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The Upper Florida Keys of the Key West Region include Keys in Biscayne National Park (accessible only by boat) in Miami-Dade County. Transitional keys in this specific region include; Soldier Key, Ragged Keys, Boca Chita Key, and Sands Key. True Florida Keys, (i.e., exposed ancient reefs) in the Upper Keys area include; Eliot Key, Adams Key, Reid Key, Rubicon Keys, Tottered Key, and Old Rhodes Key. Keys in Monroe County include; Key largo, Plantation Key, Windley Key, Upper Matecumbe Key, Lignumvitae Key, and Lower Matecumbe Key. (Plantation Key through Lower Matecumbe Key are incorporated as Islamorada, Village of Islands. The "towns" of Key Largo, North Key Largo and Tavernier, all on the island of Key Largo, are not incorporated.)
Key Largo is connected to the mainland in Miami-Dade County by two routes. The Overseas Highway, which is U.S. Highway 1, enters Key Largo at Jewfish Creek near the middle of the island and turns southwest. Card Sound Road connects to the northern part of Key Largo at Card Sound Bridge and runs eastward to connect with County Road 905, which runs southwest and joins U.S. 1 at about mile marker 106. These routes originate at Florida City on the mainland. Key Largo is a popular tourist destination and calls itself the "Diving Capital of the World" because the living coral reef a few miles offshore attracts thousands of scuba divers and sport fishing enthusiasts. Key Largo's proximity to the Everglades also makes it a premier destination for a Florida keys Fishing Vacation including kayakers and eco tourists.
Islamorada, a "Village of Islands," is an incorporated village in Monroe County, Florida, United States. It is located on the islands of Tea Table Key, Lower Matecumbe Key, Upper Matecumbe Key, Windley Key and Plantation Key in the Florida Keys. The village was incorporated on November 4, 1997. Prior to this date, Islamorada was only considered to be on the island of Upper Matecumbe Key. Islamorada is know for its fishing vacations because of the easy access to the Florida Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. From Bonefish to Sailfish Islamorada is a top location for a fishing vacation.
Marathon is a city on Knight's Key, Boot Key, Key Vaca, Fat Deer Key, Long Point Key, Crawl Key and Grassy Key islands in the middle Florida Keys, in Monroe County, Florida, in the United States. Big Pine Key is a census-designated place and unincorporated community in Monroe County, Florida, on an island of the same name in the Florida Keys.
Key West is a city in Monroe County, Florida, United States. The city encompasses the island of Key West, the part of Stock Island north of U.S. 1 (the Overseas Highway) (east), Sigsbee Park (north, originally known as Dredgers Key), Fleming Key (north), and Sunset Key (west, originally known as Tank Island). Both Fleming Key and Sigsbee Park are part of Naval Air Station Key West and are inaccessible by civilians. Key West is the county seat of Monroe County. Key West is known as the southernmost city in the Continental United States. It is also the southern terminus of U.S. 1, State Road A1A, the East Coast Greenway and before 1935, the Florida East Coast Railway. Key West is 129 miles (207 km) southwest (229.9 degrees) of Miami, Florida, (about 160 driving miles) and 106 miles (170 km) north-northeast (21.2 degrees) of Havana Cuba. Cuba, at its closest point, is 94 miles south. Key West is a seaport destination for many Florida Keys Vacation passenger cruise ships. The Key West International Airport provides airline service. Hotels and guest houses are available for lodging. Naval Air Station Key West is an important year round training site for naval aviation due to the superb weather conditions. It is also a reason the city was chosen as the Winter White House of President Harry S. Truman. The central business district primarily comprises Duval Street, and includes much of the northwest corner of the island along Whitehead, Simonton, Front, Greene, Caroline, and Eaton Streets and Truman Avenue. The official city motto is "One Human Family." When you think of a Florida Keys Fishing and family vacation, what thoughts come to mind? Looking for family togetherness plus time to relax and leave the hassles of everyday life behind? If fun as a family is your goal with time for adult relaxation, seek out a kid's friendly vacation spot with attractions that appeal to both adults and children. An all-inclusive resort is one of the best ways to bypass family vacation pitfalls for your Florida Keys Fishing Vacations. Such family-oriented resorts are designed to provide fun and excitement for children as well as time for adult pursuits.
Florida Keys Fishing Vacation Backcountry Slam – Snook-Redfish-Trout
Florida Keys Snook - The local backcountry offers some excellent Snook fishing. The average size is 5 to 9 pounds and 24-34 inches. You will find them around bridges, mangroves, pilings just about any structure. They eat Mullet, Shrimp, Pilchards, Pinfish and a multitude of artificial lures or combinations of live and dead bait.
