The Lower Keys and Key West Fishing Charters for
Flats and Back Country Fishing Trips

This is the most complete list of Key West fishing charters for flats fishing and
back country fishing on the Internet today!  We know that anglers want to
comparison shop online and make advance reservations with the Key West
fishing charter that's the right fit for them!!  We know how difficult it is to compare
Key West fishing charters by looking at the individual websites.  Because there are
only a few websites that Google ranks highly, many excellent charters and guides
are overlooked because their website doesn't come up on the first few pages of a
search.  We've done the research for you and compiled a very comprehensive list!
Browse through this page, see at-a-glance highlights of each Key West fishing
charter and choose
the perfect fishing charter for you!   - Gail Culver, Webmaster
More helpful Florida Keys and Key West websites: | |
  • Two anglers maximum
  • 4 hour or 6 hour trips
  • The fly tackle is provided by Sage, Scott Rods, Loop,
    Able Reels and 3M Scientific Angler Fly Lines.
  • Spin and bait casting tackle is provided by Shimano,
    Abu Garcia, Fenwick, Falcon Rods, and Berkley
  • Gear is provided by Ex-Officio, Patagonia, Action
    Optics, and Julbo.
Captain Lindsay Harper
Key West, FL
  • We use one of the most important techniques you can
    use in saltwater fly fishing to increase casting distance
    into the wind and achieve tighter loops. This cast is so
    significant to my saltwater fly fishing that I named my
    company after it.
  • Our charter boat is a 17-foot custom 2006 Maverick HPX
    skiff powered by a dependable Yamaha outboard with an
    extremely shallow draft and no slap hull.
  • I'm a full-time guide specializing in sight fishing in the
    Florida Keys for permit, tarpon, bonefish, barracuda &
    shark on fly & light tackle.
  • I do tarpon night trips at a variety of different times,
    depending on the tides. Some trips may start in early
    evening, or some into the night.  The prime tarpon
    season is March - June.
Capt. Bob Beighley
Lower Florida Keys
Captain Jim Peabody
Big Pine Key fishing charters in the crystal clear waters of the Florida
Keys, with a professional and patient guide who takes Florida Keys
fishing to a whole new level of enjoyment.

Having devoted the majority of his life to Florida Keys fishing Jim
has a thorough knowledge of the Florida Keys waters, both Atlantic
and Gulf side.

Jim holds a United States Coast Guard 50 Ton Masters License,
and is a fully insured commercial fishing guide.
Captain Tom Morgan

Florida Keys Sight Fishing
for Tarpon, Permit and
I have been fishing the shallow waters of the Florida Keys for over 20 years
and the flats of the Lower Keys are arguably the finest shallow water fishing
grounds in the world.  The Lower Florida Keys is home to the largest
population of Permit in the United States with world record class fish.  The
annual Tarpon migration in the Lower Keys draws thousands of fly anglers
every year and with year round bone fish opportunities it is one of the best
world class fishing destinations for skinny water anglers.  Whether you are
an accomplished fly angler or a begining spin fisherman I would be honored
to guide you in your quest for the fish of a lifetime.
I fish from a Maverick HPXV that is equipped with leaning rails to make it more secure when standing on the casting
platform and increasing your vision.  This is essential in spotting Tarpon and Bonefish from greater distances and in
tougher conditions. The boat also incorporates a line tamer for fly line management to decrease those line tangles
that can happen at the most  inopportune moments when putting a fish on the line.
Capt Sean O'Keefe
Stock Island, FL
The boat is a comfortable 17 foot custom Action Craft powered
with a Mercury 150HP Opti-Max outboard motor. The fully
insured boat is suitable for the Captain and up to two anglers.
When fishing the backcountry and flats of the Florida Keys, we
use top-of-the-line Daiwa spinning and plug casting tackle and
Thomas & Thomas fly rods
While fishing, we will primarily employ the method of poling the
boat while stalking and sight casting the shallows with either
fly, spin, plug casting tackle or use live bait depending on the
preference of the angler.
Captain Tim Carlile

