Key West Tarpon Fishing


Tarpon | steven lamp
Veteran Key West Tarpon Fishing Guide Capt. Steven Lamp Poses With a Nice Tarpon.

Many people come down to Key West specifically to fish for tarpon, also known as the silver king due to their color, size, and magnificent aerobatics as they jump and fight against the angler that seduced him with their bait.

Where do we fish for tarpon and when is the best time to fish for them? Well, that all depends. Pretty much any day of the year you can go to a dock and see these fish hanging out while waiting for a free meal that a fisherman will throw to them, but these fish do not ever really move from this area, so just because you see a tarpon hanging out at the dock it does not mean that you will see a bunch of them at the fishing grounds.

Typically, tarpon start to migrate to the Keys around the end of February or the beginning of March, all depending on weather patterns. These fish travel in the deeper waters of the backcountry, so fishing the harbor and the channels for tarpon using light tackle spin fishing gear with live and artificial bait is the norm. Starting in April and all the way through October, our “resident” fish and baby tarpon are found on the backcountry flats in very shallow water; we can fish for these fish using light tackle spin fishing gear or fly fishing gear if the angler prefers. November through February is a very spotty time for them; it is possible that you can hook up on a tarpon, but it is not as likely as in the spring and summer months.

A popular questions about fishing is, “What is the best time of day?” Early mornings and late afternoons are best, with the bite usually waining at mid-day. For that reason, many guides suggest booking a 4 or 6 hour day rather than the full day.

Booking a charter is easy, but as so many people come down specifically to fish for tarpon in the spring, advance bookings are highly recommended. Key West’s Dream Catcher Charters offers 4, 6, and 8 hour charter. Their flats boats can accommodate up to 2 passengers while their bay boats can carry up to 4 anglers. Everything you need to fish is provided for their anglers including licenses, gear, bait, ice, and bottled waters. So all that the angler needs to worry about are sunglasses, suntan lotion, a light jacket, and whatever he or she would like to eat or drink besides water. To make a reservation you can contact Dream Catcher Charters at 1-888-362-3474.

To see what is happening on the island during your visit, check out our Key West Events Calendar to see other upcoming special events. For more information about the fun side of Key West… things to do and see in our island city, go to our Key West Web Site.

And before deciding where you are going to eat while visiting Key West, be sure to read my  restaurant reviews; check out our restaurant review section of this blog as well as our restaurant reviews. Learn from my mistakes, lol.

Feel free to Email Me if you have any questions about Key West!! Or give me a call if you want to book a tarpon fishing charter.. 

About the author: Island Genn

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