Matecumbe Sportfishing - Keys Style

Islamorada FL, United States

Matecumbe Sportfishing Light Tackle - Keys Style offers a selection of trips exploring the stunning Everglades National Park and fishing for Tarpon, Snook, Permit, Bonefish, Mangrove Snapper, Redfish and many many more. Take a trip through one of the most beautiful and unique environments in the country and catch some amazing fish - what more could you want?

The 17 ft Back Country Ghost you will be using is the perfect tool for the job - a famously solid and well-built vessel with a nice shallow draft, so even the skinniest waters won’t be safe. She comes with an anchoring system, live bait tank, state-of-the-art Lowrance GPS and fishfinder, and top-of-the-line rods and reels for a choice of light tackle or fly fishing.

Captain Mark Byrnes is a Florida native who has been fishing the Keys for the last 50 years. He is an expert in light tackle, fly, and sight fishing and knows every nook and cranny of the winding waters you’ll be fishing - there’s no better guide to take you round the Everglades that Capt. Mark!

Matecumbe Sportfishing’s trips come with licenses, bait, and free cleaning and filleting for anything you take home.

Matecumbe Sportfishing Light Tackle - Keys Style offers a selection of trips exploring the stunning Everglades National Park and fishing for Tarpon, Snook, Permit, Bonefish, Mangrove Snapper, Redfish and many many more. Take a trip through one of the

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About this listing

Boat Specs

Back Country (BC) Ghost (Flats boat) originally built in 2002, and restored in 2016. Powered by a 115HP Yamaha VMAX SHO engine, with a maximum cruising speed of 40 knots.

17 ft
2 persons
Types of Fishing
Inshore Fishing
Flats, channels, FL Bay/Everglades National Park
Nearshore Fishing
Always within sight of the Islands.
Flats Fishing
Sight fishing for Tarpon, Bonefish & Permit
Backcountry Fishing
Everglades National Park
Fishing Techniques
Light Tackle
Spinning gear from 8-30 lb test
All sizes of Shimano spinning gear
Fly Fishing
9 wt, 10 wt & 12 wt
Drift Fishing
Ice Fishing
Targeted Species

Shark (Blacktip)

Shark (Bull)
Shark (Lemon)

Snapper (Mangrove)

Spanish Mackerel
Spotted Seatrout
Air Conditioning
Fighting Chair
Lowrance Chartplotter
Life Jackets
USCG approved
Fly Fishing Equipment
Snorkeling Equipment
Live Bait Well
Multimedia System
Wireless Trolling Motor
Minn Kota Riptide ST
Tuna Tubes
Spearfishing Equipment
Ice Box
Lowrance Chartplotter
Life Jackets
USCG approved
Fly Fishing Equipment
Live Bait Well
Trip Includes
Rods, reels & tackle
Live Bait
$25 extra chg to buy live mullet if available
Catch cleaning & filleting
we prefer catch & release but it's ok to keep a few
First Mate
Fishing License Included
All fishing licenses included
Fly Fishing Equipment
FREE Cancellation
You can cancel or change your booking free of charge up to 14 days before the trip date.
Pickup not included
Transfer to/from departure site is not included in trip rates.

Other Policies  
Child Friendly
Very patient w kids & beginners
You Keep Catch
We prefer releasing but it's ok to keep a few fish.
Catch and Release Allowed
We definitely prefer catch & release

20% deposit charged upfront by FishingBooker to guarantee your reservation. The remaining balance is to be paid directly to the captain on or prior to your trip date in one of the following payment methods: Cash, Visa, Mastercard, Checks, Bank Transfer, PayPal.

About the Charter Operator

Matecumbe Sportfishing/Light Tackle Keys Style
Islamorada, Florida, United States
Member since April 2016
Capt. Mark Byrnes is a Florida native fishing guide, born in Miami in 1953. He started fishing in the Keys when he was 6 yrs old,. As soon as he was old enough to drive (but unable to afford a decent boat) he was spending weekends fishing day and night on the old rickety wooden catwalks attached to the old Keys bridges. He was usually tasked with bringing home snapper and grouper for his family to eat. For his own enjoyment he discovered the thrill of jumping tarpon and of seeing these monsters explode out of the water. In the 70's and 80's his passion was Offshore Fishing in small center console boats...However, he always liked to explore the Keys flats and backcountry of Florida Bay and the Everglades every chance he got in his flats skiff. Slowly but surely he became hooked on the shallow water inshore scene and has fished inshore/flats/backcountry exclusively for more than 20 years now. Capt Mark expertly navigates the Islands, banks, creeks & channels in Everglades National Park.
Response time: within an hour
Response rate: 100%

Islamorada Fishing Calendar

Customer Reviews

5 out of 5 stars from 9 reviews

5 stars
4 stars
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2 stars
1 star

Being on the water with Mark is like an extension of our family.  His expertise in knowing the hot spots and producing results along with his excellent personality makes for just an awesome trip every time out.  Highly recommend!!