Fish with a legend on
Sugarloaf Key
Carlile runs shallow water
fishing charters year-round..
Capt. Tim Carlile offers flats fishing charters for up to two
anglers departing from the Sugarloaf Marina. Half day,
3/4 day and full day charters are offered. December and
January can be action packed fishing months in the
Lower Keys. On warmer days we may see bonefish,
permit and even tarpon. On the cooler days the
barracuda, sharks, jacks, ladyfish and seatrout are going
to offer the most action. Snapper fishing can be excellent
in the winter because the fish move into shallow water
that is in close proximity to the flats
Captain Chris Duncan
Capt. Chris has been on ESPN North American Fisherman, had his own fishing report on the
local radio and had some of his fishing knowledge printed in some of the known
The flats skiff he uses is a state of the art 2012 carbon/kevlar 18' SEA HUNTER with Yamaha
150. This boat is a true pleasure to fish out of.  Whether you prefer spin or fly fishing,
beginner or expert, he can accommodate all of your flats fishing needs.
Captain Ron Ward

CAPTAIN RON WARD is a full-time
fishing guide, chartering the back
country and flats of the LOWER KEYS
since 1980.  Being a year-round
guide, he focuses on different types of
charters depending upon the season.
Capt. Ron uses a 20 ft. Wellcraft for charters with more than
two people and a 19 ft. Hoog skiff for flats trips and charters
with less than 3 people.  Charters are fully insured and the
captain is Coast Guard approved and licensed.
During the winter months {Nov. thru Feb.) Capt. Ron
specializes in light-tackle backcountry fishing, catering to
those looking for a fun day on the water and bringing
home a nice seafood dinner.  During the spring and early
summer almost everyone is interested in the three great
gamefish: TARPON, PERMIT and BONEFISH.  All three
can be found seasonally in the shallow waters of the
KEYS and be pursued by novice and/or expert anglers
using either spinning or flyfishing tackle.  During the July
mini-season and August 6 thru September Ron takes
lobster catching charters for snorkelers in the
Captain Todd Bowen
Sight Fishing Key West
I am in Key West from November through June, with the exception of 2 – 3 weeks in
January when I organize small groups of anglers to fish Ascension Bay, Mexico.
Please contact me if you think you might be interested in joining us.
As an independent guide, I own and run my own boat. I do not hire captains to run
my trips. If you’re serious about fishing with me and would like to speak with some
of my regular clients, please contact me and I’ll arrange it.
I’ve been doing this a long time, and have many anglers and friends who book way
in advance. Consequently, open dates are sometimes limited. The earlier you book,
the better.
Captain Chris Robinson
Hello, I am Captain Chris Robinson and I would like to welcome you to learn
more about my charter and a day on the flats or in the backcountry. I have lived
in Key West and fished Florida’s lower keys for 40 years and have been a full
time licensed and insured charter captain for 23 years.

I fish on the flats and in the backcountry from the Content Keys to the
Marquesas Keys. Our home base is 21 miles north of Key West at Cudjoe
Gardens Marina; however, I can trailer the boat into Key West.

Go to the website and click on "in the News" to find out about Chris and Jimmy
Captain Brandon Henley

If you are looking for a guide full of
enthusiasm, patience, and who
absolutely loves his job, you have
found him.
I fish out of a 17 Ft Maverick Mirage skiff with
a reliable 90hp Yamaha outboard. It can
carry two anglers and myself on our outing.
I will work extremely hard to find
the fish of your dreams without
the cranky, burnt out attitude you
find in some captains. After all, if
it isn't fun you probably aren't
really fishing.
This skiff will get us to the flats fast and
is very comfortable to fish from. It poles
in super shallow water and is very quiet.
Two, Three and Five-day ''fishing trip packages''
are available. The packages include lodging and
charter flats fishing and instruction by expert,
certified guides led by Capt. Dexter Simmons.
Fathers and sons will sight cast to fish on the Key
West flats while learning new flats fishing
techniques from the expert guides. "This program
is unlike other fly fishing schools in the Florida
Keys that teach on land. We teach on the water
while we are fishing, so the Dads and their Sons
have a chance to catch fish while they are
learning!'', Capt. Simmons explained.
Captain Dexter Simmons
Key West, FL

