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Recommendation for Keys dock fishing

Old 10-15-2018, 05:04 AM
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Default Recommendation for Keys dock fishing

I am heading down the Cub Scout campground in Big Pine Key next weekend for a campout with my son. I believe that there is a pier at the site so I am looking for recommendations for rod/reel set-up as well as bait. I have experience fishing freshwater from the shore (peacock bass, largemouth bass, blue gills, etc) but not saltwater so I am looking for any input. Thanks!
Old 10-15-2018, 05:23 AM
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Most of what will be at the dock should be Mangrove snapper. You can 1/0 sized hooks or smaller No weight. unless you want to cast out and let the bait soak.

Live or dead shrimp or cut mullet or squid will work too.


If you want, get a chum bag and a chum block and the snapper will go crazy. Some nurse sharks may come around.


Rod setups for just dock fishing can be 2500- 4000 sized reels and medium action rods. 10-15 pound mono.


A penn fierce II size 3000 combo would be fine. ($90 msrp)

It really depends on your budget.

Penn Pursuit combos are a little cheaper.
Old 10-15-2018, 07:54 AM
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If you can get some fish bodies and folks have been cleaning fish on the docks I have found that hooking up the yellow fish eggs can get strikes. Live pilchards or other live bait can get some strikes also.


One of my buddies came down with some really light freshwater gear, 6 pound test or less and we didn't have much luck keeping the fish on. I would recommend 12 pound test or bigger.
Old 10-16-2018, 11:04 AM
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There is a fishing pier on the north side of US1, when you leave Camp Sawyer make a left and it is just ahead on the right side. Remember my son catching a monster parrot fish there and was happy to toss it back after a quick picture. Try timing your fishing with the moving tide as not much happens at slack. Ideally toss your bait out into the water and have it drift under the pier, fish will hang out in the shadow of the pier. Tackle? Simple spinning rod with 10# test will be fine. Grab a couple of sabiki bait rigs and drop one when nothing's biting - you are sure to pull up small grunts, and other colorful little fish - kids don't care as long as the fish are biting.

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