Caught a nice tarpon in the everglades today on 3/10/13. The water was chilly… mid 60s… not ideal for tarpon. But we managed to find a hungry one! The fish ate a live pinfish on light tackle. My angler battled him for an hour+ and did a great job. The trick especially on lighter tackle is to pull AGAINST where the fish is trying to swim, not just pulling up on him. Use the rod to battle the fish, not just the reel on an islamorada tarpon. If he swims right, arc your rod left so the line goes directly over his back… and now your pulling directly against him and he must work much harder. You can also (at your own risk) palm the spool of your reel (or use your thump on the line on conventional) to put additional pressure, however be careful as a fish will usually make a hard run when the feel this additional pressure and when he does, let him go (take your palm off the spool). Always be ready to bow when he jumps to give a little slack. Fighting a tarpon is an art especially on light tackle or fly. Islamorada tarpon fishing in March is getting better.. night fishing is a good bet and guides are ready and willing to go – are you???
Capt. Rick Stanczyk