Puerto Rico Virgin Territory Trip - New Date [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Puerto Rico Virgin Territory Trip - New Date

08-23-2006, 03:24 PM
After assessing other events, Dave17 and I have decided to re-schedule the PR trip until October 29-29th and surrounding extra days (either before or after).

We feel confident that these will be the firm dates for the excursion. Others in good health, adventurous spirit or exceptional skill at dominoes are encouraged to join us.

08-24-2006, 06:27 AM
hmmmm ex.domino player needed for PR Tarpon trip ????

I just may know someone that fits the bill...

Although its a way off, I think I can tentatively say I will join you.... its a place I have always wanted to explore.

Dave did you get the emails on PR fishing I forwarded to you ?

Some interesting info in there..... Looks like there are good possibilities...

I will go dig up more info... I think I had a bunch of web sites saved somewhere that were of interest also.

Keep me in the loop ....

08-24-2006, 08:39 AM
Hey Frank:

Can you send some information over this way, if you don't mind. Thanks in advance. Thomas.

08-24-2006, 08:53 AM
Trucha - Will send you what I have...

Dave17 ... I will assume you have forwarded all info to Juro

These are old emails and web sites I have found over the past few years and hopefully they will give us some insight into the fishery...

08-24-2006, 02:15 PM

Thanks, got all the info. Haven't sent anything to Juro yet.

Juro - do you want me to send the info? If so PM the email address you want me to send them to.

08-25-2006, 07:11 PM
yipeeeee:hihi: i can go with you guys keep me in the loop since that is a sunday i will assume that the other days are thurs and friday or mon and tues. just let me know
fish we must

08-25-2006, 11:18 PM
Sounds like this is turning into a nice little foursome:smokin:

09-11-2006, 07:07 AM
I'm a new member and new at all this, however I could not let this potential trip past without possibly getting involved. I live on the Island of St.Croix and am interested in joining you all for the PR adventure. I've been living in the VI for 42 plus years and have traveled around PR quite alot, unfortuneately though, without my fly rod. Only once, several years ago, went tarpon fishing in the San Juan Lagoon area...bad weather, no fish but lots of cold beer! Have been to Culebra, but years ago on a spearfishing trip. Let me know if there's space and how I can be of help!


09-11-2006, 08:18 AM
Yer IN! Might have to limit the initial trip to number of passengers in the rental car :)

09-11-2006, 08:56 AM
Thanks! If there is anything I can do in advance let me know. Has anyone in our group traveled thoughout PR? The coast line is basically assessable from there major road system. It does take a a little time to drive to the west side though, depending on traffic about 90 -120 minutes. Most of the major car rentals have mini-vans...might be a good idea with all the fishn' stuff. Anyway...let me know how I can be of assisstance! In the future maybe a trip to my waters, both the US and British Virgin Islands, may be in order!


09-11-2006, 09:14 AM
Have you camped in that gorgeous campground on the north side of Culebra?

09-11-2006, 09:38 AM
No...but I have stayed in the little town but it was several years ago during my spearfishing days. A friend of mine has family on Culebra with a guest house/cottages. Believe also has a boat. Little whaler I believe. Would you like me to check this out? Only a little (90 Min =/-) from Fajardo by ferry. Fajardo is about 90 min from San Juan. Ferry is cheap! Used to be around 2-3 bucks each way...can check it out as well if need be. Jeep rental on Culebra to get to outer beaches/bays is also possible. Have you considered Veiques? I have not been there but also easy to get to from Fajardo and supposedly has good flats...possibly not as fished as Culebra. I fly over it often and looks as good as Culebra.


