Captain
Mike Dates

Member since September 2014

Destin, United States

Background
Mike has been a USCG licensed Captain for over 14 years, but he's fished the waters of Destin since 1969. He and his crew work tirelessly to put you on fish, and employ their wealth of knowledge and experience on every trip they run.

Hey, I'm Captain Mike Dates

Destin, United States
Background
Mike has been a USCG licensed Captain for over 14 years, but he's fished the waters of Destin since 1969. He and his crew work tirelessly to put you on fish, and employ their wealth of knowledge and experience on every trip they run.
Angler's Choice
Verified

My Charter Listings

Destin
trips from
US$ 550

Customer Reviews

4.92 out of 5 stars from 37 reviews

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Went fishing on Friday, October 7, 2016

Captain Mike is first class! Loaded the boat kings all day!

Fished October 2016

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Went fishing on Friday, August 19, 2016

Mike was awesome
Great time was had by all
Bob Myers
Dallas Texas

Fished August 2016

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Went fishing on Thursday, August 18, 2016

My wife and I took our two boys out in the gulf with Captain Mike and were not disappointed.  We had some bites early on with King Mackerel and got one to the boat, when things got slow Captain Mike tried a different spot and swapped us over to Amberjack and we put several more over the rail.  It was my boys first time on the water and Captain Mike was first class in every way, very patient, very knowledgeable and I had a great time watching my boys fight fish and work together to get them in.
My brother and I are already talking about next year and fishing with Captain Mike and First Shot Charters

Fished August 2016

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Went fishing on Monday, August 15, 2016

A minor scheduling snafu messed up our originally booked trip but Captain Mike got us out and and made everything right and then some! He let us stay for extra time until each of us had a big red fish in the boat! Mike cheered the kids while they fought their fish and he was always putting bait on our hooks! Captain Mike was awesome and we’ll be back!!

Fished August 2016

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Went fishing on Wednesday, July 27, 2016

We went as a family of four with a teenager & nine year old. We had hoped to get out in the gulf but the weather made it too choppy to have a good time. Captain Mike suggested staying in the bay for the trip & it didn’t disappoint. He put us on the fish where we caught around 20. Out of the 20 we had 8 good sized Spanish Makerel & Mom won this round catching the largest one of the boat for the year. We will definitely go again & would recommend Captain Mike, he was extremely professional & took care of the kids making sure they had a good time.

Fished July 2016

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Went fishing on Thursday, July 28, 2016

Great trip for me and my son. We caught and released several Amberjack. One that was 36 inches. Caught a nice King Mackerel. Mike put us on to some good locations with the right bait.  We would definitely go out with First Shot again. Thanks Mike.

Fished July 2016

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Went fishing on Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Capt dates is everything a capt should be. We had a blast. The marina bait boat was out of bait so we had to spend a little time catchung bait.. but personally like catching bait. Amber jacks were out of season but we werent really into keeping more into catching….so we went after some jacks…..average wait time from drop to bite was less than 1 minute….as he said it would be…..also caught big king mack there then trolled for some more king mack…..over all if i ever book another trip in destin capt dates will be taking me fishing….was a blast

Fished July 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, July 24, 2016

Fun trip!! Thanks for the review!

Went fishing on Friday, July 8, 2016

Captain Mike did a great job for us today. We limited out. I highly recommend him.

Fished July 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, July 24, 2016

Thanks Michael! Fun trip and a limit of fish! I give my anglers 5 stars!

Went fishing on Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The most amazing experience I have ever had with any type of guide. Captian Mike and First Shot charters was the best experience we could have asked for for our first time on open water. Captian Mike was very professional and extremely knowledgeable. He is honest and will not just take your money. Our scheduled date was to rough to be on the ocean and he let us know “no fun would be had on the ocean today it is way to choppy” he wasn’t wrong and worked with our schedule to get us in the water before leaving our vacation. His boat is very clean and easily maneuverable. This is a great family time that will never be forgotten. The fishing was so good we limited before I time was done (which is what you want) and we had extra time to try for some trophie sail fishing. I would defiantly use his services again in the future and hope you do to. You will not regret the time spent on Captian Mike fishing charter.

Fished July 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, July 24, 2016

Thanks Timothy!! Any day you catch 1 cobia on a trip is a great day…but 2…off the chain!!

Went fishing on Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Capt. Mike is an A1 captain.  We had an awesome fishing trip. Very good with my daughters and kept us catching good fish all morning.  Will fish with him again next time!

Fished June 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, July 24, 2016

Thanks Jeff! Can’t wait till next time!

Went fishing on Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Could not ask for a better experience and a greater Captain. Highly recommend First Shot Charters. If you want to catch fish on your trip, Capt. Mike is your guy.

Fished June 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, July 24, 2016

Thanks Jenifet!! You guys were awesome!

Went fishing on Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Thank you to Captain Mike for a great morning of fishing! Mike put us on fish all morning. We caught our limit of red snapper and I was lucky enough to land a 25# king mackerel. It was our family’s 1st time deep sea fishing and when we make our way to Destin again we will be sure to look up Capt Mike.

