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Trevor B 10-11-2007 05:32 PM

Bones in January, where to go ?
Hi all
I find myself with a weeks vacation that I have to use this coming January and I would like to spend it doing some more Bone fishing, any ideas as to where to go at this time of year with out spending a small fortune would be greatly appreciated.
I realize that weather can be an issue at this time of year; with this in mind any input as to what would be a good bet and the best bang for my bucks.
A friend of mine really likes Mangrove Cay Andros and I wonder if this would be a good choice? I would be alone and could only probably do a couple of days guided and the rest would have to be DIY.
So some expert opinions here would be a great help, thanks as always guys and I hope all the plans for the upcoming year are well under way.

Bob Bergquist 10-12-2007 06:36 AM

Hi Trev,

Andros is tough DIY as most flats are a boat ride away, and may are softish. Try looking at the Rainbow !nn program on Eleuthera. Pretty crowded. Drop me an e mail.

josko 10-13-2007 11:18 AM

I would say Andros has pelnty of DIY-accesible flats, and the 'guided anglers only' situation has completely calmed down. However, January in Andros (or elsewhere in the northern bahamas) means the likelihood of a cold front, which implies ~3 days of low cloud cover, rain and strong N-NW winds. That time of year I 'd look somewhere further south, perhaps Anegada, Mexico or Belize.
From first-hand experience, Anegada is very DIY-fishable, has great accomodations and could be just the ticket for a January getaway. It's easy to access through Puerto Rico.

Trevor B 10-13-2007 03:41 PM

You have been to Anegada ? What else can you tell me about it, sounds interesting?
I am I must admit a little dubious of the weather in Andros in January so I am open to any Suggestions. I donít mind a bit of guiding but the fun of exploring and catching them on my own really appeals as well. Plus I am trying to keep costs reasonable.
Thanks Trev

josko 10-13-2007 04:05 PM

We spent 2 2-week vacations on Anegada and enjoyed them immensley. First time we stayed at one of the houses owned by the Anegada reef hotel, and later at the 'bonefish villa'. The whole southside of the island is a bonefish flat, a bit dark and high at high tide, but eminently DIY wadeable. Bonefish numbers are not as large as on Andros, for instance, but the fish are bigger. There is some permit (in march anyway, as well as ample 40-60 lb tarpon. North side of the island has spectacular beaches and great jack/cuda fishing from shore, as well as diving and snorkelling. You can (could?) rent a Suzuki jeep (DW rentals???) quite reasonably and jounce all over the island.
There is a couple top-end guides on the island (Garfield and Kevin Faulkner) and maybe 1/2 doz others. Northside beachside restaurants have absolutely great food, as does Anegada reef and Neptune's treasure on the south side. Neptune's treasure also has a bakery with sumptionus fresh morning pastries.
There is very little shopping, entertainment, etc, on the island; however, ferry and shorthop flights to Tortola are frequent and reasonable, although you will spend the whole day doing a trip over there.
Anegada is among my favorite islands in the carribean. Not sure what more to say, but post or p.m. if you'd like more info.
One last thing. if there are 4 or more of you, look into an air taxi from San Juan. It's no more expensive than a regular flight, and leaves whenever you are ready.

Trevor B 10-13-2007 08:26 PM

How would you do the last part from San Juan to the island as a single are there direct flights from San Juan to Anegada ?

petevicar 10-14-2007 05:20 AM

Hi Trevor

Sorry for being so slow in replying.
The point that Josko makes about the weather is very true.
I was on Andros in January this year and we were rained out for a day and a half.

The safest place I know in terms of weather is Los Roques.

I have talked about it a lot in the past. It is one of the best bonefish locations I know.


JR SPEY 10-14-2007 10:30 AM

I've fished the North Bight area of Andros the first full week of January every year since 2001. I've lost exactly one day of fishing in that time and there were a lot of guys who did go out when I stayed back, including my fishing partner. Yes, there's a chance of a norther', but I've had better weather in January than I've had in the first week of March, which I've also done since 2001. In fact, this year I'm going in January and not in March due almost exclusively to the weather patterns. So I wouldn't stay home or even head somewhere else just because of concern for the weather.

josko 10-14-2007 11:03 AM


Originally Posted by Trevor B
How would you do the last part from San Juan to the island as a single are there direct flights from San Juan to Anegada ?

San Juan to Anegada flights go through Tortola, BVI, but the connectioons are quite reasonable.

One can always have good or bad weather, but the odds of unfishable weather in northern Bahamas are definitely higher in January and February than in other months.

