ENP 12/18-12/19

Welp, got back from a little overnight down south and figured I should write up a report.

Departed Fort Myers with my 21' master angler in tow, down to the Eveglades City ranger station to file for a camping permit. Bummer that they open at 8 :/ burnt a solid hour of daylight that I wouldve loved to fish! 

Got on the water and headed south via the inside, goal was to make it down to Lostmens before we got a line wet. Made it down to onion key bay and fished the first point with good water moving past. First cast brought forth a baby snook, with many more to follow. 
Worked our way down to Rogers River bay, hitting the points with moving water and shorelines caught in a back eddy. Nice little jewfish came out to play, but almost exclusively ladyfish and snook were caught. 
Decided to make waves towards our campsite on new turkey to leave plenty of daylight to setup camp and hopefully get some dinner fish from nearby. No dinner fish, but my god the noseeums were bad when the wind slicked out. 
Woke up the next AM and cruised over to the mouth of the Chatham river. More snook and a few baby reds and trout came forth as the sun started to warm things up. 
Decided to run the outside home to Choko, hopefully finding some tripletail to bring home. WHERE DID ALL THE CRAB POTS GO?! Ive seen quite a few from Marco to Naples, and figured more would be south!!! Nada... 

Just as we have every time, we fished the oyster bars at the mouth of the Turner river right before heading to the ramp, and caught plenty more baby reds and snook, as well as a keeper trout! 

Through the whole trip we were throwing darker colored mirrodines, zman shrimp, jerk shads and paddle tails. Wished to throw the fly rod some more, but didnt SEE many fish. 

Overall it was a great overnight, with intentions to head back very soon. This was somewhat a test run to see how my big boat handled the backcountry, and I am very pleased that I ran nearly 100 miles at 30mph and burnt just under 40 gallons of gas :) Not bad for an oldschool 2 stroke! 

My main questions to the locals - is there much worth to running all the way to the Broad river? What about farther inside past Rogers River bay? 

I love the glades and look forward to the next trip :D 

Replies

  • JW_YakAnglerJW_YakAngler NaplesPosts: 106 Deckhand
    Thanks for the report. I will be camping on Jewel/Picnic/Tiger keys over New Years. I am hoping for some cold before then because I have experienced the same clouds of noseeums at sunset the last two times out.
    We have been finding reds, mostly small, but some upper slots and overs, really shallow at low tide on the inside flats.
  • chalmerspchalmersp Posts: 265 Deckhand
    Glad to hear theres slot sized fish out there! I wasnt able to sight cast to a single fish this whole trip. All of the catching was done on blind casts. Are you able to see the reds cruising the flats? 
    Might be headed back down in the very beginning of January if you wanna meet up! 
  • BobberBobber Posts: 895 Officer
    noseeums are also called sand gnats.  camp up inside and you wont have a noseeum problem.
  • JW_YakAnglerJW_YakAngler NaplesPosts: 106 Deckhand
    Bobber said:
    noseeums are also called sand gnats.  camp up inside and you wont have a noseeum problem.

    They are thick all the way back inside at the launch...and at my house 30 minutes inland when the wind is right(or wrong depending on how you look at it).
  • JW_YakAnglerJW_YakAngler NaplesPosts: 106 Deckhand
    chalmersp said:
    Glad to hear theres slot sized fish out there! I wasnt able to sight cast to a single fish this whole trip. All of the catching was done on blind casts. Are you able to see the reds cruising the flats? 
    Might be headed back down in the very beginning of January if you wanna meet up! 
    I kayak fish, so spend most of the time sitting and mostly blind cast. I do stand up when it is calm, and I also get out and wade the flats, but rarely see them cruising, just surface activity. I have been finding them in 12" of water on low tide where it tapers up to an inch of water a few feet away. There are intermittent oysters on these flats(like teeth sticking out of the sand) that the fish can navigate, but not the dolphins, so they are comfortable there. We will be camping the weekend before new years, but I have a bunch of work lined up for January and Feb.(contractor) I will likely only get out for some quick afternoon weekend trips.
  • Split ShotSplit Shot Posts: 6,146 Admiral
    I love fishing low tides. not say it's the best but I like it!
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