09-11-2006, 11:13 AM
No...but I have stayed in the little town but it was several years ago during my spearfishing days. A friend of mine has family on Culebra with a guest house/cottages. Believe also has a boat. Little whaler I believe. Would you like me to check this out? Only a little (90 Min =/-) from Fajardo by ferry. Fajardo is about 90 min from San Juan. Ferry is cheap! Used to be around 2-3 bucks each way...can check it out as well if need be. Jeep rental on Culebra to get to outer beaches/bays is also possible. Have you considered Veiques? I have not been there but also easy to get to from Fajardo and supposedly has good flats...possibly not as fished as Culebra. I fly over it often and looks as good as Culebra.


09-11-2006, 05:35 PM
it wont be a bad thing if we have more than 4 people ..

I think the areas to the Soutwest are supposed to be good...

But I also have heard about the areas to the East in the Fajardo area and the islands off the East coast Vieques and Culebra...

So if a larger group split into two and one group goes East and one West and we communicate via cell phones we could cover the whole island... if one group finds great success and the other fails we meet at the good area !

09-13-2006, 08:13 AM
Have checked up a little on Pr...heres some thoughts. Tarpon fishing in the San Juan area (lagoons) is to be good this time of year. Mostly if not completely unwadeable. Poluted water and soft bottom. I think we may need to have boat access. Several guides are available...easy access on internet. Fajardo Bay (south-eastern tip) is also to be good but may also need boat access. Fajardo is about one hour from San Juan (major highway) and follows the coast. May be places along the way to explore but usually very crowed on weekends (PR has about half a million people, mostly in San Juan area).

South-west PR is to be explored. Cabo Rojo (town) area by Boqueron Bay. May have wadeable flats. May need boat to access tarpon. Guides here as well. Drive thru Ponce and by south shore of PR. May find places along the way and not as crowed. La Parquera is another possibility. North shore is really not good unless offshore. South shore has lots of lagoons, river moths etc. Drive to Cabo Rojo about 2 hours. Either oiver mountains (faster from San Juan) or by Fajardo.

Culebra...campsite is by Flamingo Bay. Around 500 campsites. This time of year, being hurricane season and quite rainy, expect lots of misquitoes. Vieques also has a camping area. Easy access to flats and lagoons on both but may need a boat to get to uncrowed areas, tarpon waters. Guides available on both as well. Either fly ($$$) or take ferry (cheap!) from Fajardo. Do not believe you can travel from Culebra to Vieques directly...must go thru Fajardo unfotuneatly.

Hope this helps with the planning!

Any one who wants to stop off on St.Croix first, on way to PR, let me know. This time of year is usually good permit action on our south shore (very wadeable). If you don't get a shot at a permit the beers on me!

09-13-2006, 08:50 AM
virginfly -

great suggestions

Just to remind the intent on this virgin mission is to recon, and catch some fish in the process. The ability to jump down there and score big on our own will probably take 2-3 rounds to develop. I am not bent on hiring a guide or even fishing in SJ but might share a fare at the start or end of the trip while necessity puts us in San Juan.

Frankly I would much rather fish down on the Keys with Ben Iannotta than fish the polluted SJ lagoons. But beyond the polluted lagoons and urban atmosphere lies infinite virgin possibilities for DIY tarpon on a fly in pristine surroundings that is PR beyond the city. That is what excites me about this.

My plan is to have a 'mik run' route planned, and cover ground for tarpon intelligence purposes. So the first trip is mostly about knowledge, secondly about catching. You mentioned some of the spots in your post we've been looking at. We'll take it one step further to detailed lat/long and aerial offline.

Such an investment will make it possible to head down on a Friday afternoon and back on a Sunday with say 20 tarpon jumped in future years and that is my goal.

I led similar excursions into Acklins and thanks to the great group that materialized we have reached that status with that destination, and wish to add PR to the list of FORUM DIY exploits.

Thus the discussion so far has included the west / southwest side, also the southeast area as you know, and of course Culebra. I am less interested in the San Juan area lagoons but have several target areas on the periphery of the city that should be amenable and have come with reports of success from the grapevine. The SJ area is planned to be hit while leaving or returning to the airport and not a specific target in my book. There is so much more area and most of it virgin for tarpon on the fly.

