2/25/17 More February Islamorada Tarpon Fishing

Got out with Jim, Jeff, and Ryan today and tarpon was on their list of fish to try and catch.  I knew the water was still a little chilly but with it being fairly calm and on a warming trend told them we’d probably have a shot.  Anyways we fished for the spanish mackerels first and that was pretty good fishing considering we had almost no wind.  After that we looked out around the channels where we had caught our big fish yesterday.  I gave it a good hard look, hoping to spot either some rolling fish or possibly mark some packs on the bottom.  But we saw nothing and we checked a couple different areas.  I knew the tide would soon be turning so I decided to run further to check off some of the mainland areas where we had found some big schools of tarpon just before the last front.  We got out there but didn’t see any signs of life… So we ended up running back to where we had been before, hoping some fish might move in with the incoming tide starting.  Luckily that happened we started seeing a handful of fish roll and started catching quite a few blacktip sharks.  We hooked into a few big sawfish too but they were too big for us to get up before they cut us off.  We moved around a bit trying to entice a tarpon bite but to no avail.  Finally I decided to run further up the channel to take a look and we started seeing quite a few more tarpon.  We had about an hour left to fish, and we were able to get a few bites out of the tarpon.  Unfortunately they didn’t want to stay on the hook, we jumped a couple off straight away, and then had what I’m pretty sure was on just take the line and zip us for a couple seconds.  These did appear to be smaller 40 to 60 lb fish, which have been giving us a little more trouble hooking lately versus the big 100+ lb fish.  That was about all she wrote, hate not catching one but it happens sometimes!  At least we had some good action and 3 bites isn’t bad this time of year.  Have double half days the next two days, so probably won’t be doing much tarpon fishing, but maybe next week.  0 for 3

Capt. Rick Stanczyk