Big Gamefish Are Closest to the Shores
of Saint Augustine in the Summertime!
The warm waters of Summer along the sunny coast of St Augustine bring the large bluewater gamefish we love to catch closest to shore that they will be anytime during the year.
During the Summer months, Wahoo, Mahi-mahi and Sailfish can be encountered within 15 miles of the St Augustine shoreline. This is the best opportunity for anglers to catch these highly desirable pelagic species during a basic 4 hour, half day fishing charter.
Any other time of the year, catching Wahoo, Mahi-mahi or Sailfish usually requires a full day or extended 12 hour fishing charter or even an overnight trip in a large (and expensive) vessel to reach the edge of the Gulf Stream some 50 to 70 miles from shore. It's a potentially dangerous and fuel-eating journey to the Gulf Stream but this is where Wahoo, Mahi-mahi and Sailfish are found most any most other time of the year.
Even near shore species such as King Mackerel and Cobia, can be caught much closer to the shores of St Augustine during the warm Summer months. So if you want to fish for big gamefish without a long journey out to sea, Summer in Saint Augustine is the time and place to do it!
Kingfish are Plentiful During the Summer Months
King Mackerel (aka Kingfish or just Kings) are one of the most targeted offshore game fish during the long Summer months in St Augustine. That's because Kingfish are perhaps the most abundant of the large pelagic species you'll encounter on an offshore fishing charter in St Augustine, they can be found close to shore and are a lot of fun to catch on light tackle.
During the Summer, they can be caught in water as shallow as 20 feet or less, feeding on schools of pogies (Atlantic menhaden) that travel along the St Augustine beaches. Kingfish can also be found near the many reefs, ledges and shipwrecks off the coast of St Augustine.
Summer is the Best Time for Tarpon Fishing in St Augustine
During the late summer, big Tarpon begin showing up within 5 miles of shore. Tarpon, also known as the Silver King, are perhaps the toughest fighting fish in the world and are well known for their high flying leaps when hooked.
As long as the water is warm, usually June through September, big Tarpon, up to over 150 pounds and from five to seven feet in length, can be caught just off the coast of St Augustine.
However, the later in the summer you fish for Tarpon, the closer you'll find the big boys to shore, especially near the inlets. August is considered the best month for Tarpon Fishing in Saint Auustine.
Bottom fishing in Saint Augustine is great year round!
In the Summer, however, the weather is more predictable from week to week than most other times of the year with calm mornings and frequent afternoon thunderstorms but no cold fronts from the north and only rare tropical disturbances to deal with.
Fish most commonly caught when bottom fishing off the coast of St Augustine include a wide variety of Snapper and Grouper, Amberjacks, Triggerfish, Weakfish, Black Sea Bass and many more species. Mutton Snapper, Mangrove Snapper, Lane Snapper and Red Snapper are especially plentiful when bottom fishing in Saint Augustine.
You'll also encounter Cobia, Kingfish, Tarpon, Barracuda and Sharks feeding off the reef fish. Flounder found on the reefs are especially large and plentiful during the Summer months!
Plenty of Artificial Reefs to Fish!
Just off the coast of Saint Augustine lies a large and diverse collection of underwater habitats for bottom dwelling species such as wrecks, natural ledges and rock piles as well as artificial reefs laid down by St. Johns County. Florida leads the world in artificial reefs. These immensely successful and intensely inhabited reefs consist of scuttled vessels such as retired barges and tugboats and large amounts of discarded concrete bric-brac such as bridge pilings, bridge platforms and jersey barriers. There are 10 to 20 artificial reefs within 20 miles of shore. With good conditions, any of these reefs are reachable on a half day fishing charter with Captain Danny.
Jack Crevalles, Bonito, Spanish Mackerel and More!
We've just scratched the surface when it comes to Summertime Offshore Fishing in Saint Augustine. The schools of pogies (Atlantic menhaden) that travel along the St Augustine coastline are followed and fed on by many more species besides Tarpon and King Mackerel.
There are plenty of Sharks and Cobia and schools of Jacks, Bluefish, Bonitos and Spanish Mackerel. Fishing for big, hard hitting and hard fighting Jack Crevalles, averaging 25 pounds are more, peaks during the Summer months in Saint Augustine.
Some of the most fertile estuaries in all of Florida!
The Matanzas, Tolomato and Guana River basins around St Augustine form the largest and most pristine habitat for inshore and backwater fishing between Jacksonville and Cape Canaveral. These shallow rivers flow through many miles of rich, flat marshland north and south of Saint Augustine. Stretches of the rivers widen considerably as they meander through the marshes towards Saint Augustine and Matanzas Inlets forming bays with even more prime habitat for inshore species.
The “Northeast Florida Slam”
The fertile estuarine waters of the Matanzas, Tolomato and Guana Rivers are home to a wide variety of saltwater species and offer great fishing year round. Summertime in St Augustine offers plenty of opportunities to accomplish a “Northeast Florida Slam” catching a Redfish, Spotted Sea Trout and Flounder in the same day.
In the summer, the waters of the creeks that feed these rivers and bays warm up. Redfish move into deeper water, schooling at the mouths of creeks where they empty into deeper, cooler water. Top water fishing at dawn is a great way to catch hungry, hard hitting redfish during the summer months.
By summer, large female flounder have returned to the rivers and creeks after spawning offshore during the winter. You may even catch one of the huge "doormat" size female flounder during a summer inshore fishing trip in St Augustine.
Spotted Sea Trout (aka Speckled Trout) like redfish, can be caught year round and there's no shortage of these great tasting fish during the summer months. Spotted Sea Trout offer exciting top-water action all summer long and are easy catches for anglers of all ages.
Plenty More to Catch When Fishing Inshore in St Augustine!
Other species may be caught in the summertime on inshore fishing trips in St Augustine. Although more commonly caught during cooler months, you may wind up hooking into a large Black Drum, the hard fighting cousin of the more famous Redfish (Red Drum) and like redfish, very good table fare.
There are sharks in the bays as well, especially Atlantic Sharpnose Sharks and Bonnethead or Shovelhead Sharks. Although smaller than their offshore counterparts, sharks caught on an inshore fishing charter are still lots of fun to catch for all ages!
You may even catch a Snook, Sheepshead, Mangrove Snapper or Spanish Mackerel while fishing inshore in Saint Augustine. Either way, there's plenty of fish to catch inshore all summer long!
Make the most of your Summer visit to Saint Augustine with a Private Fishing Trip with Captain Danny and Long Line Fishing Charters!
More about Offshore Fishing Charters and Inshore Fishing Charters in St Augustine with Captain Danny.
For Fishing Trip Prices see our Charter Rates page.
Let's Go Fishing in Saint Augustine!