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Fishing Long Key/Marathon area in mid/late July- any suggestions?

I'll be fishing the Long Key area with my kayak in Mid July. Any suggestions? I know very little about the area. I'll be bringing a 9 wt fly rod, as well as regular tackle with both bait and lure set ups.

If anyone wants to hook up with me during this time, let me know. I'd love to have an extra for safety's sake. I had two buddies going with me who both had to back out because of work.


  • clearchoice18clearchoice18 Posts: 118 Deckhand
    i'll keep you in mined, i would like to hangout.
  • bugdocbugdoc Posts: 421 Officer
    If you're fly-fishing try the flats around Lignumvitae and Shell Keys (on the gulf side about MM 78, just past Bud-N-Mary's marina) for bonefish and little sharks and cudas. You can launch from the causeway just before the bridge that crosses over to Robbie's Marina. They may let you launch at Robbie's too. Robbies keeps "pet" tarpon there that people feed.

    Southeast Florida kayak launch sites at http://www.floridakayaksites.info
  • yakhunteryakhunter Posts: 138 Deckhand
    One of my favorite things to do in that area in the summer is to fish the flats for barracuda with splashy topwater plugs. I prefer chugbugs and use a very fast retrieve. The cudas are wily, so I use heavy mono or flouro, 40lb or higher, instead of wire leader. And since I've already had a vasectomy, I never bring a big cuda into the kayak. I de-hook boatside using a boga grip to keep the beast at arm's length. Have fun!
  • Android77Android77 Posts: 492 Deckhand
    nothing works better on cudas than a tube lure cranked real fast.Some of the channels in that area have some good mangrove snapper small pinfish live or dead or larger ones steaked up work the best.
  • yakhunteryakhunter Posts: 138 Deckhand
    Tube lures do work well, and I sometimes use them. But I like the spectacle of the cuda smashing a topwater. Strangely, two weeks ago we were getting large mangrove snappers on chug bugs on the bay side of Grassy Key.
  • FishingAddictFishingAddict Posts: 170 Deckhand
    Thanks for the tips, guys! Can't wait to go down. Still don't feel good about going out on my own. Never had a problem, but don't want to have my first while by myself.
  • CookinmanCookinman Posts: 880 Officer
    Don't overlook Long Key Bridge or Channel 2 Bridge. If its worth the drive down from Broward just to fish it ( and it is ) That will be a great way to spend the nights when yakking is impractical....Leave the fly stuff at the hotel for that foray, you will need beafier gear.....Soak a crab on the bottom for Permit as some bruisers will be around. Mangrove snapper should be plentiful and tarpon are so many they are a nuisance at times when meat fishing during the summers. Though there is technically no structured camping on the span anymore, a neat orderly site that has put up a tarp for sun protection is almost always judged on its organization, compactness and cleanliness when, or IF asked to dismantle.
  • razorreilly09razorreilly09 Posts: 8,401 Admiral
    I know some good flats around Duck Key, shoot me a message closer to the date, may be able to meet up and go fishing w/you
  • RollinRollin Posts: 1,546 Captain
    In the Keys it’s a lot about the wind, although this time of year not quite so bad. I always check the wind then the tides to figure out where to go. If the wind is from the ocean side I launch on the Bayside and fish out of the wind. On long Key heading towards Key West you go out of layton then past the Transfer Station on your right and then you come to a short section of seawall on your right (the Bayside). This is a good place to start and you will have a lot of good fishing including a nice big deep hole right on the Miami end of that seawall.

    As you head back to Miami on the highway, go past the KOA on your left, cross the bridge to a small Island. You will see on the Ocean side a large flat. This flat has some good fishing. When they built the road they pulled some fill from this flat to raise the road. This left a small channel on each end of the flat and on the out going tide the fishing can be real good. On the Miami end where the small channel flows into the big one this can make for a real honey hole. It’s real good as the speed of the tide picks up. You’ll see the guys that fish for a living show up here twice a day for about an hour.

    I fished long Key when I was a little kid in the fifties. My Grandfather loved it there and so did I.
  • FishingAddictFishingAddict Posts: 170 Deckhand
    Thanks for the great responses...I have some time, I will try them all. Looking forward to doing some guilt free, straight up fishing 12-18 hour a day fishing (which gets next to impossible with kids- but this trip is all about fishing while the kids are in the Galapagos with the grandparents). I'll shoot you a PM in a week or so, Razorreilly- I appreciate the offer!
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