Some tarpon still around Boca Grande and snook along the Venice Beaches.

Our fishing has been good when weather has allowed us out. we endured rain and hig winds several day but I made the best of it. I spent Wednesday in Orlando at the ICAST tackle convention. it was impressive lots of new gear and all the big names were in attendance. I even shook hands and spoke with our Govenor Rick Scott briefly.

There were way too many things to share the exsperience with you but it was very educational for me and I’ll have some neat new tools to share with you on our fishing trips. the most important point I’d like to share is that our fishing industry is growing and going strog right now!

We are enjoying great action trips near shore right now catching snapper, some grouper, barracda, little tunny and seeing a few permit and king mackerel. inside the snook are active and a few redfish are around also finally. trout are fine just smaller and perfict for the famly trips with the kids. Some jacks, ladyfish, flounder and all are adding excitement too.

We still have tarpon if you don’t mind looking around for them. It is not crowded and fun to poke around exploreing. Lots of manatees and dolphin for your entertainment also. Fishing is fine from Boca grande to Venice right now. Come on down and give it a try soon. Let’s go fishin’ now! Captain Van Hubbard


It’s time to take your children fishing!

          We have several options available for good Summer fishing. Tarpon, the majestic silver kings, are still bunched up along our Gulf Beaches from Venice into Boca Grande Pass and up into Charlotte Harbor. We carry small live blue crabs for bait whenever we can get them. Pinfish and other bait minnows are good also. This time of year we also carry a few artificials to be sure we are always ready for action. You can actually see to cast at the giant fish you are seeking. I’ll promise you’ll never forget the mighty silver king adventure. Most grown men get buck fever and freeze up as the adrenalin jolts your reality; your brain will retain the experience but your hands are out of control. These are truly unforgettable memories. I still get excited every time your silver king soars against the blue skies above our beautiful Gulf waters. Be sure to bring a camera or videotape.

          Snook, those larger trophy tackle testers are available now also. Minnows are our first choice as baits. We can usually cast net or Sabiki a few for the trip. Pinfish and other minnows also produce and can be caught easier most days. We utilize a few lures here but prefer “lures by God” or natural baits if possible. Fly fishing can produce some hot action now if you’re looking for fun. Some tides are better but we can almost always catch a few even under challenging conditions. Forty years of snook guiding experience and quality gear enhances our odds. This fishing frequently allows us to see the trophy snook we are targeting! We even get to observe the bite often! We caught a dozen snook from thirty to over forty inches Saturday the twenty-eighth of June with Amy, Brian, and Tom.

          Children’s trips work well now with them out of school. We can find something to catch, bending their rods adding smiles to their beautiful faces. It’s hot by mid day, welcome to Southwest Florida in Summer. We just work around the heat of the day by starting out early. The 23 Dorado does have some shade, charters are family fun; we can select a quiet white sand beach to hop out and cool off in the beautiful Gulf waters if you desire. This is your trip; let me know what you want and I’ll try to please. Your recommendations are the best advertising money can’t buy. We observe dolphin, manatees, and much more besides fish; many fun family memories to cherish forever.

          I want to thank everyone for using my services and sharing time on our beautiful Venice to Boca Grande, Florida waters. It has been wonderful. Our baitfish situation has been inconsistent so far, but it’s improving. We do have abundant tiny minnows that are growing up rapidly. In the mean time threadfins have been a back up most days. So I’m left with making a tough decision; live minnow trips are on hold as minnows grow up. Reality is we can usually enjoy good tarpon action for the next month or more. If we can catch any minnows large enough to fish with then we can catch and release a few trophy snook. We can fish shrimp or tiny minnows for snapper or trout and anything else that bites for us. We can even try trolling state waters for a few gag grouper if your game, they open up the First of July. I’ll do whatever I can to help share a memorable day on our local waters. Thank you, let’s go fishin’ soon. Captain Van Hubbard. Check out web site at for more info and bookings you can call me at 941-468-4017.

Summertime fishing is fine from Venice to Boca Grande now; come try it.

Venice to Boca Grande has enjoyed good fishing and it will improve with our New Moon this week.

          Tarpon are still a primary target species for the next month or two. We will have silver kings off and on into September. This week was challenging because we endured West winds that hamper our comfort in the near shore Gulf waters.  As soon as we get back to normal morning Southeast winds catching will improve. Crabs are our best baits early and threadfins are good if we can catch some after sunup. I believe Boca Grande tarpon action will improve after the Forth Weekend. Venice Beach fishing depends upon their migrations to and from Boca.

