Fishing Reports

Islamorada Fishing is world class. There are not many spots on this planet that can offer the diverse fishing available in Islamorada. Offshore, Patch Reef, Gulf and Bay, Back County, Everglades, the Flamingo, and Bridges are all active destinations for the largest fishing fleet in the world. The species are endless. Some favorites include tarpon, permit, bonefish, redfish, snook, shark, sailfish, mahi, wahoo, backfin tuna, hogfish and many species of snapper. Epic does not even do justice to describing the fishing in Islamorada. Islamorada Times provides the most current and accurate fishing reports in all the Florida Keys.

Fishing Report 06/30/2020


Some decent weather this week for a change, with a little wind late in the week and will persist throughout the majority of the weekend.  It shouldn’t be too bad for the offshore charter boats, but the smaller boats may want to stay on the bay or patches until Sunday afternoon when the wind comes down a bit.  The offshore bite has been picking up all week with the mahi, and some larger fish have been caught up and down the line.  Outside of 1500’ off the sword ledge have been less numbers of fish, but the sizes have been much better.  Inside around the rips and the humps out to around 500’ to 1000’ have been good numbers of schoolies with plenty of shakers around.  Most boats have been able to put a decent catch together, so it has been manageable.  Speaking of the Sword Ledge, there were a few nice fish caught this week up to 200 pounds I heard, and several smaller fish, so there is definitely some hope with these guys.


The reef has been a little slow late in the week as the water is gin clear and hasn’t been much current.  The wrecks were good earlier in the week, but tapered off mid-week.  Although, the bite Friday was decent again so maybe with a little wind they will spark up a bit.  The fishing all-in-all is decent, but nothing super crazy.  Pretty much some grocery shopping with a few nice ones mixed in.  Hopefully this wind will get them all a little more fired up!

Gulf and Bay:

Out on the Gulf Wrecks look for a variety of species, from Permit to Cobia, big Sharks and Goliath Groupers plus all the rod benders that frequent those areas. Closer to the park boundaries the big Trout bite continues to be phenomenal with some nice Snappers as well. Bouncing jigs on the bottom has been the ticket while drifting.

Flats, Backcountry and Flamingo:

I’m sure every angler that has braved the hot temperatures, bugs and passing storms in the Florida Keys backcountry got rewarded with some great fishing. We had some amazing fishing with lots of Snook and Redfish on a recent outing. The Snook and Redfish bite among others has been spectacular in the Everglades National Park. Big schools of Redfish are patrolling the many island flats, banks and mainland shorelines with lots of Snook as well. Fly’s, live bait or artificials are all working great. Captain Lain Goodwin reports a great bite of Snook and Redfish while fishing the mainland shorelines in the Key Largo area, live pilchards and soft plastics have been working great for him. Captain Brian Gwilliam has been getting in to a great Tarpon, Snook and Redfish bite while fishing the areas west of Flamingo, live baits have been his bait of choice. Look for the good Snook bite to continue in the Flamingo area with nice Redfish, Trout and a few Tarpon as well. Live Pinfish or Pilchards is the way to go but scented soft plastics like Berkley Gulps will get the job done. Fish some dead baits on the bottom around the deeper channels for the big Sharks in the area and the occasional Tarpon.

Look for the Snapper and Trout bite to continue as you head west from the middle grounds towards First National bank. The Cape Sable area continues to produce great catches of Snook, Redfish and Tarpon. Working the shorelines with your trolling motor can be very productive while casting scented soft plastics like Berkley Gulp’s! Take your time and work with the tides and soon enough you will start catching. Look for the Bonefish to be more active on the early and later parts of the day around Oceanside and bayside flats. Permit continue to patrol the deeper edges of flats and banks both ocean and bayside.

Around the Bridges:

Captain Carlos Jimenez out of worldwide sportsman marina has been getting in to a good tarpon and Jack bite really early in the mornings while fishing the Islamorada bridges. Live baits have been getting most of the action. Tarpon continue to be available around the local bridges and channels. The daytime action has been best while fishing live or dead baits. Live crabs at night continue to provide the most hookups. Snappers and groupers continue to be part of the action. Overall the fishing is really good in the Islamorada backcountry.  Get one of the best guides in the business to take you out and experience the great summer time fishing Islamorada has to offer.

Fishing Report provided by: Captain Juan Garcia 305-297-0438 for backcountry charters, and Captain James Chappell 305-803-1321 for offshore charters.

Tailing tarpon

*Please email or call/text 484-919-2133 for referrals and recommendations for the best Captains and Guides in Islamorada and the surrounding Florida Keys.