"Flats boats are your best friends in the backcountry!" They are the bomb for fishing the "skinny water" of the flats and the Florida Bay.
Perfect for 2-3 people, flats boats are designed with a nice big deck at the bow for casting and working fish. A poling platform at the stern provides a higher vantage point for sighting fish and "poling" the boat quietly through the shallow water.
Unless you are an accomplished boatman, can read the water and are proficient at navigation, utilizing the skills of a licensed guide will be your best option.
The Florida Bay is "One Big Puddle" and requires some knowledge and experience to handle it safely (both for you and the marine environment).
There is a lot to think about out there!
Work with the pros for awhile until you feel comfortable. Then, venture out on your own.
The fragile marine environment will thank you for it!
While fishing the flats and the back-country, you will have an opportunity to catch a variety of sport fish including red fish, snook, bone fish, tarpon, permit, shark, and other species.
If you love to fly fish, you are going to love it here!
You can find a directory of guides in the "Keys" from here to there. Here's the thing. Some are great and customer oriented, some are good and customer oriented, some are illegal. Either of the first two choices work. You definitely want a guide who is coast guard certified, licensed, bonded and insured.
Do a little research and find a good fit. Below we will give you a few of our recommendations.
Speak with any accomplished fly fisherman, and you will probably find out it's the only way he rolls, it's what he's about.
Fly rods, flats boats, tailing bonefish, it's all he dreams about!
Fly Fishing Discounters offer great information on fly rods, reels, line and accessories.