The Summer Hangover

by Capt. Bobby Manske

The Summer Hangover

Fall is on its way and the sooner it gets here, the better. I'm ready for a breath of fresh, cool air from the north, and will likely have to wait until mid-October to get it.  In the meantime, we'll just keep on keeping on, albeit, at a slightly slower pace.

The Florida Keys are known for their laid back, slow paced lifestyle, however, when it comes to fishing, most of us are wide-open, full-throttle on it until September. The kids are back in school and people just seem to get back into the grind of life again--but nobody told the fish. September and October provide some of the best fishing of the year.  Whether it’s offshore, reef, or wreck fishing, it's just good all around.

As we ease into September, the wreck fishing for grouper and mutton snapper can be absolutely outstanding; it changes from day to day, but, overall, it is good to great.

Late September and October provide some of the best offshore fishing of the year.  As the surface water temps drop back into the mid to low 80's, those big dolphin (the fish, not Flipper) spend more time up on the surface where we can find them, instead of way down deep.  Tuna are still around in good numbers, as well as billfish.  October is also when we start to see the beginning of the wahoo migration through our local waters.

Lobster season is open and, contrary to popular belief, you can catch lobster all the way into December in our nearshore waters--it's not just a two-day season in July. In October, after the first real cold front, we get a big push of lobster through our islands. It's known as the October run. The front triggers the fall migration for lobster to head back to deeper water, and diving or snorkeling for them is good—in fact, it's really good.

The deep reef and patch reefs are always good for a mixed bag of snapper and grouper, as well as a variety of other species.

September and October are one of the best kept secrets of the year. The fishing and diving are outstanding, and you'll rarely wait in line for anything.

The Florida Keys are home to some of the world’s greatest fishermen and women. Walk the docks, or pick up the phone. We’re happy to offer free advice, or get you set up with an adventure of a lifetime.  “Stop Wishing!  Go Fishing!”




Capt. Bobby Manske
Capt. Bobby Manske

Author

Captain Bobby Manske owns and operates Aikatsi Sportfishing out of the Marathon, Key Colony Beach area. He has over 30 years fishing in the Florida Keys and specializes in offshore, reef and wreck fishing, live bait sailfishing and tarpon. You can reach him at 305-481-1118, or go to his website www.captbobbymanske.com.



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