I will set up a PRvirgin board for those who have replied with earnest in this adventure so we can discuss details. I have more aerial recon done than we could possibly cover in a month never mind a few days.

09-13-2006, 10:00 AM
I'm right with you! The less we spend in SJ the better! Just let me know how I can hekp! Really sounds like I need to make it to Acklins with you guys...I've so much to learn.

09-13-2006, 12:34 PM
No way I want to do the SJU lagoon thing....

I have fished urban areas on other islands and believe me, it is not worth it!

Excellent notes.. most appreciated... you have started to confirm some of the areas I have researched over the past year on several internet sites.

Local Contact:
I contacted an old friend of mine (non fisher) whose in-laws are doctors on Puerto Rico and like to fish offshore... He will ask them for any local knowledge they can provide re: Sabalo ... hope to hear from him soon.

What do you think of my idea of splitting the group into two camps one to the East and one to the Southwest ? On the initial trip it could save a lot of exploring...

Dave17 and Acklins Big Dave... chime in here ... all ideas welcomed..

09-13-2006, 01:11 PM

Not a bad idea, although if we could fit the group in one vehicle that would work for me as well.

It depends on number of days e.g. whether we have two days or four. In four or more days we can easily cover both sides - the drive is only a few hours. Two days we'd better split up.

Going to Culebra would make it a Culebra mission, in other words the boat ride and it's own nooks and crannies could leave only an urban evening or morning to spare.

BTW I have some 'periphery' stuff pre-analyzed by aerial and offline correspondence that I think you will not want to miss. Will post on alternate board. Not far from the airport but not urban either.

SJ is congested but once the city limit is hit it turns into country real quick as you must know from having been there. These inlets flush bays into the sea from large lagoon systems just out of the urban sprawl and we have first-hand experience by members of great tarpon fishing. It's an option for filling in time on arrival or departure dates only.

Is sasquatch coming? Havent' seen any posts.

09-13-2006, 01:44 PM
Will set up alternate board tonight and include those who have replied with interest. Frank tell the squatch to post or tell you he's in so I can include him.

JUICY aerials, it's an amazing island.

No crocodiles but there is a bat-eating boa. Careful of stingrays, was that a freaky occurrence or what?

09-13-2006, 02:27 PM
Unbelievable! Though no where near as scary, I had a similar experience in Acklins the first year. Walking out to Jamaica I looked left and there was a ray right next to me, floating, puffed up, with its barb sticking up. I must have just missed stepping on it and it looked like he took a shot at me and missed as well.

Then there's Bob's Lemon shark tooth in his boot story. I'll never wade in soft shoes again.

09-13-2006, 05:39 PM
the last time I talked to him he was very interested in going...

he has been super busy ... have not seen him for weeks...

include him in the forum... I just sent him an email and will call him tomorrow..

my thoughts are to take a few vacation days around the weekend we go..

make it like a 4n/5d trip... so if you all are only going down for a weekend I could scout out an area beforehand..

09-13-2006, 07:11 PM
Juro .... please check you PM's ... Isgrigg

09-14-2006, 08:35 AM
Like Frank said I would be very interested in going....
Please add me to the list for the new thread

09-14-2006, 07:00 PM
Hey hey,

How've you been?

09-14-2006, 10:13 PM
This is going to be a great Forum adventure into new territory.:smokin:

09-15-2006, 02:57 PM
This is going to be a great Forum adventure into new territory.:smokin:

And......it will be taking place near my birthday. Huuuuuuuummmmmmm.


10-02-2006, 02:17 PM
I've been away...any updates on the late Oct Puerto Rico adventuer ??

10-03-2006, 09:29 AM
I hate to push it too but the guy at work I back up has a wife 8 months pregnant and I know he will want a couple of weeks off around the birth date...

Could be tough for me to get away if the timing is wrong.... I asked his wife to try to hurry up because my Tarpon fishing is being affected but I cannot print the response here...

10-15-2006, 09:22 AM
You all up for this trip ?

Could be tough for me now because I have to book the time with work.....and no one has responded with a date as of yet...

Lets talk !!!

10-15-2006, 09:44 AM
Frank -

I couldn't begin to tell you how much I want to follow through on this in fact it's filled my thoughts since the wild idea popped into my head - but it will be a while before I can commit to anything as family must come first.

It sounded like there was quorum with the guys who responded so I really hope this excursion happens with or without me.

I will be doing it, but the matter of when is up in the air at this time. I wouldn't wait for me to get things sorted out, just do it as they say!

10-15-2006, 02:57 PM
I hear you re: family priorities.... I was just pushing the issue a bit because, like you, I think this could be a great trip... it would save me so much time, money and effort if I could make SJU my final destination from BOS.... the island hopping has worked in the past but PR could be a much better option and appears to have all we want..

Can you set up a private forum entry so that all those that were interested can exchange info ?
Dave17 ... Sasquatch etc ... you all still interested ?

10-21-2006, 07:07 AM
I will have plenty of free time on weekends to come for the forseeable future. Normally I would be very happy but under the circumstances I can't bear the thought of it.

However, perhaps following through on this could very well be therapeutic. So whos goin?

10-29-2006, 06:53 PM
Hey all,

Looks like the wife and I are still going in March. By the looks of things, I may beat you all to PR. We are going to travel a little bit on the island and I got permission to fish my butt off.

I will give more information as I get it. I will do the obligatory trip to the lagoons around San Juan but there are a couple of beaches on the island that permit wading that I may want to try out. Wish me luck.

12-12-2006, 08:19 AM
This is my wife's and I intinaray for our PR trip. Land in San Juan and head over to the island of Vieques:hihi: , for two and a half days. Then, back to the big island for my wife's conference and I will hit a few places on the east coast. We will be on the island for about a week; on Saturday most likely head over to El Yunque with the wife and play the tourist. Return on Sunday, hopefully with a lot of stories to tell.

12-13-2006, 12:44 AM
Can't wait to hear. We had to postpone this year and my attention is starting to shift toward my bonefish trips in the new year, but I will get there sometime soon.

Keep us posted.........

12-13-2006, 08:39 AM
I may pop down there on a whim anytime I can once my hand is healed enough, maybe just for a long weekend. Flights are cheap and there is a great campground on Culebra Island, but Cabo Rojo on the southwest has my interest piqued with the hand-feeding of tarpon at area tourist spots and aerial recon reveals a vast myriad of tarpon habitat which I am certain has never seen a fly in remote areas.

Or if a ridiculous group adventure forms even better.

12-13-2006, 10:35 AM
What happened to your hand?

12-13-2006, 12:08 PM
Torn radial collateral ligaments (MCP) right hand blocking a front kick while sparring. I had surgery a couple of weeks ago but have a couple of months left before I can use it effectively.

It's a pain in the ass but long-term its the right decision. There's always lefty casting if I get desperate! Depends on how cold and nasty the winter is I guess.

12-14-2006, 07:03 AM
Acklins Big Dave sent me an email about new daily service to SJU on Jet Blue !!!

Tin Pusher
01-24-2007, 01:02 AM
Who is still interested? I just got a free week in my schedule (Mar.21-29) and am seriously looking into it. All I need is at least one other guy to share ideas and expenses with and I am there.

Juro, How is the hand? I am firming up Baja Rooster dates this month and it looks like June is shaping up nicely.

01-24-2007, 04:59 AM
Hands coming along nicely thanks! Still can't risk separating the ligaments from their new titanium "tent-stakes" for a couple of months but I think I am ready to take a few tosses with a 5wt the next decent day (weather wise). I did not attend the Fly Show recently because FFF activities took the entire day. Probably a good thing.

I should be fine for February bonefishing if I take it slow, stand still and wait for easy shots. Using the head more means using the arms less anyway.

I am headed to the Gaspe' in June and pretty sure I can not commit to Baja that month... but a spontaneous hop to SJU is definitely in my future but late March is PNW time so I would have a conflict unfortunately.

Can you shift some of that time, say two days, earlier in the month of march and make a four-day weekend?

Tin Pusher
01-24-2007, 01:32 PM
Sorry Juro dates in March are set. I selected these vacation days last year and my plans have recently fell through so now I am free for an adventure. From home to San Juan is a 3 flight, 15 hour trek so there will be no 4 day weekends in my future but if you can hop down for a few days let me know. I will post when and if I commit and buy my airfare. As someone who lives in the PNW I may put a fall dry fly steelhead trip ahead of Tarpon but never cold March sink tip dredging. I have not fished the Skagit in a few years but if the reports are good and you want to drift it I have 2 pontoon boats. Just let me know and I may drive down I5 for a day or two.


Tin Pusher
01-26-2007, 05:59 PM
I found the cheap skiff rental web site but that is for Culebra. I am after tarpon this trip and the more I research the more I think fishing around San Juan is the answer. Does anyone know of a boat rental business in San Juan? Any recomendations on a hotel would also be appreciated. I don't need a place on the beach as that is not where I will be spending my days. Something close to the channels and estuaries would be nice.

Trucha, when are you going to be down there?


01-27-2007, 04:50 AM
Off to catch a flight to San Juan. Basser called from SJ last night and told me to bring cash, he booked a charter for Sunday am, before we board the cruise ship. Don't think the missus is too happy. Oh well. We'll report our findings.

01-29-2007, 07:55 AM
Fred hooked and dropped 2 large tarpon over 60 #..... The 2nd one never came up from a very deep hole...our guide fired up his engine to prepare to give chace and said "oh no" , fish came unbuttoned before we made chase.....very good morning at the lagoon adjacent to the airport.

01-29-2007, 08:47 AM
Good for FredA. Now you guys can relax on the Cruise. I knew you would do well. FishHawk

01-29-2007, 11:22 AM
Nice work Fred and Basser!

Fred's ruined now... there ain't a bluefish or striper on earth that can stand up to the silver king I hate to say. The local fish win our affection in other ways but not brute force and explosiveness and wild aerial display like tarpon.

Starting to get the 'jones'...

01-29-2007, 12:19 PM
Agreed , it 's the ultimate gamefish. Primitive and loaded with raw power. My turn is coming up. FishHawk:smokin:

01-29-2007, 04:42 PM
Okay, all. We got our tickets and we are headed to Puerto Rico. My wife and I will be on the island from March 3rd. to March 11. The first part of the week, we will be on the small island of Vieques. I will be hitting the beaches pretty hard on Vieques. I think this may be the highlight of the trip for us. Then, the later part of the week, in San Juan for the wife's conference. But, I will work the beaches there, too. Besides the typical tourist stuff; food, sights, rum and salsa.

01-29-2007, 04:44 PM
Don't forget the lagoons and salt ponds as well, and take lots of pics.

01-30-2007, 09:09 AM
Here's another PR secret...sunrise/sunset try the water holes on golf courses on the coast. BIG TARPON ROLLING! HOLD ON!!!!

02-14-2007, 01:22 PM
puerto rico tarpon report



Posted by frank s. on 2007-01-23 08:56:56
On Jan. 3rd I left Sac. at 6:45 am to hook up with my Idaho fishing buddy on the way to Boqueron Puerto Rico (west side of the island). We met up in Washington D.C. and landed in San Juan at 9:30 pm. We had previously decided to stay the first night in San Juan since we didn't know the roads to Boqueron.
After checking in to our hotel close to the airport we went for a walk to the nearby casinos ( Nevada style) and ended up at a taco beer joint across the street from our hotel for a late snack. I found it interesting and a little uncomfortable to be searched for firearms in order to eat a snack.

Anyway the next morning at 6:00 am we were on the road to Boqueron for the 2.5 hr drive. On the way we called our guide Francisco "Pochy" Rosario to meet us at the harbor. By 10 am we were ready to step on to the boat. It was very easy because Pochy supplies all the rods and flies so we didn't have to haul all our stuff down there. So we stepped on the boat and he poled us back about 20 yds and we saw our first tarpon of the trip. Within 15 minutes we had jumped the first tarpon. We fished that day until dark (around 6 pm) got off the boat had a beer and an appetizer and headed for our hotel which had been picked by a friend who has lived in Boqueron for 20 yrs. We checked in to the hotel and stayed there one night but the rooms were terribly small and spartan so the rest of the trip we stayed at Boqueron Beach Hotel ( which is not on the beach and does not have a water view) where the rooms were larger and only $20 more per night. After this move we settled in to a routine of early morning breakfast accross the street at "Rice and Beans" (which was run by an 85 yr old nice lady). Breakfast was scrambled eggs, 2 bacon , 1 pancake, grilled bread, juice and coffee all for $2.99. Then we would hook up with Pochy and go fishing. We ended up being there for Three Kings Day so it was a party atmosphere in the town center which was within walking distance where we ate at a different restaurant every night.
I really lost track of the number of fish we jumped in our 6 days of fishing but I believe we landed close to 15 tarpon. We also landed jacks, barracuda, snook, lizard fish, mutton snapper. If you want to catch a tarpon on a fly rod this is the place that you can pretty much be sure to do it. Pochy is by far the best guide I have ever fished with and I have fished tarpon in Florida , Mexico and Belize . He is a hard worker that started early and stayed late. Dark to dark a couple of days. The food on the boat was plentiful and good. There is nothing like cold fruit in the tropics. Not only was there a lot of fish but for the most part they were large. Pochy believes that my friend released a fish that could have been the world record on fly. It was estimated (using formula)78 inches lenght and 48 inches grith Right at 205 lbs( I think the record is 202). The smallest fish was taken in the mangroves and was only about 15 lbs. but everything else was 40 and up with many in the 60 to 100 range.

As far as the fishing goes it was different than what I was used to. We fished mostly around docks and marinas where the tarpon hung in the area. Often there were people watching us. The casts had to be precise into the shades of boats and docks. And many fish were hooked and lost because they went under, around and over docks, ropes, boats and other obstacles. It is very difficult and you have to be lucky to land a big fish in that environment. Greg's big fish was under a boat on the outside of a marina and luckily (with a lot of help from Greg) headed to the bay. This type of fishing is not as enjoyable to me as the more classic situations where tarpon are found. Greg on the other hand loved it and he is more skilled than I am.

We did fish some schools of bait out in the bay and caught both tarpon and jacks. We also fished in mangroves for snapper, tarpon and snook. We also saw schools of false albacore busting bait and got a couple of casts at them but they didn't stay up long. This more traditional fishing was what I enjoyed the most. But I must say that watching 100 lb. fish take your fly is outstanding fun. We even had a double on 60 lbers for a short time.

On Wednes. the 10th I headed for home. Rather than have Greg, who was staying 4 more days, drive me back to San Juan I took a small plane from Maragues (sp?) for $80.

All in all it was a great fishing trip. I have never been so up close and personal with as many tarpon. We probably averaged 10 hrs. per day for the 6 days of fishing which is pretty hard core. When he comes down here to fish the delta with me we do the same thing.

Part of the reason I wrote this report is because I told Pochy I would so if you're thinking of going to Puerto Rico or you want to catch a tarpon on your fly rod call Francisco "Pochy" Rosario a man with a great disposition who loves to fish and loves the fish that he chases.

Capt.Francisco (POCHY)Rosario

02-14-2007, 04:57 PM
Thanks for the excellent report. I'm excited about a different venue for tarpon. Juro please keep me informed on the PR adventures.