Shark Fishing in Key Biscayne

Its April and that means fishing season is open! Apparently the boys up at Kensico are pulling in 8 lb Lakers already and the reservoirs are all thawed out. Well, last week I was “stuck” in Miami for a conference and decided I would get in a day of fishing in Key Biscayne with Capt. Ken Collette. Ken was a gracious, smart, and funny guide. I first saw him on Mike Iaconelli’s fishing show “City Limits Fishing” and watched him put Mike on fish in Key Biscayne within sight of the skyscrapers and bridges of Miami.

My buddy and I met up with Ken at dawn and made our way out to the overpass on the way to Key Biscayne to fish for tarpon. The tarpon were busting all over the place, but they wouldn’t take a crab, shrimp–even Pinfish were ignored. They were acting “tarpony!” The wildlife was everywhere, cormorant, pelican, eagle rays, porpoise…but no tarpon bite. Finally we decided to fish for bait for an afternoon of shark fishing. We pulled in a few bluefish, ladyfish, blue runners. My buddy fought a 20 lb Jack on very light tackle for about 15 min right next to the seaquarium.

Finally, we headed out about 7 -8 miles past “Stiltsville” and to Ken’s shark honeyhole. Stiltsville was built in the 30s, and consists of fishing shacks about a mile south of Cape Florida. Looks like there are about 6 or 7 left, and only their pilings remain in some places. I spotted one with a slide, but I can’t imagine why anyone would want to slide into sharky waters.

We cut up the bait and the Jack (my buddy swore the meat looked edible but was willing to sacrifice it for the shark). About 10 minutes of chumming produced whitetip, spinner shark, blacktip and a gorgeous hammerhead. I hooked-up with a black tip which proceeded to do a quarter mile run. It was like pulling up a car engine. A 30 min. fight from one flat to another and he finally rolled-up. My burning arms! His bright orange cat-eye startled me, as well as a row of teeth. He was fat and well-fed. After thanking the shark for the battle we set him free and headed back in on the hunt for a bull shark. No luck, the weather and wind had picked up and though we had a few followers, the bite was shut down.

If you’re in Miami, I suggest you give Capt. Kenny a call if you want a great day on the water. Capt–we’ll be back for those tarpon soon! Click on the picture below to visit my Tumblr blog for more pictures from the trip.

Now its time to clean-up the gear and head North to Westchester for some early season bass, Lakers and Brown Trout. Time to use some of my vacation days.

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