Pro Talk: Summertime Trolling in the Florida Keys

15 Minutes with: Capt. Mike Hogan

Introduction: Summer trolling in the keys is all about the mahi. There may be a few wahoo, black fin tuna and a sailfish mixed in, but the primary target will be schoolie to adult dolphin along rips and weeds lines.

Location: Key West, FL

Tides: When trying to locate schools of Mahi offshore, finding current edges or temperature breaks is a great place to start. These areas tend to collect sargasso grass and debris, offering protection for small bait fish.

Approach: Mahi trolling at it’s core is easy and straight foreword. Deploy a spread of 4- 5 baits arranged at different positions in the boats wake. Many anglers will troll shallow to deep in a zig zag pattern until fish concentrations can be located and a pattern can be established.

Bait Selection: Hogy® Bluemax Series Trolling Heads

Colors: Chartreuse, Ballysmoke, Blurple

Retrieve:  It’s generally better to cover more ground and you can benefit by trolling at a fairly high speed. 5 – 7 knots is perfect for covering ground and having a great presentation.


Rod: 20lb – 30lb trolling set ups are ideal for The Blue Max Trolling Plugs.

Reel:  Shimano Tiagra 20 – 30.

Line: 30lb Mono. Use a Bimini twist on your main line to connect to a ball bearing snap swivel.

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