Fished June 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, July 24, 2016

Thanks Nicholas!! I had great anglers!!

Went fishing on Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Captain Mike is all around great. He was patient with my younger son, and after battling the weather for two days, we caught some nice fish! I’ve been on several charters, and this one is definitely the best. He made us feel like we were his friends instead of clients, and went out of his way to make sure we had a great time. When we go back to Destin, and I feel that urge to get out and fish, I’ll never charter any other boat than First Shot! Thanks Mike! God bless!

Fished June 2016

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Went fishing on Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Captain Mike made sure we had the best fishing experience!  We couldn’t have asked for a better day of fishing.  Amazing!!!

Fished June 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, June 15, 2016

It was an amazing day! I also had awesome anglers!


Went fishing on Friday, May 27, 2016

Awesome charter! Captain Mike put us on fish
We’ll be back next year

Fished May 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, June 12, 2016

Thanks Mark!! Can’t wait to fish with you again!!

Went fishing on Sunday, May 8, 2016

It was our first time out and we weren’t disappointed. Captain Mike was great and got us in front of some good sized fish. One of our prizes was a 3 lb Black Sea bass, we also got a couple of nice sized red snapper. Would definitely do it again.

Fished May 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Thanks Carol! It was a beautiful day and I am glad you 2 had a fun day!!

Went fishing on Monday, April 25, 2016

Captain Mike done a great job. We caught fish all day. Very nice person and easy to get along with.

Fished April 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Thanks!! I had a really nice time fishing with the 2 of you!  Can’t wait to do it again!!

Went fishing on Saturday, April 23, 2016

Mike put us on fish. Then my boyfriend ended up catching 180-220 pound bull shark and it was his 1st time out salt water fishing. I caught the most fish he caught the biggest on our trip. I highly recommend Mike he knows his spots.

Fished April 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, April 24, 2016

I had a great time fishing with you two!  You took an awesome picture of that shark!!

Went fishing on Sunday, April 3, 2016

Fished April 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Monday, April 4, 2016

Yes it was !  Your boys outfished everyone :)

Went fishing on Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Capt. Mike went the extra mile in every aspect of our trip. He was very entertaining as well as knowing the waters and put us on fish immediately. I definitely will go with him again

Fished May 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Saturday, June 6, 2015

Thanks!!  It was a pretty rough day in the gulf, but you guys hung in there like champs!

Went fishing on Tuesday, March 22, 2016

We had an awesome time with Mike out on the water yesterday.  We had four people fishing and caught 50-60 total fish.  We were only able to keep 11 due to some being too small or out of season.  Mike did a great job of keeping us on the fish and moving around to maximize the experience.  We caught red snapper, mango snapper, key west porgy, flounder, triggerfish, and a few others I don’t remember.  Would have like to have caught more keepers, but it wasn’t for the lack of effort from Mike.  Would book again in a minute and hope to go again on our next visit.

Fished March 2016

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, March 24, 2016

Thanks Eric!!  I had a great time with you and your family!! Looking foward to our next outing!

Went fishing on Saturday, November 28, 2015

Had a great experience.  Tried a few spots.  Had 4 keepers & they were delicious.

Fished November 2015

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Went fishing on Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Myself, my daughter, and my son a law booked a 4 hour charter with Captain Mike Dates and First Shot Charters. We have gone deep sea fishing before off the coast of Orange Beach,  Alabama, but decided to try bay fishing this year. It was incredible! We caught 24 Spanish mackerel in less than 3 hours. Captain Mike was very attentive, very knowledgeable, and a tremendous boat captain. I highly recommend captain Mike Dates and First Shot Charters!

Fished September 2015

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Went fishing on Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The fishing trip went well. We caught fish and the captain was very professional. We will book with him again when we return.

Fished August 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, September 3, 2015

Thanks for the review Jason! That was a fun trip!!  Can’t wait to do it again!!!

Went fishing on Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Promptly left the dock @ 6AM and after about a 30 minute ride to the honey hole were catching Amberjack by 7:30. Caught our limit + 2 throwbacks due to size by 8:30. Bottom fished for about an hour with limited results and were back at the dock by 10:00 AM. Captain Mike knows what he is doing!

Fished August 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, September 3, 2015

Thanks Larry for the review!! Jacks were biting great that morning!!

Went fishing on Friday, August 14, 2015

Captain Mike was awesome.I took my 3 sons on this trip and Captain Mike had us on the fish. We will definitely use First Shot Charter and Captain Mike again in the future.

Fished August 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, September 3, 2015

Thanks Mark!!  Your 3 boys were awesome fishermen!

Went fishing on Monday, August 10, 2015

We had a four hour trip! Capt. Mike was great! We will be back.

Fished August 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, September 3, 2015

Thanks for the review!!  Glad you had a great time!

