Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Hi Guys,

I’m doing another trip to the area this fall (October). I did the trip back in 2011 and really enjoyed it. We stayed at Rod and Gun at the time. I am looking to stay at a different place this time that has a kitchen so we don’t have to eat out every evening. I see a few places on vrbo that have what we need. Local information is always best so I’m hoping you guys can give us some recommendations. I saw Glades Haven...but am wondering how easy the pass out of choko is at low tide  

Leaving the boat in the water and leaving out of Indian Key pass each day was really easy last time. Hoping for something just as easy this go round. 

Thanks as always

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Outdoor resort on Choko, not the nicest place I have ever stayed but it’s somewhere  to sleep with cold AC and a shower. Each room has a small kitchen, and a marina to leave the boat in. I am pretty sure he does not have gas there anymore so you will have to pull your boat out to gas up. At least he didn’t the last few times we stayed there, talk to Kenny he runs the place. We have been staying there for 20+ years. If you are taking wife and kids I would look elsewhere, but for a group of fisherman it works.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Try calling kenny at outdoor resorts. Impeccable facility with 3 pools and hot tubs. People rent their rv's out at reasonable prices. Most of them have included deeded docks which are all part of the deal. Try everglades city hotel as well, recently remodeled pretty nice place only draw back is no pool and you would have to pull your boat out. A lot of people are afraid of running rabbit key pass as well as chokoloskee pass, you definitely need local knowledge or an FMT chip. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is Choko pass marked at all? Also, can it be navigated in a flats boat at low tide? Google earth shows somewhat of a winding channel until you get to the deeper water part of the pass. You guys that have put your time in there would know best. I def would want to follow someone out the first day to get the tracks on my gps

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

choko pass is way harder to navigate than rabbit key pass in my personal opinion. Rabbit key pass has one turn where if you miss by 2 or 2 1/2 feet on each side your in the sand- s-turn-which scares a lot of people away. Don't rely on following someone unless you talk to them first. Ive seen first hand 80,000-120,000 dollar bay boats beach them selves in choko pass and rabbit key because they don't know where they are going. If your in a bayfisher you can go through choko pass as well as rabbit on a low tide. On an extreme winter negative low is where you might start worrying about running aground.

I would do yourself a favor and invest in a Florida Marine Track chip. Glenn, the owner/inventor has personally run all of his tracks he has on his chip and has all bars/oyster beads marked on chip. You need to be running simrad, lowrance,  B/G unit and maybe hummingbird for the chip to work. It will totally change the way you fish the 10k. That chip has put a lot of the learning curve that most people have invested in that area right out the window. The value of that chip is priceless and I'm baffled it isn't a standard feature on all shallow water/ bay boats in the florida region.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, I appreciate the insight. I checked out the chip online. Don’t think it will work with my little Garmin. Very cool and could see how it would be priceless though. We did a lot of exploring on the last trip but never put ourselves in a bad situation. Very cautious to say the least. Worst experience we had was running on the outside (due to low tide and not knowing the backside shallows) from Pavillion Key back to Indian Key pass during a thunderstorm. Got beat up pretty good in the skiff

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/30/2018 at 5:13 PM, Geaux Time said:

Don’t think it will work with my little Garmin.

No does not work on Garmin...that's why I went with a SIMRAD EVO2 9NSS

For the occasional fisherman to the area I would recommend you NOT try Chokoloskee or Rabbit Key Passes....low or even medium tide.

Stay at the Rod and Gun or EC hotels or even Outdoor resorts and launch on the Barron River and take the markers out to the gulf....

I learned the areas out front by launching at the Rod and Gun and even now, on a negative low, I'll put in my boat over there as I know I can get in or out of the river...only have the ramp to deal with...and it's good enough...

The EC hotel has been rebuilt...I don't know the conditions.....The other option is the Port of the Islands down the road...very nice accommodations, just long idle zone...

For VBR check with Rubble on the forum..he rents a house on the river...or check with a local realestate...from 2011 there have been a lot of new condos built and you should be able to find something.....or as mentioned, the OR trailers...at Chokoloskee Island Park..they do rent trailers....I don't know that part of the pass, so when I stayed there...I actually trailered the boat over to Outdoor resorts to launch or you could go to the Rod and Gun....yeah, it's a bit of a pain, but, better to take a bit of time vs. loosing a lower unit if you are not familiar with the area...I would have to run to get bait anyways at 0600 as the CIP doesn't open for bait till after 0700....

For bait during the season...Alana at Everglades Bait and tackle has the best tackle and bait selection and she will reserve bait...just tell her Dino and Don recommended her....I'll get a few big shrimps maybe :)

 

Just my $.02.....

 

dc

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks as always guys. Your input means a lot. We fished artificials 80% of the time on the last trip and did well. We happened upon a school of white bait on the last day of the trip and crushed the fish after filling the live well. Snook, redfish, even hooked a jewfish. As he trip gets closer I’ll touch base with you all to see if you will be around that week. Be nice to put a face with the names and reports I read. 

