We've had our first few cold fronts in Key West, keeping the temps down a few degrees. There are still some tunas and dolphin offshore with an occasional sailfish. The reef has been excellent when the current is moving. We've had some days with a mixed bag of yellowtail, mackerels, tunas, and an occasional shark if someone wants to pull on something big. We had a shark steal a big yellowtail on a lure, only the shark got greedy. A while later we dropped a live ballyhoo down for a big grey snapper, only to have him get grabbed also. The shark finally let him go and when we got the fish to the boat, the lure we had lost earlier was stuck to the side of the snapper! If you would like to get out fishing, I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
It's been over a month since hurricane Irma came through the keys. We were very lucky in Key West, only having a few houses damaged by falling trees and wind. People a little further up the road, mainly from big coppit key to marathon fared much worse. Some are still sleeping in tents in their yards, trying to figure out what to do. My family and I evacuated and made it home safely. Our yard and most of the town was a mess, but a few weeks of chainsaw noise cleared it up quickly. Key West is open for business, and Fantasy Fest is only 2 weeks away.
Fishing has been decent since the storm. Offshore there are some dolphin and tunas. The reef bite has been good when the tide is running. Lots of nice yellowtails and ceros around. I have mostly been commercial fishing with a friend to stay busy. No charters on the books until next month, but my boat is ready to go. I just need to replace a cup holder that blew away! If you're looking to get out on the water, I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt Taylor
The offshore dolphin and tuna bite has been good this past week with lots of schoolies around. There are some big schools of skipjack tunas offshore as well. Our last trip we had a few dolphin and a bunch of tunas up to 20lbs. The weather has been great for the long runs. The reef has been good as well with yellowtail snapper, grouper and an occasional blackfin tuna in close. I haven't tarpon fished this week, but I've heard it's about the same. Lots of fish with only a few bites. If you'd like to schedule a day, I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt Taylor
Fishing in key west has been pretty good lately. We've had decent dolphin action offshore with an occasional billfish, wahoo and tuna mixed in. Inshore the fishing has been excellent in the harbor with some big mangrove and mutton snappers, sharks, cudas, and massive tarpon. Our last one I estimated at 150 lbs, he took almost 90 minutes to get boat side. Painful fight but the guys took turns and pulled hard when they could. Other fish like the one in the pic take 10-15 minutes and they're spent. Remember to bring your gatorade! It's been hot! I can be reached at 305-923-6977 for reservations. Thanks, Capt Taylor
We started out windy as usual this month, but the last few days have been nicer. It has finally calmed down, and the fish are starting to respond. Offshore there are more dolphin and tunas being caught, with an occasional sailfish or marlin mixed in. Grouper season is now open, and the Tarpon are stacking up in the channels. With all of the wind the last few weeks, I've done a lot of inshore trips and had some luck with Tarpon, sharks, snappers, groupers and barracudas. The permit should start spawning on the reef soon, and the snapper bite has been good on the reef also. Yesterday morning I took a group from Europe that wanted to do some deep jigging on the wrecks. The current was very strong and the few fish we did find wanted nothing to do with jigs or live bait so we switched it up and started trolling for tunas. We caught 4 nice fish before the time was up and had enough tuna to feed a dozen people. If you are looking to get out I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt Taylor
Springtime in Key West can be windy, and this year seems to be no exception. Last month we had mostly windy and rough conditions offshore, and as of today the winds continue to blow. There are a few sailfish, cobia, tunas and dolphin being caught offshore, but it has been rough. Inshore fishing has been calmer, and the snapper bite continues to be good. The tarpon are starting to show up inshore, but the bite has been either early morning or late afternoon until sunset. We had a nice fish in the 80lb range on Wednesday and saw a few other followers. Hopefully the tarpon bite will just get better as the weather gets better! I have some openings in April and May. If you are looking to get out, give me a call at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