Capt. Dexter Simmons invites Fathers and Sons,
Mothers and Daughters to join him on FlatsMaster for
a fishing adventure. Capt. Simmons hopes to lure
vacation anglers to Key West to have fun family fishing
while sharpening their fly fishing and flats fishing
skills for Bonefish, Tarpon and Permit.
I run shallow water sight fishing charters for tarpon, bonefish, permit, barracudas and sharks. I
offer half, three quarter and full day charters and night tarpon trips during tarpon season.
My boat is a 2011 18' Beavertail BT3 flats skiff powered by a proven Yamaha 90 HP four stroke
outboard. Capable of floating in a foot of water, my boat will get us to the best flats quickly and
comfortably. I am equipped with the finest saltwater fly and spin fishing gear for you to use
including Sage, Tibor, Colton, Penn, Shimano and Star Rods.           
Whether you want to pursue a tournament winning permit on fly or have a ten year old kid
simply bend a rod for the first time, everyone is welcome aboard my boat.
I offer private charters accommodating one or two anglers on the boat. I can secure additional
guides for your party upon request.
Captain Mike Bartlett
Paul Tryon

Stock Island (one Key over from
Key West)
I enjoy taking the time to show the novice fisherman how to feel the bite and guide you through the
obstacles that lunker is going to put you through, just as much as I love being the complement to
the expert and doing everything I can to insure he lands his trophy fish. Having patience is an
absolute necessity no matter what skill level your at. Pateince is what I have lots of in helping you
have the best trip of your life.
Captain Justin lives in Sugarloaf Key
with his family. He guides anglers of
all abilities and because he trailers
his Maverick HPX skiff, he has the
ability to fish anywhere from Key West
to Key Largo, but most of his fishing
is in the Lower Florida Keys, Key
West and the Marquesas.
Captain Justin Rea
Booking a fishing trip ahead of
time is essential during the
season in Key West. Our busiest
season is from February until
June, there are other months in
between where holidays and
festivals bring larger than normal
crowds to Key West.
Come aboard our BRAND new 2010 Sea Vee boats.
Our charters have been serving our clients for the past 12 years. We take
pride in our ability and experience. Both of our boats are equipped to get
you out fishing faster and longer than any other charter boats in Key West.
We will pride ourselves in providing our clients with excellent service,
state-of-the-art gear, years of fishing experience and a comfortable
relaxed environment. Perfect for the serious angler or vacationing famliy
looking to enjoy an day of fantastic fishing
Captain Pat

Key West, FL
My name is Capt. Rick Mager, and I’ll be your Key West
flats fishing guide on my 18-foot Maverick ‘Master
Angler.’ With a 150 horsepower 4-stroke Suzuki engine,
no time is wasted getting you right onto the best flats in
the backcountry. My Key West fishing experience dates
back about 40 years. I began blue water fishing, but I
now prefer poling the crystal clear backcountry flats. For
the past 25 years, I’ve explored the Key West flats – east
to the Content Keys and west to the Marquesa Keys,
which encompass 60 miles of some of the most
unspoiled waters in the world. If you want to experience
Key West tarpon fishing, you’ll want to start in the
Capt. Rick Mager

I run a one-boat, one-captain operation – this means
you’ll get an experienced guide with a great flats boat
and top-of-the-line tackle. There are quite a few multi-
boat operations in Key West. These operations are
owned and run by one person, but have multiple
guides with less experience. You pay good money to
fish, so why not have the best guides? One boat
operations are the way to go. Guides that do it full time,
for a long time, are your best shot!
Captain Scott Irvine

