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Chokoloskee

We are doing a fishing trip December 11-16. Never been before but I know only fishing available there. That's why we are going.
What type of fishing this time of year? What is the best tide?
Inshore fishing only as we have a 18' flats boat. We do not mind traveling 20 miles either direction if need be. Thank you for and advice and education.

Replies

  • 10kman10kman Posts: 689 Officer
      1.Think before hand if you get stranded.
         A.Full tank of gas always.
         B.Two way radio w/antenna and cell phone.
         C.Plenty of fresh water
         D.Rain gear
         E.Long rope,so you can be towed. 
         F.Park permit if in the Park.Available on line.
        
         Rising tide to start and watch depth finder closely coming in.
         Cast net if you throw one and/or plenty of live shrimp.
          Snook,redfish,trout,maybe flounder are there.Snook out
        of season Dec.1
          Look for moving water,fish islands(keys),oyster bars.
         
  • limitlesslimitless Posts: 698 Officer
    10Kman offers great advice.  Take it easy your first couple runs out of Choko and make a good track on your graph that you can follow after that.  It is a beautiful place and you will catch fish for sure.  One other thing, boaters in the Everglades National Park are required to have a valid Boater Permit.  This can be obtained only after taking an online course and passing an assessment with a score of 80 or higher.  The Permit must be presented as a paper copy or saved as an image accessible on an electronic device if requested by a law enforcement officer.  Here's a link to the course:  http://provalenslearning.com/national-park-service/everglades-boater-education-course

     


    The Snook & Gamefish Foundation is now the Angler Action Program: http://angleractionfoundation.com/  Dedicated to Conservation and Education.  Please check us out.

    Angler Action Program: IAngler app trip log on your phone

  • BobberreduxBobberredux Posts: 15 Deckhand
    Spare prop and marine-tex.
  • Paucan6005Paucan6005 Port of the islandsPosts: 59 Deckhand
    Get a chart . Study it. Pick your route and follow it. Deviations will get you in trouble. Best thing is hire a guide. And in December north winds can really move shallow water. 
  • GettnreddyGettnreddy Posts: 96 Deckhand
    Is the permit required to boat around Chokolosee or just in the everglades park? 
    Have a chart on the way.
    Looks on Google map that I definitely want to bring the push pole. Normally use trolling motor here locally and not push pole. Maybe the opposite there.
  • limitlesslimitless Posts: 698 Officer
    Choko is in the ENP, so yes.  The course isn't hard for a boater with some experience.

    The Snook & Gamefish Foundation is now the Angler Action Program: http://angleractionfoundation.com/  Dedicated to Conservation and Education.  Please check us out.

    Angler Action Program: IAngler app trip log on your phone

  • GettnreddyGettnreddy Posts: 96 Deckhand
    Ok. Thank you to everyone for info.
  • GettnreddyGettnreddy Posts: 96 Deckhand
    Ok. Thank you to everyone for info.
  • Kayak_PeteKayak_Pete Posts: 17 Deckhand
    Something I do whenever I come down is go back over past years' threads.  You can always get some good tips and fishing reports.  Dec 2019 starts on page 8 of this section, but pickin's are pretty slim, you might want to go back to 2018 or 2017.
    2014 Hobie Sport
  • BobberreduxBobberredux Posts: 15 Deckhand
    More like 2001-2009 in the archives.....o,but FS lost those threads forever......

    The single best resource for fishing the 10k and Park is the long out of print annual Fishing Mates by the late Capt Andy Mclean. It's been my Bible since the 80's.
  • Lostmen_DanLostmen_Dan Ft. LauderdalePosts: 14 Deckhand
    10kman, limitless and paucan all offer great advice.

    I'm a guy that won't hardly get down from the poling platform yet I find myself using a trolling motor in the area south of the Baron River as much, frankly even more than the push pole. Both are always on board. Water temps have remained steady this year with your trip only a few weeks away.

    Before the big storm plenty of snook, reds, trout, flounder, drum and sheepshead still holding on outside points, bars and shoals. These fish will begin their move to interior bays as the water cools with some fish instead moving to nearshore wrecks and reefs. Spanish mackerel should really be present by then over those wrecks and reefs along with cobias, snappers, groupers and a fair share of the inshore gamefish. The mackerel can likewise be targeted over grass flats, river mouths and into some of the larger passes. Sea trout will occupy many of these more inshore haunts with ladyfish, some bruiser jacks and bluefish. Shoot me a PM as the trip gets closer if you like and I can help point you in the right direction.
    Formerly lostmen dan. Not able to get back in the account but what else is new around here.

