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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Those of you that have been following my posts and answering my questions (and thank you for that) know that we are down from AK staying in PCB FL until Feb 20. You know we are scouting places for where we'd like to settle for future winters, and you know that we just purchased a ECS Glide from a member here.

Well, just a few hours ago the person we are renting the condo from notified us that we have to be out on Feb 4 (instead of the 20th) so some condo repair (from the hurricane) can take place. Now when we rented this place thru Homeaway (now VRBO) we purchased trip cancellation insurance so we are covered there. And the home owner has offered to give us back a months rent, so one way or the other we are covered (at least partially) financially. Now I try to look at unexpected events as opportunities so here is where I hope your help comes in.

If you were going to spend the first three weeks of February fishing (hopefully fly fishing) would you go to Louisiana and chase Reds (if so whereabouts? Not a specific spot but what general area?); or somewhere along the forgotten coast maybe between Steinhatchee to Keaton Beach or Cedar Key to Horseshoe Beach (assuming we can find a place there to rent short term); or would you go somewhere in the Keys? Remember an ECS Glide is what we currently have.

Really appreciate your help everyone. I promise I'll reciprocate in any way I can in the future when I have something to offer.
 

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I like your thoughts about these areas.

or somewhere along the forgotten coast maybe between Steinhatchee toKeaton Beach or Cedar Key to Horseshoe Beach (assuming we can find a place there to rent short term); or wouldyou go somewhere in the Keys?

I have only been to the Keys from your list. Great place to hang when not fishing. But all have sparked my interest over the years.
I personally like really nice scenery along with good fishing. Not so sure about Louisiana. Never personally been so don’t take my comment to seriously. I’m sure some others have been to or live in these areas will comment.
 

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If it’s mild in February the Everglades is the place to be... We’ll have big tarpon up in Whitewater Bay out of Flamingo before the Keys ever see the first one every year. The big girls will be laid up in four to six feet of water and very approachable... If it’s cold we’ll still have lots of trout, redfish, and snook for sight-fishing each day.
 

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Im in a similar boat, no pun intended. We are going to Empire probably for a few weeks then to New Smyrna for a few weeks. Not to hard to just get around a bit. When I was in Punta Gorda last year there were signs saying you couldn't fish for Reds because of the red tide, I don't know how extensive that is on the west coast?
 
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Also I will say I crushed the Reds in Louisiana, and got eaten alive by no see ums through my long johns because it was like 50 degrees and like 20 mph winds. 2 days later I was at Mosquito Lagoon and it was shorts and a T shirt. Didn't catch a single red.
 
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If it’s mild in February the Everglades is the place to be... We’ll have big tarpon up in Whitewater Bay out of Flamingo before the Keys ever see the first one every year. The big girls will be laid up in four to six feet of water and very approachable... If it’s cold we’ll still have lots of trout, redfish, and snook for sight-fishing each day.
Your glide would be perfect for the Everglades as @lemaymiami said you could stay in Everglades city or Chockoloske not sure about Flamingo and availability for the southern end of the glades. The cedar key area of Florida has an awful hard bottom I would be careful there.
 

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Your glide would be perfect for the Everglades as @lemaymiami said you could stay in Everglades city or Chockoloske not sure about Flamingo and availability for the southern end of the glades. The cedar key area of Florida has an awful hard bottom I would be careful there.
Are you basically goin for snook that time of year? If your Flyfishing.
 

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I like all those ideas as well. We go to Buras, La to fish for Reds every February and the fishing is always great. I think the fall is peak season in LA for Bulls but I can remember at least 6 days on the water in February with 30 Redfish Or more, with a few Bulls mixed in Over the last 4 years. We usually fish 3 days every time we go.

But I also love Cedar Key. If you want a good relaxing environment with fishing I’d pick Cedar Key.
 