Went fishing on Thursday, August 6, 2015

My wife and I took two 13 year old boys on their first salt water fishing trip and they LOVED it!  First of all, I want to complement Captain Mike on his professionalism and honesty.  Our original reservation was on a Thursday.  He called me that morning and expressed concern that the wind would be bad for fishing.  He wanted to help us make the trip fun for the boys, and he felt like it was too windy for the fish to bite well.  He could have easily taken our money and gone on about his business, but he truly wanted it to be a great experience.  He rescheduled us for Saturday, and no matter how that day would have turned out (even if we hadn’t caught a single fish), I would have rated him high - simply for his honesty and courtesy.

That said, we DID catch fish on Saturday!  The spanish mackerel weren’t biting, so he shifted gears and took us to his speckled trout hole.  The boys spend a couple of hours catching trout after trout, and ultimately we kept 7 big ones that would be our dinner that night (see pic).  If you haven’t had fried fresh sea trout, you don’t know what you’re missing.  It was unbelievable.  I want to send a “shout out” to the staff at Tail Fins (a new restaurant in Destin’s Harbor).  The chef came out and personally talked to us about the fish.  He fried it himself, and let me tell you - WOW!

Ok - back to the fishing…......

While we were catching the trout, the boys got up close and personal to a school of dolphin that were feeding on mullet.  The dolphin were surrounding the mullet in order to catch them, and it was a sight to watch them work as a team….....

The highlight of the fishing trip was the last hour.  Captain Mike took us to catch larger bait fish and we headed for the harbor bridge.  He fixed the boys up with larger rods and they set out to catch some reds.  Well…......they didn’t have to wait long.  The first one was on within a minute of the first cast, and the second was caught within 10 minutes of the that one.  Both were in 37 inches and gave the boys a serious thrill and a helluva fight. 

Thanks Captain Mike for a great day!  We’ll be back.  I can’t tell you enough how much I appreciate the personal attention that you gave the two boys.  We’ll never forget it!

Fished August 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, September 3, 2015

Thank you so much for the awesome review!  I was an epic day for sure!  Can’t wait to do it again!

Went fishing on Tuesday, July 28, 2015

I had had a great experience and so did my guests. We hit our limit on speckled trout! We caught 21 in total!  Captain Mike was awesome.

Fished July 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, July 30, 2015

Thanks Chris!! Love it when a plan comes together :)  It was definetly the Govt Mule music that made them fire off haha!!

Went fishing on Tuesday, July 14, 2015

We fished with Captain Mike July 15th.  It was a tough day of fishing but Captain Mike made sure that he gave us the best opportunity to be successful.  We were the only in shore fishing vessel that had any success that day.  I would only fish with First Shot and Captain Mike, great boat and awesome service.

Fished July 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, July 19, 2015

Thanks Gary!! It was a fun day and I am glad you guys had a great time!!

Went fishing on Thursday, June 25, 2015

Captain Mike Dates from the First Shot Charters really provided an outstanding fishing trip/experience at Destin, Florida. I suggest that you book early with Captain Mike as he does not have a secretary and if you call him when he is out on the waters with a client he will not answer your call. I liked this… You would not want him to be on his phone if this was your group out with him. Also don’t let Fishing Booker change to another Charter just because they did not get ahold of him (to confirm) in a few hours too! It was well worth the wait for Captain Mike as he put us on some great looking/delicious fish: Cobia, Red Snapper and Mackerel. We were truly blessed with a wonderful fishing trip with Captain Mike on First Shot Charters!

Fished June 2015

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Went fishing on Friday, June 5, 2015

Went out with First Shot - Captain Mike in Destin Florida and had a great day. Everything was first class. Captain Mike was great, boat was clean and very good , rods and reels were excellent. Caught an excellent limit of Red Snapper and many other fish. Highly recommend !!!!

Fished June 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, June 21, 2015

Thanks Ron!! It was a great day and i had great anglers!!

Went fishing on Thursday, May 28, 2015

We had a great Day with Captain Mike! He put us on fish within 15 minutes after catching bait. Had my son with me on his first fishing trip Captain Mike took time with him and made sure he landed a fish by himself before we quit. If anyone is looking for a good fishing trip contact Captain Mike you will not be disappointed!

Fished May 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Saturday, June 6, 2015

Thanks Todd!!  It was an awesome day!!

Went fishing on Friday, May 8, 2015

Capt Mike made the day a day to remember, fishing was outstanding, caught king fish,red snappers and a bunch more plus seeing my friend on his 1st fishing trip catch fish was just a great experience. Would highly recommend using first shot chapters. Again Thank you Mike

Fished May 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Thanks alot Charles!!  It was a great day to fish and a great day of fishing!!

Went fishing on Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Capt. MIKE DATES knew where the fish were & was extremely pleasant.

Fished April 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Monday, May 11, 2015

Thanks guys!! I had a great time too!

Went fishing on Thursday, April 2, 2015

Had a great time with the charter.  Everything was very first class and the captain was very nice.

Fished April 2015

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Mike Dates (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Thanks Willy!! I had a great time with you guys!!

Went fishing on Friday, March 20, 2015

Grear trip, took my 10 yr old, pretty much were on fish the whole time, capt mike was great, nice guy.

Fished March 2015

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