I have been in the Fishing and Hunting business in Maryland since 1971, but hunting season only went through the end of January, and fishing didn’t get started in Maryland until May, so I always had February, March, April, and most of May with nothing to do. My father was born and raised in Florida and had three brothers spread out from Jacksonville to Miami. Every winter since I can remember we went down there for a couple of weeks. My father and all of his brothers were fishing maniacs so all we did was go from one uncles house to the other, and go fishing. My second wife was also born and raised in south Florida, so after I got married, we continued to take our winter vacation to Florida where, you guessed it, we fished from one uncles house to the other. Add her father and brother to the equation. Now we had a whole bunch of fishing fools. Having a particular liking to the Keys, the trips started revolving around the Florida Keys. I must say, it is hard to fish here and want to fish anywhere else. In 1991, after getting our last child out of the house, and it was a “No Brainer” to come down here and start a winter fishing business. We had fished for Tarpon a couple of years with a friend at the seven mile bridge here in Marathon, and decided this is where we would settle. We bought a house and a Florida Keys custom made boat, Appropriately named it “Fishin’ Fool”. As I was fishing and hunting in Maryland the season before, I told all my customers I would be booking charters that winter, and it was unbelievable how many of them came down to fish with me that first year! I have now done 30 years of winter seasons here and most of those same customers have been coming every year, and of course many more of my customers from Maryland have found out how great the Florida Keys are in the winter, so I have no complaints about the business I have built in that time!
When I first get here at the end of January, we catch Spanish Mackerel, Bluefish, Mangrove Snappers, Grouper, Sea trout, and many other species. It is not uncommon to catch over a dozen different species of fish on any given trip. That is one of the truly great things about fishing here. By the middle of March, the Mackerel and Blues leave, but Tarpon move in. They don’t get here in any numbers however, until April. From then until I leave towards the end of May, the Tarpon fishing only gets better. I must say, it is hard to beat having a hundred to hundred and fifty pound Tarpon jumping six feet out of the water on the end of your line, twenty yards from the boat. Come down and check it out once, and I’ll probably see you down here again every year. The weather is great, the food at the restaurants is fabulous, and the fishing is fantastic. Gatling Guide Service offers Marathon fishing charters and will help you catch that big fish you’ve been dreaming of. Join Captain Gatling on a Marathon Florida fishing trip today. Our Marathon Florida fishing guide is for avid fishers as well as those that are not experienced we know the best Florida Keys Fishing spots and you will have an awesome Charter Fishing Trip! Hope to see you soon! Capt. Wayne Gatling