Gasparilla Outfitters

Rates

Our goal is to provide visitors to Boca Grande with a great outdoor experience. The guides we work with represent the best of the best this area has to offer. Each have their own specialties and style. Contact us to discuss your specific needs and we will do everything we can to match you with a guide that will make your trip memorable and fun.

Three Ways to Fish for Tarpon

Boca Grande Pass Tarpon Fishing

Half-tide trips (3 hours) and full tide trips (5 hours) are available. The best fishing is often dependent on the tide stage. Morning trips are generally scheduled around sunrise, and evening trips around sunset. Late afternoon trips are often scheduled around the strong tides of the new and full moons known locally as “Hill Tides”.

It is important to follow the guides advice as to departure times to maximize the best fishing opportunities. Times can change daily. 

Boca Grande Pass tarpon fishing is generally considered the most consistent trip for experienced and inexperienced anglers to catch a tarpon, and the type of trip that made Boca Grande tarpon fishing famous.

As many as 6 anglers per boat, 4 or less preferred. Conventional tackle, live bait. Almost all boats have bathroom facilities.

Tarpon Fly Fishing

You will be sight casting to roaming schools of fish along the beaches and in the harbor, sometimes near the passes. Two anglers max per boat and they will usually have to alternate their fishing time. Guides mainly do full day trips and some will do split day trips.

Beach/Harbor Tarpon Fishing

Sight casting to roaming schools of fish along the beaches and in the harbor. Guides use live bait and heavy spin casting fishing equipment. Most guides only do full day trips due to the large amount of water often necessary to be covered to find the fish. Some will do split day trips. Some boats can carry four people, two preferred.

TARPON
(April through September)

Boca Grande Tarpon season begins in late April to early May and continues into September or even October, if the weather conditions co-operate.

Generally speaking, a mild winter will bring the Tarpon into Boca Grande Pass early, while a cold, late winter will bring them in a little later. When they do arrive, be assured it’s not just one or two, it’s by the thousands.

While every year can be different, traditionally the full moon of June is considered the peak of the season.

Just how long the Tarpon stick around in the late season is often affected by tropical weather. During years of heavy rains and low pressure systems, the big schools of tarpon will likely leave the Pass early(mid July?) and scatter throughout the area. While the big schools of the Pass may be gone with the rainy weather, there will be many still roaming around the Harbor until the water temperatures drop into the low seventies, which can be well into fall.

During years of drought or very little rain, the big schools see no reason to leave the Pass and continue to hang around for the food buffet the tides deliver well into September.

Many may head offshore to spawn for a week or so, but then return to the Pass hungry and ready for a fight as long as the tropical stuff stays away!

Rates

  • Boca Grande Pass Fishing
    Half Tide (Three Hours)
    $600

    Six People maximum, everything included.

  • Boca Grande Pass Fishing
    Full Tide (Five Hours)
    $950

    Six People maximum, everything included.

  • Live Bait/Harbor or Fly Fishing
    1/2 Day (Four Hours)
    $600

    Live Bait Trip, 4 people maximum
    Fly Fishing Trip, 2 people maximum

  • Live Bait/Harbor or Fly Fishing
    Full Day (Eight Hours)
    $950

    Live Bait Trip, 4 people maximum
    Fly Fishing Trip, 2 people maximum

BACKCOUNTRY SNOOK, REDFISH & SPECKLED TROUT
(*Year Round)

Fish the surrounding waters year-round for Snook, Redfish, Speckled Trout, Yellowtail Jacks, Ladyfish, Pompano, and Flounder. Anglers use light tackle spinning gear or fly fishing equipment among the shallow grass flats and mangrove islands of Charlotte Harbor and Pine Island Sound.

Trip Description: Most anglers choose between Morning or Afternoon 1/2 day trips, (4 hours). Full day trips are available, (6 hours). *Note: The time spent by the guide cast netting live bait is not deducted from your fishing day.

Morning departures leave the Pink Docks at 9am and return at 1pm. Afternoon trips generally depart at 1:30 pm and return at 5:30 pm.  Departure time for full day trips are set individually to take advantage of prime fishing time that day. Most boats have a maximum capacity of two anglers, some can carry as many as 5 anglers. There is an additional fee of $50 per person for more than three anglers.

Rates

  • Backcountry Light Tackle
    1/2 Day (Four Hours)
    $500

    Three people maximum
    (*$50 per person fee for additional persons).

  • Backcountry Light Tackle
    Full Day (Six Hours)
    $750

    Three people maximum
    (*$50 per person fee for additional persons).

OFFSHORE
(*Seasonal)

Targeted Fish: Grouper, Snapper, Permit, Cobia, Amberjack, Kingfish, Spanish Mackeral, and Bonito. Conventional tackle, maximum of 6 anglers. Full or Half day trips. Most boats have bathroom facilities.

Rates

  • Offshore
    1/2 Day
    $700

    Maximum 6 people.
    Everything included.

  • Offshore
    Full Day
    $1000

    Maximum 6 people.
    Everything included.

Note: All fishing charters include ice, quality tackle, and licenses. Clients are responsible for their own beverages and snacks. Gasparilla Outfitters only works with Boca Grande’s most experienced, local and dependable guides to provide you with a great trip!

Trips and Things

The Morning Trip

During season, a typical traditional morning charter often begins early, usually around 4am thru 7am, to catch the sunrise bite. Like just about everything in the wild, Tarpon feed heavily in the morning low light hours and this is a very consistent time for a successful trip. It’s a short 15 minute ride to Boca Grande Pass from the Public Guide Docks, (Pink Docks) and usually uncrowded at that time of day. A crisp, cool sunrise over the Harbor is a beautiful sight, and it is not uncommon to catch and release 4 to 6 Tarpon in this time frame, with many over 100lbs. After your successful trip, a hearty breakfast at The Sisters Restaurant  in downtown or at the Gasparilla Inn will complete a morning to remember.

The rest of the day can be spent lounging on the beach, maybe a trip to the spa, some shopping in the village, or a round of golf after a short nap.

The picture of how Boca Grande became the “Tarpon capital of the world” should be coming into focus in your mind about now…. 

The Evening Trip

Evening trips to the Pass are generally scheduled around sunset. Your guide will often suggest you fish from 7pm till 10pm, if he thinks the bite is likely best before the sun sets. Or he may wish to go from 8pm till 11pm if he thinks the action would be best after the sun sets. 

The reasoning behind the departure times are often dependent on the tide stages and weather patterns along with the previous few days of action. It is recommended that you stay flexible and depart on your guides suggestion, they are out there every day and will be in tune with how the Tarpon are feeding.

The Afternoon Trip

Afternoon trips to Boca Grande Pass are usually scheduled around the new and full moons of summer and are known locally as “Hill Tides”. These trips generally leave the public guide docks,(Pink Docks), at 4pm and return at 7pm and are famous for the “crab hatch” that occurs with the strong outgoing tide. Tens of thousands of crabs will ride the current as they make their way offshore to reproduce, and this conveyor belt of easy snacks for the Tarpon really gets them going. The strong falling tide is also perfect for “bombing” a squirrelfish tight to the bottom. This technique is deadly at the strongest stage of the tide for those schooled in the presentation.