Fly Fishing Guide Profile: Capt. Ron Doerr of Bite Me Charters in Florida

Credit: Joe Mahler
Credit: Joe Mahler

Capt. Ron Doerr of Bite Me Charters guides out of Jupiter, Florida for a wide range of saltwater species. Doerr recently sat down to take on some questions for the Venturing Angler:

1. Why do you guide where you do?

Jupiter, Florida is the only place I have ever gotten 17 species in one day! And it’s beautiful!

2. What is your favorite fish specie?

Dolphin (Mahi Mahi), and albies second.

3. What is your favorite thing about guiding?

Watching people’s face light up when the finally catch a fish of their lifetime!

4. What is the most memorable trip you’ve guided and why?

July 2005. It was a bait/fly fishing trip …

In Jupiter Inlet with a husband and wife (remarried) and 16 year-old girl. I had 40 pin fish, and they landed 38 snook on bait from 6-25 pounds. Then we went offshore for albies (bonitas in Florida). The girls were using jigs, and the husband used a fly rod. Caught them nonstop. Husband kept saying, “nice fish but it’s not on the fly, so it’s just an okay catch.” Wife got upset asked for a fly rod – had a 12 weight tarpon rod rigged. Daughter has something big eat her bonita at the side of the boat, and she said it was dark! I was landing one on the fly rod for the husband, and Mom drops the fly over the side and a 14 pound bonita ate it. About 200 feet peels off the reel and the line goes slack … All of a sudden about a 200-plus pound blue marlin jumps out about 100 feet ahead of the boat. I look down the line, and I followed it to the fish and saw the fly in the corner of the marlin’s mouth. I told her, “What do you wanna do – that’s your fish?” She screamed, “You take it!” I yelled, “Start the boat!” and it was on! Jumped 18 times, went under the boat and by us twice. Got it close, got the gloves on, and the lead was chewed through as I grabbed it, and it broke.

We never got one picture in all that excitement.

I now carry a high speed camera on board. But what a mind’s eye picture and what a memory!

But to end the story the day wasn’t over yet, and the husband said, “Now what?” So I said, “You wanted snook on fly  – let’s go chum some up.” He caught eight on fly!

Credit: Drew Chicone
Credit: Drew Chicone

5. What is the funniest thing you’ve experienced while guiding?

I watched a spinner shark miss a fly three times then go to the bottom (8 ft) come straight up explode on the fly, jump six feet in the air, and while the shark was in midair, I turned to the guy and said, “Set the hook.” He did and we landed it!

Also, when the pompano are thick on the beach, we ride along to spook them. A fellow was on the phone one day when a pompano hit him in the chest. He yelled, “What was that?” I yelled back, “LUNCH! Grab it!”

6. What makes your guide service great?

I really enjoy making people laugh and teasing them. I have been teaching fly fishing for a long time. I’ve been fly fishing about 30 years, and I actually run a fly fishing school at the local high school at night for adults. I’m always explaining and trying to help everyone have a great experience. I’ll be your biggest cheerleader. I want you to do well. I like making memories!

7. If you had only one day off all year, where would you fish and what fish would you target?

I’d take a day off in April or May … or September/October.

I would target dolphin on fly!

8. What are your favorite three flies?

DNA Bon Bon

Clouser Minnow (olive white/white chartreuse)

and a pilchard pattern natural colors

But … Don’t over look the Door Slammer I first tied that 25 years ago to act like a Slugo on a half ounce jig head. It’s the fly pictured on the side of my boat.

9. What is the one piece of gear you couldn’t bear to leave at home?

Maui Jim sunglasses, bronze lens color.

Second: Sunblock – Ocean Potion #50

10. Do you have any other passions?

Of course … riding motorcycles and flying airplanes! I messed up when it came to inexpensive hobbies!

To check out more from Capt. Ron Doerr and Bite Me Charters, please click here.

Disclosure: Bite Me Charters is in a professional relationship with the Fly Fishing Guide Directory, LLC and the Venturing Angler. Though potentially benefiting from this relationship, we do not post what we do not believe to be true. To read more, click here.

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