Fishfinder Charters - Phil Rooks

1201 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE
Fort Walton Beach FL, United States

Fishfinder Charters is an owner-operated, family-oriented business based out of Fort Walton Beach, FL. They specialize in inshore and nearshore fishing in the Choctawhatchee Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Captain Phil Rooks is an expert in light line and live bait fishing for the area’s top gamefish. Capt. Phil also offers exciting bowfishing charters in the shallow bays and flats.

Spend the day aboard a 23’ Mako center console which was built back in ‘77 but was completely restored in 2015. This classic vessel features a T-top for much-needed shade and a cobia tower to help sight out the biggest fish around. She also has a range of marine electronics to pinpoint the fish in any depth of water.

You have a variety of techniques you can try on your day, from spinning and popping to jigging, drift fishing, bottom fishing, and of course, bowfishing. Anglers of any age or experience level are encouraged to join in – Capt. Phil will make get complete beginners reeling in fish like a pro before the day’s over.

All Fishfinder Charters trips come with rods, reels, tackle, and live bait, as well as fishing licenses for everyone onboard. At the end of your trip, Capt. Phil will even clean and fillet your fish for you free of charge. All you need to worry about is finding a cooler big enough to fit it all in!

Select date to see available trips and rates:

  • Private trip
    3/4 Day Trip
      FREE Cancellation 1 day notice
    6 hours trip, starts at 7:00 AM
    US$ 750
    up to 6 persons
    More time on the water means even more awesome hookups on this 6-hour light tackle trip, fishing the Choctawhatchee Bay and nearshore spots out in the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Private trip
    Half Day Trip
      FREE Cancellation 1 day notice
    4 hours trip, starts at 7:00 AM
    US$ 500
    up to 6 persons
    Spend the morning fishing with light line for big fish in Choctawhatchee Bay and the nearshore waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Private trip
    Half Day Trip - Bowfishing
      FREE Cancellation 1 day notice
    4 hours trip, starts at 7:00 AM
    US$ 500
    up to 6 persons
    Let out your primal side and jump aboard for a half day of exciting bowfishing on this 4-hour trip.
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About this listing

Targeted Species

Black Drum
King Mackerel (Kingfish)

Snapper (Red)
Speckled Trout
Triggerfish (Gray)

Boat Specs

Mako (Center console) originally built in 1977, and restored in 2015. Powered by a 200HP Yamaha engine, with a maximum cruising speed of 38 knots.

23 ft
6 persons

Types of Fishing

Inshore Fishing
Nearshore Fishing
Flats Fishing

Fishing Techniques

Light Tackle
Bottom Fishing
Drift Fishing


Life Jackets
Live Bait Well
Ice Box
Life Jackets
Live Bait Well
Ice Box

Trip Includes

Rods, reels & tackle
Live Bait
Catch cleaning & filleting
Fishing License Included


FREE Cancellation
You can cancel or change your booking free of charge up to 1 day before the trip date. If the captain cannot run the trip due to unsafe weather conditions, your booking can be moved to another date or canceled free of charge.
Pickup not included
Transfer to/from departure site is not included in trip rates.
Child Friendly
You Keep Catch
Catch and Release Allowed


Book with 10% deposit
When the captain confirms your trip, FishingBooker charges your credit card a 10% deposit to guarantee your reservation.
Pay remaining balance to captain
The remaining balance is to be paid directly to the charter operator on or prior to your trip date in one of the following payment methods:
American Express

When paying the remaining balance with a credit card, there is a 5% fee.

About the Captain

Phil Rooks
Fort Walton Beach, Florida, United States
Member since November 2014
Captain Phil Rooks was born and raised just down the road in Niceville. He grew up fishing the bays, bayous, and Gulf waters of Okaloosa County and has been running charters for over four decades. Being a guide was always a dream for Capt. Phil and he's been lucky enough to make that dream a reality. Jump aboard and let him show you his native waters – you won't be disappointed.
Response time: 3 hours
Response rate: 83%

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1 review
Daniel Faulkner


December 27, 2014
no fish - I mean zero - need I say more.  Oh yea, one guy caught a sea robin. Isn’t that exciting.
Daniel Faulkner does not recommend Fishfinder Charters - Phil Rooks
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