Foggy conditions but Gin clear waters make for great fishing today! January 20 2011

Florida Keys Barracuda Fishing
George Winter admires another large Barracuda caught with Capt. Matt Bellinger and Bamboo Charters

Warm air temps plus cool water equals foggy conditions today in the Florida Keys.  It is a rare occassion here in Islamorada and the Florida Keys that we experience fog as thick as pea soup, but today was one of those days.  Not to be undone by this weather I pointed the GPS towards Alligator Light house and we trolled shallow diving plugs and tube lures from the channel entrance to the light.  Chugging along at 7 knots in my Mercury Verado powered Yellowfin Bay Boat paid great dividends as it wasn’t long before we hooked into Spanish and Cero Mackerel and several nice Barracuda.

An often time, but wrongly, under estimated and appreciated gamefish, the “Cuda is a blast on light tackle!  Spin tackle in the 8 – 15 lb range is all you need, you will want a reel that holds between 150-200 yards of line.  We use 20 lb Suffix 832 Braid and 30 lb mono leader to attach lures and plugs.  Tube lures are built with a wire leader that runs through it but you will want to add a trace of light wire in front of any lures or plugs that you choose to use.

We had fast action around several shallow patch reef structures and the action at Alligator reef was nonstop.  These fish were hitting the tube lures about 50 yards behind the boat and several fish sky rocketed our offerings.  The Cudas were averaging 12 lbs and all were released.

The Mackerel were found in the area of Hawk’s Channel and they were easy targets on silver spoons and diving plugs. Again the same tackle that we used for the Cudas were used for these speedsters.

For more info on fishing in the Key Largo and Islamorada area of the Florida Keys check out Bamboo charters and Capt. Matt Bellinger at