Its was a very busy month in Key West. I had a lot of good trips with great customers. Dan and Michelle came back and had a great day, catching a huge sailfish on the reef, a mutton snapper for dinner, and various other snappers and groupers we released. These guys always bring the good luck. The Marshfields also got a sail on the reef with me last weekend. Dave and Jess Hepler came down for 3 days of fishing and tore it up. We caught some big tunas, snappers, jacks, mackerels, battled the sharks, and a few exotic species we have down here. They left my house this morning stuffing their suitcases with frozen tuna slabs! I love having these guys and hope we get to do it again soon. Offshore there are still some tunas around, a few sails, and an occasional dolphin and wahoo. The last front really stirred up the waters out to the reef, but hopefully it will settle quickly. Inshore fishing has been good with muttons, sharks and some big kingfish. I had an excellent morning half with Patrick McDonald catching 2 kings over 40 lbs and 2 legal muttons close to home. Big thanks to everyone who came down this month. Keep sending pictures! If you'd like to get out on the water, I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
It was a great end of the year with lots of familiar faces and good fishing, even when the weather didn't cooperate. Offshore fishing has been hit and miss, with more tunas than anything else lately. The reef has been good for yellowtail snappers if the offshore bite slows. On the windier days, we've been doing more inshore channel fishing, which has been consistently good. Lots of keeper sized muttons and yellowtail snappers, jewfish, sharks, jacks, and assorted other species. I did 2 inshore trips with the Balsamo family this week, we stayed close on the first trip and caught a bunch of mutton snappers and a big blacktip shark. The second day we went for variety out at the marquesas and had tons of action with snappers, jacks, grouper, and some big sharks. We had numerous nurse sharks and a big bull shark around 200lbs. Charles Jr. fought the fish while I chased it around the lobster traps with the boat. After about a 45 minute fight, we got the leader and let her go. Big thanks to everyone that came down to fish with me this year! Looking foreward to next year!
Riding out with the Littens.
Tunas, dolphin and amberjack
Mutton snappers close to home
Steve fighting a big mutton
The Balsamo family with a mixed bag on their second day of fishing
A few tunas and nice yellowtails on the reef
Sometimes the sharks take their share
Susan with a nice mutton
Cathy with a nice yellowtail on a beautiful day
This week has been windy (again) but the fish didn't seem to mind. I had some great trips with the Matts, and Burys. Offshore fishing has been slower, but the reef fishing has been good. The yellowtail snappers seem to like the wind and waves, and the inshore fishing has also been decent. We had good action this morning on the reef with yellowtail and mangrove snapper, a 40 lb amberjack on 15lb test, and a big hammerhead. If you're looking to get out, give me a call at 305-923-6977. Happy Thanksgiving! Capt. Taylor
As the weather cools off in Key West, bottom fishing can really turn on. I fished the reef yesterday morning and had good action with yellowtails with Brian Hormel and his group from Naples. We came in for lunch and spent the afternoon in the back country where the mutton snappers, sharks and groupers kept us busy. The guys had a pile of fish to take home and loved catching the big snappers on light tackle. All in all a great day! If you're looking to get out I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
Here's a nice sized fall sailfish caught and released by Bill and Jackson Visciano Tuesday on board the Reef Runner. I was running the boat for Capt. Anthony while he was up in Georgia hunting (LUCKY). We had a nice half day with one out of two sailfish raised, a bunch of bonitas and a few cudas. It was still rough offshore, but today seems to be better. Hopefully the trend will continue into the weekend. The sails this time of year are generally smaller than the spring fish, but can come in bunches or wolfpacks as we call them. They fight really well and always put on a show.
