Key West Christmas Fishing Forecast

Christmas New Years fishing forecast for Key West

Yellowtail Snappers Reef fishing

Sunday December 22 2019 – As the end of the year comes to a close we have one last bang for our fishing Key West. Christmas / New years week. I always say that Christmas fishing tourist season starts on the 23 of December. This year due to the weather thats about right. Even though we have had our books filled solid the last week, we have not been able to get folks out. Extreme winds and occasional rain have had us pinned to the dock and nothing to report.
So, that leaves me putting up a Key West fishing forecast. My best guess from what I have seen in the 25 plus years guiding here in Key West as to what to expect when the weather lets up on Monday afternoon the 23rd..

Yellowtail snapper
Yellowtail Snapper fresh for dinner caught on the reef of Key West.

Key West Christmas / New Years Fishing Forecast

What to expect? Well, thats easy. Lets start off by talking about the weather.
Monday afternoon the 23rd it looks as though things will come back to normal. The winds will switch from the NW to a Northerly and then North Easterly pattern coming off the 25- 30 to a modest 10-15 for the most of the week eventually clocking out of the East.
The temps will drop a bit on Tuesday the 24th from this low that is bashing us this morning here in Key West with heavy rains and strong winds. Strangly enough the humidity will drop to a (low for us) of 45-55% on Tuesday and Wednesday and then things will warm back up for the rest of week on into New Years day where we usher in another front on the 2nd and 3rd of January.
Till Then…. Lets Go Fishing.

As the temps drop a touch on Tuesday and Wednesday I don’t see any huge affect on the fishing across the board. 70 degree weather really has no affect on us except in the shallows of the backcountry and on the flats where things are already in winter mode waiting for REALLY cooler temps to spark of the fire that is our winter fishing back there.

Backcountry / Flats Fishing

With the winds coming down, the water clearing up after all the rain and Easterly directions expect the water temps to come back up after Wednesdays little chill making the backcountry fishing one of our best arenas for fishing in Christmas and New Years for several reasons.

Nice catches of sea trout like these are a daily occurance here on our trips at Dream Catcher Charters.

The Key West flats fishing will still hold bonefish and permit, there have not been a lot of tarpon around but if the sight fishermen want a target and have some patience my bet is there are some trophies to be had.

The basins are holding some nice trout, ladyfish, jacks and a few pompano. this means casting and catching. For our Christmas and New Years week folks that love a quick 4 or 6 hour fishing charter to cast, catch fish and not get seasick, is a perfect solution for a great time on the water this coming week.

Reef Fishing

On the Key West reef fishing arena I expect there to be more bait. We have not had a huge amount of ballyhoo through November this year like we normally do and December was meh as well. I am hoping all this wind will stir things up. I have no doubt that after the blow the fish will go on the feed out on the reef. Keep in mind that the last 4 days they have been feeding by brail with the water so stirred up. I plan on being there to feed them as soon as they can see.

Yellowtail snapper fishing will be on fire for the first few days for sure. I love to fish for mutton snappers as well on the shallow patch reefs right after a good blow as they are looking for some grub..

Keep in mind the red grouper in the Atlantic is off limits and closed. And all the other Grouper seasons closed from January 1- May-1 2020.

Deep Sea Fishing

Key West Deep sea fishing is going to be a roll of the dice this week coming up. Windshifts will dictate the patterns. Today the Gulf Stream is located pretty far offshore of Key West (about 29 miles). With the darker nights of the new moon I suspect the tuna, dolphin and some sailfish will be around. More details when we get out there. In addition to those mentioned I would also like to add kingfish will be strong on the reef and fun target for trolling.

As we all start to fish again this coming week keep in touch here and I will update things with a new report.. Till Then…. If you are looking to get out on the water for any of our Key West fishing charters give us a call or text us..

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About Capt. Steven Lamp
Dr Catcher Is - Capt. Steven Lamp - Owner of Dream Catcher Charters is a veteran Key West fishing guide for flats fishing, deep sea fishing, wrecks and reef fishing, and fly fishing. An expert waterman and licensed captain since 1986. A Veteran of the United States Coast Guard Heavy Weather Search and Rescue, I.G.F.A. Certified Captain and Standing regional board member of The Florida Fishing Guides Association