20’ Center Console able to fish at Flamingo?

I finished snake bight several years ago in my Hewes, but have since changed boats to a 20’ center console (Angler 204). I’m pretty sure i could get into the bight again, but is my boat’s draft too much to fish west of Flamingo on the coast? 

Replies

  • Saltwater JunkieSaltwater Junkie Posts: 1,067 Officer
    I'd say you can go anywhere the park rangers go in their Boston Whaler. I think what would be really important for you to learn about your boat is what it drafts, what depth of water do you need to get on plane. Get yourself a chart and check for areas like the west coast creek mouths, rivers, channels, beaches etc. In addition, to learning where there's enough water for you to go play. Learn what area's you have no business going to in that boat.

    There's plenty of places in Whitewater Bay, West Florida Bay and the Gulf Coast to keep you out of trouble. Just don't try going anywhere you see a bird standing in the water and remember High Tide is your friend. On that note we're going into winter which means we'll have lower low tides.  

     
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,238 Captain
    Pete just laid it all out... When I used to fish my old SeaCraft out of Flamingo (no 20 footer - but the hull weight was every bit of 1400lbs without motor....) I had pushpole clips on it and routinely poled up onto the edges of flats, staked out and then poled back out into the channel when we needed to re-locate... 

    These days there's a good selection of high quality trolling motors for that boat as well (we're talking 24volt to start -but you do have the potential to go up to 36 volt if you choose,,, With spot lock or anchor functions a bigger boat can be not only mobile in shallow areas (shallow for you means about three feet of water -maybe two feet of water -depending on hull design) just like a large bass boat...   I see folks running big bayboats these days out of Flamingo all the time (some of them are guides...).  Find the right guide and you should be able to have him step onto your boat for a day to get you oriented and operating safely (I do that for a few of my customers every year - and of course get spoiled running big boats with big motors and the quality trolling motors that most come with...),

    Be a bit cautious at first and remember Pete's advice -there's good fishing there for every size and style of boat -once you learn to play to your strengths instead of your weaknesses... 

    And when you finally get on the water - post up a report for everyone to see...
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • MGDMGD Posts: 1,080 Officer
    edited December 2018 #4
    we fished there a lot in out 21 Answer. mostly out front...snake bite channels and then out toward Conchie Channel and all the way to Sand Key, then up towards middle cape. Mostly trout fishing.
    Never got stuck...paid attention to the charts.
    Also fish the middle grounds rise..good trout there at times

  • JWTJWT Posts: 526 Officer
    you will be fine with that boat, just know your limits & take it slow till you get re-oriented. one of my first jobs was a mate down there & the Capt. fished a 24' straight inboard. we caught a lot of fish from that big old thing & Snake Bight was a regular spot. you can relax a bit more as you move west.............
  • GotTarponGotTarpon Posts: 158 Deckhand
    I started fishing in Flamingo in a 16 Egret and moved up from there to a 24 pathfinder and now a 26 foot yellowfin hybrid with a trolling motor, I have adjusted my game all along the way and can't do what I did in the egret but we always have a great day and usually can stay on the fish. The one thing I can tell you is that with a bigger boat don't get stuck shallow on a falling tide you will be done and going no where for a long time. We have avoided that by fishing shallow when the tide is incoming. My boat drafts 15 inches and works fine in Flamingo. take it slow and learn as you go.
  • crackedconchcrackedconch Posts: 377 Deckhand
    I fished Flamingo this summer in my Pioneer 197SF and did the "loop" with no problems. 2 people, full tank of gas (57 gal) and full livewell. Most of the channel markers on the inside are missing, so follow your gps. You can get in trouble in a hurry if you don't pay attention. I plan on going back this spring.
    Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things!!

    Pioneer 197 Sportfish
    Suzuki DF150
  • Jessie350ZJessie350Z Posts: 11 Greenhorn
    “Loop” as in through the inside and back outside? Which route did you take?
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,238 Captain
    The loop or "big circle" is simply launching off of one ramp then returning by the other.  Any way you do it you're going to clock exactly 55 miles without any deviations.  I'm usually showing about 70 miles on my gps' trip log on a day that we do the circle...

    For us the attraction is mainly that it's relatively easy to load a livewell with bait on the Florida Bay side of things (pinfish, pilchards, etc) - then take that bait up around the coast to the Little Shark and back through the interior... to **** Bay then back down Buttonwood Canal to the "inside ramp".  The interior is many things and some great fisihing... but it's not a place that has much in the way of easily caught baitfish....
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • crackedconchcrackedconch Posts: 377 Deckhand
    “Loop” as in through the inside and back outside? Which route did you take?
    Bob hit the nail on the head. Drop in the saltwater ramp and head south/southwest. There you can take the canal through the lake or go around the outside. Fish the west coast and work your way up to the Little Shark River. You can work the mangroves and then cut through the interior and eventually end up at the freshwater ramp.A lot of the markers are gone, so follow your gps. It's every bit of 55 miles around with no deviations. I hope to going there this Saturday if weather is permitting.

    Mike
    Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things!!

    Pioneer 197 Sportfish
    Suzuki DF150
  • Jessie350ZJessie350Z Posts: 11 Greenhorn
    Thank you all. The wife got me a casting net so I’m gonna go make the run Friday. Been studying the charts and it’s appears I can make the full loop in mostly 6’+ of water. Only a few tight spots at 3’+.
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