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Key West Fishing Connection - Private Charters
Reviewed July 12, 2013

If you are like me, you research your pre-planned activities to make sure that you are getting a quality experience. That's what I had read about this outfit....KeyWest Fishing Connections or Second Nature, they are the same charter. Unfortunately, even with all the other positive reviews, our experience with them was very different and left us wanting our money back. We originally booked a full-day because we love fishing, wanted to do Tarpon fishing and then wanted to fish the reefs. We both decided on a 10-12 hour adventure that would cost 1400, plus deckhand tip, which you will find a sign on his boat telling you exactly how much tip should be included. Our day started at 6:30 am and by 7:00 we were pushing off from the dock. About 10 minutes later we are fishing for Tarpon amoung and in between the sailboats that are anchored in Key West. We are no more than 3/4 of a mile from the dock. Who cares? As long as we catch fish right? Garrett and Dan start the morning off and both are cutting fish to attrack the Tarpon. We catch one and thats where the trip begins to turn. They both start complaing about the "south wind", and how much it is effecting our fishing. The morning continues with off and on showers and us still in the harbor catching nothing. Dan tells us that the "south wind" is to blame. I ask if there is any other fishing spots that he knows of that we can try..."no, not with the south wind" he responded. What fishing Captain doesn't have more than one spot for every type of wind? Garrett stays with us in the back of the boat, while Dan is laying down on his smartphone, eating our chips. Apparently, after we caught the 1 Tarpon, Dan feels the pressure off and he is done for the day. Officially Dan is not going to call off the trip, but he is going to let you know that its a helpless situation. "We can go back now and call it a half day" he tells us. Sure, you work four hours and make $750, plus tip or work 10-12 hours and make $1400, which would you rather?

So, half a day fishing, we caught 1 fish and cost us $900, tip included.

I wanted to see what the other fishing charters fishing luck was so I returned to the dock at 4:00 to see the boats come in and what they caught. Yep, we had heen dupped. Lots of fish was caught that day despite of the "south wind". I spoke to one other fishing captain about our experience and that fishing was no good due to the south wind and he laughed, handed me his card and told me "I'll put you on fish in any kind of wind". And the next day he did, lots of them, with the rain blowing in our face and the wind blowing from the south.

Pass this fishing charter up. I have been on fishing charters in Cabo, Cozumel, all along the Gulf Coast, Belize, Grand Cayman, Destin,and Puerto Rico, worst fishing charter ever.

7  Thank Kirk S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
captdan305, Owner at Key West Fishing Connection - Private Charters, responded to this reviewResponded August 12, 2013

First, let's recap how the trip started out.... I briefed the client that today the weather is going to be bad with winds out of the south at 20 to 30 knots with heavy rain on the way. Heavy winds were blowing out of the south from Cuba over 90 miles of open water and producing seas from 6 to 8 feet. Most trips do not go out under these conditions in the Keys.

I fish almost every day and rarely fish in that type of weather. The client still wanted to do the trip and we set up to do a full-day offshore trip. I gave them the option to all go back home before we left the dock and try to fish another day, or we could try to fish in the protected Key West harbor for big tarpon. I will never fish open seas in south winds over 25 knots because it is hard on the boat and even harder on the charter. I always give customers a choice for what they want to do when the weather is bad.

The client desired tarpon fishing in Key West harbor as an alternative to fishing in the rough seas. We left the dock at 7am and were fishing within 15 minutes. We hooked a 100+ lb fish almost immediately. After a 45 minute fight, we pulled the fish alongside the boat for a quick picture and safe release. As soon as we got back on anchor and started fishing again the storm hit. In between the heavy wind and rain we did our best to catch another fish. The problem was that when the rain started, it swung the boat around and we fished up the anchor line. Wind against tide is bad and usually leads to situations such as this.

With conditions continuing to deterioriate, I suggested that we just do a 1/2 day trip instead of a 10 hour trip. Many captains make claims that are hard to fulfil and I did my best to not do that and to ensure the best trip possible for the conditions that prevailed for the day. When the client opts to proceed with the trip after the captain suggests otherwise, it is up to the client to understand that fishing will be difficult and below normal standards for the day. With twenty plus years of experience fishing the Gulf waters, the safety of our clients is paramount and we do not jeopardize their safety taking chances fishing in conditions that are unsafe.

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186 - 190 of 280 reviews

Reviewed July 9, 2013

What's better than fishing in Keys?...Fishing with Captain Dan on Second Nature Charters in the Keys is! I recently went on Second Nature Charters and it was AWESOME! If you love the ocean and you love fishing then it's time you give Captain Dan a call! Dan and his first mate Garrett were great! We caught Mutton Snapper and a couple of sharks. I had a lot of fun and Dan and Garrett were very helpful and cool guys. It was my first charter and I learned a lot about fishing from them. After the trip Dan filleted the fish and we took a bunch back to the hotel. We had an excellent meal prepared for us. They blackened, grilled, and fried the fish and it was so good. There's nothing like spending the day fishing in aqua blue water, catching some rays, hanging with the crew, and then having an awesome meal to look forward to after. That's what Key West is all about so call CAPTAIN DAN:305-393-0566.

Thank NSBgirl17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2013

This is the second time I have fished with Cptn. Dan and Garrett. We wanted to do some live bait reef and wreck fishing. The pin fish traps were full but we also wanted some nice live baits for the surface. Captain Dan found the thread herring and Garrett worked the sabiki rigs and loaded up the live well and we headed offshore. The water was crystal clear but the fishing started out slow due to a lack of current. We had to move around a few times but Captain Dan and Garrett were persistent and eventually got our rods bending. We caught a nice mixed bag of fish including large mutton snappers, amberjacks, sharks, kingfish, barracuda, Bonitos and ceral mackerels. We also lost several fish to the predators lurking below which is expected. Thanks for another great day on the blue water!

Thank Docraf99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 1, 2013

Spent the day trolling in the beautiful blue water about 7-10 miles off of Key West with Captain Dan and First Mate Garrett. We had a great day and Dan and Garrett made it fun and easy. We caught mahi mahi, black fin tuna, a barracuda, and lots of bonito. Garrett filleted the fish for us and we had an amazing "eat your catch" dinner at the Roof Top Cafe. We will definitely be back to land some Marlin and Sailfish! Thank you Dan and Garrett! There are a lot of charter boats to choose from in Key West, but this one should be at the top of your list.

Thank MDJ0311
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2013

Great day in Key West. Capt Dan and Firstmate Garrett treated us with great service and great fishing experience. Biggest and most fish ever for me in deep sea fishing. Fish almost jumping in the boat. Mutton Snapper and Black Grouper. Capt Dan was even kind enough to tell us about Dantes Restaurant in Key West were we had some of our catch prepared for us grilled, blackened, and fried. All was great. What a great day and vacation.

Thank GreenCreekRogers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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