We had a few beautiful days this weekend and now the winds are blowing again. It hasn't stopped the fish from biting. I took this picture this morning at Sand Key. There have been sailfish, wahoo, tunas, and a few dolphin offshore with some boats getting up to 10 shots at sails in a half day trip. The reef has been great for snapper and grouper with only about 7 weeks left of grouper season. The backcountry has beeen good for shark fishing and there are still a few tarpon around. As it cools off in the back, we should start to see more trout and redfish. The winds may stick around this week until the next front moves closer to south florida this weekend. November is usually a transition month with temperatures cooling off. Our fall sailfish run has started off well, and more tunas and dolphins will start to show up soon. We could have a run of wahoo this month (fingers crossed) and we should start seeing more kingfish if the next few cold fronts are stronger. It should be a great rest of the year! If you're looking to get out on the water, I can be reached at 305-923-6977 or Tay87@aol.com. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
Fantasy Fest came and went but the winds are sticking around. We still have 15-25 knot winds out of the Northeast making it pretty rough around Key West. It seems the clouds have finally cleared out, and the sun is shining for the first time in 4 or 5 days. It was a gloomy, windy week for Halloween, but we made the best of it. I took the Overmans out for a 3/4 and had a lot of action on the reef with snappers, mackerels, yellow jacks, bonitos, and other assorted reef dwellers. We did a few loops offshore in the rougher water and picked up a couple of decent sized blackfin tunas. After that we came back and anchored up on the reef, caught some live ballyhoo and had more reef action on the live baits. Last week I also took out the Debow family for a 3/4 day. It was really cranking, and hawk channel was 4-5 ft. We anchored well inside the reef line and had good action with groupers,snappers, sharks and porgies. We came back in to drop off a young one that wasn't feeling well and headed back out. We hit 3 more spots, and caught a few more fish before calling it a day. Offshore there are still a few sailfish around as I write this, and hopefully the winds will start to settle down soon. If you are looking to book a trip for this fall or early next year, I can be reached at 305-923-6977. This time of year fills up fast, especially around Christmas and the new year so try to book early. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
We're finally getting our typical summer weather after what has been a windy season. The fishing this week was good. I had the Hepler family for two three-quarter days, and the offshore fishing was pretty steady. The first day we headed out deep and had a sailfish on in the first 5 minutes of trolling. He put on a quick show and threw the hook, but it was a good start to the day. We caught a skipjack tuna out deep, but the reports didn't sound encouraging. We headed in to the outside edge of the reef and had constant action. The bonitas were thick, and we trolled a few around on wire and caught some huge cudas. We pulled in a nice blackfin tuna and a few mahi and ended the day with a second sailfish, which we got to the boat for pictures. Awesome day! Our second trip started out slower, with mostly bonitas. We trolled a few around hoping for a wahoo bite, but only managed a few cut in half until we made it out to a deeper wreck. We started marking fish and something took one of the live bonitas. After a 30 minute fight we had a 180-200lb bull shark next to the boat. We got pictures and got the hook out and went back to trolling. We managed a few keeper mahi in the afternoon and an almaco jack on a wreck, but the water had turned an off color green. All in all a nice couple of days!
Bahama star was released!
Its been a while since my last report, so this should be a long one. The end of the summer is fast approaching. Tropical storm hermine brushed by us last week and left a lot of stirred up water around key west. The last few months have been very busy with charters, lobster season opening, and everything that comes with having a soon to be 1 year old girl. I want to say thanks to everyone who fished and came diving with me this summer. Now that kids are back in school, it should slow down in Key West for the next 6 weeks or so. This time of year most charter boats do any big projects that need to get done. Having already tackled two of these this year (all electronics and a completely new steering system) I'll be good with a bottom job and some new vinyl on my bolsters. Also most of my tackle was upgraded this year, and the new reels are fantastic! As for the fishing.....
We had an excellent mangrove snapper bite this summer on the reef. Some days we got our limit in under 30 minutes with fish up to 6lbs. Some days were a struggle with sharks and cudas, but we seemed to have more easy days then tough ones. Offshore fishing was slow. No other way to put it. We didn't see many dolphin, and the tunas were hit and miss. There have been occasional wahoos and sails around, but scattered and inconsistent. The wreck fishing continues to be good. and with all the wind from the storms the past few weeks, the channels and backcountry fishing have been a life saver. I fished in the channels the last two days with the high south winds. We had some nice snappers for dinner, mostly muttons and yellowtails, and some big sharks. We caught a 9ft. Tiger shark yesterday, which is always pretty cool to see. The lemon sharks are still biting pretty well in the lakes and basins, and the nice thing about those trips is the calm water. When it's blowing 15-30 knots its nice to be able to go hide and still manage to catch big fish and dinner. If you're looking to get out I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt Taylor.