Key West, FL
  • The serenity of the flats coupled with the
    intensity of fighting fish in shallow water
    intrigues both novice and experienced anglers.
  • Fishing from a 16' Maverick HPX-V you will
    experience Florida Keys Flats Fishing like no
  • My expertise include Tournament Guiding -
    Technical Fly - Technical Spin - Beginner Fly -
    and - Beginner spin
Born and raised in Key West, I have been exploring the waters of
Key West for over 36 years. We are home to some of the finest fly
fishing anywhere in the world. Our shallow, crystal clear Key West
flats make for exciting sight fishing. The hunt is always an exciting
one casting to bonefish, permit and tarpon. And our florida waters
include barracuda, sharks, snapper and jacks to round out the
perfect fishing day.

My innate insticts of the Key West waters has led me to some
incredible spots. Fishing for permit, bonefish and tarpon in shallow
water is what I focus on.

Access to the most pristine fishing grounds is an aquired skill that I
have developed using my 16' Maverick HPX-V skiff. The waters of the
Florida Keys are full of prestine fishing and I will guide you to the
best fishing available in this region.
Capt. Dan

Key West, FL

Non-Stop Action - Fish Key West
Channels and Flats for Large
Tarpon, Shark and Anything That's
Enjoy backcountry fishing at its finest in the channels and on the
flats of the expansive waters that surround Key West. We use
extremely light, light, and medium tackle (6#, 10#, 12#, 15#, 20#,
and 25# test line) to catch a variety of species.

We can fish for snapper, jacks, barracuda, shark, tarpon, permit,
bonefish, grouper or even mackerel. I have sat in one spot, on
anchor, and caught 17 different species of fish in 4 hours. That's
good action!

We use live bait, chum and cut bait depending on what we're fishing
for. We may drift a live pinfish or crab down a channel for tarpon;
throw a shrimp-tipped jig for snapper, jacks or even bonefish; or put
a cut bait out on wire for a barracuda or shark.
Big Pine Key to Key West

Captain John O’Hearn
Captain Drew Delashmit
Captain Alex Boehm
Captain Jacob Shemper
As four fishing guides and close friends, our lives revolve around fish, the wind and tides
– much to the chagrin of our wives and girlfriends.

Our specialty is fly fishing the flats of Key West and the Lower Keys, as well as,
Everglades National Park. Each of us, as independent owner operators, owns our own
boat and runs our own business. We are NOT an outfitting service.

Every day we work hard and strive to not only put our clients on fish, but, more
importantly, to “unlock the code” and help our clients catch fish. However, we know that a
successful day on the water is not only about catching fish. It is also about enjoying the
company and the natural environment that we are blessed to call our office.
I have had a passion for fishing since catching my first trout when I was just 4 years old.
Although I have fished both freshwater and saltwater throughout my life, the strength and
speed of the saltwater species was what lured me to Key West fishing. I have lived in Key
West for the past 20 years, and I’ve enjoyed world-class fishing in my backyard. In those
years, I’ve sharpened both my fly and spin fishing, and I became a full-time Key West flats
fishing guide in 1999. I am Orvis-endorsed and associated with Sage, Winston, Abel, Rio,
Scientific Anglers, Shimano, Star rods, Power Pro and a host of other great companies. I
fish out of a 16-ft Dolphin Super Skiff with a 90-horsepower Evinrude ETEC. When you fish
with me, you will have all the best equipment and an experienced local fishing guide.
Capt. Anthony Skinner
While attending F.I.T. John started working in the sport fishing industry out of Sewals Point, in the
heart of sailfish alley aboard the charter boat, Cracker Jack.  John brought those skills with him to
the Florida Keys.  While still going to F.I.T. John moved to Little Torch Key, Florida in 1984.  

After working several years as a full time diving instructor, John established his charter business
in 1988. Captain John also taught marine science with marine sciences under sail.  A few years
later the flats boat was added to the operation in order to offer all types of Keys fishing.

