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spring time - Everglades backcountry, Flamingo to Chokoloskee


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12 replies to this topic

#1 Capt Bob LeMay

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Posted 20 April 2019 - 06:19 PM

Typical guide lament... spring-time has you praying for a day off... so this report covers about a six week period ending just a day or two ago.

 

At any rate I was lucky enough to fish forum member, Barbless Bob (aka Bob Elliott) a few weeks ago and that's the start of a report that probably has more spin than fly fishing... At any rate Bob did get a nice 60lb tarpon on a 10wt up a small, nameless river in the backcountry... A sixty pound tarpon in a small river is a handful.....

 

For all the particulars (and a few photos) .... 

 

https://www.microski...koloskee.64272/


Tight lines Bob LeMay (954) 435-5666

#2 Flicted

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Posted 22 April 2019 - 08:07 AM

Nice tarpon and beautiful snook!!  Speckled trout wasn't bad either.  Looks like a great time.



#3 Barbless Bob

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Posted 22 April 2019 - 08:44 AM

I had the great pleasure of fly fishing with Capt. Bob Lemay last month. He's a master guide with an incredible wealth of knowledge about all aspects of fly fishing! One of the very best guides I've ever fished with! He knows how to fight off no-see-ums, too. 



#4 FlatsRoamer

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Posted 23 April 2019 - 07:39 PM

how to fight off no see ums? Thats something I would like to learn!


Still hunting for my first tarpon on fly! 


Why are windknots in love with me?


Can't wait for that diy trip to Acklins!!

 

 

Find my youtube channel in the link below

 

https://www.youtube....plkVnmuDObYCLBg


#5 mikechell

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    Cold weather afficando- Give me Snow or give me death!

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Posted 23 April 2019 - 07:50 PM

100% DEET works all the time, for me.


Barbed hooks rule!
My definition of work: Doing something in which effort exceeds gain.
Ex-Marine ... quondam fidelis
 


#6 Capt Bob LeMay

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Posted 24 April 2019 - 06:45 AM

Not for no-see-ums (or deer flies...).  What will stop no-see-ums cold is oil.... but the cure is almost as bad as the problem since you have to grease up every square inch of exposed skin and hair - like you were prepping for a cage match (even your eyebrows)...  Avon Skin so Soft bath oil, Johnson's Baby Oil are what we've used but the moment your sweat runs down to your eyes - the stuff will burn like fire and almost blind you.... 

 

Our usual way of dealing with them involves simply covering up as much as possible (you begin to look like some desert raider..). The alternative is to be smart about them.  Being on the sand or next to tall trees in the Everglades at dawn or dusk when there's no breeze at all will have you in a cloud of them (and even if the fish are biting - you won't stay very long..).  The moment there's a breeze you're home free (and if there's any good news an hour after getting chewed alive your skin won't have a mark on it - unless you've been scratching holes in your hide...).

 

Any time I see anglers at the boat ramps from Flamingo to Chokoloskee that show up in t-shirts, shorts, and flip flops... I just cringe - but everyone needs to learn the hard way (if I'm any indicator...).


Tight lines Bob LeMay (954) 435-5666

#7 mikechell

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Posted 24 April 2019 - 07:45 AM

This is what I use, Bob.  I don't get bitten, by anything, no matter where I've been.

While I can't say for sure, but I'm fairly certain your Everglades bugs are the same as what we get here in Central Florida.

 

81980f96-553d-4bec-9625-0879ebeb56a2_1.1


Barbed hooks rule!
My definition of work: Doing something in which effort exceeds gain.
Ex-Marine ... quondam fidelis
 


#8 FlatsRoamer

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Posted 26 April 2019 - 06:57 PM

Also, Bob, another question - been wanting to tow the skiff over to that side of the glades, just worried about running into oyster bars and gashing the boat open. Float in about 11 inches... you think I'll be ok if I just take it real slow?


Still hunting for my first tarpon on fly! 


Why are windknots in love with me?


Can't wait for that diy trip to Acklins!!

 

 

Find my youtube channel in the link below

 

https://www.youtube....plkVnmuDObYCLBg


#9 Capt Bob LeMay

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Posted 27 April 2019 - 06:44 AM

Your best bet, running out of Chokoloskee or Everglades City the first few times is to either have someone on board to show you the safe routes - or be allowed to follow another guy to the outside (while marking course corrections on your gps as you hit each turn into waypoints..).   That's how I got started... There are several alternatives - so here we go....  You don't need a skiff that floats in very little water - but it helps when running back into the interior.  That whole area is much different than where we run out of Flamingo....

 

1.  Launch out of the Everglades Rod and Gun Club into the Barron River then simply follow the well marked route all the way to the outside (by Indian Key) and work outside all day long, returning the same way you came out.   Each day you run add waypoints to your gps so that you can go there again.  Gradually you'll begin to learn where it's safe to run and what areas to avoid.... Since we're nearing the time when most of the fish are outside (all summer long) that's very do-able...  An alternative is to launch out of Port of the Islands where you have another well marked route to the outside.

 

2. Something that was not available to me years ago is the Florida Marine Tracks chip for a better quality chartplotter (minimum 7" screen - 9" is better - the machine must be either current Lowrance or Simrad - other machines not compatible with FMT....).  You're looking at a 1000 to 1500 dollar cost overall -but the FMT chip is what everyone is running these days.  It really does show safe, navigable routes throughout the Ten Thousand Islands (and everywhere else from Palm Beach down to Key West...).  You really can follow it safely up on plane just about everywhere (except on "super low" tide conditions...).  It allows an absolute beginner to run in places that I had to learn the hard way....

 

 

The deal in the 10K area is not how shallow your boat floats - it's all the oyster bars and hard cap coral areas (mostly on the gulf side of islands for the coral...) that are just everywhere.  You can be running in three feet of water and hit what feels like a concrete sidewalk - with no warning at all.  In deep rivers (depths six to sixteen feet) oyster bars can rise like mountains to the surface (that's where learning to read the water is very important).  As a result - I don't just run anywhere when I'm over there (Flamingo is very forgiving by comparison).  I very carefully follow safe routes everywhere I run (and whenever I have to leave those routes it's a white knuckle proposition until I'm either stopped or back in my comfort zone.... and I accept it that running aground is something that happens to almost everyone running that area....

 

Hope this helps... I also will step onto almost anyone's boat and show them where to run and fish over there... at a bit smaller cost than my daily booking fee.  That's a pretty good option for first timers wanting to get started in the 10K area...


Tight lines Bob LeMay (954) 435-5666

#10 Barbless Bob

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Posted 27 April 2019 - 11:53 AM

Attached File  Capt Bob Lemay vs noseeums FNL LR.jpg   534.83KB   1 downloads

 

When Capt. Bob suggested covering up to stop the no-see-ums from torturing us, he wasn't kidding. Just one of many helpful tips he shared on our trip!  



#11 Capt Bob LeMay

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Posted 28 April 2019 - 11:09 AM

Thanks for the photo Bob - that's what I'll be looking like the next two days back down at Flamingo... once again chasing silver with the fly...


Tight lines Bob LeMay (954) 435-5666

#12 FlatsRoamer

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Posted 07 May 2019 - 05:26 PM

Bob, thank you for the very detailed response - it is deeply appreciated! Going to try and follow one of the outside tracks you mentioned and take it step by step. I knew about the oysters, but not the coral. Definitely something to watch out for especially in our older mavericks...

 

As you said, flamingo is extremely forgiving. Was easy enough to learn where I could (and couldn't) go, usually when we got stuck or whatnot we were able to pole out of it. Only once did we have to wait for the tide to come in.


Still hunting for my first tarpon on fly! 


Why are windknots in love with me?


Can't wait for that diy trip to Acklins!!

 

 

Find my youtube channel in the link below

 

https://www.youtube....plkVnmuDObYCLBg


#13 FlatsRoamer

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Posted 07 May 2019 - 05:27 PM

By the way, have you tried the Simms sun gaiter hd buffs? Those breathing holes make a huge difference when it comes to preventing fogging of the glasses, especially in these hotter months to come.


Still hunting for my first tarpon on fly! 


Why are windknots in love with me?


Can't wait for that diy trip to Acklins!!

 

 

Find my youtube channel in the link below

 

https://www.youtube....plkVnmuDObYCLBg