With the tougher conditions offshore this week, the wrecks have been producing some nice fish. We've been pulling on Amberjacks, Almaco jacks, African Pompano, Red, Mutton, and mangrove snapper, bonitas, and a few crevalle and horse eye jacks. We've caught fish mostly on vertical jigs and live bait. There hasn't been much current out front to anchor up and chum. There are a few dolphin and sailfish around, but there has been more action on the wrecks and reef. The tarpon continue to be picky, but if you put in some time it will pay off. We jumped a few and caught some big bull and lemon sharks the last time I tried it. If you would like to schedule a trip, I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
Tropical storm Colin swept by us yesterday bringing some rain and gusty wind. I think we fared better than most of florida. We still have some wind out of the southwest, but not as bad as predicted. I think only one boat went out offshore yesterday morning before the squall came through. They caught a blackfn tuna and some bonitos before coming home.
The last few weeks have been pretty good on the Sea Change. We've had some dolphin, tuna, and plenty of bonitas offshore. Most of the dolphin have been small, but there are some bigger fish mixed in. The blackfin tunas are averaging anywhere from 5-15 lbs. The reef has been spotty with snappers and groupers. There wasn't much current to the west before this storm came through but i'm sure that will change. Fishing the patch reefs and channels has been good for grouper and snapper. Tarpon fishing has been decent, with lots of fish on the gulf and atlantic sides of the island. The sharks are mixed in with them and we've caught a few bull and lemon sharks while tarpon fishing. All in all a pretty good month! Once the remnants of Colin clear out, I think June will be a great month. If you are coming down and want to get out on the water, I can be reached at 305-923-6977. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
This month we have seen some nice fish offshore, on the reef, and in the harbor. The tarpon season continues to be good with a large number of fish around. The morning outgoing tide this week has been tougher, but the fish are still eating. Offshore has been hit and miss, lots of dolphin at the beginning of the month and now a lull. There are still a few sails around. The wave of fish that came through in the beginning of the month was pretty nice with some 40lb plus fish mixed in. It's just a matter of time until the next wave swims through. The reef and wreck fishing has been great. Every wreck I've been to lately has a big school of amberjacks on it. The yellowtail and mangrove bite has been good with an occasional mutton and grouper mixed in. We are coming up to the mutton spawn, so the numbers should increase steadily. A lot of boats have been shark fishing lately also with the tough conditions offshore. I have a split charter available for this saturday, the 21st. The cost is $400 for up to 2 people. If you would like to schedule a split or private trip, I can be reached at 305-923-6977 or Tay87@aol.com. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
Fishing has been good the last week of April with the Tarpon bite kicking into high gear yesterday. The mass of fish in the harbor finally decided to start eating. It has been difficult to get bites the last few weeks as the school was settling in, but they are finally ready to feed. Offshore fishing has been pretty steady with dolphin, with the majority of the fish being caught a good distance from home. The gulf stream has been 18-20 miles offshore, and the fish are a little further that that. There have been some sails and tunas mixed in also. The reef has been great with lots of nice yellowtail and mangrove snappers, and the occasional mutton; There is good current and dirty water which makes bottom fishing productive. The permit spawn is happening now. This is a great time to catch one if you never have. Also the South Atlantic Grouper season starts tomorrow. It really is the best time of year for fishing right now with so much going on. The weather has been good with some wind to keep the temperatures down. The forecast is steady at 10-20 from the southeast for the next few days with little chance of rain. If you would like to get out fishing, give me a call at 305-923-6977. I had a group cancel this week due to family illness, so I have openings. Thanks, Capt. Taylor
Offshore fishing has improved since the last front went through. There have been more sailfish, dolphin, wahoo and tuna caught this past week by the fleet than previous weeks. We have been getting some wind and rain the last couple of days, but the forecast looks like things will clear up this weekend. The tarpon fishing has also been good. There are plenty of fish in the harbor, backcountry, and atlantic side.
I've got a bit of tweaking left to do on the boat today, as I just installed a new hydraulic steering system on the boat. After finishing the electronics, I noticed the steering ram was starting to drip from a corroded fitting. Rather than patch up a 20 year old hynautic system, I went ahead and ordered a new ram, hoses and helm. There's nothing like new when it comes to equipment. Hopefully this system will last as long as the previous one did.
I have availability this coming week for private trips and also a split half day trip Tuesday the 26th of April and the 27th of May. Split trips are for up to 2 people and the cost is $300. I can be reached at 305-923-6977 or email Tay87@aol.com. Thanks, Capt. Taylor