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Are you seeing the reds or running a sinking line in the creek mouths?
Haven't fished down there lately planning a trip in a few weeks about an hour away from my house. I've been fishing Matlacha lately super low tides in my gladesman. Yes stinking lines will work in creek mouths also the water on the outside will be a little clearer less rain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Awesome responses so far guys, thanks. I've been staying in West Bay here in PCB so I wouldn't do anything stupid and wreck the boat's bottom. But she is getting a Simrad installed on Friday and I've got the FMT and the LMT chips so I'll feel safer about venturing to new places. Part of me wants to go to LA and chase reds, one because it's closer to Texas where we will leave the Glide, but the other part wants to go to either the forgotten coast area or now the glades. Looking forward to hearing more thoughts. Thanks again.
 

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The Nature Coast can have some good fishing in February. However, it is very weather dependent and you might not be able to go for several days in your boat when a front is rumbling through. There are also a lot of small rock piles that I'm sure even FMT doesn't have plotted and they love to get up and move around at night. Species would be redfish, trout, sheepshead mainly.

If I were in your situation I would head to Choko or Everglades City. Lots of places to hide from the wind and a variety of species to target on fly. Milder weather, too.
 

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On the Flamingo side of the Everglades - that's where the giant tarpon will be if the weather is mild.. Everglades City / Chokoloskee ( the City is actually a village - Choko is an island joined to it by a causeway for those who've never been there...) has the accommodations and the restaurants and cafes... but although the area fishes really well for snook, reds, and trout (and is fishable almost in any weather)- in winter it's the Flamingo side that has most of the big tarpon... Flamingo though - has no motel or cabins or restaurant any more (not since hurricane Wilma in 2005) - but it does have a marina, marina store, and a campground with RV hookups.. Anglers there have a fifty mile commute each day from Florida City/Homestead where all the motels and restaurants are to the boat ramps.... That area is only 18 miles from Key Largo so you also have access in each direction if you choose.... and Homestead Bayfront Park is less than ten miles with ramps that put you in the heart of the south end of Biscayne Bay for the bonefishing....

Tough choices all around down here in paradise (for any fisherman)... It's my favorite place in this world. Once you're on the water in any direction it's hard to remember that you're actually pretty close to a major metropolitan area....

As you can guess I fish out of both ends of the Park....
 

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February in the glades is a special time. Plus it can be downright miserable here in LA when a front rolls through. The glide will be fantastic running around the interior of the glades especially if you have plenty of fuel onboard.
 

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I would go with , because I have never fished it. And as Zika said, many unmapped rocks on nature coast. Forgotten coast has some but most are mapped. You have options of the O river, Carrabelle river and Apalachicloa river. And a long term rental in a very nice place will cost what 7 days does in season.
 

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Sorry meant go with Everglades. Thoughts change when power goes out while removing refrigerant and you are right at freeze point with no water flow.
 

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In Florida you can't go wrong in February as long as a front is not going through. For a change this year I towed my boat to Louisiana and found out I can catch as many fish in Florida without taking a 10 hour drive. Lemaymaiami and others have already covered South Florida the only thing I will add to their comments is a place called Port of the Islands near Naples. It may have some short term rentals and for sure they have hotel rooms. Fishing in the area is great for snook and reds and there is a nice public ramp at the facility. Nice thing about the location is that it is out of the craziness of winter tourist in Naples but it is close enough if you need to go shopping. Downside is that there is a no wake zone that takes about 30-40 minutes to go through before you get out to the 10,000 Islands.

On the Forgotten Coast a real out of the way place is the Econfina River, about 20 miles from Perry, FL. Near the mouth of the Econfina there is a state park with a great free public ramp. In Feb. great fishing for reds and trout. Like the other places in this area you need to look out for rocks in the water (just go slow and you will be fine until you learn the area). Near the state park their are some campgrounds and rental condos. If you are looking for a place at the end of the world with great fishing this is it.

Good luck with your decision, the great news is you can't make a bad choice!
 
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