Had Reg and Lucinda out for the day. They stay down here in the late winter/spring and fished me last year. They wanted to get in on the early season backcountry tarpon action. Last year we cancelled due to a late cold front, though overall it was the best early season I’d personally seen. This year is kind of a complete 180. Lots of late fronts in February and March, plus the heavy winds keep the water cold for several days after. But for small windows when it gets warm and calms down some in between, we have had some really good early season fishing. Just got spoiled from the last several years I suppose. Anyways, water temps were just cracking 70 degrees today and we had a bit of a chilly north breeze, sweatshirts, etc… in the morning. I didn’t have high hopes but this was our day. I caught mullet early and we ventured out back. Looked around in a few spots for about an hour and didn’t see much. Kept moving and then we found a few fish. Set up and had a few sharks, then Lucinda hooked a big 100 lb tarpon! A good 45 minute battle and we landed the fish but as I was wrapped in the leader the line snapped, i managed to take a few more wraps and get some jumps out of the fish boatside on video before she broke off. After that we moved again as the fish were gone. Found some more fish further out, and we got had to move several times but eventually got on another one for Lucinda. Good jumps and landed this one quickly about a 70 lber. After that things slowed down, tide quit and changed. The tarpon started to show well but then when the tide started coming in hard they kind of layed down. We gave it a bit longer and sure enough right when we were about to call it quits, we got one more bite but the fish came off. Anyways, not bad to catch two nice tarpon with the cold water conditons back there. No more cold fronts in the immediate future so tarpon fishing should stabililze and I’m hoping we have another good month or so of awesome backcountry fishing for them. I’ve had sevearl cancellations from Corona Virus already, some next week. So if you are wanting to come down let me know, otherwise I have been booked up personally through mid June. so I may be able to work something out.
Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing