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America’s Best Saltwater Fly Fishing Spots

The United States has a plethora of fishing spots, whether you’re looking for saltwater or freshwater varieties. Massive game fish can be caught offshore in Florida and the Gulf Coast, while monster trout can be caught in rivers in Missoula, Montana and around the Great Lakes. All along the Gulf Coast and southeastern coastline are populated spots with hungry saltwater fish such as redfish, bonefish and spotted sea trout. Bottom line, bring a variety of saltwater fly patterns to prepare yourself for whatever species and conditions you encounter! 

The atmosphere that you will be fishing in is also important. For many anglers, fishing is seen as the ultimate activity to relax and unwind; and for others it’s about the adrenaline-filled hunt. Aside from relaxation or adventure – both staples of fishing in general – the best saltwater fly fishing spots around the country all offer tremendous opportunities to catch a personal record redfish or spotted sea trout on a saltwater fly.

As we previously wrote about America’s best fishing spots include calm rivers and lakes, but there’s something to be said about traversing out in the ocean waters searching for the fish just waiting to jump onto your line. Below are a few of the top coastal spots to cast your saltwater flies in all of the United States. 

Galveston, Texas

Load up your tackle with any new saltwater flies you want to try, because Galveston is textbook redfish territory with all its flats, grass and mud. Redfish eat a diet of crustaceans so a saltwater fly pattern mimicking a shrimp or crab usually works wonders. 

Galveston is an incredible melting pot of saltwater species! Black drum can also be caught and are much larger than redfish (also known as red drum). The drawback of catching black drum is, they are not nearly as tasty as their red counterparts. Speckled sea trout, flounder and sheepshead can also be caught on a saltwater fly. Experienced boating anglers typically utilize a poling skiff to allow the boat to get into the perfect position without spooking the fish.

Georgetown, South Carolina

Georgetown is one of the largest watersheds on the entire East Coast of the United States. Four rivers contribute to the bay making it a metropolitan of different fish species, and thus a good potential “laboratory” for you to test out various saltwater flies and fishing techniques. Speckled sea trout, bonefish, redfish, snook, flounder and tarpon can all be caught, to name a few. It’s also possible to hook a shark on a saltwater fly since the ecosystem of Georgetown’s large bay is rich and highly diverse. 

Due to the bay’s water movement, in addition to skillful casting it’s extremely helpful to know the tides. If you are inexperienced but want to try your hand at any of these exciting fish, consider connecting with a fly fishing guide to show you the best approaches.

Miami, Florida

The city of Miami has so many large inlets there’s ample space to fish the flats or offshore. When fishing Florida’s flats, you’ll find many mangroves and underwater ledges close to shore to practice strategically placing your saltwater flies. Bonefish season is immensely important to Florida’s fishing ecosystem, which is healthiest in October. This month not only brings bonefish but also cooler temperatures when compared to the scorching Florida summers. Early morning when the water is flat is the best time to catch these incredibly speedy fish that can also put up an immense fight for their size and weight. 

Do not be surprised to find species like cobia or king mackerel so make sure you have an appropriate line. A steel liter is often used for larger fish or fish that have sharp gills like a snook. Hooking a huge redfish or snook is pretty common when fishing inshore around most areas of Florida. Floating a saltwater fly where you see fins close to shore could win a monster hit on your fly from a bull redfish. Late summer to early fall is the best time of the year to catch redfish so get prepared right away! Do not be surprised if you pull up a stingray as they feed on similar bait and have similar feeding patterns as redfish.

The aforementioned cities are great for fall trips since all have reasonably moderate climates. If you’re looking to soak up the sun year-round, Miami is a must. Research more about these areas to learn the best specific spots and what gear to use to increase your likelihood of having an unforgettable fly fishing trip. Wherever you choose, taking a saltwater fishing trip is one of the best ways to see the beauty the coastal US has to offer. With countless locations, you have plenty of options to cast your favorite saltwater fly patterns, and of course catch a photo op while you’re at it.  

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