangrove islands and hide from the wind--which ALWAYS blows in the keys.

You can wade Lower Matecombe west of Islamorada. It's easy to spot because everyplace else along the ocean (south) side is built up. There's a crabber's place on the right side of the road--lots of crab traps--and a wide open area on the ocean. That's a large flat that's all easy to wade. The Florida Bay side (north) is very mucky and nearly unwadable.

If you go to Ohio Key, park at the bridge and wade the big flat on the ocean. Check the tides, though. If the tide's out, so are the fish. You need incoming water, moving toward high tide, to expect any bones.

I don't usually guide down there unless it's a regular client who wants to do a week of bones. But Bruce Chard is good. Or simply call Christina at Sea Boots Outfitters on Big Pine or the names of some local guides.

Get back to me if you have any other questions that I might be able to help you with. Otherwise, have fun!!!

Oh, one other thing. Get a motel room ASAP. They don't come easy in the keys during the winter.

Tight Loops,
CapT

juro 01-11-2003 06:35 AM

Great scoop Tony!

Say, is the Green turtle inn sign still there? I am down in early May on business :hehe:

Tony Petrella 01-11-2003 04:38 PM

I don't recall the Green Turtle Inn. Where was/is it?

May is a great time in the keys. Motel rates are back down, tourists are gone except for tarpon anglers, and the tarpon--if you're lucky--are back from Africa. Where will you be down there?

I'll be guiding tarpon off Sarasota and Boca Grande from mid-May through late June.

CapT

juro 01-12-2003 07:59 AM

Lower Matecumbe west of Islamorada. That's where I caught my first bone on my own! Maybe we can hook up in May... business meeting in Miami, I plan to take extra days off to hit the keys.

Juro

Eddie 01-12-2003 10:16 AM

Well, you might do OK. at the prviously mentioned spots, but weather is sketchy almost everywhere in Feb.
Christmas Island would be your best bet at that time of the year. Call our site sponsor Kaufman's Streamborn for more info. They have one of the best travel programs.
I have also heard that the Red fishing in Louisiana is very good at that time of year. Let us know how it goes, Eddie

bcasey 01-12-2003 03:09 PM

Having just returned from the Keys yesterday, I gotta say that although you need to get a little lucky with the weather this time of year , there are no bigger bones than in the Keys.
It took all week but when the cold front had passed and the wind stopped, Thursday and Friday were awsome. Flat & Calm, 77 degrees and the bonefish were hungry.
I rented a 17' whaler w/50 hp on Friday and went about two miles out in the gulf side till I hit the flats about 10 miles west of Islamorada and had tailing and schooling fish all day. The tally for the day, 2 snapper Jacks on the way out (they were bustin on top and after a tough week I had to get the skunk out of the boat early) and 7 Bonefish including one that was bigger than I ever could have imagined.
I'll try to post some pictures after I develop and scan them as soon as I can and I will follow up with a full trip report as well. But, just so you know, my new most favorite place for bonefish is the Florida Keys.

BTW, Juro the Green Turtle is still there as well as the Cracked Conch up in Key Largo, man that conch chowder, conch fritters and cold beer was incredible, but the Key Lime Pie was the best.:smokin:

Tony Petrella 01-12-2003 07:30 PM

keys, food and bonefish
 
JURO--I'm filling up dates in May for tarpon, but let me know when you're going to be out here and if I'm not booked I'll see if we can hook up and maybe get you into some poons. I'm an easy freeway shot nearly the whole way (Alligator Alley, the north on
I-75 about 50 miles to the Happy Hunting Ground.

BCASEY--Yeah, I've had a lot of fun with keys bonefish. Put a pal of mine who'd never done it into ONE fish on a horribly windy day near Big Pine when I couldn't hide even there. He hooked one that went (no fish story) about 12 pounds. I was scanning the water when he hooked up. All I heard was, "Tooooooooony---ZZZZZZZZIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNNNNGB AM!!!!!!" A truly large bonefish. I said, "Rex, guys have spent many years and many thousands of dollars trying to hook a bonefish like that. You got yours--all except for landing it, of course, on your first day out."

Go figure!

CapT

Adrian 01-12-2003 09:13 PM

Great report Case - nice going!!

Just the thing to warm up a chilly winter night ;)

profota 01-12-2003 09:39 PM

Bonefishing
 
Hello,
Are you still looking for a bonefishing destination for you and your friend? If so, I know of a great place to go for your first time bonefishing and they will be able to take care of the two of you know problem. If you would like more information feel free to e-mail me and I will give you all the details and be able to answer any of you questions you might have. Take care, Tim

e-mail address: profota@colorado.net

striblue 01-13-2003 11:09 PM

Case, that sounds like a great trip and day..I look forward to seeing those pictures.. What flies were you using?

bcasey 01-14-2003 06:40 AM

John,
I should have the pics with me in Marlboro on Sunday, You gonna be there then? I don't know the names of the flies I was using but I'm gonna e-mail BonefishBob and ask for a picture of them or maybe have him send me some more and I can snap a pic and post it. What I have left are pretty beat up by those fish! Hope to see you at the show.

juro 01-14-2003 07:25 AM

Case -

You don't know how bad I wish I hitchhiked in your suitcase... the shack nasties are settin' in on me and with the highs this week expected to be in the teens around here it's not going to get any better.

Sounds like an AWESOME trip, cool adventure renting a boat and heading out to those flats! Something you'll never forget for sure.

I look forward to seeing those pics at the show!


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