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Fly Fishing Trips on the Banana River Lagoon

Saltwater Fishing Charters by Lagooner Fishing Guides

Fly Fishing Trips on the Banana River

Inshore Saltwater Fly Fishing Charters In Florida

Saturday February 24, 2018

Fly fishing enthusiast will enjoy mild days of double haul casting for redfish and spotted sea trout on the shallow grass beds in the Banana River Lagoon. While there's plenty of backwater fishing action in canals and mangrove shorelines for snook and tarpon, the angler will have to get up early to throw streamers and poppers under the branches and around drop offs, because an hour after sunrise may be too late. Most anglers don't understand the demands of a fly fishing addict... Captain Richard Bradley does and he'll help you discover what the Banana River Lagoon between Merritt Island and Cocoa Beach on Florida's east coast has to to offer a fan of saltwater fly fishing.

A typical day on the Banana River with a fly rod in the shallow water will require an 8 or 9 weight rod of your choice with ample backing. Most anglers find a nine foot rod 8 weight with an intermediate or floating line is perfect for inshore shallow water fishing in Central Florida.  An 8 weight St. Croix Rod will be provided upon request if needed. Floating or intermediate lines are adequate and should be equally effective in the shallow water and along mangrove shorelines.

Banana River Fly Fishing AssortmentStreamers & Poppers: Most everything you fish for in the Banana River Lagoon can be caught on a streamer fly, the most popular being Clousers in various colors and shapes. "I find that red fish fall readily for a well presented clouser and depending on the water color you may present a chartreuse or various natural shrimp colored brown/black Clousers. A finicky fish may pick up a crab pattern better on certain days", explains Captain Richard Bradley.

Snook like deceivers or lightly weighted clousers, there's only one real color for a Banana River Snook fly and it's white. While tarpon will take a traditional tarpon fly, they also take various glass minnow flies and popper flies too. Tarpon fishing can be challenging on the fly in the east central part of the state as they are not the most consistent species to pursue and find. Snook on the other hand are readily available in the warmer months.

Sea trout aren't too finicky and a nice clouser or popper will do just fine. While it's not considered as sporting, many anglers have fashioned small streamer flies trailing behind a popper for warmer water trout. This method is similar to the popping cork rig that is popular in the deeper grass flats.

Mixing Fly Fishing with Sight Fishing

The ultimate achievement in fly fishing is when you combine fly fishing with sight fishing on the shallow water flats in saltwater. You've seen the fishing shows for bonefish, redfish and permit on the television and have come to expect a fishing trip to go just like one of Jose's Spanish Fly episodes or Flip Pallot's Walker's Cay Chronicles. The reality of a fly fishing trip is that the sun and moon often have to line up for a great sight fishing day on the water, but when it does, it's a great time and can be the climax of a fly fishermen's career.

"I'd come down to fish with Captain Richard for a couple of years and we found windy, choppy conditions unfit for sightfishing with a fly rod and we resorted to using spinning tackle instead. However the third year was the winner and we able to score many large schooling red fish in the Banana River and some awesome sight casting for single fish too. The fishing is awesome and I'll be back for many more years to come."
-An Extraordinary Fly Fisherman from Utah

Calm days are best and clear water makes things much easier, but one must also remember that the fish must cooperate too. During certain times of the year, it's unreasonable to look for redfish on the Banana River and one might resort to other species like snook or possibly even tarpon and sea trout.

Bring your fly fishing skills and work on your double haul, remember a 70 foot cast is not unusual for red fish and it must be placed accurately too. Practice in a large well groomed grass field and consider using a stripping basket to store waiting line. Bring polarized sun glasses and a hat with a dark underside bill for less reflection. Sight fishing on the flats will test every fly fishing skill that one possesses excepting possibly the roll cast, so be prepared.

A little More Information About Fly Fishing

Fly fishing on a small skiff is a one person endeavor and should not be shared with other anglers as it becomes difficult and often dangerous for the other passengers in the boat while the back cast is being performed. Consider that the guide is putting himself in position for your back cast and also calculating for another passenger too. Life is difficult for the fly fisherman, so make it less difficult and leave other anglers shore bound if possible.

Banana River Fly Fishing Trips

Reviewed by Captain Richard Bradley on Last modified: December 10 2015 17:57:31.

Published by: Captain of Lagooner Fishing Guides©

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Fishing Reports

February - 2018 Fishing Report

Florida's weather up-and-downs will determine if February will continue on as a typical winter month or warm into March toward spring. The Banana River has been a mixed bag of fishing with good days and fair days of fishing this year and depending on water temperatures and coldfronts the banana has been good during the colder days and so-so on the warmer days where Captain Richard has leaned toward the Indian River and Mosquito Lagoon for a more productive fishing day.

Fishing Forecast

February - 2018 Fishing Forecast

Valentine fishing in February is one sweetheart of a fishing trip on the Banana River as temperatures and coldfronts make fish predictable as the weather. Coldfronts will send the sea trout to the holes and the warmth between fronts will cause them to enter the shallow water in numbers. The redfish are ever-present and there may be mixed opportunities with them, but they should be consistant. If we have a mild winter, the fishing for reds will probably be better but a harsh winter will be more challenging. On the Banana River look for redfish and large spotted sea trout and a smattering of black drum for fun. Typically the snook are a no-show and the tarpon can be in a couple of backwater locations if they feel up to it.

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Lagooner Fishing Guides
Cocoa Beach's premier saltwater fishing guide with over 25 years of charter fishing experience in his native waters.
Telephone: 321-868-4953

204 Garfield Avenue
Cocoa Beach, FL

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Inshore and Offshore Charter Fishing near Orlando and Cocoa Beach, Florida. Catch redfish, sea trout, tarpon, snook and many other saltwater gamefish aboard the world famous Lagooner flats fishing boat with renowned Captain Richard Bradley.

We had a great time with Captian Richard!! 1/2 day trip,good weather and fish in the box:)) We stdpped off cruise ship and onto his boat within 10 minutes. Great trip for novice to experianced angler. Thanks Capt. & will see you again!!!
about Lagooner Fishing Charters on July 13, 2014

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