Ft Myers Fishing Charters
Fort Myers fishing charter, No Fish! No Pay!
If you're looking for a fishing charter in the Ft Myers area then you have come to the right place. All of my fishing charters in Fort Myers, Pine Island, Boca Grande and Charlotte Harbor are No Fish! No Pay! Which means that if you don't catch a game fish then there will is no charge for the trip. That includes hooking a tarpon on any 10hr or all-day tarpon fishing charter. 6hr tarpon fishing charters do not apply for the No Tarpon No Pay Guarantee.
I'm Capt. Scott Hughes. I guide fishing charters in Pine Island Sound, Matlacha Pass and Charlotte Harbor for anglers of all skill levels. Some of the best fishing in southwest Florida is within a short drive of Ft Myers and the surrounding communities. I have pick-up locations near Ft Myers, Cape Coral, Naples, Marco Island, Sanibel Island, Captiva island, Upper Captiva Island and Punta Gorda. The main locations for launching our Fort Myers fishing charter is Burnt Store Marina, Pine Island, Boca Grande and Ft Myers (Punta Rassa).
Ft Myers inshore fishing
Most of the inshore fishing charters around the Ft Myers area are flats fishing charters inside Charlotte Harbor or Pine Island Sound for snook, redfish, and spotted seatrout with a run up to a few miles offshore for certain species like tarpon, mackerel and sharks. The flats fishing charters tend to strive for a "Backcountry Slam" which consists of catching all three most popular game fish (snook, redfish and trout) in Southwest Florida in a single day of fishing. Snook, redfish and speckled trout are available through out most of the year and are fairly easy to catch with live bait for the moderately skilled angler. For a little more of a challenge, artificial lures provide a lot of fishing fun. Winter months are more geared toward artificial lure fishing since live sardines are scarce and the fish are more aggressive due to lack of their favorite food source. For anglers with world class sport fishing in mind, we have the largest population resident and migratory tarpon in the United States.
Fort Myers area fishing
Pine Island Sound is a 22 mile long relatively shallow body of water that runs from Sanibel Island to the south and Charlotte Harbor to the north. With its miles of gin clear water and lush turtle grass flats, its a sight fishers dream. Schools of redfish roam the flats for most of the year and hordes of speckled trout gang up in the deeper potholes and sloughs during the colder months. Snook migrate into the sound as spring nears and spawn along the beaches and passes in summer. Tarpon use Pine Island sound to rest and feed while preparing to spawn from April though July. Pine Island Sound can be accessed easily from the Ft Myers area by boat or car. With a short boat ride from the south one can reach the southern portion of the sound with a pick-up at Punta Rassa. Punta Rassa is short drive from Ft Myers Beach, Bonita Springs, Sanibel, and Captiva. From the north Pine island Sound can be reached with a quick boat ride across Matlacha Pass from a Pick-up at Burnt Store Marina. Burnt Store Marina is a short drive from Punta Gorda, Fort Myers, Cape Coral, and Port Charlotte. If you want to launch closer to the fishing then a 30 minute drive can be made from Ft Myers to Pine Island to one of the several launch ramps on the island.
Matlacha Pass is very shallow body of water that's filled with oyster bars and grass flats on the east side of Pine Island. This flow way between Ft Myers and Charlotte Harbor is a shallow water fisherman's paradise. Because if it's proximity to the Caloosahatchee River which runs from Lake Okeechobee to Ft Myers the salinity of Matlacha Pass varies greatly. During Summer months the water is stained due to brackish water. schools of jacks and redfish rule the flats. Snook seek cover in the thick red mangroves that line the shore lines and tarpon live in the deeper runs and channels. During the winter months the salinity drops and water becomes crystal clear and the grass dies off. Schools of speckled trout abound on the flats and around the oyster bars. Redfish are on the flats and black drum will be found around the oysters. Flats fishing in Matlacha is made easy with pick-up locations in Ft Myers (Punta Rassa), Matlacha, or Burnt Store Marina.
Charlotte Harbor is the second largest open bay in Florida. Tampa Bay is the largest but is far more developed with urban areas and industrial enterprises. The harbor is fed by two main rivers. The Peace and Myakka Rivers flow from the north and empty into the northern portion of Charlotte Harbor. Charlotte Harbor is lined my mangrove shorelines and large grass flats that extend up to 600 yards off the shorelines. The middle of the harbor runs about 12-16 ft deep with a number of deeper holes that are slightly over 20ft deep. I like to fish the deeper runs for tarpon from April through late September. Spanish mackerel, ladyfish and bluefish are available most months in the deeper areas of the harbor also. The rest of the year is spent flats fishing for snook, redfish and speckled trout. Cobia make a good showing in the spring and fall. We drift fish for them in the middle of the harbor and sight fish for them along the sand bars that line the east and west walls of Charlotte Harbor. Burnt Store Marina, Matlacha community boat ramp and the Pine Island boat ramps are all good pick-up locations for fishing charters in Charlotte Harbor.