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Solo trip to Chokoloskee to fish the Ten Thousand Islands yesterday and check out some areas I have not fished. 3:57 a.m. high tide meant only a little bit of out-going water to fish before the slack tide. I launched at OR around 6:15 a.m. to one of the most beautiful sunrises ever. Fishing mostly to the south on artificial baits (plugs, soft plastics on jig heads or twist-lock hooks, GULP! shrimp), I caught a mixed bag: rat reds and a couple at the lower end of the slot; half dozen snook--mostly small; couple of nice trout; some jacks; and I found the Big Uglies! This one was hefty and measured 24" so it was fun on light tackle. The water was as high as I've seen since the hurricane upon my return to the dock (which was underwater!).
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Here are a few pictures from the day.
 

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Nice report DB! I was there last week and had similar results....high tide too....but not quite that high. At one point....there was a large baitball behind us, with something busting the bait. Pretty sure it was jacks and ladyfish. So I throw over with the rod I had in my hand. A large tarpon whacked my 3-inch Gulp shrimp. I’m totally out-gunned. An hour later.....the big girl decided she was tired of my foolishness....and spit the hook.
 

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Everybody and their neighbor was in Flamingo on the 4th. Saw similar beautiful sunrise!
Caught more reds yesterday than I have in 2 years. All between 18-22". Must be that all the rats from last year have grown up. Snook fishing was on fire!! In one spot it was every cast
24-26" for 15-20 minutes. My thumb is like sandpaper.
 

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Everybody and their neighbor was in Flamingo on the 4th. Saw similar beautiful sunrise!
Caught more reds yesterday than I have in 2 years. All between 18-22". Must be that all the rats from last year have grown up. Snook fishing was on fire!! In one spot it was every cast
24-26" for 15-20 minutes. My thumb is like sandpaper.
It’s funny, I fished the 4th in Flamingo too and couldn’t find a snook anywhere we were fishing but the trout were like that. Every cast, we even caught 3 on a bare hook after we lost our plastic but it was too crazy to put another on. Found a spot where we pulled 7-8 reds out, same size as you, but still haven’t seen a school of reds for 2 years now. Hopefully the park keeps bouncing back and salinity stays down. The sunrise was absolutely beautiful though!
 
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