Backcountry Fishing Captains

Capt. Mike Patterson/Capt. Larry Cummings
18’ Action Craft

Born in Baltimore Maryland and raised in Westminster, Mike began fishing in a small stream behind his house at the age of 4. Growing up in Maryland give him many opportunities to fish in ponds, streams, lakes, the Atlantic Ocean, and let’s not forget the Chesapeake Bay. Mike’s career choice was an electrician but at the age of 26 Mike had a terrible accident. Mike was still limited as to the things he could do, so with his love for the water Mike changed his career and learned to scuba dive and soon became a dive instructor. With his knowledge for fishing, diving and love for the water he moved to Islamorada “The Sportfishing Capital of the World”, in the Florida Keys, and ran a dive shop and soon after bought an offshore boat and started a Fishing Charter business. Sailfish became his fish of choice. Mike competed in every tournament in town and won 1st, 2nd or 3rd place in almost every tournament that he competed in. So then it was time to try backcountry and flats fishing, after 1 year Mike sold his off shore boat and became a full time Backcountry Fishing Guide, winning many backcountry tournaments and is still backcountry fishing today. Mike has had the opportunity to be a Fishing Guide for a past President, sports heroes, actors, senators and some very interesting fishermen and enjoys every minute of it. You could sit for hours and hear all the interesting stories that Mike has to offer about events, people, and some pretty interesting situations he has come to find himself in. This is what led Mike to The American Outdoorsman and is very honored to be a member of the “Pro Staff”. He is looking forward to bringing his passion and knowledge of fishing to The American Outdoorsman. Mike has been a fishing guide for about 30 years now. He made a full recovery from his near death accident and by looking at him today you would never know that it even happened. He continues to live his life to the fullest and is thankful for every day he has.

Capt. Ron Howell
21’ Hydra Sport

Hi, I’m Captain Ron Howell. Most folks will remember me as one of the captains on the Captain Michael. I ran her for 5 years. Anyways, I’ve fished the Florida keys for the last 35 years. I now have my own boats, a bay boat which I fish Florida bay, Everglades National Park and the near shore waters of the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic. I specialize in Snook, redfish, tripletail, and sea trout and have an intimate knowledge of the creeks and sounds of our estuaries. I also have a flats skiff to fish the “skinny waters” where I target bonefish, permit and sight fish tarpon. I look forward to taking you to catch that fish of a lifetime or just take in the beauty and catch some dinner with the family! I’ve guided anglers to victories in tournaments such as the Redbone, super fly and take stock in children. Again I look forward to fishing you.

Capt. Eric Bass
18’ Action Craft

Capt. Eric Bass has been fishing the waters of the Florida Keys for more than 25 years and has been a professional backcountry and flats guide for the past 10 years. He is recognized as one of the top fishing guides in the Upper Keys and is the co-host of the “Friday Night Radio Show,” which is broadcast from Wahoo’s Bar and Restaurant in the Whale Harbor complex found at mile marker 83 in the Village of Islamorada. The show is on the World Wide Web and can be heard on Clear Channel Broadcasting’s Easy 96.9 every Friday night live from 6 to 7 p.m. The show has guests covering many different subjects with the main focus on the fishing industry in the Keys and local issues. Many celebrities while visiting Islamorada are guests on the show. They have included sports and entertainment celebrities who fish with Capt. Bass and other guides while in town. Capt. Bass has won numerous fishing tournaments and has consistently placed in the top five positions in the tournaments he has guided anglers. He has a thorough knowledge of the techniques and skills you need to fish the waters of the Florida Keys. His ability to convey this information to the anglers he guides is done with humor and a fun approach. He has a passion for fishing fitting his motto for the sport, “We are fishing for fun.”

Capt. TJ Zinkand
18’ Hewes

Capt. TJ Zinkand was born in South Florida and grew up fishing all of the surrounding waters. He spent most of his days fishing with his Grandfather and Dad learning the skills to catch redfish, snook, and tarpon. With Capt. TJ’s love for fishing he also learned the art of fishing offshore for sailfish and dolphin. Even though Capt. TJ is a younger captain, his experience of fishing and navigating the waters in Islamorada, The Florida Bay, and Miami is tremendous. A Day on the water with Capt. TJ will be exciting, adventurous and will give you the opportunity to catch the fish of a lifetime.

Capt. Bruce Pollack
24’ Lake & Bay