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Key West Pro Guides - Flats/Back Country Report - May 2018
By: Capt. Paul Tryon

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May 2018 Flats & Back Country Fishing Report

For today's action call 866 259 4205

On the flats our water temperatures have risen slightly however the winds have subdued significantly improving the flats conditions. Our prevailing winds can still be somewhat difficult for the fly caster on a rare given day. Thankfully the overall population of fish on the flats is up to our typical norms now! The Bonefish action during May markedly improves. It is Tarpon time now and Permit action by May is notably better and the flats angler will be getting more and more shots at our most elusive shallow water sport fish. The flats angler should continue to include Barracuda and sharks on his hit list as these cruising predators will be easily found and are typically aggressive. Understand we provide a true "flats fishing experience" and this should not be confused with the back country fishing. Flats fishing is challenging and requires some angling experience to be successful including the ability to sight cast at distance to moving targets. Unless you are familiar with true flats fishing we recommend you compare the flats to the back country fishing in Key West for the experience you are seeking. If you are seeking a hard core fly fishing experience...choose the flats.

In comparison the back country is a very productive trip and May is peak shallow water time in Key West. For the angler looking for faster paced action verses the challenges of the flats species yet wanting to remain in calm, protected near shore waters our back country is the better trip choice. These non technical trips are perfect for most anglers simply looking for a fun few hours in comfortable conditions including flat calm waters.

The overall population of fish in the back country is staggering with the Tarpon migration bringing us adult fish flooding into our back country and shallows where their spawning rituals will play out. The overall numbers of sport fish species, edible fish, predators, and several schooling species continue to provide super fast paced action while keeping things non technical in our approach. A perfect trip for the hard core light tackle angler to the novice angler or the family or larger groups. Tarpon time is well underway for the season and our Sunset Tarpon trips have been awesome! It is absolutely kick off time for Permit in the back country. These elusive sport fish are more and more plentiful in the shallows now but always our toughest characters to hook up. For the angler that enjoys a "bit of fly fishing" along with a primarily light tackle spin gear/live bait experience the back country works! However for a serious fly fishing trip we recommend the flats.

The Redfish action is all but forgotten by May, Snook on the other hand improve bring them to life. This is a time overall of fast paced "excellent" action from the schools of BIG Jacks including some exceptionally larger fish going north of 25 pounds…an absolute blast on light tackle! Sea Trout and Pompano are gone from our warmer water temperatures now replaced with Cobia for example...a pretty good trade off in our option.

The 1/2 day to 3/4 day morning departure trips continue to produce well however the afternoon water temperatures still are not so high as to slow the later part of the day with good tides. Afternoon trips can be awesome. Our Sunset Tarpon and Shark trips are becoming spectacular but not for the faint of heart. Not a trip we are comfortable with smaller children aboard and no more than three anglers for the ultimate fishing experience in four hours for these night time adventures.

Our outstanding predator fishing especially for behemoth Barracuda continues in May. Sight casting to Giant Barracuda and several species of Sharks in the shallows continues to produce. The Marquesas being remote and isolated from the nearer Key West fishing grounds are an exceptional trip for the seasoned angler looking for explosive action. Our Monster Shark charters are always awesome and continually produce multiple larger sharks even on the 1/2 day trips on the calmer days. We "highly recommend" a back country charter this time of year and especially for those guests looking for a shorter than full day trip. We continue to enjoy an abundance of visible marine life, tropical birds on the Mangrove Island shorelines, mirror calm, crystal clear waters and more for the outdoors and nature lovers .

Let's go Fishing! Call Key West Pro Guides today to book your charter 866 259 4205 daily 7 AM to 9 PM. We look forward to your call!

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