Roadside Ditch Snook & Tarpon Fishing In The Everglades

I’ve always wanted to stop to do some roadside ditch snook and tarpon fishing in the Everglades.

Just last week, I finally got my chance.

Fishing Coach Matt Lanier and I were making our way back from The Florida Keys when we stopped to fish some roadside brackish water for snook and tarpon.

Take a look!!

Roadside Ditch Snook And Tarpon Fishing [VIDEO]

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Links To Gear Used:

We get to the water and I am PUMPED to get a line in the water.

The water was dark due to the color of the bottom but the clarity was very clear.

Having not done this before, I was looking for any signs of life or movement around us.

After not seeing much action and trying a couple of spots, I was beginning to feel dejected and thought I was wasting my time.

But after about a half hour or so, something chased my lure and I was able to pick up on a trend.

I had the Power Prawn USA Junior rigged up but after noticing the smaller tarpon responding to small bait moving fast through the water, I made a quick adjustment.

I pinched off the tail of the Power Prawn USA to create a 2.5-inch nub lure.

A tarpon hit my lure on the first cast and then 3 casts later I was hooked up!

As the bite slowed down, we walked back across the road to fish the other side.

It was a smaller area to fish on that side, however, it was filled with fish, and there was action almost immediately.

After getting snagged but recovering my hook, I saw a fish slowly moving right beneath me.

I dropped the lure down and one twitch later my rod was bent!

A beautiful snook gulped down the Power Prawn USA right off the side of the road!!!

Later on, we got back in the truck and drove to another roadside spot that looked promising.

There was a creek that ran underneath the road as well connecting both sides.

I’m sure glad we stopped because we got into some action right away!

Slingshot Un-Snag Method

In case you’re not familiar with the Slingshot Un-Snag Method, pull the line really tight and let go.

The stretch of the line shoots the lure backward and is surprisingly effective at releasing your snagged hooks and lures.

This helps get your gear back out of hard structure and keeps you fishing instead of tying up new rigs.

Lessons Learned

  • Lure Selection

Don’t be afraid to change your lures out for another, but remain strategic and focus on retrieve first and then the size.

On this trip, I played around with different retrieves to see what the fish were interested in.

Then, I made the change to a smaller profile which ended up being the ticket for the entire trip.

  • 90/10 Fishing Zone

At any given time, 90% of the feeding fish are in 10% of the water.

If you can put yourself in front of the fish on every trip, then you’re maximizing your efforts to find success each and every time you hit the water.

Gear and tackle won’t get it done alone, you’ve got to try and put yourself in those particular feeding zones.

➡Get the 90/10 Recipe for YOUR Area


This was such a memorable trip and I’m so grateful we were able to stop and fish these creeks on our way back from The Keys.

A trip like this also goes to show that paying attention can cause you to make slight adjustments that can lead to your success.

If you have some time, go ahead and drop a line in roadside creeks (make sure you are able to fish there first!!).

Do you have any other questions about this trip?

Insider Members be sure to check out the full pre and post-trip analysis in my report HERE.

Please leave a comment down below if you have any questions!!

Finding The Fish Help

In order to help make sure that you are targeting the right areas based on the latest feeding trends and upcoming weather forecasts, make sure to use the following 3 resources because they will save you a ton of time.

1. Weekend Game Plans (updated weekly)

These regional game plans will show you exactly what types of spots to target in under 10 minutes… just click the video to start, and you’ll be informed on what to do on your next trip.

➡ Weekend Game Plan Lessons

2. Smart Fishing Spots Platform (updated every 15 minutes)

This exclusive software literally shows you where the most fish are likely to be feeding based on exactly when you’ll be fishing. It factors in the tides, wind, and weather to help you quickly see which areas to target throughout the day.

➡ Smart Fishing Spots App

3. Community Reports (live feed)

The Insider Community platform is what you can use to see what is biting near you, and you can get to know other members who fish in your area. Plus, you can use it to keep a log of your catches so you can use past trips to help predict future catches.

➡ Community Platform 

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William Fishburne
10 months ago

You mention above several things that Smart Fishing Spots takes into consideration. What about water temperature?

Jamin Garbe
10 months ago

so cool man

Luke Simonds
10 months ago
Reply to  Jamin Garbe

Thanks for making time to post the nice comment!

Luis Arana
10 months ago

You guys were hitting my go-to spots during this time of the year for roadside fishing on the Tamiami Trail for freshwater snook and poons. Nathaniel Reed center bridge is the only bridge not to allow fishing, but the footbridge you guys were on is a choice location. In fact, I was in that area two weeks ago on a kayak fishing trip after the last front and reported fish kills south of that area,.

I also know that second spot well lol. You can fish all the bridges and nooks east of Carnes town all the way to Marco city limits along the trail for all sorts of goodies if the weather, heat, mosquitoes, and trucks allow you to. Fun times! Reminds me of my earlier non-boat/kayak days where the truck was the land craft.

Luke Simonds
10 months ago
Reply to  Luis Arana

Thanks for making time to post the helpful comment!

10 months ago

That mystery fish was a Mayan cichlid!

Luke Simonds
10 months ago
Reply to  Josh

Thanks for posting the helpful comment Josh! Those mayan cichlids sure were fun to catch.

10 months ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

Happy to help. They’re all over the place down there. They are very aggressive and will eat any number of baits/lures. They fight hard so they’re fun to catch despite their small size. They are invasive so you could keep as many as you want of them. Although I have never eaten them myself, I hear they are good to eat.

Bob Wagner
9 months ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

Luke … Josh was correct. They are Mayan cichlid … also known as Oscars. When I was a park manager in Ft Myers, a bunch of us guys would drive down there and catch a 100 of those .. clean them and have a big fish fry for the park. Excellent eating …


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