Well lots of half days this week, we are so busy it is making my head spin! Double half days every day which is a good thing! Today on our february islamorada fishing charter we fished a bit further in the backcountry. Yesterday fishing was tough locally around islamorada, with the cold water temperatures from the cold front that passed over the weekend. Though we did catch what we needed and the afternoon picked up quite a bit as it warmed. Today was good all around. This morning first thing we got into a mess of nice pompano which I’ve only been catching a handful of through the winter. We got about 15 or so pompano fishing in islamorada. Also some nice big drag pulling ladyfish kept mom and son entertained! Next somebody hit the switch and the trout started biting one right after another. Nothing spectacular size wise but it was fun, getting them on shrimp, gulp, artificial, popping cork – you name it! In the afternoon we did the same thing… no pompano this time, but a lot of trout again plus ladyfish and jacks. My same anglers from yesterday afternoon loved it and still had plenty of fresh mangrove snapper we caught yesterday for dinner. All anglers reported sore arms which I like to hear!!! Look for the florida keys fishing in february to pick up and with that hopefully being our last front of the year, tarpon can be just knocking on the door. The water temps did break 70 this afternoon, a few more degrees and the tarpon should be much happier and willing to feed. Well thats all for this february islamorada fishing report.
We’ve been out fishing Islamorada a bunch the past week, and we’ve caught a little bit of everything! We had our strongest cold front of the year pass through this past weekend while Fishing in Islamorada in February, and it definitely shook things up a little bit. Today started out pretty cold with a North Wind, and by the afternoon had warmed up quite a bit and the wind was strong out of the East. Anyhow we did two 1/2 day trips today, which you can get away with this time of year and usually still have some action on the reef. Dinner was the goal of the morning trip, and that’s exactly what we did. We worked hard at it, and moved a few times, but by the time the trip was over we had a handful of tasty yellowtail snapper, mangrove snapper, and porgy for the dinner table. We also released a nice black grouper due to the closure. The day before yesterday we also got out and had a great Islamorada Fishing Trip! We caught live bait first thing and then moved out to a spot just out side the reef and started slow trolling. We managed 2 sailfish releases, boxed 3 nice king mackerel to 20 lbs, and a 15 lb blackfin tuna within the first few hours. After that we looked for cobia for a couple hours inside the reef, but no luck. For the last hour we anchored down on the reef and caught 15 snappers including yellowtail and mangrove before heading home. We also released a fat black grouper this day too at the end of bottom fishing! The Day before that we went offshore fishing in Islamorada and caught some big fish! We started out at one of our “humps” (underwater sea mounatain), using tormenter vertical jigs. Now this is a major work out, dropping down 300 – 400′ with a 7 oz. jig on 80 lb braided line, and working it up aggressively, but when you hook up the bite and fight is incredible. We caught a couple almaco jacks and then finally hooked a big amberjack about 40 lbs. After that we sent down a big bait and hooked a monster amberjack! After a 15 minute tug of war we had a 75 lb amberjack in the boat! After we caught a couple big fish we decided to go for some tasty eating fish so we rigged up for some “deep dropping”. This is basically bottom fishing in 400′ to 600′ of water with chicken rigs. We managed to catch a handful of blueline tilefish, a snowy grouper, a mystic grouper, and a few rose porgies, which are all great eating fish! On the way home we put out the wahoo lure, and it had been about 6 months since we had a bite on it, so there we were running 14 knots with a lure out and it started screaming. The only bad news was the fight was short lived because after 10 seconds the fish shook free… oh well, we’ll have to get him next time. Pretty soon we’ll start heading offshore more, but we will still concentrate most of our time near the reef while February Fishing Islamorada.
Well today February fishing islamorada in the backcountry we had shots at several different types of fish. Tarpon, redfish, snook, trout, cobia, tripletail, and more! That’s all possible when you go fishing in the florida keys, especially out of Islamorada. We caught most of them too, unfortunately the snook we broke off and cobia we had some hook pullage. But several, nice 22-24 inch reds in some creeks plus a juvenile tarpon which ate a big lively shrimp on a jig. We found some nice slowly falling water with some tanic water coming out of a side creek which usually spells F-I-S-H. We hit the gulf after that escapade and had our cobia bite, unfortunately no others and the conditions did look good plus we caught the tide change which usually is a sure bet for decent cobia fishing in islamorada – perhaps the incoming front had thrown them off. We hit the trap lines on the way back, lots of triple tail which I’m happy to report, we caught plenty plus one for dinner. Also got into a mess of trout on the way home and some keepers as well. After this weekends front, fishing should continue to improve as we enter the spring time. You know what is on the agenda then – big tarpon! We’ve been seeing plenty showing up and after the cold weekend they will likely be in feed mode, so be ready! Until our next february fishing report islamorada.
Well we just wrapped up the last of our Sailfish Tournaments aboard the Bn’M while Fishing Islamorada in February. Yesterday was the 32nd annual Islamorada Bartenders Sailfish Open where a Dozen different bars/restaurants competed against each other for the most sailfish releases to bring the big wooden plaque back to their place for a year. We started out Kite fishing and within the first 6 minutes we had our first hook up of the day. Within two minutes we grabbed the leader for an official release and put the baits back out. About an hour and a half later we had our second Islamorada Sailfishing encounter. After a bunch of jumps we were able to back down on the fish and get the leader for a 2nd release. It was slow fishing overall, with one other boat releasing a double header and 3 more boats releasing a single fish, but we were able to bring the trophy back to Dillons Pub for the 4th time in 7 years. We also caught a 34.6 lb king mackerel off the kite to win most outstanding catch other than a sailfish. Over the weekend we fished the Islamorada Women’s sailfish tournament. We started out Saturday with the first release 15 minutes into the tournament, but that was our only bite until 2:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. At the time we raised a double header sailfish, hooking one but unfortunately he broke the 12 lb test main line when a ton of sea weed got on the line. With a slow bite we still managed to finish in 3rd place overall. Deep Sea fishing in February in Islamorada usually still takes place on the reef, and we should start seeing some spring time fish here shortly. Let us know if you want to get out for some fun on an Islamorada Fishing Trip!
Well we did not win the Poor Girls 2013 Islamorada Sailfish Tournament this year… we did get 3rd and 2nd in the last two years. But we did make the top 5 with 3 fish, and 4 fish overall won it. Here is Elizabeth Baxter catching the last sail of the day out of the kite! Great job Capt. Scott Stanczyk with mates Hunter Barron and Nick Stanczyk.