I’m a life-long fly fisherman who first discovered the Everglades and Pine Island Sound when I moved to Florida in the early 90s.
For the last 20 years, I’ve spent every available minute learning the intricacies of the waterways and increasing my knowledge of the fishery.
I’ve also fished in other parts of the world: Montana, Wyoming, Oregon, California, Cape Cod, Alaska, Baja, Belize, Brazil and Cuba, not to mention my native North Carolina.
Since 2004, I’ve been sharing my fishing experience with other anglers through guided trips.
I’m a licensed and insured Coast Guard captain who is permitted by the U.S. National Park Service to guide in the waters of Everglades National Park.
Welcome to Fly Fish the Glades, a charter fishing service for two great, but distinctively different, nearshore venues, Everglades National Park and Pine Island Sound.
Everglades trips begin in Chokoloskee at the western entrance to the Park. From this jumping-off point, we’ll prowl the shallow Gulf flats that border the western Glades and Ten Thousand Islands or plunge deep into the heart of the Everglades backcountry in search of the Big Three of the flats: snook, redfish and tarpon.
Pine Island Sound trips begin at Punta Rassa, adjacent to the bridge that connects Sanibel Island to the mainland. From there, we can explore the Sound and its bordering waters, Charlotte Harbor and Matlacha Pass, looking for the same Big Three of snook, redfish and tarpon.
Wherever we go, we’ll be poling in shallow water — sometimes with only inches to spare between the hull of the boat and the bottom — searching for the predator fish that roam the flats. Sight-fishing like this is exciting and demanding, requiring stealth, teamwork between angler and guide, careful presentation of fly or lure, and once you hook up, the ability to fight and subdue a powerful adversary.
For those who are concerned about their skill level as anglers, I’m a patient instructor who can help you master the techniques needed for this exciting method of fishing. I offer the option of fly fishing or light-tackle angling.
I look forward to having the opportunity to show you these two great fisheries.
One or two anglers, catch and release only.
Capt. Bill Blanton
Guided fishing trips in Everglades National Park and Pine Island Sound
Capt. Bill Blanton with an Everglades snook.
Photograph by Sue Panther