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    Flats & Backcountry fishingIf you live in the coastal areas of other places in the United States, you know that you often have to travel far out to sea to have contact with fish worth catching. If you are in Big Pine, you are already 100 miles at sea, right between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, so you don't have to travel far to find the fish.

    But, to fish in Florida waters, either from a boat or from land, you will need a license. They are available in marinas, tackle shops, and the County Courthouse.

    If you are staying in the Lower Keys, you don't have to go all the way to Key West to secure a charter, unless you want to go out on one of the big party boats that hold around 50 anglers. In that circumstance, you will need to visit Charterboat Row at Amberjack Pier located at Garrison Bight Marina. It is located at North Roosevelt Boulevard and Palm Avenue.

    Sport Fishing in the Lower Florida Keys

    sport fishing Florida KeysSport fishing charters are available from Cudjoe Key through Big Pine and up to Ohio Key. You can stop at marinas and bait and tackle shops to get the information you need. Or you can simply stop at one of the charter concessions you will be able to see from the highway. If you go it alone, it will be expensive, probably over $600. But, with the big cost comes a knowledgeable captain who knows where to find the fish and a crew who will put all their attention on you and the fish you are catching. These private boats will take up to 6 anglers; so, if you don't mind sharing the boat, or are interested in sharing the cost on a private charter, this may be just the ticket for you. The expense should include your license, tackle, and bait, but you will have to provide your own food and drink for the trip.

    For those who want to really commune with nature, flats or backcountry fishing may be for you. This is fly-fishing at its finest, and you really can't beat the feeling of outsmarting a cautious and sly bonefish, tarpon or permit. These fish are not in the least edible so, when you catch them, you will simply have a photo opportunity before you have to return your catch to its watery home. Flats fishing guides leave for their destination at the crack of dawn. Make sure you take your food and plenty of drinking water. If you haven't been in the sun for a while, long sleeves are advisable, but sunscreen is a must. You will also be happy to have a hat with a sun visor. You can find information at Bait and Tackle Shops, and marinas as well. Of course, many captains have Web sites that will hold information concerning their boats, their experience, and their recent luck.

    Bridge Fishing & Fishing from land in the Florida Keys

    Bridge fishing is a very popular sport in the Keys. No matter where you are staying, you will need your own transportation because you will have to ride out on the Overseas Highway to find a usable bridge. The epitomy of fishing bridges can be found at the easternmost end of the Lower Keys, right on the Old Seven Mile Bridge. Of course, you will be on your own so you will need your license, bait, tackle and food and drink. The sun is very strong on those bridges so sunscreen and proper clothing are items you will feel fortunate to have.

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