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Everglades City, Chokoloskee and Everglades National Park

Capt. Charles Wright
February 21, 2007
Everglades City - Saltwater Fishing Report


March signals the end of winter … at least in my eyes. The water begins to warm, our winter guests are beginning to stir and look to the north and the bigger fish begin to return.

As soon as the water warms up in March, schools of permit show up roaming the live bottom and structures. They are hungry, aggressive and stupid … my favorite fish!! Averaging 15-18lbs these fish will make a 200 hundred yard run on the first hookup.

March also is “rung in” with the tarpon dinner bell. The big fish move in from offshore this month following the forage. The past several years, they have actually begun to show up in mid-February. Most importantly, they stay here all spring, summer and fall. March also means that the tarpon in the deep back country move out to the river and creek mouths to feed on this fresh supply of bait. These are smaller versions of their bigger cousins that are moving in from offshore and are my favorite fish to target. They feed well, jump often and everyone gets a shot. Once you have done a 100+ pound Silver King, try a 30-50 pound Silver Prince on eight pound gear or better yet, a fly rod. Be careful, however, it can be addicting.

March snook fishing can be red hot, but somewhat unpredictable. The fish that have been hiding in the back move out through the creeks into the bays and shorelines in search of new forage. One day you will catch 25 fish and the next day four. It is March, and still not summer.

Catching a tarpon, snook and redfish in the same day is a Backcountry Slam and March is “Slam Month”. Through the years, more of my anglers slam in March than in any other month. But for me, the redfish are the hardest part of the slam. Those that fish with me know this…redfish and pompano can be a myth…at least while fishing with me.

March can be some very good fishing, but it is March. The March winds can be frustrating … In like a Lion; Out like a Lion … I am always waiting on the lamb! March is just the beginning of the good fishing here … lots of opportunities both inshore and offshore.

A ¼ to 3/8 oz jig is probably your best bet for all species this month. In addition to the “Slam” fish, you may encounter Spanish mackerels, cobia, bluefish, cobia, speckled trout, silver trout, black drum, sheep head, snappers and sharks.

Beginning in May, near the full and new moons it is time for the “Gentleman Tarpon Fishing Trips”. Each moon phase, we set aside several carefully selected evenings that are prime for jumping big tarpon.

Using baits “the size of a small dog”, big tackle, a properly stocked evening cooler, good friends and a fine cigar, we fish in concentrations of tarpon. The fishing is easy in calm waters and a excellent opportunity to put one of these big silver dinosaurs in the air.

We leave late in the afternoon in time for a bit of snook fishing, but before sunset, we set up in the tarpon grounds for the “King”. If things go well, we will be back in time for a (very) late dinner in town. If the fish is too big and hooked to late, you may go to bed hungry!

These are great trips that can be shared with up to four friends on the same boat. There are not many days that are prime each month, book early. However we are able to do these trips in May, June, July, Aug and Sep with good success.

Tight lines. See you on the water.

If you would like to book a charter with Chokoloskee Charters, contact Capt. Charles Wright @ www.ChokoloskeeCharters.com (captwright@ChokoloskeeCharters.com) or call him @ 239-695-9107. Tight Lines!

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Chokoloskee Charters.com and Everglades Kayak Fishing.com is your complete outfitter for fishing Everglades National Park. Fish the Everglades backcountry, the beaches, 10,000 islands, river and wrecks with the most experienced guides in the area. With flats boats, bays boats, offshore boats and even kayak transport boats for our fleet of outfitted fishing kayaks, we can offer a complete, multi-day, fishing experience. Capt. Charles Wright - Fishing the Park Since 1972 Catch the Experience

Contact Info:

Chokoloskee Charters
PO Box 670
Everglades City, FL 34139
Phone: 239-695-9107
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