Florida Keys Redfish - Redfish love the warm waters of the Florida Keys, the mangroves, and grassy flats are their regular haunts. They are prolific, and definitely not timid when it comes to eating - Which makes them a great sport fish for light tackle and fly-fishing. Redfish are often seen "tailing" (very similar to bonefish) on the shallow flats as they feed.
Florida Keys Seatrout - Seatrout are frequently targeted from December to April. When fishing for them you can use the old standby a popping cork rig with a shrimp or artificial hanging below the cork. Remember Pop the cork Sea Trout come to the gurgling sound the cork makes.Sea Trout are found over grassy bottom and in the"muds" that is muddy areas where the bait is routing in the bottom stirring up shrimp and small fishes.
Florida Keys Fishing Vacation Flats Slam – Bonefish-Tarpon-Permit
Florida Keys Bonefish (“Grey Ghost”) - Known for very fast and very long first runs, this is probably the species most synonymous with Florida Keys flats fishing. There is a reason why they are called "gray ghost of the flats" and are a real light tackle challenge. Here in the Keys, bonefish generally average in the 6 to 8 pound range with fish of 10 to 12 or larger not uncommon. They are usually fished in water less than two feet deep, and sometimes are seen so shallow that their tails and dorsal fins show as they root out food from the bottom. This is called "tailing" and is the most demanding of angler skills. Bonefish prefer water temperatures over 72 degrees, but can sometimes be found in slightly cooler conditions.
Florida Keys Tarpon (“Silver King”) - These incredible fish offer the ultimate in a shallow water big game fish. During the spring migrations, fish can average from 80 to over 150 pounds. They can be found rolling and feeding in deep backcountry finger channels, in shallow grassy basins or along the edges of bars and flats in 4 to 6 feet of water. Tarpon tend to prefer water temps in the mid 70's for the channels and usually need 78-79 degrees for the flats. The big fish are here in good to excellent numbers from March through July and small tarpon 8-20 pounds are here year-round, disappearing during cold fronts in winter.
Florida Keys Permit - The permit is a very strong and hard fighting fish, averaging 8 to 16 pounds. Fish in the 20 to 35 pound range are common with fish to near 50 pounds showing fairly often. They seem to tolerate slightly cooler and slightly warmer conditions than the bones, and are also here all year with February thru November probably being most productive. Permit are usually found in waters less than 3 to 4 feet deep and will also float in channels or off flat edges in calm situations.
Florida Keys Fishing Vacation Offshore Species
Florida Keys Blue Marlin Description: color cobalt blue on top shading to silvery white on bottom; upper jaw elongated in form of spear; dorsal fin and pointed at front end; pectoral fin and anal fin pointed; lateral line reticulated (interwoven like a net), difficult to see in large specimens; no dark spots on dorsal fin; body covered with imbedded scales ending in one or two sharp points.
Florida Keys Sailfish Description: color dark blue on top, brown-blue laterally, silvery white underbelly; upper jaw elongated in form of spear; first dorsal greatly enlarged in the form of a sail, with many black spots, its front squared off, highest at its midpoint; pelvic fins very narrow, reaching almost to the anus; body covered with imbedded scales, blunt at end; lateral line curved over pectoral, then straight to base of tail.
Florida Keys Dolphin Description: bright greenish blue above, yellow on sides, with capability of flashing purple, chartreuse, and a wide range of other colors; body tapers sharply from head to tail; irregular blue or golden blotches scattered over sides; anterior profile of head on adult males is nearly vertical; head of females more sloping; the single dark dorsal fin extends from just behind the head to the tail; anal fin margin concave and extending from anus to tail.
Florida Keys Blackfin Tuna Description: Blackfin tuna are the most abundant tuna species. They are equally shaped from the head and tail from their midsection, making look in shape like a football. Silver side, dark blue on the back and white on the stomach. Small gray finlets run from the second dorsal fin to the anal fin. Eyes are large size.
Cobia Description: Strong fish with broad depressed head; lower jaw projects past upper jaw; dark lateral stripe extends through eye to tail sometimes mistaken for a shark. When young, has a conspicuous alternating black and white horizontal stripe.
Shortfin Mako Shark Description: lunate tail with similarly sized lobes; lateral keel at the base of the tail; deep blue back and white underside; underside of sharply pointed snout white; origin of first dorsal entirely behind base of pectoral fins; second dorsal fin slightly in front of anal fin; slender; recurved teeth with smooth edges.