    3rd gen Floridian fishing Flamingo, Chokoloskee, the Keys and Tri-County area since 1988.
    IG - @danielrearle
  • Paucan6005Paucan6005 Port of the islandsPosts: 59 Deckhand
    Great info Dan. I also recommend getting a top spot map or if you have the $$$ and a good plotter but the navionics platinum. Pretty savvy about the waters from choko up to dismal so if I can help shoot me a pm also. Can’t emphasize enough how important the tides are. Not only for fishing of course but those low low tides can bite you in the lower unit especially with wind pushing 
  • Turner River TerrorTurner River Terror Posts: 8,110 Admiral
    Depending on the water temps I'd be looking at back country mud bays fished slowly with top water or sluggo type baits.
    Them Snook will lay up on the mud and absorb heat during the mid day.
    Think Lopez river to Alligator Bay.
    The land of a Thousand casts. I lived in Chokoloskee for almost 15 years.
    Killin and Grillin :grin
  • GettnreddyGettnreddy Posts: 96 Deckhand
    So I just found out Friday I can not get a chart card for my old school furuno chartplotter. Just bit the bullet and will be installing Garmin 74sv. Hope the preloaded chart is good. 
    I noticed for the dates we will be there low tide is in the 6am to 11am and high tides 12pm to 6pm. Do we want to fish from the outside to the inside following the moving tide in?
  • bocapup1bocapup1 Posts: 1,208 Officer
  • GettnreddyGettnreddy Posts: 96 Deckhand
  • GettnreddyGettnreddy Posts: 96 Deckhand
    bocapup1 said:

    Sweet. Wife and I are getting excited.
  • bocapup1bocapup1 Posts: 1,208 Officer
    Low tide was dead but when it filled up it was fun
  • Turner River TerrorTurner River Terror Posts: 8,110 Admiral
    Depends on the water temps.
    If its real cold the fish won't be on the Outside at all or very little.
    They  Stage further back in The Backcountry the colder it get,s...the further they are in The Back.
    If you want to catch a Thousand fish..Stay out front and throw tipped jigs. 
    You'll catch...everything.
    Back Country is more Specialized and for long cast , On your feet most of the day..Hard core.
    Family , Stay out Front.
    Killin and Grillin :grin
  • GettnreddyGettnreddy Posts: 96 Deckhand
    Depends on the water temps.
    If its real cold the fish won't be on the Outside at all or very little.
    They  Stage further back in The Backcountry the colder it get,s...the further they are in The Back.
    If you want to catch a Thousand fish..Stay out front and throw tipped jigs. 
    You'll catch...everything.
    Back Country is more Specialized and for long cast , On your feet most of the day..Hard core.
    Family , Stay out Front.
    We don't have kids and fish on our feet all day here. Cruise the mangrove shoreline pitching artys or liveys all day. Used to that.

    We are there 3 full days so I'm sure we can do both. Even one day going into the backcountry wiil be cool.

    My buddy and his wife have been the last 3 or 4 years sheephead fishing. We don't want to only do that.

    The take away would be, nice weather, light winds, warm temps. Stay out of deep backcountry. Fish out front. Windy, cold water temps, fish deep backcountry later in day.

    I will be using the area experience advise to good measure.

  • Turner River TerrorTurner River Terror Posts: 8,110 Admiral
    If a Cold Front is blowing in the winds will be out of the North and the Outside will be crappy.
    The Sun will be low in the Southern sky and the Inside ..North walls of warm mud bays will be getting direct sunlight most of the day and be warmer.
    It's the land of a Thousand casts..Cast anywhere ,shoreline , out in the bay. behind the boat..The Snook will be Anywhere in them bays.
    The Bow guy has no advantage. Cast all over.
    Killin and Grillin :grin
  • mikenavmikenav Posts: 861 Officer
    Another thing to look into is the Navionics app on your phone. Great charts and detailed maps. Even if you're out of range of cell signal, the GPS will work, which can be pretty helpful, especially if you're deep in the backcountry. 
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