01-23-2007, 12:53 PM
Hey bud, thought it might interest you. Sounds the the fella and his friend had some awesome fishing (guided mind you). Wonder if some of the marina/dock areas have public access for DIY poonfishers?
Ever get a vibe about something? Acklins was that way when I first flew over it en route from Aruba to the mainland. Well the PR poon thing has been giving me goosebumps for a couple of years now and these stories just confirm it. I would have already been if I wasn't dealing with hell over the last several months but the time will come.
I've done a complete aerial analysis of the island and the possibilities are astounding. I imagine PR is about the most accessible virgin tarpon wonderland for eastern US anglers outside of florida, but without the famous crowds of the latter.
I believe there could be some safety challenges for gringos in the wrong areas, but my understanding is that once into the countryside enthusiastic fishermen are not going to get much trouble.
I won't be wearing a rolex (don't own one anyway) or a safari hat with gold field glasses anyway so I will probably exude my humble status in muddy wading pants and an untucked tequila stained flats shirt. After a couple of days without shaving they might even offer me some change :)
01-24-2007, 05:46 AM
I know exactly what you mean. Last January, we flew into Holguin Cuba for a weeks family vacation. During the flight, we passed over the vast inland and ocean side flats in the Cayo Coco/Cayo Guillermo area. Absolutely awesome looking. Unlimited pothole flats/channels/creeks and mangrove areas. In fact, the area drew me so much that we're off for a two week vacation there this Friday. The most interesting thing about the place is the number of man-made causeways that connect the cays...they stretch on for miles and miles. To me, that means almost unlimited DIY access to remote areas. My E-research has gleened me much information and I'm really looking forward to numerous opportunities at Tarpon, bones, snook and permit as well as some really big Mutton snappers.
I've got 3 days to relax at home after that trip before I'm off to Eleuthera for another 10 days of fishing and relaxing. I just can't stay away from that place. All our trips and exploration there have paid off big-time with lots of fine fish in remote areas (via inflatable kayak and bushwacking).
I'll post a trip report about both places when I get back.
01-24-2007, 01:40 PM
Henry access may be denied by the military check point at the head of the bay 30 min. east of Cayo Coco. How's your Spanish? Land guides are relatively inexpensive ($100 approx.) and can get you anywhere. When you take into account car rental and gas you are probably better off with one. For DIY check out the flats near the Cayo Guilermo bridge. There is a shuttle bus that runs between Cayo Coco and Guilermo.
01-24-2007, 01:50 PM
We're staying at the Iberostar and plan on doing at least a few guided days including an outing or two into the Baga Reserve. Also, know about the military checkpoints...we'll get a fell for the situation when out with a guide...if it seems doable on our own at a later date we may try it, if not...like you said...guides are cheap. I also plan on putting the hurt on some of the poons in the canals directly in front of our resort.
04-15-2008, 08:52 PM
Thank you for two of the best fishing days in my life! 24 tarpon, on flies, in one day! My brother Frank and I had an absolutely wonderful experience with you. The day before we caught the two dozen tarpon, we caught 10 with you and I simply didn't believe we could do any better. We caught them sight fishing in crystal clear water (4-6 ft.), in deeper water (20-30 ft.) and in the shallows (2-3 ft.). We caught tarpon around boat slips, in the middle of bays, along sandy beaches and along rocky breakers. You certainly know your spots and how (and when) to pick them.
I do have to tell you that when we first went out on that second day and anchored in the middle entrance of a two mile wide bay, first thing in the morning, and you said the tarpon like to come here on Sundays, I thought to myself, well, at least yesterday was good fishing - today, I guess we'll be mostly practicing our casting. Fortunately, I couldn't have been more wrong. You know where the fish are and we certainly got into them there for several hours of steady action. I guess the best story of the day was my catching six tarpon on three casts - I would hook one, it would throw the fly somewhere in the middle of the fight, another tarpon would pick it up and we'd bring it to the boat. I've never seen anything like it. Talk about exciting action! And the fish - "huge" doesn't begin to describe them. I saw one rolling that had a back that looked like a decent sized dolphin. Most of the ones we caught were in the 30-50 lb. range, and man-o-man, these were tough, flying fish to hang on to.
I've fly-fished for and caught all 5 types of Pacific salmon and they didn't hold a candle to these tarpon. I don't think I've ever seen fish leap and fight all the way in like them. They are spectacular - I remember the first tarpon my brother caught - about 60 lbs. and it tore out line like it wasn't ever going to stop and the tail-walks/head shakes were amazing sights. I think we chased that first fish for at least a 1/2 hr. and at least a 1/2 mile before we got it to the boat.
I brought my own rods and reels but ended up using a lot of yours - thanks for supplying such high grade fly fishing equipment and your recommendations on flies. I also appreciate your hard work ethic and willingness to cheerfully put up with a couple of beginner tarpon fishermen. My brother and I went out fly fishing near the airport in San Juan earlier in the week and we spent the first hour watching the guide throw his cast net for some minnows. In sharp contrast, when you picked us up - the live well was already stocked and we were out and fishing in short order. I also appreciate your "catch and release" policy, silver kings certainly deserve this treatment (besides, I hope to one day return with you and catch them all over again...).
Another thing that I still find hard to believe was the fact that in two full days of fishing with you for tarpon, along many miles of inshore water, we never saw another guide. In two days of fishing, on a weekend, no less, we saw a total of two other fishing boats, the closest about a 1/2 mile away. With this tarpon fishery in Boqueron, I'm stunned that the place isn't packed with fly-fishermen elbowing one another out of the way.
My brother and I would certainly return fishing with you in a heartbeat if we got the chance. I talked to him today and he's already scheming a way to get us back next year. The 75 pounder that wrapped my line around a pier and snapped me off, still haunts me, and I won't be able to get his leaping form out of my dreams until I return.
Thanks again for a most memorable trip.
San Antonio, TX