Welcome to Eye of the Guide

Part Fifty

Fishing Report for Miami's Biscayne Bay
and The Everglades National Park

By Capt. Dave Sutton

Fishing Biscayne Bay has been great this past month. The Bonefish in the early morning have been active but the real story is the Permit. I have seen more permit this year than ever before. The past few years we used to chum a bit and maybe if were lucky we would see a pair and maybe even get a shot at them. This year the fish are larger and in much better numbers.

On the strong stages of the tides, on the outside of the cuts between Soldier Key and Sands Key, is a set of key's called the Ragged Key's. Setting up on a flow to the north or south sides of the major wash will be your best bet. The fish will be running up-current looking for a helpless meal being flushed out by the tide ....... Here's where you come in.

Spinning tackle should start out with a stout rod ... I recommend a G.Loomis model HSR930S in a GL3 blank. This rod is 7' 9"long, one piece blank, and has a power butt with a light tip. Set, at least, a Shimano Aero Stradic in this reel seat and spool her up with the new P-Line in 8 to 10 lbs. test!!!!!! Oh Yea....Hang - on!! This is my perfect Permit rig. You can feel this rod at Kendall Bait & Tackle on US1 in Miami. Tell Joe ....... Capt. Dave sent you in for a permit rod.

Fly gear will be a bit more challenging. My first choice would be a Nautikos FR10810-3 by G. Loomis. This is a 10 wt, 9 foot, three piece rod with the backbone to throw a good size fly in the windy conditions you will find on the outside of these cuts. As for reels, here is where we run into a lot of personal preference. My friends at G.Loomis are making a fine reel for a great price. So check these out at Joe's also.

Ok, we have the gear . . . what do we put on the end that matters? If your limited for time, fishing only one day, start out with live crabs on spinning gear. The ratio of shots to takes on my boat has been around 1 in 5. The ratio spreads out a little more when you go with the fly rod, more like 1 in 15 and sometimes higher. If it's your first Permit go with the odds. Like Bob Haddock from Guam did with his first permit, caught on a live crab Wednesday, the 12th of August. This fish was twenty plus pounds and made a return visitor out of him . . . for sure. But the challenge of the fly will always be there . . . haunting and tempting us to stand on that bow for hours and wait for that perfect shot. Hopefully, I'll be behind you on the tower to witness the event and revel in the rareness of it as well.

Bob Haddock and Permit

Next report will be on the opening of the Snook season here in Florida. I've pre-fished the beaches of the Cape's and the cuts of Lake Ingram with good results. The fish are aggressive in the early morning hours and again at sundown. We killed the Speckled Trout in the middle of the day and even saw Trippletail all the way up in Snakebite Channel. Good signs of a great fall season coming up. See you soon.

As always, Tight lines . . . and quick releases. Capt. Dave Sutton Sent email comments to me, Capt. Dave.

Captain Dave Sutton is a US Coast Guard licensed guide, and an Everglades National Park Guide, fishing Florida Bay, The Upper Key's and Miami's Biscayne Bay. He can be reached for any questions on-line at www.saltwater-flyfisherman.com or by phone: 1-305-248-6126

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