TARPON fishing is truly big game fishing and not for the faint hearted, often tipping the scales at 100+ pounds. Tarpon usually start to move into Boca Grande Pass in April and peak in May/June, then scatter around the beaches and Charlotte Harbor. Tarpon are jumpers, often leaping 20 feet or more. Most fish bolt skyward several times between screaming runs before settling down to a game of tug of war. One of the best kept secrets in SW Florida is how great the tarpon fishing is in upper Charlotte Harbor during the summer months. (By the way, Punta Gorda protrudes directly out into upper Charlotte Harbor providing instant access to this great fishing area.) In this area tarpon will range in size from 40-150 pounds. Live bait, pass crabs or artificial baits offer a variety of fishing methods. Try sight fishing for rolling tarpon or drifting live bait through schools of roaming fish to find what works best for you. You can also fish the local Punta Gorda canals or around the bridges for smaller tarpon between 10-40 pounds. (May through September is the best time for this type of fishing.) Or, you can sight fish for larger tarpon off the beaches, best done in May.
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