Fished May 13, 2017
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My half day fishing in cold water for Tarpon was saved by at of the ninth inning switch to a bottom bait. The 80 lbs fish hit while Mark was handing me the rod.
What a thrill.

Fished April 24, 2017
Matecumbe Sportfishing/Light Tackle Keys Style (The Captain)
Replied to this review on May 4, 2017

Glad you enjoyed catching that tarpon Pete. Many memorable jumps close to the boat. I love to scratch off “bucket list” fish especially for an easy going 80 year old salt like you! 80 for 80! hope to see you next time you sail down this way. Mark.

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Words cannot express how much appreciation we have for Mark, his knowledge of the Florida Bay numbers, ability to put us onto the most exciting fishing my dad, me and my son have ever had, (with nearly 100 years of fishing between the three of us) and just being a genuinely good guy to hang out with in the most beautiful place in the world for a few days.

We had been planning a surprise 2-day fishing trip for my dad’s 70th birthday for going on 9 months, and as our date approached, couldn’t find a referral for a great guide. After searching online and coming across, and after reading Mark’s profile and seeing the photos from other anglers, we knew it he could deliver, but we didn’t quite know how well.

From Mark’s handling of some of hardest weather to fish (15-20 knot winds, with 30 knot gusts), to his tactical and strategic thinking around physical structure, tide, wind and current movements and as a father himself, amazing ability to work with and bond with my son (age 10), the trip was nothing short of perfect.

On the first day, we barely made it out in the morning around an east-to-west storm system that was centered directly on Islamorada. Undeterred, we made our way north throughout the Florida Bay, with Mark navigating the channels in the flats like his brain was directly connected to GPS and sonar. I swear he could have done in blindfolded, especially in the rough seas we went out in. After a 25 mile journey, we got into great, large baitfish (ladyfish and jack) just to get warmed up and have nice, fresh stuff to work with the rest of the day. After catching no less than 20 fish, including dinner (nice sized trout), we made our way further north.

My son caught several blacktips and we got into a bunch of other activity; snapper, jack, a massive tarpon that shook the bait, etc. The kicker was some sort of sea beast that my son and dad fought for an hour or so, that we actually never got a chance to see, but the consensus around the marina was that it was a sawfish (it never came off the bottom). In any case, they had great time fighting him.

On day two, the weather was much better and we spent the morning hunting tarpon to no avail, eventually making our way further north to target bonnethead shark, which was a blast, as the photos will show, moving on from there to continue our shark adventure… and what an adventure it was. One nurse, and multiple lemon shark, and we all reeled in big fighters, including one 6 ft, 150 lb. monster and a 6-7 ft. 200 lb. behemoth that managed to spit the bait and subsequently get hooked in one of the rear lower fins. This one was mine. I had to drag it from its tail 200 yards by its tail with its belly dragging in the flats. 45 minutes later, and using what must have been the most-perfectly tied rig ever known to man (I was pulling with my opposite hand full force on the spool… zero drag), we got her to the boat. It was unreal.

If you ever fish in the Florida Keys, and want to have the most incredible experience of your life, you absolutely MUST book with Mark. Do not book anything less than a full day if you can. Leave some time after your trip to hang out at Angler House Marina, where Mark is based. Great people there, and it’s clean, comfortable with great amenities.

Again, this was the trip of a lifetime and as soon as we can, and as often as we can, we will be back to have another adventure with Mark. If we could go back right now, we would.

Thanks so much, Mark!

Fished April 15, 2017
Matecumbe Sportfishing/Light Tackle Keys Style (The Captain)
Replied to this review on April 22, 2017

Thanks Ryan.Wow that was a glowing review. Not sure what to say after that but I can tell you that I had a great time fishing with you, your dad and son. Challenging weather conditions indeed. That high pressure system sat on us for over 2 weeks with 20+ knot winds the entire time. We made the best of it though. The Tarpon came unhooked on the first jump but that’s how it goes. The big Lemon Sharks were great fights. You surprised me with your perseverance by continuing to fight and subdue the tail hooked jumbo lemon shark. Definitely close to 200 lb! The smiles on Dillon’s face as he caught all those different species was priceless. I hope to see you guys next year. Take care, Mark Byrnes

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