          Snook action has been sporadic but mostly because minnows are tough to catch. We do have a influx of smaller baitfish that are growing up fast to help here.  Most of the fish are catching are large trophy fish from 30 – 40 inches and longer. Lots of fun on lighter spinning gear. Normal wind patterns will help us here also because we frequently fish these out in the Gulf now also from Englewood to Venice Beach.

          Snapper are abundant in our Passes and near shore reefs. They are smaller but great eating. Barracuda are also on the reef systems. Some Spanish and a few kings still hang around if we are lucky.

          Redfish and trout are available and picking up a few with the smaller minnows.

I hope your Summer is going well it’s great to live here and fish with wonderful folks like you. Thank you; hope to share a day on our beautiful waters soon. Don’t forget my specialty children’s trips; just what they need for fishing fun. Captain Van Hubbard

Veince fishing is great what are you waiting for?

Captain Van Hubbard fishing report for 26 April 2014. 

It looks like our crazy weather is over and Spring fishing is fine.

          Gulf and inside waters have cleared up finally and fishing is improving. The Gulf is still a little cooler than it normally is in almost May but we could see bottom in 40 feet of water from Venice Beach to Boca Grande Pass; so prospects look bright for our fishing future. We even saw several large flying fish last week; a sure sign of clean waters. Inside has cleared up also since we have not had any rain recently..

          On inside trips we are getting a few redfish, some snook, and plenty of trout. Bait minnows are almost impossible right now and this has hampered our backcountry catching. Plenty of pinfish but almost no whitebait and that’s tough on us all. Many of us have discussed this problem and God only knows what will change and when. The little bit of minnows around are not responding to chum this year? Even Captain Van’s Magic Chum has not enticed the whitebait into range of my deadly cast net. Fortunately we have options.

          Outside is much better with some king and plenty of Spanish mackerel to please anglers. They pull hard, have liberal bag limits, and make great meals; that’s making my folks happy. We got several permit last week and expect to see some cobia but none so far. Sharks are missing with the big black balls of baitfish but I hear some are just south of me now. I’m excited about the big Spring fish migration that has not materialized here yet. We also have had some nice mango snapper to enhance the dinner plate. Everything seems to be coming together both in and out side and I’m ready to tangle with all of them; come help.

          I do have a few days open next week Wednesday the last day of snook season also May 1 &2 if you can get away on weekdays. Also the 14 and 27 this month and several days in June prime tarpon or catch and release snook action. This has been a very busy year so far and it’s wonderful.

          Tarpon are beginning to show up around Boca Grande Pass and should start moving up towards Venice on the Beaches soon.  It’s time to get out and enjoy our beautiful waters and great fishing! Let’s go fishin’ now! Captain Van Hubbard <>

Venice action catching up, Boca Grande mackerel action hot!

Finally our winds back off a few days to allow access to great near shore Gulf fishing.

          We had a couple days we could get out and enjoy the mackerel bite on the near shore artificial reef systems. The action was almost too fast for me to keep up with the Makowski Family Wednesday morning. They wanted to enjoy some family time saltwater fishing. We got lucky on the weather; so they had the time of a lifetime. Older daughter Abby actually suffered a sore arm from reeling in so many fish, seriously, lol. Brother Noah stayed on his game and even had a big barracuda thrill as the three foot fish chased his big blue runner right beside the boat. It even jumped alongside and had everyone excited. Kylie was the youngest but caught so many fish she lost count; but did claim all if them at the cleaning table on Little Gasparilla Island after out trip. This Michigan family went home with a mess of fish and some wonderful memories. It was a pleasure to help Kyle and Katy share quality time with their awesome children.

          The inside/bay fishing is still up and down with no minnows yet? Our waters are warming back up again; so I have my Captain Van’s Magic Chum handy and ready when minnows do show up. Trout and macks save or trips inside but I do expect to see more snook soon. We are getting a few on shrimp but minnows will help here as the pinfish are back. We are catching fish most of the time but not like I’m used to; I could be a little spoiled?

          We trolled blue runners awhile up by Venice for king mackerel again yesterday but none yet. Bait outside is available but not showing at the surface. The warmer water should help here too. Predictions are for continued warming so Spring appears to be arriving here now. Birds are headed north and flowers are blooming.

          Boca Grande tarpon and snook action will pick up soon don’t miss the action. I have limited openings so don’t wait to make your reservations please. If I’m already booked I can usually help you get hooked up with a good guide. Also note that you may want to give me the chance to talk with you before you book because the captain fishing during the day is on top of the fish while the guys at home answering the phone is, well at home! Book with local guides and get the experience you desire and pay for. Thank you Captain Van Hubbard

Captain Van Hubbard

P.O. Box 146
Placida, FL 33946



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