Keys Flats Fishing: Welcome!

Welcome to Key West, a truly year-round and world class fishing destination. Whether you came here for the party on Duval Street or to relax with friends and family, one thing is for sure: A trip to the Back Country of Key West to catch some of the most sought after fish the ocean has to offer should not be missed.


Two Boats for Backcountry Fishing

Key West Fishing Guide

We now have two boats available for your Key West fishing trips:

  • Pathfinder 22ft TRS
    This boat allows us to comfortably fish 1-4 anglers in great comfort.
  • Maverick MasterAngler 17
    For 1 to 3 anglers, pure flats fishing with traditional poling platform.

Rates & Information    Schedule Your Charter


What is the Back Country?

Back country fishing in Key WestThis area to the North of Key West is known as The Great White Heron and Key West National Wildlife Refuge. Many visitors to Key West never get to experience this area that still looks today like it did hundreds of years ago. In the Back Country you are surrounded by living mangrove islands, beautiful white sand flats only inches deep and calm, narrow channels all filled with amazing wildlife.

» Schedule a charter with Captain John today! «


Your guide: Capt. John J. Smouse

Keys Flats Guide Captain John J. SmouseUpon graduating from the University of Georgia, Captain John settled in Key West and has been guiding his customers to trophy fish since 1997. As the owner and operator of the Shadow Caster he insists on delivering a personalized fishing adventure. With Captain John you can expect Professionalism, Preparation and Performance, qualities that Capt. John has learned from the best in the business and keys to his continued success.

On the Shadow Caster you can rest assured that Captain John will always have a well-thought-out fishing plan and the appropriate bait and tackle to handle any situation. Whether you are the seasoned angler or the beginning fisherman, Shadow Caster is about catching fish and enjoying what makes the Florida Keys such a great place.


A New Year: 2018

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Here a some of the fish we’ve been catching since the New Year. The season is approaching and dates are filling up fast. Give Capt John a call to get in on the Fun.
305.587.7669


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Happy Holidays

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Below are a few of the Fish we have been catching here this Winter. The cold weather fishing is really turning on, so give Capt John a call to get Hooked Up
305.587.7669

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New Pathfinder 22Ft

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Purchased in November 2017 is the Pathfinder 22ft TRS. This boat is going to allow us to comfortably take 1-4 anglers in great comfort. The Pathfinder handles the chop we have here in the winter beautifully and has plenty of seating and one of the most important features……SHADE. The style of fishing isn’t going to change. We are still targeting all the same species that live in the BackCountry water of Key West.
We are also running trips on the Maverick MasterAngler 17, like we have always done, so now Anglers get their choice of boat. Below are some pics of both boat and some of the fish we have been catching this November.
Give Capt John a call @ 305.587.7669
Check us out on TripAdvisor (Links Below)


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Back In Business

Bonefish, Fly Fishing, Keys Fishing Reports, Permit, Tarpon, Uncategorized No Comments »

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It has been quite a month here in the Florida Keys. But Key West escaped with minimal damage and is OPEN again and ready for tourists. The ShadowCaster made it through the storm very well. We had her tucked in behind the house and other than 500lbs of leaves and debris inside we are alright.

Thank you to all that reached out and kept us in your thoughts.

The waters around key west have cleaned up very nice and the backcountry is as beautiful as always.

We are looking forward to having you all return in the coming months.

Give Capt John a cal @ 305 587 7669 or drop an email and lets GO FISHING

Late Summer 2017

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Summer has been great fishing. The winds have been light and the sun shining. The last couple of days Eric Mills (longtime customer and friend) fished with us at ShadowCaster Charters and we had a great couple days in the Marquesas Keys. Small resident Tarpon were on the menu and we jumped a bunch on topwater.

With the “slow tourist” time upon us mean very light boat traffic in the backcountry and some great fishing!!!

Drop Capt John an email and we’ll get you Hooked Up

305.587.7669
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2017 Season Pictures

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Here are a few of the great Fish we have been catching during this very busy season.


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Tarpon Season

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The end of April is here and the Tarpon fishing is finally showing consistency. We have all been waiting for the weather to cooperate and it has. May and June should be great Tarpon fishing!!!
Give Capt John a call @
305.587.7669

Barracudas!!!!

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The last half of March has been great for Barrucudas on the flats. There have been some bruisers around too!!!

Call Capt John to get some
305.587.7669

Spring is Near

Bonefish, Fly Fishing, Keys Fishing Reports, Permit, Tarpon, Uncategorized No Comments »

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The Fishing and the Weather have been great. We are all waiting on the Annual Migration of Tarpon to begin. Won’t be long now, Tarpon show up with the warm waters of Spring and Summer. In my opinion, they are the most sought after fish in the Florida Keys.
We have been having some fun hunting down Permit with all this warm weather. If you put your time in and fish hard sometimes you get rewarded. Above is a picture of the largest Permit ever to come aboard the ShadowCaster. Our 30lb bogagrip scale bottomed out!!!!
Still a few open dates in March and April, but not many, so act fast. If I can’t get you out with me, just call or drop me an email and I can get you hooked up with some of the other great guides we have here in Key West
305.587.7669

February 2017

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Season is here and things have been extremely busy. Above are some of the fish we have been catching in KW lately. Tarpon are on everybodies mind and it won’t be long now and the Migratory Tarpon will be showing up. Between cold fronts the Tarpon and Permit have been a prime target.
Barracudas, Jacks, Sea Trout Etc are the main target fish when the temps drop and the winds increase.
There’s always something fun to catch and do out on the water.
Give me a call 305.587.7669 or drop an email here to get hooked up.
Things are booking up fast, so don’t wait!!!!

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