Over the years the diving segment of the operation has been phased out to concentrate on fishing.  
Captain John writes a regular feature for Fishing the Florida Keys Magazine as well as holding live
how to seminars.
Captain John Sahagian
My skiff is 16ft. in length and weighs around 700lbs.
While we search for fish on the flats I will pole the boat
quietly while my angler stands on the front also looking
for fish. I stand high on a platform and can usually see a
bit farther than the angler and most often I will instruct
you on where to look and spot the fish as they move
across the flat closer to the boat. In flats fishing we use
the clock as a reference for directions to look. I might tell
an angler to look at eleven o'clock and have them point
their rod to help us both get focused on the incoming
fish. When the fish gets close enough I will help instruct
your cast and help you judge how far to cast.
Captain Pete Heydon
We offer guided fly fishing and light tackle, flats fishing trips in Key West and the lower
Florida Keys. We sight fish for Tarpon, Permit and Bonefish, as well as many other
species in the clear shallow water flats surrounding the lower Keys.
We also offer guided
fly fishing trips in Southwestern Montana during the summer months.
In the early 90s Jimi came to Key West to Tarpon fish and caught a bad case of Tarpon
fever. He soon moved to the Keys and began to guide flats anglers in 1995. Having a U.S.
Coast Guard Captains License as well as an outfitters license in Montana, has given Jimi
a well rounded approach to fishing. Jimi now spends the majority of his time in Key West,
Florida pursuing Tarpon, Permit and Bonefish.
Summers are still spent in Montana, fly fishing for trout. Jimi is a full time guide and an
avid fly tyer who has not lost his enthusiasm for his sport.
Captain Jimi
Captain Mike Wilbur
I'm Capt. Mike Wilbur and I have been guiding flyfishing and light tackle
spin fishing enthusiasts since the early 1970's in the backcountry flats of
Key West, Florida and the Lower Florida Keys. After many years of guiding
both beginners and ol' salts alike, I am still as enthusiastic as ever and
have lots of fun with my customers. Tarpon, Bonefish, and Permit are of
course the main targets, but Barracuda, Jacks, Snappers, and Redfish
also provide fun and action while flats fishing in the Florida Keys. I am
happy to have witnessed a dramatic rebound in our fish stocks due to
concern and new laws protecting the Florida Keys Wildlife Refugee.
Come on down and let me show you a great time!
Capt. Andrew Tipler
We offer flats, inshore, reef, gulf and offshore fishing charters
in the Lower Florida Keys. Whether you are into battling the
acrobatic sailfish or chasing reel screaming bones in inches
of water, the Florida Keys is the place to be. With three boats to
choose from there is no fishery out of reach.   Capt. Andrew
Tipler offers fly fishing with Orvis gear both in skinny water and
offshore. All other tackle is top of the line Shimano.
fishing trips in the Lower Florida Keys are just a phone call
With so many types of fishing and fish available in the
Florida Keys, why target just one when you can catch them all
with our charter.
Captain Jack Teague offers flats and backcountry fishing in the waters
around Key West and the Lower Florida Keys ranging from Big Pine Key to
the Marquesas from
January until mid-June yearly. Come experience the
unmatched excitement and angling challenge of sight casting to tarpon,
bonefish, permit, sharks and barracudas in gin clear water and experience
the tranquility of the Florida Keys backcountry.
We specialize in fly fishing! All levels of experience welcome, patient
instruction provided. We also welcome Spin and Conventional Tackle fisher
Captain Jack Teague
Capt. John, upon graduating from the University of Georgia, settled in Key West
and has been guiding his customers to trophy fish since 1997. As the owner
and operator of the Shadow Caster he insists on delivering a personalized
fishing adventure. You can expect Professionalism, Preparation and
Performance. Those are the qualities that Capt. John has learned from being
trained by the best in the business and continue to be the keys to his success.
You can rest assure that he will always have Plans A, B, & C, and the
appropriate bait and tackle to handle any situation. Whether you are the
seasoned angler or the beginning fisherman, Shadow Caster is about catching
fish and enjoying what makes the Florida Keys such a great place.
Light Tackle Backcountry
Fishing in Key West, Florida
since 1997
Captain John Smouse, USCG
I'm proud to announce that I fish with the finest shallow water boat
that has ever been built! This is a bold statement, but it is backed up
by many of the best guides and fishermen in the world.
The "Guide 18" will outperform any flats skiff on the water in terms of
quality of materials and construction, draft, stealth, comfort, dryness
and the ability to catch fish. If your considering hiring a guide make
sure he has a "Hell's Bay Guide 18" or you'll regret it every time you
see a tailing bonefish or redfish you cannot reach. Hell's Bay boats
make all other flats boat's obsolete.
Capt. Scott Kolpin

