Excellent late tarpon bite!


Or would it be early? I suppose you could make an argument for either as this is about as far away from tarpon season as you could get. The migration is long gone and the weather should be cold and windy. There are always some resident tarpon that never leave, which can be very tricky to get to bite. They don’t like cold weather. They don’t like windy days. The tide has to be just right. Ian had called me the week before letting me know he was going to be in town for a couple of months and to let me know if I thought the conditions would be right. About a week and a half later the planets aligned and all the conditions looked like they would be perfect for an off season tarpon bite. The wind dropped off. The weather had been warm for several days and the tide was going to be just right at the perfect time in the morning. I put out a couple traps the day before the trip in anticipation of maybe getting a tarpon or two in the morning. We got of the dock just as the sun was beginning lighten up the eastern sky for an early morning charter. We pulled the traps and they were loaded! We went to the spot and the tide was just beginning to move as we put the baits out and started to ;chum with lots of fresh pin fish chunks . the tide was just coming of the horizon when we had the first bite and it was a big one! A huge tarpon that was close to 150 pounds. A monster tarpon any time of the year let alone out of season. Ian battled the fish for over an hour before he managed to get the leader on the rod tip for a catch. I was worried that so much time had passed as the tarpon bite on the off season tends to be just a first thing in the morning event. My concern was unfounded as we had another bite within five minutes of getting back on the anchor. The fish jumped off immediately. But it was pretty clear that we would not have to wait long for another bite since the fish were rolling all around the boat, and sure enough we quickly had another fish on which Justin fought to the boat rather quickly for it’s size of close to one hundred pounds. It was an incredible day. We hooked fish after fish. some big some small but it was just non-stop action. We ended up catching six tarpon out of ten bites as well as a couple of nice jack cravelles and a nurse shark. What a great day in the Key West back country. Flats fishing at the finest.

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