Scott

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Choko Island Park is a great option.  You will be fine in a flats boat out of there.  I've taken my 2000v Pathy out of there FULLY loaded for a week in the glades at Neg Tide.  It's bumpy until you get out of the Now Wake area and it is marked with channel markers from there.  Unit 67 is what we stayed in.  It is the first trailer in front of the ramp.  Newly remodeled.  Very clean.  Nice kitchen.  Kind of tight quarters but very adequate.  Two bedrooms with twin beds in each.  Can leave your boat in a slip.  It's really skinny in the marina so need to be cautious.  

There is also Pleasure Island which is the little island in the Baron River across from the Rod and Gun.  Very nice homes.  Plenty of room.  Swimming pool and club house.  You are on an island so there are no vehicles there but you can boat across or maybe they still have a guy that will shuttle you over on a pontoon.  

There are a few houses there on VRBO.  Also saw a house on the Southern Tip of Choko that was on VRBO.  Looked like it was a well known Fly guy's guest house.  I think it has it's own channel with dock and ramp but it can be tricky navigating around the island there.  I was there with a friend that stopped by to visit the owner once and then again with a guide who pulled in to meet with a TV crew staying in the guest house.  It's a nice place as well and fairly secluded   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/5/2018 at 4:10 PM, rubble said:

Choko Island Park is a great option.  You will be fine in a flats boat out of there.  I've taken my 2000v Pathy out of there FULLY loaded for a week in the glades at Neg Tide.  It's bumpy until you get out of the Now Wake area and it is marked with channel markers from there.  Unit 67 is what we stayed in.  It is the first trailer in front of the ramp.  Newly remodeled.  Very clean.  Nice kitchen.  Kind of tight quarters but very adequate.  Two bedrooms with twin beds in each.  Can leave your boat in a slip.  It's really skinny in the marina so need to be cautious.  

Dang Rubble...now you are making me look bad....I still have not had the courage to run the "trench" out front of CIP.....I assumed you were slow idling :)  U da Man....I'm waiting to get over a weekend ConOcean is there and put a track on and follow him out ......

I stayed in # 9 in the back...but, trailered over to Out Doors Resorts just because I know my routes :)

Maybe with my FMT chip...I need to give it a try......

DC

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most rigs can't get through on the inside of Pavillion on low water conditions but it's no problem when the water is up.    You will never be able to determine that on your Garmin. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is Choko pass marked from the tip of the island to the gulf? I can see a few markers near the island on google earth but not further west. Also, if any of you have used the navionics app, is it somewhat accurate?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Navionics is a traditional chart style chip, everything is labeled nicely and is easy to understand but no where near comparable to FMT as far as navigating. Most markers are gone after Irma, don't rely on them being there. To answer your question, I have used app, its dated, imagery is not clear.

 

Here's a link to a discussion regarding your question. After reading you'll find yourself at you local west marine buying a simrad.

http://forums.floridasportsman.com/discussion/250554/choko-s-turn-gps-track/p1

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, heweymagoos said:

Navionics is a traditional chart style chip, everything is labeled nicely and is easy to understand but no where near comparable to FMT as far as navigating. Most markers are gone after Irma, don't rely on them being there. To answer your question, I have used app, its dated, imagery is not clear.

 

Here's a link to a discussion regarding your question. After reading you'll find yourself at you local west marine buying a simrad.

http://forums.floridasportsman.com/discussion/250554/choko-s-turn-gps-track/p1

Great thread....I have the Evo 9 NSS and the FMT.....game changer for sure...

The Elite's will work, but, I opted for the dial on the simrad vs screen touch....i had the screen touch on the garmin and in rough water it was difficult to zoom, but the $$$ diff is significant....but, for me, it's part of the hobby.

 

dc

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/6/2018 at 5:26 PM, Wanaflatsfish said:

Dang Rubble...now you are making me look bad....I still have not had the courage to run the "trench" out front of CIP.....I assumed you were slow idling :)  U da Man....

Pulling out of the dock and all the way to Smallwood’s is def slow idling.  The trench in front of the ramp is probably the most difficult thing to maneuver. Tough when you have a shoal marker right where you launch. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most people get stuck on the bars in the ENP due to looking at their GPS screens rather than reading the water. That's fact. I suggest you idle around the first day at low tide to get a feel of where NOT to run. 

The rentals at Choko Island Park are reasonable and decent. There are dozens of really good places to fish within sight of Choko and you won't even need to get on a plane. 

There's nothing more rewarding than finding fish using a map & compass instead of using GPS. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, conocean said:

here are dozens of really good places to fish within sight of Choko and you won't even need to get on a plane. 

Aint no fish within sight of Choko....you gotta run at least 20 miles to find da feeeeesh !!!

 

dc

 

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×