I fish all of the Lower Florida Keys
including Key West and West of Key
West on the backcountry and ocean
side flats. The area I fish dependent
on the time of year, the tide, the
weather and which fish you want to
Captain Chad
Key West, FL

Call Captain Chad today to schedule
a full-day or half-day Key West Florida
Flats Fishing Charter!
We can work
to fit your schedule and find your
trophy fish!
One of the best parts about fishing in Key West is the great variety of fishing
opportunities.  Nestled between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean the
shallow waters of the back country are no exception. I have something for
every level of experience and patience. We can spend the day searching out
your dream trophy bonefish permit or tarpon on the flats. The basins and
channels teeming with life from sea trout and lady fish to jacks and sharks of
many varieties. There is always something to catch and the waters are
always protected and calm.
My boat is a 16 ½ Silver king with a 90 horsepower 4 stroke Yamaha outboard engine. It’s the perfect boat for a
great back country charter experience. Whether you want to pull on a giant tarpon in the harbor, catch a shark in the
basins or channels, or stalk permit or bone fish on the flats, this is the boat for your Key West charter experience.
The engine quiet and clean, the shallow protected waters always calm, nobody ever gets sick.
Capt. Scott Yetter
Flats Fishing The Lower Florida Keys....
It is solitude and shallow water every where.   
It is sight fishing from the bow of a skiff...searching for bonefish in
crystal clear water... casting to in coming redfish...tailing
permit...rolling tarpon..   
It is dolphins and turtles...ospreys and egrets...cruising rays,
barracudas and sharks....
Sight fishing on the flats, combines many of the elements of
hunting and fishing.   You see the fish, before you cast.    
It is some of the the most challenging and exciting fishing there
For the shallow water angler, fly fishing or spin
fishing, the rewards are great.  The fish are
incredibly large, fast and strong.
Captain Connan provides all
equipment, bait, tackle and
licenses necessary. Gear will
be set up for spinning or fly
depending on the Anglers
choice. Captain Connan is an
expert Fly Fisherman as well,
and would be happy to instruct
and assist First Time and
Novice Fly Fisherman as well as
the Expert Fly Fisherman alike.
Fly Fishing Charters, as with all
Charters, should be coordinated
with the Captain prior to your
fishing Trip.
Charters provided by
USCG Licensed and
Insured Captain Connan
Capt. Connan has been fishing & diving the Atlantic,
Gulf, Flats, and Back Country area near and around
Key West and the Lower Keys for over 25 years. Capt.
Connan is originally from Southern Ohio and is also
an avid hunter, sportsman and outdoorsman who is
involved in wildlife conservation (Committee Member
& Donor Ducks Unlimited,...). He is also involved in
maintaining the habitat which he loves so dearly
including the Everglades and other Wetlands. He
continues to be involved in the conservation of these
areas and most all of the fish that are pictured are
released by Capt. Connan and his Charters. You can
always photograph your catch before releasing it back
into the habitat.
Captain Mitch Pazara