Trevor B 10-14-2007 09:14 PM

I see also there is a ferry from Tortola over to Anegada, a little cheaper than a flight but a little trickier to tie in with flights form here. But it does look a very interesting and beautiful place.
Is there any thing else you can tell me about what to expect of the fishing there.
Also is it an expensive place for food, restaurants, car rental etc

I do fancy the idea of Los Roques but flights from here for some reason are very expensive in early January, shame because I would like to try it, is it expensive for Guides, accommodations, food etc?

josko 10-15-2007 07:10 AM

We found Anegada relatively inexpensive, with the exception of 'creative fees' at the Anegada reef hotel. They charge extra for just about anything. :confused:
The bakery was great and inexpensive, northside restaurants excellent and also inexpensive, rental from Anegada Reef was prohibitive, but from DW rentals surprisingly cheap. Flights are set up so you can reach the place in a day through san juan.

House rental was very reasonable. Provisioning the houseis hard and can get costly. See if the house renter can provision the house with a list you supply - it worked out for us. There's is very little available on the island for sale. People are very nice and helpful.

p.m. if you'd like more detailed info.

Swalt 10-15-2007 08:34 AM

I am going to throw in my 2 cents on Anegada. Its a beautiful island. 15 miles of nearly deserted beach on one side and expansive flats on the other. The food is excellent, best lobster I have had. I have been there 3 times and stayed at the Anegada Reef Hotel each time. It caters to the sail boaters and is a lively spot in the evenings. They offer room and 3 meals a day plan which was around $100 a person when I was last there in 2002. I also rented 4wd from DW's. Its a great way to get around the island on your schedule.

On the fishing, I found the DIY fishing difficult but did catch a few. Found a couple of spots I could go to where you had a good chance of seeing fish. The problem for me was that the flats were just so expansive that I had a hard time finding the spots. You can find tarpon at the Anegada Reef in the mornings and evenings under the dock lights. They clean the lobster there and they hang out in that area. Also you can just walk the beach neast of there and find tarpon in the surf at times. Also if you go to the government dock you can find them under the lights at night. As Josko mentioned there are 2 good guides there. I have fished with Garfield Faulkner on each visit and he is in tune to the island and will find fish. I havn't fished with Kevin but I am sure he is good also. Take a rod with you to the beach side too. I have seen bonefish, permit and baracuda just cruising along the beach.

Not sure about the ferry but when I was there the only way to get there from Tortolla was by plane unless you had a boat. I think there was a ferry from one of the resorts on Virgin Gorda but to get to Virgin Gorda from Tortolla you have to take a ferry or plane.

Trevor B 10-15-2007 12:33 PM

Apparently there are now only charter flights in to the island but there is ferry service from Tortola which takes about 1 hr and is $50 round trip. A charter flight is not really an option for me as I would be alone
I am seeing some mixed revues from the fishing point of view but it sounds like itís worth a try, I think catching even a few bones when you go it alone has a certain appeal to it and for sure a sense of accomplishment, and even the chance of a crack at a Tarpon would make it all worthwhile.
I do appreciate all of the input; this is what makes this forum so great.

Swalt 10-16-2007 06:55 AM

The best place I have found for information on the BVI and Anegada is the Traveltalk forums. You can get an answer to any question you may have there except for maybe fishing.

I also spent time fishing Tortola and Beef Island. If you get this trip going let me know and I can point you to a few places to start hunting fish on both Tortola and Anegada.

bnowak15 10-19-2007 07:02 PM

I fished Anegada with my brother and we spent the entire day wading the flats but it was a bit too deep to do anything reasonable DIY style. I'd love to know more about the spots because I plan on going back to Virgin Gorda/BVI area this winter for family vacation.

I went back and fished it with a guide, Kevin, and we saw a ton of fish but it was very fast fishing- meaning we floated along and the fish were moving right at us, "there there there, cast cast, ok, it's gone". It's not hunt and sneak, heart pounding fishing, but you can catch fish. I did. Personally, I don't find it nearly as much fun as the hunting style.

We did see Tarpon as well and that was a ton of fun. I'm a DIY type fisherman and I spent five days on Virgin Gorda working one flat to catch one fish, and it was great but I wouldn't recommend it if you want numbers. I also fished with Juro for a week and caught a Bone a day, but I was fishing 12-13 hour days.

For DIY fishing, you have to find shallow flats, where you can see the back of the fish, because if you're trying to sight fish for them it's usually too late when you finally see them in the water. You'll see them but usually they will be skirting away or two close, or about to scoot. So try and find spots that have shallow spots, and know the tides, where you can see their tails/backs breaking through. You might not see as many fish but at least you'll have a shot at catching them.

And the best way to catch Bone DIY, I feel, is to go really early. I fish from sun up, like when you can see- 545- to 830. After that it goes down hill until 630 at night. That's just what I've learned. Mid day I spent napping and trying to find Permit.

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