As Fall Arrives with Cooler Temperatures, the Action Heats Up!

The fall time frame in Key West brings many options for the light tackle angler from the flats to offshore. As we begin our transition from the summer’s steamy air and water temperatures into cooler and frankly more comfortable conditions, fish are on the move. We welcome the migration patterns of several outstanding pelagic species soon to arrival in our offshore waters. Many of the shallower resident species of the backcountry are reacting to the changes as well. This is a time of plenty for the angler willing to work for it. Let us break down the recent action as reported from the docks of Key West Pro Guides…

In the Shallows and on the Flats……
Bonefish and Permit are still keeping the flats anglers on their toes! The Tarpon action unfortunately is over on the flats for this year. A nice bonus…we are finding Mutton Snapper cruising on the backs of the rays presenting challenging targets! Jack Crevalles are plentiful and offer a good fight with fast action. –As the conditions are bringing changes to the deeper water so they are changing the shallows. The major difference is that the backcountry waters are not cooling nearly as quickly as offshore. For the near future at least high water temperatures will still prevail. This will keep the action slower on Redfish and Snook and Trout are not “on” just now either. The good news…Permit! The action with these sought after fish is good! Can there be a more desirable species in the backcountry this time of year? In addition, the shark fishing is crazy good right now with several species from Black Tip to Spinner and the always-present Lemon. A shark on light tackle is edgy stuff friends and we highly recommend targeting them if you are looking for a battle! The always available Jack Crevalles and Mangrove Snapper are everywhere and perfect to target for those family outings or if you have a novice angler in your group!

On the Wrecks –Gulf & Atlantic……
Things are really heating up in the Gulf. Mangrove Snapper fishing has been excellent. Cobia are now cruising the more remote and distant wrecks in numbers. The elusive Permit are here as well and always an appreciated target to pursue. Nice size Gag Grouper in numbers have been easily found lately while the behemoth Goliath Grouper continues to offer the angler an ultimate game of tug- o’- war!– Fishing has been fast paced of late with nice Mutton Snapper’s leading the way! Big Margate Snappers running 8 to 10 pounds are plentiful if you can keep them away from the several shark species cruising these sites. Heavyweight Amberjacks are certainly making their presence known as are a massive population of Bonito. No problem keeping the rods bent here!– The action here has been far better than well offshore due to very good water conditions.

On the Reef…..
The Reef has been providing excellent Yellow Tail Snapper action daily with these tasty fish averaging 3 lbs for the last few weeks. Landing a limit is quick work most days. The Grouper action remains good and the Mutton Snapper bite has been exciting recently.

Offshore – In the Blue…..
The far offshore “Blue Water” conditions have vastly improved but still are not perfect from recent weather. In fairness, the action has been in the “fair” range as the Gulf Stream flows 50 miles out from Sand Key. The Mahi Mahi action is dwindling as expected with a few decent size fish being taken in the 350’ to 400 ‘ depths recently. Bonitos remain good and Barracuda are so plentiful they have become annoying! We are looking forward to the cold fronts coming our way soon, which bring the “speed demons” to us. Kingfish, Mackerel and Black Fin Tuna to mention a few will arrive shortly and things will immediately fire up offshore.

All in all friends fishing ain’t bad…but it is getting much better and soon! Our days are calm and comfortable, water conditions are coming to us and the newly arriving species have our full attention. Looking forward…book your charter today for the upcoming fall period with Key West Pro Guides and experience the “world class” fishing both Key West and our team is known for!

Tight lines,

Captain Paul [email protected]
Captain Roc [email protected]