We also offer trips other then Fishing,
something for the Ladies and Children,
or anyone who wants to:
  • Dolphin Watching
  • Sunset Cruise
  • Bird Watching
  • Swimming/Deserted Beach
I have been fishing my whole life and have been doing it
professionally for the last 15 years in Key West. It is safe to say
that I know the Key West Backcountry like the back of my hand.
I will take you out on my 20' Custom Built Skiff - 8' Beam, Ultra
Stable, Ultra Dry, Padded Seats, Backrest & Large Cooler, 2
Livewells & Bimini Top into some of the most unspoiled
waters in the world and show you some of the best fishing in
Key West and the Backcountry. 15 years of exploring and
fishing the backcountry has given me an incredible knowledge
of the area and where the b to find the best areas to fish.
I offer a one captain, 3 people fishing charter. So you get the most value for your money, private attention and an
experienced captain who knows the area and knows where to go.
I fish this area all the time, I know where to
take you. Period. Get ready to have the best day fishing.
Captain Pat Bracher

That’s Captain Pat in a nut shell.
Captain Pat's passion for fishing and determination
to provide successful fishing trips day in and day
out has lead to great results and is the number one
reason why his loyal customers return year after
Captain Pat has been honored by the Key West and
Lower Keys Fishing Tournament with many awards
  • Outstanding Guide Flats – 1998, 1999, 2000
  • Most releases Flats – 1998, 1999, 2000
  • Most Tarpon Releases – 1998, 1999, 2001
Other recent highlights include:
over 4912 Tarpon releases in last eighteen seasons.
756 Grand slams in the last eighteen seasons.
Captain Bo Sellers

Veterans and multi-day trip discounts!
Sight fish for Barracudas, Bonefish, Cobia,
Permit, Shark, & Tarpon!
The backcountry and ocean side
flats surrounding Key West, Big
Pine Key and the Lower Keys offer
world class opportunities for
anglers of all skill levels. Whether
you prefer Permit on spin,
fly-fishing for Tarpon, or casting
small live shrimp to schools of
tailing Bonefish, I will cater each
trip specifically to your needs
ranging from Big Pine Key to the
Marquesas Keys. For a true trip of
a lifetime give me a call!
  • Trips tailored to the anglers' needs
  • 1/2 day, 3/4 day, and full day trips available
  • All tackle, bait, and license included
  • Specializing in spin and fly fishing from
    beginner level to advanced level
  • Capable of fishing anywhere in the Lower
    Keys such as Big Pine Key
Flats and Back Country Fishing Charters & Guides
The Lower Keys and Key West
                                                                                                           Sponsored Listings

End Sponsored Listings
The 'flats' surround all of the Florida Keys.  A flat is a shallow area or sandbar.  The bottom of these areas are mostly covered in a carpet of seagrass,
known as Turtle Grass. This seagrass is the environment that the most challenging fish come to hunt for food. Bonefish, permit, tarpon, barracuda,
and sharks are commonly found in the shallows.

Searching for and sighting fish to cast at is what the sport of flats fishing is all about. Fortunately for Florida Keys and Key West visitors, we are
surrounded by shallow water: one or two feet deep and is often clear as glass.
Did You Know?
Fly fishing in Key West has contributed to the modern development of the sport.  In the past, anglers on fly would be found exclusively on the flats. And
today, that is still mostly true. But the limits of the sport are being stretched, as some anglers toss flies to huge tarpon and even marlin.

