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12/22/17 Another epic day in the backcountry of Islamorada... tarpon,reds,snook,macks

Eric was down with his twin boys Ethan and Evan and wanted to go fishing. I had today available and was excited to get out after good fishing yesterday. We found some good mullet muds on the way out and caught plenty of bait. We had tarpon action yesterday and figured it'd be a good bet today. We hit the tarpon early with the last couple hours of falling tide. Even more fish today there were hundreds with lots of surface activity, free jumping, bait busting, the kind of thing tarpon fishermen dream about. I told the guys they picked the right day for it! It wasn't a red hot bite with the chilly water but we first caught a big sawfish. Then about 20 minutes later Eric hooked a massive 150 lb tarpon! We followed her around as she out on a show, and after 40 minutes we had the fish boatside! After that we moved a bit and we hooked another 80 lb fish. More acrobatics and a quicker fight but we got that one boatside too! After that the tide slowed and the fish didn't seem as active, we caught a blacktip and then decided to do some mackerel fishing to give the boys some action. Great Spanish mackerel bite we caught probably 18 or so in an hour. After that the boys wanted to try and catch a snook, and I had a few pilchards left over from yesterday. I said I might know a spot... We tried that and got into some redfish and snook - bonus! What a day on the water it's nice when everything cooperates! Eric said he wants to go tarpon fishing again in April and might buy a place down here. I think he's got the keys fishing bug. 藍藍藍

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
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