2/16/18 Florida Keys Tarpon Fishing in the Islamorada Backcountry

Got out for a 3/4 day with John, Michelle, and Phil today.  We departed around 6:45 and headed to the spanish mackerel grounds.  Fishing was pretty good we caught about 2 dozen in just an hour or so.  It was action almost every cast!  Good to see them still around thick as they are sort of our bread and butter this time of year.  After that we ran to find some tarpon.  We tried the channels where they were milling around yesterday and they were there today again too.  The winds were nice and calm and we had the last trickle of falling tide, but the tide quit out on us early.  We managed to hook a shark that cut us off, and then on the change of the tide Phil hooked a nice 85 lb tarpon!  He to under and around the trolling motor, all the places you dont want them to go, which often happens when they bite on a tide change as the line and stuff is wanting to drift under the boat.  Anyways we avoided cutting him off and Phil landed him nicely.  Later on we caught a big lemon shark when the tide changed and started coming in, and while fighting him, Michelle hooked a nice 45 lb tarpon.  She got the wind on leader on him but unfortunately it was a quick release as he spit the hook on a jump but we had the leader for a technical catch.  It was time to head home after that but a great day on the water for these 3!  Back at it tomorrow.  We seem to be in full tarpon season swing right now with no cold fronts in site.

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Instagram: @richardstanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing