I've got an opportunity to spend some time next March in Aruba with my wife, and some friends. I'm not interested in the shopping, drinking, eating, etc.
What I'm interested in is the possibility of flats fishing. Anybody been there after bones? Contacts?
Thanks for any info you can supply. I have to make a decision at the beginning of August, and if flyfishing can't be a large part of the trip, I'll have to decline the invitation.
07-16-2004, 05:57 PM
I've not fished Aruba but I have fished the Caribean and it rocks :smokin: Its down there by Venezuala so there will be bones and probably permit and tarpon tucked away. Baracuda are always lurking somewhere. Just offshore is sailfish heaven along with Mahi Mahi, Yellowfin etc. etc. I expect some of the others have more specific knowledge but I would be there in a heartbeat :D
It's a nice place but far from a bonefish mecca. I did however catch two bones at the wreck.
Do a search on aruba (above) and I will see if I can dig up some maps.
Where are you staying? It makes a big difference because of where you can get to before the beach crowds, etc.
Adrian, Juro: the plan is to stay at Divi Aruba Beach Resort. After doing a search of threads, it appears that there is limited opportunity for bones, but I guess that is the challenge.
I'll start purusing the maps, and see if I can find some contacts.
The Divi is very close to where we stayed last winter. The big beach itself gets some jacks busting so keep the rod handy and a popper on a floater.
To the south from the Divi there is a cove with a rockpile on the left and the beach leading to Divi on the right. At low tide rising I saw some bones there but did not hook up. The bottom is not ideal but you might have luck before breakfast or when you only have a minute to spare.
The very best flat I found was all the way down near the Balashi brewery down by the sand / salt piles. I posted the name in the earlier post. There is a public beach / landing where the locals hang out with a big white sand flat where I spooked a few bones at high tide. Again I would go early morning or low tide as the high water made it tough to see them before they spooked. You look down the road and it looks like a tall wire fence, but when you drive down the road goes around the fence and to the public landing. Cuda down there too for sport.
The most bones seemed to be along the beach from the wreck at Malmok down toward the Divi along the sailboarders beach. The area around the wreck stays clear but the beach to the south got milky once people arrived so it's best to fish early in the morning and over in the shallows at the wreck in the evening when you can see their tails (according to the guy who has been renting that beach cabin for decades, I always had to attend to dinner plans in the evening).
I got two at the coral flat on the right side of the wreck although I saw bones on the left side flat as well. These are ocean bones and will grab the fly greedily but cut you off on the coral in a blink once they get your drag smokin.
Baby beach is way on the other side of the island and you will need to fish it either at the crack of dawn before people arrive and make it look like a chalk bath or in the evening after everyone has gone to dinner plans where you are mostly looking for surface distruptions. On the road past the jail there is a gorgeous but windy cove of deep water where I got a big nasty jack crevalle on the fly. Beautiful spot to fish surf style with two-hands.
North from the Divi there is a gravel shoal near the lighthouse with a deep channel on the right side. Fish busting everywhere one day while sight-seeing with the wife. Kind of creepy to wet wade there as it seems any kind of predator could make an approach up that channel right to shore.
Before my fuzzy memory leads me astray here, go read the previous posts to get better details from a fresh recollection.
BTW - there are tarpon in the lagoons on the south side.
Juro, thanks so much for the info. If I plan my family obligations carefully, I will be free to roam the fishy spots in the early a.m.
While I would prefer to be in the Bahamas, Los Roques, or Belize, this seems like a fair trade-off to accommodate my wife. There is always next year, plus, I now feel less guilty fishing two months a year on the Cape.
07-19-2004, 01:22 PM
Jim... don't fall for all the bonefish hype also.... a great and hard fish no doubt...but, as Juro also says, and I also agree, I always enjoyed hooking a feisty Jack, or a yellow tail.... and The Cuda are really a lot of fun too..... Then there are fish at the time you catch them that you haven't the fogiest idea of what they are... that's fun too..... I caught a Permit also...but I did that blind casting....pure luck... but fun.
Los Roques... just a short puddle jumper away to the east... :lildevl:
The name of the very good flat was the Barcadera, a locals public beach and dock area with huge piles of white sand (or salt?) just to the east on the south side near the Balashi brewery. You will want +/- 2 hrs around the low early morning or evening there, textbook tide situation. Baby Beach could be great across from the chair rental shack but once people show it's soupy and crowded. Dawn patrol or bust and it's a looong drive from the Divi.
Best jack fishing I found was at the trench near the lighthouse on the northwest tip, and the jailhouse beach near baby beach on the other end of the island.
Your best bet is to go up to the wreck at Malmok in the mornings and evenings and keep those Monomoy-trained eyes pinned for green backs. This is a place where true-color sunglasses are better than high-contrast for me anyway, because the color differentiation is the key to seeing these fish in coral. These oceanic bones are aggressive and not all that spooky compared to flats bones - especially since there are waves. I cast into a wave as it rolled over a fish's path and when the wave passed and cleared out a window my fly was descending into the sweet spot. A twitch or two and bang! off to the races but pay special attention to clearing the line over the coral as this is about the easiest spot to get cut off by a smart bonefish I have ever fished. I only landed two but on sand I would have landed several more on the day I hit them just right.
Note - the day before I was spotting lots of bones from horseback riding with my wife and father in law on the sailboarder's beach just north of the Divi. The next day I hit a bunch of them, and from that day on there were no bones to be seen there when I could sneak away. My theory is that these oceanic bones roam the shoreline and could be anywhere as opposed to the flats and mangrove dwellers who have the compulsion to return to the same spots on queue based on tide activity.
The guy who lives right across the street from the wreck beach says the tails come out in the evening calm regularly, but that time is usually reserved for shirt and tie dining with the family and I never got to try it.
BTW there are also tunoids like true albacore in the rips just offshore. The boats near the officers club at baby beach are local fishermen who handline for wahoo and albacore. They told me a piece of shrimp fished along the beach at night would produce bones galore. Never tried that either although it would be pretty interesting to try right on the Divi beach.
Good luck in March.
07-30-2004, 07:03 PM
Juro, which Divi beach are you referring to? As you probably know, there are a couple of Divi resorts beachfront on Aruba.
The Divi Divi down by the bunker bar is the one I am referring to. Just south of the bunker bar there is a little cove with a high bank on the left (looking to sea) where a lot of the locals fish spin gear. In the cove on a low tide rising there would be bones, you can just tell looking at it.
Another spot not too far off is the airport flat but I was not as adventurous in passing the barbed wire as my mentors from Seattle who wrote the first account of aruba bones on yer own I've ever found on the net... or anywhere for that matter. BTW they also caught bones at the wreck as well as the airport flat and the windsurfer beach. I hit paydirt at the wreck but the windsurfer beach was always milky while I was there and you couldn't sight fish.
Too bad they don't rent pangas in the lagoon. Definite tarpon and big cuda opportunities in there if you had some mobility to get around. Not very accomodating from shore though. The point out at the officers club Rogers Beach? Had some potential as a big jack /cuda spot. Might see some oceanside bones there once in a while too, very interesting reef structure.
Is the other Divi in the same area (north/south shoreline on the west end of the island?)
07-31-2004, 04:36 PM
Thank you, juro, and others for all that great info re bonefishing in Aruba. When I vacationed several years ago on Aruba, I didn't bring my flyrods. Now I am considering a winter trip there with my flyrods so all this great info is appreciated. Yes, juro, from what I can determine from the travel websites, there are now at least three Divi hotels on Aruba, none of them with the same name as where I stayed, thus, my question to you. :) I think I can determine from the Aruba travel websites that I stayed adjacent to the windsurfing beach which also was next to the all inclusive Divi hotel. So, this info will be very helpful if I return to the "renamed" Divi where I stayed. Now my choice will be: do I appear at dinner to enjoy their delicious food or call "room service" when I return from catching those bones? At any rate, great info and thanks again. To be sure, if I do go there this winter, I will report any bonefish activity I find.
10-20-2004, 06:10 PM
Hi there everybody, my first post on this forum...
I grew up in Aruba, my parents still live there. I now live in the Netherlands (utrecht) and started fly-fishing about a year ago. Canīt wait to go home for christams and check out the fly-fishing in Aruba myself. As I grew up there I fished a lot, I learned from the native Arubians and allways fished with handlines and dragged out nets from the shore. Still everytime I go home my father and I both go out in our sunfishes (sailing) and troll in search of the better predators. Jacks are common and Cudaīs are all around the island. Sometimes a tarpon or other big game fish, but trolling wth a handline on a small 1-person sailingboat is not the best way to approach fish.
The bonefish (a fish I learned about through my interest in fly-fishing) is a fish we know in Aruba as "warashi", most fisherman donīt do nothing with them, as your english name allready says, itīs full of bones and useless for eating. When I was dragging nets, like 12-15 years ago, we used to meet and greet quite a few bonefish. They allways made a huge impression on me, we nearly ever caught one, they were so fast and jumped way high over the net. We walked out the nets from the shore (net is like 100feet long) and then made half circles back to shore. Then you drag out both ends and see what you catch, a great way of fishing when youīre a little boy. The exact place where we fished is not easy to define anymore, but it was North of the Holiday Inn and I would say it is in front of the Marriott hotel. It has a sandy bottom, but itīs not that shallow at all (approx. 3-5 feet) you wonīt see any tailing there and fish will be hard to spot.
I also am a fanatic diver/snorkeler, the strange thing is that you wonīt see bonefish that often when snorkeling (canīt remember having seen them ever).
About Permits, I never seen one of those before, we do have lots of jack-species, and in the waters close to shore you will find a lot of Palometaīs, a species that is called "pamper" in native language.
Anyway, Iīll keep an eye on this thread, can anyone of the more advanced fly-fishers around here give me some suggestions about what kind of gear/tackle/flies to use and which colours work good in the seaīs of my own island? I got a #8 reddington to go with me, is that heavy enough?
Oh, another thing to keep in mind is the fact that fishing is not really seen as a sport there, you wonīt find any shop to supply you with good equipment when talking about fly-fishing.... So take everything you will be needing with you and think about which items you will want to have spare.
Welcome to the Aruba Bonefish Club :hihi:
An 8wt is a fine rod for the task. The coastal bonefish were very willing to grab just about any fly that had the crazy charlie / gotcha design. However I could not get them interested in an unweighted snapping shrimp pattern.
I would recommend sight fishing around the wreck at Malmok in the brightest part of the day in the shallows to the right of the ship, and in the evenings and mornings looking for tailing fish in the very shallow flat in front of and to the left of the ship.
Also, if you have a car head down toward the Balashi brewery and find the Barcadera beach area where the locals launch boats. There is a fine flat there to be fished just before, during and the start of the incoming tide.
I had fun with jacks down on the big crescent beach near the prison down on the Baby Beach road.
I wouldn't go there just to fish, but if I go there again I will definitely continue the pursuit I started last year.
10-27-2004, 04:15 PM
ok people, so I am going down to the happy island for my first saltwater experiences. Sights and spotting fish wonīt be a problem as I grew up there and allways fished, dived and snorkeled a lot..
but flyfishing? any tips, what kind of outfit, tippet strengths and does anyone have some realy easy patterns of clousers etc. :Eyecrazy: I am a beginning flytyer, so i can not make all those complicated things yet.
off course Iīll keep you all in touch with my findings and experiences and Iīll make a report on the catches when I am back.. but will check in on this forum a lot of times more before itīs december and the journey starts...
10-27-2004, 06:16 PM
For inshore / beach fishing you will be well equiped with a selection of inshore bait immitations - things that look like shrimps, crabs, small baitfish etc. Maybe some larger baitfish/needlefish patterns and a few poppers for bigger jacks and cuda's. Your 8wt outfit will be fine unless the wind is really blowing.
Some wire is a good idea for Cuda's unless you want to donate a lot of flies :lildevl: If you search back through the Bonefish flies archive you'll find a lot of great patterns to try.
i'm goig to visit "the happy island" for christmas ,too. In the last years i've fished all the mentioned spots on Aruba (more or less successfull...). We are staying in the Amsterdam Manor (15.12.-02.01.2005). If you are interrested to fish with me send a pm.
Arubaman, bone - this marks a real milestone for the Aruba Bonefish Club... an international Aruba Clave! :D
I found the Aruba bonefish, with all due respect, to be 'easy' to hook but very hard to find. Once you find them my experience was any gotcha or crazy charlie will do the trick. The problem is that in such an undefined island structure as Aruba is (no real flats structures to speak of) the fish seem to wander around constantly and don't seem to abide by any defined patterns. Perhaps I should say with so little time logged I don't know of any such patterns. This is why it's important that all Aruba Bonefish Club members share their experiences on the forum so we can reach a point where these things are understood.
There are cuda and tarpon in the lagoons and true albacore, wahoo just offshore if you decide to go on a charter out of Orangestaad. Our friend Brian Casey is down there now, I can imagine he's wahoo'ed once or twice by now! Also jacks patrol the shoreline if the wind ever lays down, and I saw bait exploding from the water in the gravel area near the lighthouse.
From Amsterdam Manor the wreck at Malmok is just a short drive to the north and this seems to be the hotspot for bonefish so far. I think you could walk across the street in early morning or late evening and look for tailers along the shore if you don't have a car.
thank's for the information. You are absolutely right, it doesn't matter what pattern you choose. You just have to find the fish. My favourite Spot was the Bay between the airport and Oranjestad harbour. The water is quite muddy, but it is the only place where i found fish nearly every visit. The best time was early in the morning, before the Bay is crowded. My second favourite spot is the flat near the Balshi-Brewery. This year i'll try some shorefishing at Eagle Beach, there must be some Jacks!
A good spot is the little harbour at the High Rise Hotels, too. Especially when the Sun dawning. There you can hire the 'Melina'( a 28 Foot Bertram) for a reasonable
price. Each time, when i visit the island i go out with Cpt.Peter 2 or 3 times to fish for Wahoos, mainly with trolling Gear. But I always carry a Fly Rod with me, because on the way to the Bluewater after the Light House, you always have a good chance to spot a swarm of Jacks!
Have you caught Tarpon on Aruba?
I have not - but briefly headed to the lagoons in search of. I met a local angler with a Dutch accent fishing spin gear who spoke of their frequent appearance around the bridge at Spanish Lagoon so I went to take a look. It's not fly-fishable without a boat, but looked real fishy. The area is an inlet across (north) from the DePalm Reef resort. There is a public park at the southeast corner with a deep and rocky shore. Might spot some tarpon coming in/out of the inlet there, possibly.
Frankly, I used all but a few minutes of my precious spare time seeking bones while there, and all from shore. I was lucky to land some nice fat bones in Malmok, some colorful snappers and a good jack on the fly in the bay north of Baby Beach.
I was very close to flying to Los Roques ($200 or so round trip from Orangestaad) on my day off from the family routine but decided to bounce around in the rental car instead.
do You mean the old bridge parallel to the Main Road from Oranjestad to San Nicholas? Ther I have spotted a lot of Tarpons, I even hooked some with spin gear, but lost all fish and broke my rod!
I've been to Los Roques twice and I love that Archipelago! I hope i can convince my wife to fly with me. Is there a direct connection from Aruba to Los Roques?
12-08-2004, 05:30 PM
was not around for a while, been diving in Egypt (no, no rods with me so donīt ask about fishing there). Bone, I think Iīll be in town around the 16th of December. I wonīt be able to fish everyday, but with some planning we can go out together to check out the sites.
It will be my first time flyfishing in tropical waters and/or in windy surroundings. I am still working to get some gear ready. my 8wt rod broke and is now on itīs way back from US to holland (redington guarantee). Further I just bought a 10 wt RS2, but still need to get some reel and line to fish it. Hope my scholarship will be in time for that. I am also thinking on bringing some spinning gear along. If you want some real lessons in handline fishing, thatīs stuff I still have back home at my parents place.
I know the island very well, so I sugest teaming up could be fun as you are far more experienced in flyfishing. :eek: I could play local guide and we could cruise around to look up some places mentioned above. Car wonīt be a problem, my dad still has no boat, thatīs a small minor. The lagoon with tarpons, we had a member of the sailing club catching one once on a handline (we troll behind our sunfishes with ballihoo as bait on a handline) We can go there and have a look, maybe with spinning gear, maybe a flyline from the bridge when there is no traffic passing by.
Anyways, weīll discuss everything back home, it is handy to bring along some type of shoe material. Myself I am going to wear my dive booties, because not everywhere there is the same nice and sandy bottom.
If you send me a mail (email@example.com) I can give you my parents home/private number. If you donīt have the time or canīt remember the number later on, remember one thing. My parents are called Van der Wal, they are involved with all the nesting of turtles on the beaches. Every hotel has flyers about the foundation, in front of amsterdam manor or la Cabana there is even a bigger poster of them in the busstop. Ask anybody on the island to give you the turtlehotline number. if you call that number itīs either my mom or my dad on the otherside of the line most of the time. ask them for their son and Iīll get in touch.
Canīt wait to cast my first fly in my own waters! :Eyecrazy:
And for all the people of the Aruba Bonefish Club, Iīll do my best to make a nice report (in english with my dutch accent :tongue: )
12-19-2004, 11:07 AM
:cool: ok, he's on the Island.
I am here now for like 4 days, been fishing and searching everyday. The first day I only went fishing in the afternoon, and when the sun set, there was activity. As my father likes fishing too, the old man was out htere with me, he's got no clue about fly-fishing, doesn't fish with a rod, most of the times when we are fishing we either send out some baitfish with a balloon or we troll ballyhoo's on a handline behind our sunfishes. If we catch something (most of the time it's barracuda) we take it home for diner.
So I came back home from the Netherlands and told my father I was going to search Warashi's (that's what bonefish are called here) and trie to hook one on a fly. He looked at me as if I was gone mad, the fish is not eatable, we never see them snorkeling and the only time we saw some was like 20 years ago when we used to drag around a net in the shoreline just for fun to see what's in it. In the meanwhile the area where we used to drag the net is built full with hotels :mad:
So we discussed some stuff and he decided to go with me like I was telling before. When there came some activity, we were trying to figure out what it was. Me and the internet, I learned a lot, my father and his wisdom and knowledge of the sea. So the discussion started, I was sure it was bonefish. I even got more sure when I saw a tail and a fin, and not much later I saw one back. But the sun was setting and it was getting dark. Too dark. so we went back home, Blank! :hihi:
The next day I was at the same spot, early in the morning, when the sun was rising. Dad didn't join, he had to go to work. I am sure I spotted one or two bonefish again, but these fish are spooky and shy. Also they are roaming solitary, not in groups. Got home at 10, blanked again.
That afternoon when dad came home from work, offcourse the plan was to go out there again. But, as we still had the discussion, me swearing I've seen them, my dad who didn't believe it, we made a deal. If there was activity and I wouldn't manage too get anything, we would take out the old net (been lying in the closet for two decades) and see if we could close something in and determine wether it was bone or fish.
And again, as the sun started sinking behind the horizon, there was some activity going on. I changed flies like crazy, every 3 casts or so. Finally!!!!
At a sudden moment I felt something on the other end of my fly-line. I set the hook like I am used too, just as I do with roaches and other whitefish in the Netherlands...... I felt something on the otherside, it felt like some weed that is moving in the current. And all of a sudden... The water broke, my line cut through it and a big wave where the fish exploded. Very nice to see and a lot of power started to work on my rod. But inexperienced as I am (only been casting fly-lines for about a year now) and only used to whitefish in the fresh waters of the Lowlands.... I didn't here my drag, I looked at it and the line came out of the reel and made a nice loop around the fighting butt before going up towards the rod. The fish past by and trottled into second gear and before I realized what was going on the leader broke!!! :mad: :mad:
DAMN DAMN DAMN, could this have been a bonefish?
I was feeling shitty about it and my dad who didn't see this happening came up to the shoreline, maybe to suggest it was getting dark and it would be time to get the net out.
I asked for some little more time as there was some new activity coming up. My last clouser of that size and color, damn I lost the flie I only had two off...
Casting like crazy and searching for that strike. And just as you think you won't get nothing no more.....
Another of those bounces on the line, it feels like fishy and heavy, but no speed. And again all of a sudden the water tears apart. But this time I hear the beautifull rattling of my reel. I trie to break it with my hand, never had a fish taking out more then my fly line before... So a wise lesson, break it on the side, never put your fingers on top, because the handle hits quite hard. Adrenaline rushing through my body, I feel something connected to me by a fishingline and it's making the calm water into one chaotic puddle. I guess it took out quite a lot of backing untill I managed to stop it and start pulling the fish in. When I finally get to the fly line the fish feels like he's getting way to close to me and takes of all over again. And I repeat the ritual by trieing to break the speed and getting it back towards me.
Dad is cheering, big fun!
After a couple of minutes, it seemed like for ever, but it wasn't (I wish it could be). I finally landed my fish. Can anyone guess? It was my first ever, it was the goal I've been fishing for, for 2 days and it was something I almost had dreams about.
Here are the pictures and I see this post as an official apllication to become the first local member of the Aruba Bonefish Club.....
Hooked on, what will it be?
The fish, sorry for the eyes, I tend to close them for flashes
goodbye and farewell
ps. been here four days now, any other tips how to spot them, where to spot them, how to strip in the flie. Where at malmok are they, I saw 2 seperate ones but couldn't reach it close to shore in front of the wreck at malmok yesterday morning. Low or high tide?
pps. Bone, haven't heard from you yet, call me?
Welcome to the Aruba Bonefish Club!
12-19-2004, 12:45 PM
Now you've done it...you'll forever be hooked on the obsession of catching bonefish on the fly. Be aware that you are now comitted to venturing forth into the nether regions of our planet in search of screeming silver...you may one day be sorry for your enthusiasum. Congratulations on proving your pa pa wrong by catching your first bone. Whitefish and other species you catch at home will never hold quite the facination as bonefish for you now. You've done it and there's no turning back...Ah!!!...ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz z
12-23-2004, 10:38 PM
Ok folks, I am about to get a bit of clue's down here. I figured out the tide (with the help of a good website) and I spot an average of 2 or 3 bones tailing per day (2 fishing sessions of 2 or 3 hours). I still am not the best caster, so sometimes I spot a tailing bone and can just not get my fly in the neighbourhood.
Also after a week I managed to land one (see above) and had 3 other ones on the otherside of my line, but all three times the tippet broke. I am using Orvis tippet/leader material, 0X which should be up to 7kg. Is it a bad score for Aruba compared to what others have experienced?
I am now going out every earlie morning and in the evening, but I only spot the bones right after sunrise and just before or during sunset. This makes the effective time to try and catch something not more then 30-40 minutes a day. What are experiences and where during the day? When it's still dark or becoming dark I know they should be there, because when it's light they're not there and in the dawn or dusk I'll see them. So any recommendations on where to go or what to do if I want to have more luck during the day?
Anyway, the mystery is unraffling? I hope and maybe some day we'll know exactly what kind of tide for which spot and what time to go out there.
All suggestions will be taken seriously and I hope a lot of you react to help my perspective get better on the bones of my happy Island.
12-25-2004, 11:59 AM
Merry Christmas everybody.
Mine is good, I am starting to figure out more and more about fishing on Aruba. Turns out there are bones everywhere. The only thing still difficult is to catch them ( :confused: DUH :Eyecrazy: ) but I am getting to the good places. I don't see them that often, but I have eyecontact with them almost every day. Today for instance, bones tailing all over, but they just seem to spook much easier in the upcoming sunlight. Maybe they see me better and I think it's because of the long shadows you create. When the sun gets higher out I spotted three and later on one cruising and they don't seem so spooky as in the early rising sun. The only problem is when you see one coming towards you to get the presentation correct and in time, before he spots you.
Anyway, I managed to land my second bone this holiday. I now have landed 2 out of 5 bones which I got on the end of my line. The other three broke the tippet of.
So once again, best wishes and I'll keep posting my findings, at the end of my vacation I think I'll write an entire report on the sites I went to and what my experiences are.
12-26-2004, 06:04 PM
Thanks for the updates Arubaman!!
We'll be back in Aruba for almost 3 weeks in January and this time will come prepared to try our luck at these elusive little guys.
The place we stayed for the second half of our stay is right in front of the wreck and we'll be there the entire time this year (save for a 3 day side trip to Curacao), so it'll be easy access to at least one of their haunts.
Never caught one and honestly don't know much about trying for them ... but I'm gathering some info and piecing together some appropriate tackle for them.
Be fun to catch one or two, but I think I'll have fun just trying in 80+ degree weather and not standing waist deep in a half-frozen river :)
Will be looking forward to any info you can pass along ;)
12-26-2004, 10:54 PM
As flyfishermen amongst each other I can guarantee you I'll let you know where to go, what to look for and what sites are hot in my experience.
I also figured out a tide tabel on the internet which could be worth of printing (it has prospects for about a year long) Some places are better with high or rising tide some places even not fishable at all with low tide.
So keep watching the forum, I'll keep in touch. For now, make enough flies, crazy charlies and clousers. Best ones I fished till now are with white and brown, white and black, white and olive shouyld be good for malmok I guess, with a little bit of flash in it. And the dark side must be the back/upper part of your flie, remember de hook stands up. 8wt rod, a lot of backing and some steel wire for accidental barracuda's.
One question in general I came up with today, can you fish for bones with a stealwire? today I lost 4 or 5 flies on Cuda's, then decided to put some wire on my tippet, but is it then still good for bones?
Bye for now.
I just came back home from your wonderfull island. Unfortunately i forgot to take your phonenumber to Aruba and couldn't find the TortugaInformationstand! However it was great again. I caught 4 Bones ( 3 on the small flat next to the Aruba Grand and 1 at the wreck). Best fishing was in the early morning or at sunset at Half moon, later on with a full moon the Tide was much higher, the winddirection changed, and fishing slowed down. Have you been fishing at the wreck( blue Columbia shirt?)
It was a fantastic vacation again and i look forward to be on Aruba next christmas!
The Aruba Bonefish Club GROWS! :smokin:
01-11-2005, 12:42 PM
I was in Aruba last spring and flyfished west of the hotel area and also on the south end of the west point with no luck. I'm heading back in March and plan to try Baby Beach and the other spots you mentioned.
What flies did you have the best luck with?
my favourite Fly was Crazy Charly (brown, orange). Size didn't matter.
01-12-2005, 03:09 PM
I spent almost a year in Auba back in 2002. I caught mainly tarpon & snook in the Spanish Lagoon. I got tired of them and looked all over for the bonefish with little luck at first. I found the biggest numbers and largest fish behind the airport. There is a fence you can duck under near the runway. Just look for them tailing. I hooked one that was definately over 10# and was spooled in less than 30 seconds. I caught several in that area. Another good place was a little flat behind the refinery. They were there every afternoon after work.
The area looked very good but I was a little hesitant to duck under the fence because of post-911 concerns but found them cruising at Malmok and landed a couple. When you caught all those tarpon and snook were you fishing from a boat in Spanish Lagoon?
02-15-2005, 06:11 PM
Carefull with the fence crossing, it is not the idea of the fence and after 9-11, can you imagine what your own customs officers will do? I can assure you the fence is not placed there for nothing, if you duck it like mentioned above here, the planes will fly about 15ft over your head. Your rod tube may look like a bazooka and I cannot garanty you wonīt get into trouble....
Why botter fishing that site if thereīs more other good ones around. About the lagoon, on which side of the old bridge was it? (the bridge through the water I mean) Because a biologist I know told me they were on the landside of it, but from the shore thereīs no way of casting there. Maybe with a spinning reel, but flyfishing? I hope I can finally talk my dad into a lightweight boat or 2 kayaks, he says he wonīt use ém that much so it will be a waste of money, but if I read all the posts and know how curious everybody is... Why shouldnīt he buy something, maybe you guys want to even pay him something to rent it or we can buy it with a bunch of people and stock it at my parents place...
10-17-2005, 10:12 PM
A little late for an update but what the heck....
I was out in March 2005 and tried Arashi beach on two days. I walked from the beach back to the hotels in the early AM and didn't see anything until I got to the small "marina" near the Marriot.
There are tons of cruising fish in and around this little cove and I hooked into my first saltwater fish ever....a bluegill sized Jack. He wasn't much but made bringing the gear worth it.
If I go back, I'm going to save myself the long walk and just mess around at the marina.
03-14-2006, 02:35 PM
Hey everyone. I am going to Aruba with the family this November. I will be staying at the Marriot and I was given free reign in terms of what I can to do while there from my parents. So I plan on roaming the island fly rod in hand for at least part of every day I am there. My brother and I plan on bringing 8, 10, 12 weight rods with us on this trip. I read and re read all the reports and hopefully with some luck I can tie into a bonefish or for that matter anything that will put a bend in our rods. I am also really interested in Spanish Lagoon as I was given the OK to rent or charter a boat for a day. I would love to catch a Tarpon if I got a shot at some. Also my father and my 2 brothers are going to do an offshore trip. Any ideas of a good charter and is it possible to maybe hire a fisherman with a small skiff to take us around? Anyways I am really excited. Thanks everyone and tight lines!
03-14-2006, 05:10 PM
as a native I can give you some tips.
I think a twelve is very heavy, bu who knows, myself I usually use an 8 and that will be sufficient for casting almost everywhere.
Charters there are a lot out there, theyīll go out for dolphin (dorado), wahoo and other nice big stuff, most likely the thing theyīll catch is some small baracudaīs. If you go out on a charter, ask them if it is possible to go to the north side of the the island. Westpunt has got a lot of wahoo and another very nice place but a couple of hours of cruising with a boat is Bajo. Bajo is a structure on the south-east of the island where depth rises up from 300ft or deeper up to 20ft or less.
The spanish lagoon will be very hard, there are no possibilities to cast flies from the shore and there is a "bridge" that lies in the water which blocks of any entrance possibilities for boats.
Marriot is perfect, in the mornings, walk out at dawn (or a litlle earlier) and when you arrive at the beach go to the right. Then just follow the shore. The sun in your back in the morning, the wind not yet so hard and also in your back, that is just perfect. If you walk to the right youīll arrive at one of your best chances for Bones, the flat at Malmok where the shipwreck lies. Outside of the Marriot allready you can start spotting, Bones will sometimes be tailing just 2-15 feet from shore, carefull not to spook them. getting closer to Malmok youīll pass by a trailer where they rent surf-equipment and give surfing lessons. From here on it turns a little more into a flat and you can consider wading out of the shore a bit untill you are standing in 3 ft of water. Then just walk parallel to the shore.
The whole walk to the stranded wreck is about 10-20 minutes, so you are on the good spot!
Other places I still did not find out everything about but maybe worth of checking out for Bonefish is going to the left and walk across the shoreline in front of the hotels. When I was young we caught a lot of Bones and Palometaīs in that zone, from marriot to hyatt.
If you really consider tarpon, I think your best shot will be to cheat on the flie fishing and bring a long some spinner and casting gear, the bridge at the spanish lagoon is perfect for making far casts and this gives you some chances to hook up a tarpon.
Aruba is not the best, but there sure is fish to be caught and it is perfect to combine with a family-trip.
ps. local fisherman can sometimes help, bring a long some pictures of bones etc. and the name of the bone is "warashi". Tarpon is Sabalo in papiamento.
03-14-2006, 05:37 PM
Hey, thanks arubaman, I'll be bringing the 12 weight if I get a chance to do some offshore fly fishing. 12 weight for bones hahaha that would be crazy! Yea im excited that the wreck where some have had success with bones is near the Marriot. I'll definitely be hitting that spot often. I may try to bring a spin rod but will probably just bring fly rods. Thanks again for the great info.
the fish rove along the shore so you have to find them from day to day
they were thick as theives at the wreck one day and sparse the next, gone the day after
the section of beach near the airport at Orangestaad to the cove near the bunker attracts bones too, off hours rising tide
the locals catch them on the south end when handlining for food fish (baby beach, rogers beach etc)
03-14-2006, 11:59 PM
Thanks Mr Mukai, more info is what I need! I will write down what you and what others have said. On a side note I got to meet your daughter through my girlfriend in Boston a while ago. She said that you were a great fly fisherman and it seems true! Anyways thanks for the info it will go into my little notebook.
Those reef / flats at Malmok are hard coral and 'dem bones will cut you off very quickly. I actually hooked several but landed only two.
Get that rod up and line tight quickly when they run or expect to be thrilled for a short time only.
There are also small waves coming over the coral edge there and when the bones are looking for a snack in the skinny water they spook from splashing flies.
Bring some weightless flies and try to lead them further ahead so they meet up at the same depth, or cast into a wave peak closer to the fish as opposed to the flat between waves with a weighted fly like a gotcha and they don't spook.
Bring high quality polarized lenses and shoes that can withstand the coral. One hunk of coral I stood on provided a surprise - a moray eel lived in it and popped out with jaws agape.
Morning and evening calm are very good times for this area IMHO.
I haven't spent as much time in this stretch as arubaman has so his advice is definitely valuable.