Flats Fishing Charters, Fort Myers, Pine Island Sound, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor
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All of my backcountry, flats charters and split-day Tarpon Charters are No Fish, No Pay! If you do not catch a game fish (or jump a tarpon on split-day trips) on your charter then there is no charge for the trip.
No Fish, No Pay!
941-628-4247 or 941-575-2389
From November though February I like to target redfish, speckled trout and flounder in very shallow water with light spinning tackle or fly rods. Most of the time I use a number of artificial lures such as soft plastics, hard suspending twitch baits, spoons, spinner blades and top water lures. When the water gets colder I'll tip the lures with fresh shrimp. For fly fishing, 7-9wt tackle is best with either a floating line or a sinking tip line. A number a types of flies work well with clouser minnows, deceivers, and spoon flies being my favorites.
Below are some pictures of the flats fishing that I do in Southwest Florida:
Winter redfish from Pine Island Sound which is just a short drive from fort Myers.
Tasty Florida Pompano caught on the flats of Pine Island Sound.
I target redfish like this one in very shallow water on the flats of Charlotte Harbor, Matlacha and Pine Island Sound.
The fish on the right is a keeper sized speckled trout. They are one of the most preveliant and best tasting fish on the flats during the winter months. The fish on the left is a sheephead which rarely hit artificial lures. This particular one hit a soft plastic on a jig head. They are also excellent table fare but I don't target them as much because they don't hit lures that well.
This redfish is right at the maximum keeper size of 27 inches and about 7-8 pounds. Most of the redfish during the winter months are 2-6 pounds but redfish up to 12 pounds are not uncommon in all of Southwest Florida's shallow estuaries.
In the late fall Pompano move into the shallow flats Pine Island and Charlotte Harbor and we sometimes catch them while targeting redfish and speckled trout. They are excellent table fare. These two pompano are legal eating size.
As winter turns to spring The tides get higher and I usually switch form lures to live sardines for bait. We caught this redfish with a live sardine fish under a float along a mangrove shoreline.
We catch a lot of large speckled trout from November though April. This one was 24inches long.
Shallow water red fishing in Pine Island Sound.
This "gator" trout was 25 inches.
A 24 inch "gator" speckled trout.
A nice winter redfish from Charlotte Harbor.
Interested in Booking a winter flats fishing charter? Check out the flats fishing rates for October-April. Click here: Rates
Call me at 941-628-4247 to book a date. The lowest tides of the month are during the weeks of the full and new moons. These dates usually require a more advance booking to get a available date. I don't try to book double trips during the winter months because the best fishing is during the warmest portion of the day. I've been guiding full-time for 13 years and I know from experience that if you book more than one trip a day in the winter one of the trips is going to be tuff fishing. I want to give ALL of my customers the best chance of a quality fishing trip. Also don't be fooled into thinking that you can have a quality flats fishing trip with 5 or 6 people on a boat. We fish in extremely shallow water and the more people that you have on the boat the more water the boat drafts and the less stealthy we are, which hinders my fish catching ability. Three people or less is best but my boat can handle up to four without a problem. I would shy away form any guide that is willing to take more than 4 people on a flats fishing trip.
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