Equipment has followed suit. Fly reels and rods are now being manufactured en masse for fish weighing over 100 pounds. And fly shops on the island
offer huge streamers the size of birds. These are switched in place of a trolled, hook less bait in front of a billfish.
Did You Know?
The tarpon is non-edible and a very athletic and strong fish so this type of fishing will truly wear an angler out!  You can
find this species throughout the Florida Keys and are targeted more in the spring.  Baby tarpon may be found in
residential canals that surround mangrove islands.  In summer, tarpon range from babies of 5 to 25 pounds up to an
average size of 30 to 60 pounds.  For the most part, these tarpon live in the Keys and don't roam far. huge streamers
the size of birds. These are switched in place of a trolled, hook less bait in front of a billfish.
Did You Know?
When a fish isn't allowed to be harvested, it must immediately be returned to the water free, alive, and unharmed.  However, if a fish is allowed to be taken
at a certain size limit, it's okay to temporarily possess it to measure it, as long as it is measured immediately after removing it from the water, and the fish
is then immediately returned to the water free, alive, and unharmed if it is not a legal-size fish.
Did You Know?
In the Back country and Flats these guys get huge and in great number starting in around November and stay real
strong and good fishing all through the winter here till about March, April when the waters warm and most move
offshore. Top water, Live Bait, Plug, Fly fishing.
Did You Know?
The land crab (Cardisoma guanhumi) is a common inhabitant of the Keys and anyone who drives down our remote roads may catch a glimpse of one or
more scurrying across.  This land crab is terrestrial but returns periodically to the sea to reproduce.  They come out mainly at night to feed on just about
anything they can find. Being a scavenger-type feeder, they will feed on rotting fish, garbage scraps, fruit, or in their burrows of a passing tree root.  This
crab is found in Bermuda and occurs throughout much of the coastline of South Florida.  In addition, it is found from the Texas coast to Brazil.

The crab is edible.  The meat is reported to be sweet, white, and closely resembling that of the popular blue crab.  A simple Caribbean recipe calls for
boiling the crab with various seasonings.

We frequently receive inquiries from Keys residents on what to do about the land crabs that are building burrows in their yard, and how to get rid of them.  
One method is to go out with a flashlight at night, net in hand, and scoop them up!  
Did You Know?
"Limit your kill; don't kill your limit!"
    Fish die for a variety of reasons after being caught and released by an angler, but usually they die from the physiological stress caused by the
    struggle during capture or from injuries caused by the hook or the angler. Some fish may die even though they appear unharmed and despite
    efforts at revival. Fish that struggle intensely for a long time during capture are usually exhausted and stressed from the accumulation of
    excessive amounts of lactic acid in their muscles and blood. Severe exhaustion causes physiological imbalance, muscle failure, or death.
    Therefore, use the proper weight-class tackle, land your catch quickly, and when possible leave the fish in the water while you release it. Bringing
    an exhausted fish out of the water is like placing a plastic bag over the head a marathon runner—the fish needs oxygen to recover!
Captain JT Gabriel
Big Pine Key, The Lower Florida

Nature, Eco, Photography Tours
Lobster Trips
Half Day / Full Day
Bay or Flats Boat
Night Tarpon Fishing
A nature lovers paradise, Big Pine Key offers up to 15
different species of fish to catch.  From stalking that
trophy tarpon to hunting the gray ghost or bringing the
kids out to catch snapper, sharks, barracudas, we offer a
wide variety of inshore and back country charters.

All licenses, tackle, bait and guide is included with your
reservation. Let's fish!
All About Florida Keys Fishing and Key West Fishing

When you decide which
charter to book with, please
make sure they know that
you found them on THIS

This page last updated on  
July 19, 2015
Angling Adventures with
Captain Rich Smith
Florida Keys Fishing Charters

Inshore, Reef, Wreck, Backcountry Flats

Light Tackle or Fly Fishing

2 Boats to choose from Center Console & Flats Skiff
I’m a native full time charter boat captain
based out of the Florida Keys area of

I have two boats to choose from, a 23′ center
console and a 18′ technical flats skiff.  

I specialize in Inshore, Wreck, Backcountry,
Flats, and Family Fun Fishing trips using
Light Tackle Spinning Gear and Fly Fishing.

It doesn’t matter if you're a beginner just
learning to fish or a seasoned angler, I can
take you on a
trip of a lifetime. I’m patient
and professional with over 10 years
Newcomers, experienced anglers and all skill levels in
between are welcome. I have fished the Lower Keys for
many years, so I have the experience and patience to
make your trip a success. Although I specialize in fly
fishing, I am adept in spin fishing with light tackle and
have all the necessary gear. As I navigate the shallow
flats, you'll witness an abundance of wildlife below and
above the water's surface. I look forward to taking you on
a Lower Keys flats fishing adventure. Feel free to call or
e-mail me for the fishing experience of a lifetime!
Captain Dale