Fishing, Key West
The Tortuga IV Party Boat is by far my favorite in Key West. Its about $35. for a 4-hr trip, saling @ 9am & again @ 1 pm., They fish either the Atlantic or Gulf side depending on the wind (Atlantic is better). The mates are great, tip 'em well. Keep an eye on the regulars, who always fish the stern & do what they do.
Equipment: If you can, bring your own eqpt.; the boat rods/reels are poor & they use about 50 lb. test line, which these heavily-fished critters can see & avoid. A medium weight spinner or casting rod w/15 lb. test is fine; You'll rarely fish deeper than 50 ft. ; 2 oz. wt. is tops, usually. The baits supplied are squid/ballyhoo, not-too-fresh (but hey, the boats gotta make $$, can't afford to supply sushi-grade). So--bring your own. Buy shrimp @ any seafood store, tell 'em its for bait & you'll get broken ones @ 1/2 price. Or bring some tiny hooks or sabiki rigs & quickly catch a few 4-8" grunts or bluerunners...Send em' to the bottom & hold on! Its grouper time! Once you know what you're doing, you can save 100'$ off a bottom/reef charter by fishing this boat. In the stern.
When I went to Key West I knew I was absolutely lost! I had no idea what I was doing, and there were so many options it was hard to pick a few activities for my trip! A friend recommended that I go on a fishing charter! So I did a little researching a found fishkeywestfl.com. I was able to find the perfect fishing charter, and had such a great time with Captain Ted and his experienced crew. It did not matter that I had never gone fishing a day in my life they made sure that my fishing trip was a memorable one! I even caught some fish myself!! I would absolutely recommend take a fishing trip, and do some research beforehand! There is the perfect trip for everyone!
When the kids were little, Bob would take them fishing off White Street pier. You don't have to hire an expensive charter boat captain to fish. In addition to small snappers and grunts, anglers have been know to hook into tarpon, snook and redfish.
The City of Key West has rebuilt the White Street Pier reducing sediment build-up and they have reconfigured the swimming area to keep people away from fishing gear. The pier has just recently been re-opened.
Wear a hat and sun protection.
Equipment: White Street Pier tide information.
Nothing is sold at the pier. You need to bring a rod and bait, and a bucket would be a good idea too keep the fish in.
You do not need a Recreational Saltwater Fishing License if you are any child under 16 years of age. Otherwise, with certain exceptions, you will need a fishing license.
I never fished off of the Keys, but when I return you bet I will. Offshore fishing rules, and since Key West is about 120 miles out in the ocean you'll find the big boys.
Equipment: When you go out on the charter the captain and his mates will set you up with everything.
When we lived in Key West, Garrison Bight was the place where all the charter fishing boats were. Since then, an additional road has been built that changes the configuration of the Bight (or harbor) and the City Marina has been changed from Key West Bight (downtown) to Garrison Bight. But the majority of the sports fishing charters are still congregated here.
I'm not into fishing myself, so I have not used any of them.
Below are the boats (and in some cases the captain's name) and the phone numbers of boats headquartered at Garrison Bight
Equipment: Amorous Junior Rendueles City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-5375
Can't Miss Party Fishing Boat City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-3751
Capt. John's Greyhound V City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-5139
Captain Hook Rick Haveland City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-0117
Charter Boat Ramerzi City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 294-0803
Grand Slam Craig Jiovani City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-8389
Greyhound V John Batillo City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-5139
Gulfstream III Party Boat City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-8494
Jolly Roger II Joe Mercurio City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-8210
Linda D Bill Wickers City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-9798
Rampage Charters City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-7996
Reef Runner Tony Soldano City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-3330
Top Hook Charters City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 294-9679
Wild Bill City Marina Garrison Bight Key West FL 33040 (305) 296-2533
At $35, I couldn't pass up the chance for some night fishing. The Gulfstream III is a 65 foot party boat. I went out on the 6:30pm to 1:00am trip. We travelled for about 3 hours or so total, but the rest was fishing. We stopped at two locations, one with at 125 feet and the other 30 feet. We were out to catch grunts, snappers and yellow tail.
The crew is great, friendly and helpful. I caught a 6 foot lemon shark, which was the highlight of the trip. It was a great time.
Oh, and on the way out to sea, a family of 3 wild dolphins raced us for 5 minutes or so.
Equipment: Rod rental is $3.00, cheap! Plus, the crew will fix your snags, clear your reel, tie your hooks, etc. All you gotta do is drop your lines and wait.
Of course, you should always tip the Mate James, $5 or $10.
When choosing a fishing charter outfit to use, be sure to ask if the gutting of the fish will be included in the price of the package. They may ask to charge you more after the trip is complete, or may not clean it at all. Hotels generally frown upon the gutting of fish in their establishment so DO
have the fishing charter take care of this for you.
Nice Guys, nice boat. If you don't have fun with these guys, I just don't know what to tell you. They were the nicest people at the docks, and will go out of their way for your fishing pleasure!!
Customized trips from 2 hours to 2 days! If you are going fishing, you will not come home empty handed with these guys!
Equipment: Bathroom, sleeping quarters, Sundeck.
1 to 6 people, Families Welcomed!