6/29/15 June Islamorada Fishing Report

June has come and gone very fast.  We got into ‘summer time’ mode here a little early this year it seemed.  Just about all of June and even late May I was mostly fishing in the everglades for tarpon.  There were steady numbers of fish back there, plus the bait was much easier to get most days.  Our spring mullet run had come to an abrupt halt near Islamorada – we really didn’t have a great year for bait at all there.  Though the nice thing about Islamorada is you have pretty close access to the everglades which is an entirely different fishing experience.  The last month or so I’ve been hitting many of the open water areas of the near gulf where schools of tarpon have been coming in for the summer.  These late arrivals are often smaller male fish, many of the larger female tarpon have already moved up the coast.  Though there is still the occasional straggler.  As a matter of fact a week or so ago we caught a 150 lber that dragged us about 4 miles up the beach and we fought for 2.5 hours!  Most days have yielded anywhere from 2 to 6 bites, and we’ve been averaging landing 2 a trip which is pretty good for tarpon fishing.  My best day this year actually was a couple weeks ago, we were able to hook and land 7.  So all in all the summer time tarpon bite has been very good and it is definitely not too late to catch them, this fishing can be very good all the way through August (which was the case the last couple years).  It does require usually a 3/4 or full day, and I like to leave early to catch the bait and get in on the better fishing.  Other than that I’ve been doing some trout and snapper fishing out to the western edge of the gulf.  There has been some very nice size trout and mixed in are plenty of snappers and ladyfish.  The small ballyhoo are readily available and we often catch those and use them for bait, though artificial GULP has been doing the trick too.  I’ve also been doing a fair amount of snook fishing and that has been good for the most part too.  Live bait is key for that and pilchards and pinfish are able to be caught most days while trout/snapper fishing, then we usually try a snook spot or two on the way home.  Most days we’ve caught at least a few and up to a dozen.  Plenty of sharks are around too including blacktips, lemons, hammerheads, and the occasional bull.  From here on out I’ll still be tarpon fishing the majority of the time.  July is slowly filling up though I will definitely have some days open short notice.  If your looking to catch a tarpon this is still a good time, plus with the other variety of fish it can be a very productive day.  Summer is nice because the winds are generally calm and weather patterns stay the same, so the fish aren’t moving around quite as much and much less pressure on them.  Drop me a line lets get out fishing!

Capt. Rick Stanczyk