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Anna Maria Island Kayaking!

BigVernBigVern Posts: 217 Deckhand
Hi folks. I am looking for a little help.

I will be staying on Anna Maria Island this summer (August) and am looking to hire a kayak for a couple of weeks. It will mainly be used by the kids for some gentle paddling.

My questions are......

Should I wish to go fishing in it do I need to hire one specifically set up for fishing or would a normal rental do?

Any recommendations for a reasonable and reliable rental place on the island?

Any basic do's and don'ts if trying to fish from a kayak?

How easy is it to fly fish from a kayak or should I bait fish?!!

Huge thanks in advance for your help.



  • dcrdcr Posts: 365 Deckhand
    I'm not familiar with AMI, so my answers will be generic. I've also never fly fished from a kayak, but would imagine it would be harder than bait fishing, but I know a guy who does it, without a fishing yak.
    I've fished from both fishing and non-fishing kayaks. I have the (latter) FORMER and it's a LOT easier. Since you don't have experience doing this, my experience says the #1 rule would be KISS. Do not take anything that's not absolutely necessary. Hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, water, one small tackle box, pliers, one rod. If all this stuff fits inside your PFD pockets, even better. Things can get chaotic very quickly when you hook a fish in a kayak.
    Have a great time!
  • BigVernBigVern Posts: 217 Deckhand
    Thanks for the advice, and I understand completely-keep it simple! I will be fishing from the beach mostly, but fancy getting out into Bimini Bay for a couple of forays! This may be a silly question but is keeping your balance easy if you hook a fish? I am tall and have struggled balancing in a kayak without the added challenge of landing a fish! I am hoping having a point of resistance will keep me a little more stable!
    Thanks again for the advice.

  • dcrdcr Posts: 365 Deckhand
    I have not had any balance issues hooking a fish, but I have been dragged into the mangroves, weeds, or overhanging branches on several occasions. Last Monday in fact, I had two rods out, both hooked up, got dragged into an overhanging branch, lines all tangled, one under the boat, both in the trees. Got my knife out ready to cut line, but decided to paddle out first and managed to save both fish. That's what I meant by things getting chaotic very quickly.

    (see my EDIT in post #2)
  • krashkrash Posts: 878 Officer
    Sitting should be no problem balancing... standing thats a different story. Realize there is very little resistance from the water and if you lean forward or back the kayak will easily slip out from under you... side to side is not so had because the kayak will lean to a point of no-return either you go or the kayak will dump you.

    For your best chance at a fun sucessful trip its worth hiring a kayak fishing guide for a half or full day... full day gets you much more bang for your buck.
    Couple names that come to mind...
    JM Snooky
    Todd Terrill
    Old Fugger who just likes to fish
  • stussingstussing Posts: 85 Greenhorn
    Snook should be on the beach very close to shore. The fishing should be good on the flats on the bayside. Be careful of the current at the northern tip (Bean Point).
  • sp00n-sp00n- Posts: 104 Deckhand
    I second the notion that hiring a guide for a full or half day is a great idea. In a new area, it is often hard to find fish (its hard ANY time, really)...but particularly when you are trying to also learn the area's tides, bottom contours, where the rocks and shallow areas are, boat traffic etc.

    I stayed at Anna Maria island for the first time, for a three day thing, a couple of weeks ago. I brought my own Yak, my friends rented theirs from Beach Bums, a local place. Two of them were fishing style, the other one wasn't, (because they were out) so call ahead for details. Prices were reasonable, I think - $99 for three days, and they delivered and picked them up at our rental house.

    What got us was the wind - it **** for three days straight. Seriously if it died down to 10-15 we were happy, because it was blowing a steady 20+ most days. We fished Bimini Bay, and one day 25+ was the norm. We caught a few trout, not much else. Tried to fish outside off the beaches but it was not possible due to the west winds. If I went back, I would definately try a guide.

    Good luck, it is a fun place to visit, nice people, lots of ice cream shops, restaurants, bars, but also with a fairly small-town feel.
  • BigVernBigVern Posts: 217 Deckhand
    Thanks for all the advice. I will look into hiring a guide and thanks for the recommendations. I have been lucky enough to visit Anna Maria Island the last two Easter holidays and it is indeed a great place. This time we are visiting in August. Hoping for a couple of early morning trips before the sun gets too hot. I have never fished the Bimini side, I have always been gulf side. Had some nice fish off the beach. Just looking at getting a little further into the bay.

    Thanks again for the advice and will post reports as and when I can!

    Tight lines!

  • mjrudd1mjrudd1 Posts: 282 Deckhand
    In August there should be lots of fish at the south end, inside the bridge near Longboat Pass. Watch the outgoing tides/current if you are near the bridge, it can rip through that narrow pass. You can launch easily at the county park / boat ramp on the north end of the bridge. Usually lots of bait and a bunch of jacks / ladyfish / Spanish mackerel schooling right off the park, and lots of trout in the potholes on the nearby grass flats (.6 miles NE, mainland side of the channel is best). There are some snook and redfish around there too. Good, protected place to get your line tight if you are not after wall hangers.
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