Our inshore charter trips take place a short distance from the coast in the grass flats, lagoons, inlets and docks from Stuart, all the way along the coast past Jensen Beach to Fort Pierce.
The four most sought after species encountered in and around the Indian River Lagoon, the St. Lucie River and surrounding estuaries are snook, tarpon, redfish and trout. Catching any of the three of these species in a single day during your river fishing charter is considered an "inshore slam." Catching an "inshore slam" is the ultimate accomplishment for a seasoned angler let alone a novice. As your fishing guide, Iíll do all I can to help you achieve an inshore slam! Most of the fishing is done on light tackle - not only does it produce better results, itís also easier for the novice angler.
Snook are the most popular targeted inshore species in Southeast Florida. You can fish for snook in a variety of ways both during the day and night. During the day you can sight fish for snook around the inlet, docks and grass flats. When the snook are spotted it's the angler's preference whether to throw a live bait, artificial lure or a fly. Spotting your targeted fish, casting to it, watching it eat and then catching it is the most rewarding feeling in the world of fishing. During your day of fishing in the river you may also spend some time in tiny canals lined with docks or mangroves where you can sight fish for these prized fish of the Indian River Lagoon. Fishing at night for snook is equally as exciting, if not more than, daytime fishing. As the tides rip in and out small bait gets caught up in the fast moving water. Snook, tarpon, jacks, ladyfish and other species wait in the shadows of lights surrounding docks and bridges to ambush prey as it drifts by in the river current. Live bait, artificial bait and flies can be presented to these lurking predators of the night! Nighttime fishing gives the fish a place to gather and it's not uncommon to see 20-50 fish piled up in one area competing for passing baitfish.
Snook can be caught year round and make for great table fare. But, they are a closely regulated species with seasons running from February 1st to May 31st and then again from September 1st to December 15th.
Tarpon are Stuart's (and the whole of Florida's) largest inshore game fish. They are caught in the rivers, the inlet and on the beaches from April through October. Ranging in weights from 30-150lbs the silver king will test any angler's endurance. Tarpon, aside from the lengthy battles, are also known for their amazing acrobatics. They will give any offshore billfish or large dolphin a run for their money when it comes to aerial displays. Tarpon are catch and release only and are caught using a variety of techniques including live bait, fly tackle, and artificial lures.
Trout and redfish round out the inshore slam species and both are excellent eating and provide a great fight on ultra-light tackle. The majority of our trout and redfish are caught fishing the grass flats from Jensen Beach to Ft. Pierce Inlet. One of the favorite methods for most of the anglers, especially our kid anglers, is casting a popping cork with a live shrimp or finger mullet below it for bait. Other methods would include casting small artificial soft plastic baits or gold spoons. Trout and redfish are caught year round.
During the winter months the weather may be too rough for your offshore fishing charter. So charter fishing in the inshore river provides a great back-up plan. From November through March we see a large influx of pompano, bluefish, and Spanish mackerel. While all 3 species are good eating pompano stands alone as being excellent table fare. It is not uncommon to have a bite or catch a fish every cast during the winter months when targeting these species. Along with the bluefish, Spanish and pompano you will encounter a variety of species of snapper in the river, goliath grouper, jacks and ladyfish.
On those super calm and sunny South Florida days we can sneak offshore to our near coastal wrecks and reefs to target Cobia and Permit - two of the most chased after species for light-tackle enthusiasts. Both of the species are targeted in depths from 5 ft. to 75 ft. of water and within a couple of miles of the St. Lucie inlet. Cobia can be caught using live bait, crabs, or jigs rigged with a soft plastic bait. Permit are primarily caught on jigs tipped with a live crab. Both species can be targeted with fly rod as well. Both fish are notorious for putting up serious fights and are excellent table fare. The average size cobia is around 25lbs and it is not uncommon to catch them over 50 lbs. Permit range in sizes from 15-45lbs as well. Make sure you eat your Wheaties before heading offshore to tangle with these gamefish.
Give us a call on (772) 405-0091 to book your inshore charter, nearshore fishing charter, Inlet trip for snook and tarpon, or near coastal trip for cobia and permit.
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