Anglers coming to Fort Myers in attempt to tame the king …. You must be VERY patient, VERY determined, and VERY willing to put in the time, sun up to sundown (if you are super serious about catching a tarpon). Tarpon are magnificent creatures that test your patience, hunting skills, and make you spend countless hours and dollars just for a shot to make them jump. Trust me when I tell you it is worth every ounce of energy and effort. If it is the stars for you get a tarpon it will happen, I promise.
There are numerous methods, ways and approaches to use while targeting the world famous “Silver King”. Capt Josh’s ultimate favorite method of catching tarpon is live baiting with threadfin herring, crabs, mullets, or lady fish free lined or under a cork on the flats or off the beaches. Off the coast of Sanibel (Knapps point) is Capt. Josh’s ultimate favorite tarpon spot. He has won tournaments out here and so have some of his dear Captain friends. Out here off the coast of Sanibel tarpon show up by the hundreds and thousands at times every year to feast on big schools of threadfins. Usually around the moons the tarpon will be more grouped up and in big schools. When the fish are like this it’s usually a jack fest. Doubles, triples and even quadruple hook ups are not uncommon. This usually happens around the 2ND moon in April, both moons in May and the first moon of June. By middle May there are Tarpon all up the coast of South West Florida ranging from Naples all the way up to the world famous Boca Grande Pass aka “The Tarpon Capital of the World”.
Hill tides are the moon tides mentioned above. On these hill tides specifically the last moon of May and first moon of June are typically the best two crab flows of the season in Boca Grande Pass especially. On these tides pass crabs will flow out by the thousands through the pass. The tarpon know this and sit in the pass to gorge themselves on the crabs. If you have never experienced a crab flow in the Capital this is quite a remarkable experience and one heck of a time to fish! Before the crabs flow, giant schools of giant tarpon will group up by the hundreds and begin to “fall out” of the pass making their way deep offshore to spawn. If you pick the right group it can be rip fest with 20-30 boats taking turns getting in front of the school, all hooking up. As days go by the groups that leave previous will come back to feed on the crabs while other groups will head offshore to spawn. This rotation cycle of fish will happen every day during these moon tides. Two to three days before and after the moons seem to be the best to experience this phenomenon.