Old man winter came knocking early this past fall.
Thinking back, it was the first week in November when I
had to cancel the first trip of the autumn fishing
season. December rolled around and the Artic Canadian
air swept across Florida with an atypical dip in the jet
stream. We ended 2010 much like we started it with
record setting cold temperatures.
The weather seems to have
stabilized this past week with more typical
temperatures, lows in the 50s and highs in 70s. Between
the passing cold fronts, winter’s staple species of red
drum and speckled sea trout are constituting the primary
catches along the southwest coast of Florida.
Savvy winter anglers use the below
mean low water depths to target redfish, trout,
sheepshead, flounder and the oddball snook that are
trapped inside these puddles located on the edges of the
flats. The fishing can be fast and furious, despite the
cold water. The primary catch is often in good numbers
but is typically smaller, school-sized fish.
Nonetheless, it beats shoveling snow or working!
The first weeks of the year are
always a busy time for long time fishing guides as they
prepare to close out their records from the previous
year and begin to schedule wise clients who are looking
to get their dates set during their favorite months or
moon phases. As always, the main attraction of the
center ring is GiantTarpon.
Each year, thousands of people make
the trek to southwest Florida to experience the best
GiantTarpon fishing in the world. They come from
Bangkok, Germany, England, Russia, just as they may come
from Cleveland, New York City or Fargo. Some are people
of purity who will not have a tarpon eat anything but
chicken feathers known as “flies” and will use long
wimpy rods, satisfied, even if they are only able to see
and present a fly to a dinosaur. Others are satisfied
anchored on an edge with 8 rods in the gunwale rod
holders baited with fresh cut bait. Like most tarpon
fishing, the hours of boredom are punctuated by moments
of chaos. The “sight-fisher” will spend hour after hour
staked out on a shoal waiting for a trespassing tarpon
or they will depart well before daybreak and cast live
baits in the massive schools of fish off the beach that
near always result in at least one landed fish per
For some, fishing in the deeper
passes is the only way or “no way”, the action is often
hot and furious. It is "pass fishing" that is ALWAYS a
favorite "past time" envy of those who seem to carry
themselves above God. When there is professional
jealousy in fishing, someone is experiencing "too much
success"! Oh yes…no single species of fish defines and
divides fishermen like the tarpon. That has not changed
in over 135 years.
Over the years, I have humbled
myself in my approach to fishing. Yes, I will always
have the desire to compete, out wit and boast, but I
have also learned that there is a sense of peace in the
quest for GiantTarpon.
Today I notice things such as
advertising slogans that may read things like “I live
I also witness possessed egomaniacs who do the fishing
and catch the fish for their clients and know they
(captain and client) have missed the meaning of what
this is all about. The tarpon is merely a catalyst
between people to form memories that are perpetual in
time. This is what I sell.
Each year, tarpon mass in our
waters like they do in no other place in the world. As
it was after the cold winter of 2010, the cold winter of
2011 too will produce an exceptional cycle of fish
(short of some other natural variable).
The new 2011 will be my 23rd
year as a full-time fishing guide. In addition to a
loyal following over the past couple decades, I too
field many new inquires to fish the peak of the
GiantTarpon season. If you have intentions for peak
spring fishing on our flats for snook, redfish, trout,
cobia, tarpon, permit or any of the other numbers of
world-class gamefish available to us, now is the time to
reports via our Blog
Over the years, keeping the fishing
reports updated and fresh has been challenging when you
spend your life on the water. Now, in the era of "smart
phones", we have found a way to over-come this hurdle.
All season I have been up-loading
live reports and pictures to our Facebook site. We've
had an overwhelming response! I'll continue to use this
page to keep a general picture of the fishing easily
accessible to all. However, we strongly encourage you to
join us in being on the cutting edge.
Would you like to see the images you see on this page
the second they are taken, read live micro fishing
reports and view live video from the boat? Here is
Facebook, you must register to view our pages. You can
become a “friend” of mine by request at
"Like" (formerly "become a fan") the GiantTarpon.com Facebook
"Fan Site" for a free chance to win a free
guided GiantTarpon with Capt. Robert McCue. Your name
must appear in the "Like" list on the left hand side of
the Facebook page to be eligible. The drawing will be
held April 1st , 2011 or at 1500 "Likes".
You can also receive our text micro-blogs by “following”
www.Twitter.com/GiantTarpon on your phone or use
just the web.
Screaming Drags and