Boca Grande Fishing Guide

Everglades Fishing Guide.
Late summer and fall is a special time and place for Everglades fly fishing guides. Most of the big fish are on the outside of the ten-thousand islands and everglades river mouths. This is a great time to fish early mornings and late afternoons for rolling and tailing fish. I love this time of year as the water is a bit stained and fish readily take poppers and top-water plugs. Top water plug fishing is usually doe with a casting ‘bait-casting’ rod and reel. This type of equipment not only allows you to throw longer distances with larger plugs with more accuracy but helps you keep your plug walking on the water for much more time throughout the day as you are not reeling up and opening and closing the bail as on a spinning reel. I enjoy showing my fly-fishing clients the art and skill of effectively throwing and working a bait-casting rod and reel. Top-water action in the stained water of the Everglades is second to none. Large snook, tarpon and redfish readily take top-water plugs with aggressive explosions on the surface. I love the fall fishing as most recreational anglers have not came down to Southwest Florida from their summers homes yet so most of these fish haven’t seen much if any pressure for 4-6 months. I look forward to hearing from you and please don’t hesitate to call with any questions regarding injuries for a Everglades Fly Fishing Guide.

Summertime Fun

The summertime is a great time for fly fishing the Everglades and Naples area! Plug fishing with top-waters and twitch baits is Very stable early in the morning with top water and with twitch baits when the sun gets up during the day. I love to show clients how to throw traditional “plug gear” on my skiff with Calcutta baitcasting reels. Conventional plug gear is the most accurate way to throw big plugs tight into the mangrove shoreline and consistently keep it there, it spends much less energy than spinning gear throughout the day. We are getting lots of juvinelle tarpon moved into the area taking smaller flies and gurglers off the surface. The giant snook are coming from top water plugs early in the day. If your interested in a late summer or fall trip please shoot me an email and I will get you some details. Thanks!

Fresh water


Post storm fish have been on fire! Everglades and Naples fly fishing has been productive for mid-sized tarpon, big snook and redfish. With the tannic water these fish will be on the top and ready to eat. Its a great time to fish The Everglades when everyone is dealing with wind, rain and other boats! None of those bother us in the protection of the tall mangrove trees there is always somewhere to hide. Adult Tarpon fishing was good prior to the front and should stabilize after the water settles and clears. I just love the time after the rains as it seems like the place is flushing out and as good as it gets. Come inquire about a fly fishing guide in the everglades and ten-thousand islands.

I teach about the estuary and encourage first time fly fisherman and plug fisherman alike. I am passionate about both kinds of angling here in the everglades and ten-thousand islands. I am located south of naples so can always meet up for some fly-casting lessons or refer you to one of my master casting instructors in the area. I look forward to your next fishing adventure in the beautiful Everglades!

Everglades Tarpon Season

These next two months I migrate toward these giants, I am in full on Tarpon mode at this point with still fishing for snook when the opportunities arise. I pick up at Chokoloskee Island and have lodging options available for traveling guest. The Everglades in March and April are worth planning a trip around, I still have a day or two available each month along with good May and June dates to chase these magical fish. Tarpon deserve all the credit, best fish that swims in any water know to man and readily eats flies and plugs with some serious acrobatic maneuvers. I love them when they so peacefully roll and gulp air then once hooked they turn into the most aggressive animal Ive ver seen. We have been getting them good on multiple trips, the fish of a lifetime! Give me a call for Boca Grande fly fishing for tarpon or Everglades fly fishing for tarpon.

Everglades Fly Fishing

We had a great March and April in the Everglades fishing for Tarpon.  Lots of Tarpon hooked and landed on fly as well as plug rods. A great place to be when the resident fish start to float up to the surface and you can get some calm warm days! I am back in Boca Grande fly fishing for Tarpon in the clear water and in the backcountry of Pine Island and Charlotte Harbor.  Here are some great pictures for you to enjoy!



First Cold Front

Most boca grande fly fishing guides dred the cold weather, high winds, and negative tides, I welcome it. Through the years I have loved the challenge and figured out how to catch fish in the worst conditions. The answer is walking, when you walk you see a lot more, a lot more wildlife, a lot more fish! I do not do much push poling during the winter as it is usually very clear and shallow water which makes the fish sensitive.

If that sounds gun please call because the fishing has been on fire and will continue steady now thru march. Book you Tarpon Fly Fishing Guide now to get a good tide.


