Welcome to The Tackle Box

History of The Tackle Box

History of The Tackle Box

Back in the 1950s, Marathon was a good town to open and start a tackle business. Back then Millers Tackle was built and the same store stands today now The Tackle Box. The Tackle Box has been family owned and operated for over 25 years. The Still family has been rooted in the Florida Keys since the early 2000s. Robyn and Chris Still bought the business from Chris’ Dad in 2016 and have run this store with their own family ever since.

Home of the Triple D Lure

Home of the Triple D Lure

Back in the 1980s, Dave Brown was playing around with a fishing lure, making some modifications to his liking. What he ended up with was a trolling lure that apparently is an ice cream cone to dolphin fish. The fish were eating them up. “You can troll them from idle to 20 knots with the same effectiveness,” Brown said. “A dolphin will pass up a rigged, fresh ballyhoo to strike this lure.”

Called El Notcho, the lure with plastic head and skirt is rapidly making a niche in the highly competitive lure business in the Keys. One of the keys to fishing success for El Notcho, according to Brown, is the trail of bubbles the lure leaves in its wake. Fishermen refer to this ‘stream of bubbles as “smoke,” and believe it attracts fish.

“El Notcho leaves a smoke bed,” declared Brown.

One of the best catches involving El Notcho was made this week by captain Gordie Granrath on the charter boat Intimidator out of Marathon. His party caught 56 dolphin from 6 to 600 pounds!

Captain Granrath was a skeptic when he first rolled El Notcho, but now he is a believer. He uses the lure to locate dolphin, and once fish are around the boat his anglers switch to the traditional chunks of ballyhoo.

Dave and Patrun The Tackle Box bait and tackle shop in Marathon at mile marker 48. El Notcho has a clear plastic head about 6 inches long and five-eighths of an inch in diameter. The Skirts are 4.5 to 6 inches long and come in 5 colors. El Notcho gets its nickname from three notches on the plastic head that help produce the “smoke bed”.

Brown takes the lure and rigs a 6-foot leader of 150 pound test P-Line monofilament tied to a size 8/0 hook. The modified El Notcho lists for $8.95, and in two months Brown has developed sore fingers from rigging over 700 – and punching his cash register!

“Now I’m getting mail orders from Key Largo to Key West,” he said. He charges $5 shipping and handling.

The finest full service tackle shop in the Florida Keys. We can provide you with advice, equipment, bait, tackle or charters for any type of fishing you wish to do. We earn our living everyday helping people from 1 to 100 have fun with fishing. We have every thing you need for fishing except gas for the boat. Our customers catch more fish!!


Shrimp, Pinfish, Crabs


Squid, Shrimp, Ballyhoo, Thread Herring, Spanish Sardines, Mullet, Finger Mullet, Silversides, Glass Minnows




Ballyhoo (seasonal)


Menhaden Products

We can clean recondition or repair any Penn, Shimano, Daiwa, and other reels quickly and for a reasonable price. We have over 20,000 parts in stock.

Drop off service takes 3 to 5 working days.

You can ship your reels to us for work anytime, and we will have them back to you in 10 working days or less.

  • Clean Oil and repair most spinning reels
  • Clean Oil and repair most conventional reels
  • Clean Oil and repair Penn International reels.

Professional line spooling is also available for all reels.