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Old 01-17-2000, 04:53 PM
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juro juro is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Steelhead country|striper coast|bonefish belt
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RE:Wading in or near Key West?

Dave -

I did this a few years back, and had success on two consecutive "business trips". There's quite a bit to say on this topic but here's my spin:

Key West proper has less access than the other keys up the road a ways. I caught bones at Bahia Honda State Park (south flat), and nameless flats near the Green Turtle Inn sign up which I believe is between Matecumbe and Islamorada. There are also other flats accessible from shore on Duck Key and the various other spots along rte 1.

Adam Albino just went down there last month... I'll ask him to answer your post with his fresh memory.

Gear:

I bought a longbill hat with flaps after the first day, when my topside ear lobes were fried and the standard brim was too short.

I also wore scuba boots with a thick sole, preferable edges re-inforced. Shuffle your feet for stingrays, which like to curl over like a scorpion and hit the stinger in the top of your foot. If you keep an eye out and shuffle you're OK.

Good polarized lenses are a must.

Flats shirts aren't just a fashion statement - you need long sleeves with a light quick-dry material unless you have that Cherokee tan like BobD gets.

This story might help... first bone on my own:

Bonefish Bob told me how. Walk out on the flat at the Green Turtle Inn sign 100 feet, and turn around toward shore. Watch for tails. Just as I am thinking I am an idiot and he has gotten the tourist to stand out there, I see a tail - and another, and another... coming right at me! Talk about nervous... I cast right on the lead fish... ZOOOOOOOOMMMM, about 6 fish take off for Cuba.

Got smarter over time. Laid the crazy charlie in the sand (white) patches between turtle grass and broken coral (dark) patches in front of the fish's direction. When the fish was coming on to my patch, I'd strip and then wunk! SCreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeammmmm!!!!! Hang on baby!

Don't need drugs down there, it's narcotic just looking at the scenery. Top it off with a yellowtail snapper fillet, conch chowder, and a key lime pie. Slip in a margarita if you get a chance, but if you're single and like the night life make sure you look real careful at friendly women. They might not be women!
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