Red Drum

Been a windy couple weeks but most of us wade fisherman enjoy the big north winds that can keep a tide out of the back country almost entirely! There has been good numbers of big redfish and snook around to sight-cast to on foot.  I was wading with clients back to back that had multiple eats and misses from the same fish on foot. When you can see a fish laid up and you are standing still, that fish has no idea there is any danger as he would if you were in a skiff. All the fish sees are two legs and a small bait that is fleeing, he will keep trying to eat it until he has it. Bill even hooked a big one, set the hook, the redfish blast on the water from being hooked and the hook pulled…he came back and ate it again. Bill went on to catch a grand slam on foot as we found some juvenile tarpon willing to play ball. Get out of the boat, stop and look around and you will do much better.

0N5A1622 10245429_775433498837_2774780506540482090_n

Get out of the boat, stop and look around and you will do much better.

Stop down to the Outfitters to chat or book a trip!


Fall SUP fishing

This past week has been some incredible fishing with great sight casting and tailing redfish opportunities. We have been exploring all depths of the back country on stand up paddle boards. It really is my favorite way to fish this time of year on low water. They are very easy to use and stable, and I believe you catch more fish due to the stealth of the board. Plug fishing off these is a dream and with the right set up fly fishing is a great time. We throw at tailing redfish a rods length away from the board, they do not even notice the board. We plug fished off them the other day and caught countless snook, redfish and trout, there is nothing like being towed around by a fish. I really enjoy the exercise aspect of it as well, you can get your workout and fishing knocked out in one shot! I have a rack on the east cape vantage that is able to take 3 boards deep into the back country where paddle boards have never been before, it sure is an adventure! If anyone has any interest in this new style of low impact fishing give me a call at (231) 409-4231 or visit

12195756_865120999367_7400224638160542871_n 12291298_867269753247_5536859049817543652_o

Wade Fishing Boca Grande

It’s getting to be that time of year, with some good winds and lower tides I like to get my clients out of the boat and do some stalking of fish.
I like to wade fish with a fly in places I would otherwise not be able to get to or in situations that would give us the ultimate stealth, like tailing redfish. Given the opportunity I will always get out of the boat on a good flat that’s already showing tails. I will also Wade tidal creeks that would be too noisy to pole skiff in or tuff to cast around mangroves in the boat, that is the ultimate in snook fishing.
Wade fishing is the ultimate in adventure and staying close with nature. Walking the flats is so stealthy these redfish will swim right against your leg, not snook but redfish love to check you out. Without tailing fish it’s all about good light and shallow water to see laid up snook, seeing and feeding a laid up snook in tight quarters is really the pinnacle in Charlotte Harbor fly fishing. You can have the monster tarpon, I will take stalking a big snook on foot any day!
So get out of the boat and explore. We have some great flats boots and good flats to Wade even without a boat in Boca Grande. book a trip!
Paul Ray
(231) 409-4231

chad snook in mangrove10245429_775433498837_2774780506540482090_n

Lemon Bay Conservancy

I got a chance to help out with the tarpon and snook monitoring program at Lemon Bay Conservancy.
Great little place if you have never been there, They do net pulls a few times a year if anyone is interested in volunteering.
From my research and understanding it started as the wildflower golf course years ago, with the real estate crash the LBC where able to buy the property at a fraction of the cost. They have since made it entirely into a nature preserve. Luckily they got to this in time and were able to save a valuable snook and tarpon nursery. We pulled over 50 tarpon in one small pond with a seine net, it really makes one think how many of these nurseries are in jeopardy of becoming built on or polluted with lawn chemicals? It is a great thing for any angler to see how these developments directly affect our fishery. I was also over in Vero Beach touring the Dragon Fly Boat works shop, I was talking with anglers there asking them about all their fly fishing opportunities. They have some great fishing there but it is a common fact that the sea grass is gone and they just kind of acted like it was just a way of life that the golf course pollution had killed any and all seagrass so Redfish and Trout are not so common there. We need to protect our beautiful park know as Charlotte Harbor at all cost.

We all need to come together as a community and tourist alike to help our fishery in any way and threat means catch and release along with our actual ecosystem.
There is a new link I came across called found adrift. It post articles trash that they found and picked up in certain fisheries. I think it is a great cause as well and should be practiced daily, it’s also good fish luck!!

Paul Ray

(231) 409-4231

IMG_4416 e-Sep2012_0740 IMG_4407 IMG_4411