S13:E11 - “Thunderbolt Permit” (2018)
Tom & Rich hit the USS Thunderbolt wreck in the Middle Keys hoping to find schools of willing Permit
I really like to teach people how to do what I do and show them this incredible experience of the fishing on the shallow clear flats of the Florida Keys. I was fishing out of a 16 foot boat, when I started, and I could take a maximum of 2 people at a time.
Tarpon are the ultimate gamefish. They are big and athletic, they jump when hooked and make insane drag screaming runs. People from all over the world descend on the Florida Keys to try to catch them. They are called the Silver King and that name stuck for a reason. They are the King of the gamefish found in the Florida Keys for several reasons:
The Florida Marine Tracks chip can be loaded into your Lowrance or Simrad unit and will display the best and most impressive aerial photography that I have ever seen. When you are running your boat in the Florida Keys, the boat is displayed as a triangle as normal, but you can see individual trees, PVC stakes, Markers, roads, marinas and every detail of the area that you are running through. You can see yourself moving through the area almost as if you are seeing it real time. I would buy the chip just for these photos. However, to make things even more interesting, they have the safe running paths throughout the Florida Keys backcountry and throughout the entire State of Florida!
My favorite rod is a St Croix Legend XTreme Inshore Spinning Rod. I like it in the 7 foot Medium/Heavy action.
Hurricane Irma passed over the Florida Keys as a Category 4 storm on September 10, 2018. Irma was the biggest storm to make landfall on the Florida Keys since Hurricane Wilma moved across the southeastern Gulf of Mexico and southern Florida peninsula during the morning of Monday, October 24, 2005. Wilma was responsible for hurricane force winds and the highest storm surge observed in the Keys since Hurricane Betsy, on September 8, 1965.
We met Jeff with our film entourage at the marker outside of Safety Harbor. From there, Jeff took us to a place to catch bait and baby tarpon. Soon, we had caught both and were at the Long Key Bridge catching a few more Tarpon, Yellow Jacks and Giant Jack Crevalle. (See that episode by clicking here)
Renown Middle Keys fishing guide Jeff Malone (Tarpon Time Charters) took us out for baby tarpon and he did not disappoint. We have always heard great reports from anyone who has fished with Jeff, and it was not just dock talk. He knows his stuff he is a true guide on the water every single day.