Christmas Island Report - Fly Fishing Forum
Bonefish, Tarpon, and other Obsessions Turquoise water, silver demons on the fly

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Old 01-20-2008, 07:15 PM
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Trevor B Trevor B is offline
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Christmas Island Report

Feeling the warm air upon stepping out of the plane was such a welcome relief from the bitter cold of winter in Nova Scotia.
But the question is, was the two day travel from east coast Canada going to be worth it amid rumors of netting by locals and greatly reduced bone fish numbers over the last few years and the fact that most of the bones were on the small side.
The first thing I noticed apart from the warm air was the cloud cover and the strong wind but for now I was more concerned with whether or not my guide was there to meet me, he was so first problem solved.
Day one: Wind still blowing and the clouds still filling the sky, but we set out into the lagoon in search of bones, but finding them proved to be difficult and seeing them even more with the lack of sun and the strong winds but as the afternoon wore on we did find and hook into some fish only to be brutalized by the corral on a couple of occasions.
Day two: With no sun at all, it was decided to head out side to the blue water and see if we can find some Tuna, but rough water make getting around tough and there are no birds in sight. We manage a couple of Smallish tuna trolling flies still great fun when hooked. In the afternoon the skies clear a little and we fish a flat with good numbers of fish and despite a difficult wind have a great afternoon with Bones and Blue fin Trevally.
All the bones are in the 3 to 3.5 lb range with none of the small ones that I was told about.
Day three: The wind still blowing and today rain as well in a place that receives very little, so again we headed outside and tried casting GT and trolling for Tuna, the GT were not up to playing ball but I did manage a Tuna, Wow these can peel line perhaps one of the harder fighting fish I have encountered.
The afternoon is perhaps the most frustrating of all with no Bonefish at all sighted but the weather is a huge factor with cloud and rain, A couple of small Blue fin Trevally and the day is over.
Day four: I did not think the wind could blow harder but today it does, and of course finding and seeing fish is next to impossible, again a few small Trevally and late in the afternoon a couple of fairly decent bones when the cloud parted for just a while. Today spotted a huge GT that was well over a 100lbs but I did not get a shot as we saw it too late, landing it on the coral flat would have been next to impossible.
Day five: With the week running out fast we tried something different a trip down to fish the ocean rock flats close to the Korean wreck area, again no bones sighted but an assortment of other species kept me amused and a couple of shots at some larger Trevally, also spot a rather large black tip shark in about 2 feet of water.
Afternoon we try a spot back in the lagoon which is just beautiful and find bones almost immediately, and with a little more sun have a much better afternoon with the bones with the best fish around 6lbs or so.
Day six: Last day so we decide to spend a long day back in the same spot in the lagoon as yesterday. Today the sun shines and we are a little sheltered from the wind and have no trouble finding bones, lots of them and not a small fish in sight with the best close to eight pounds or so and none under 6lbs, by far the best days bone fishing I have ever had and each bone is bigger than the last. Not easy fishing and a better fisherman would have probably faired better than I did but a great day and the trip is saved.
But the best is yet to come, another shot at a GT, the fun of watching the line peel is very quickly replaced by mild panic as the reel empties at an alarming rate and no sign of this fish slowing down, but with a little extra pressure it does and 30 perhaps 40 minutes later a gorgeous Giant Trevally is too hand, these fish are brutes and well worth the travel to take one. My guide estimated the fish at around 40 lbs.
In conclusion a tough trip mostly due to the weather and possibly due some reduction in bone fish numbers but whether this is due to Netting or fishing pressure from the greater accessibility of Christmas Island who knows?
I did see evidence of netting but this has probably been going on for decades and until the local government imposes regulations the locals have every right to feed there families and until educated that anglers inject more money into the economy this will continue. I was however impressed with the average size of the fish and saw none of the small fish I had heard about, again whether this is a good thing or not who knows.
I had a great time and the people are the Best, and many thanks to my Guide Mike Marao a.k.a “Cracker” who was terrific, I could not have asked for a better guide, and a great person as well as one who really showed concern for the environment and the fish.
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  #2  
Old 01-20-2008, 08:17 PM
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In a word.... WOW

thanks Trevor
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Old 01-21-2008, 06:31 AM
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Hi Trev

What a great report.
That is a super fish that saved the trip.
What did you use to catch her? (the silver ones are female)

I mean rod reel line and fly.

It is interesting that the bones there are not that small.
If only it wasn't the other side of the world for me.

Pete

Where are you off to next?
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:35 AM
Mat M Mat M is offline
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As I have said already Trev it is a great fish.

Glad you had a good time shame about the weather. Really makes you appreciate those blue sky days. I've got to the point now where I don't care how windy it gets as long as the sun shines. Any sign of clouds and I start to panic.

Put some bonefish up for us.

Cheers
Mat
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Old 01-21-2008, 01:02 PM
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Great report Trevor. Sounds like you experienced the same weather pattern we did in March a few years back. Despite what the guidebooks say, it rains and blows down there a lot during the first three months of the year. Nice job on the trevally. I have so far hooked and lost four very large GT's for all sorts of reasons including the guide wrapping the anchor rope around the propeller

I am overdue for a trip back.......
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Old 01-21-2008, 08:18 PM
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Trevor B Trevor B is offline
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Pete
It was new set up I had just for this trip, Dan craft five rivers FT12wt (custom home made) with a Galvan Torque T12 reel , WF12F, 450 yds Power pro backing.
Interesting about the color, I didn't know that the females were silver, It's not a great picture as I found out later I had a bit of dirt on the lens and most of the last days pictures look a little blurry at the bottom of them.
But Mat has done a nice job with Photoshop and the original looks better now.
As for trips I am planning to go back to Acklins this November I think to fish with Bob again, but I also have the urge to try my hand at some Tarpon as well, never caught one of those.
Did you have your Los Roques trip yet ?
Again I owe a lot to this Forum for all the help and advice these last couple of years
Thanks guys
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Old 01-22-2008, 06:37 AM
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Trevor,
Enjoyed your report. Thats a great fish, maybe a fish of a lifetime. Its funny how conditions can be bad and you get that one day where it just happens for you. A so so trip ends up being a great one.

I spent a week on a Bahamian outisland where my checked bag, with most of my gear, did not get to me till the last day. A hurricane came through Nassau the day after we went through. The Island was flooded and a tropical storm came through one night. The morning after the the storm was rough, we nearly didn't even give it a try but we did and I ended up landing my one and only permit on fly. The previous day I landed 2 double digit bones wading in my sneakers. What could have been a ruined trip ended up being my trip of a lifetime. So far that is. (Grin)
Walt
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Old 01-22-2008, 08:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor B
Interesting about the color, I didn't know that the females were silver,
Hi Trevor
You quite often see the very dark almost black coloured males in the surf. Surprisingly they turn lighter coloured when you catch them but there are still a few black splodges on them. The females are bright silver all the time.

I am off to LR on sunday.
I hope for better weather than you had at CI but t is always windy at LR.
Maybe I can catch something nice too.

Pete
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Old 01-22-2008, 02:56 PM
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Trevor B Trevor B is offline
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It's funny how a trip can turn around in a day, I know the last day certainly saved the week for me, I have a great time where ever I go and I know wind is just Par for a lot of locations, but this blew and blew, then add cloud in and that just about ends it as far as fishing for Bones. The GT was a great bonus, normally the fish everyone else seems to catch. now I'm spoiled I think !

Pete, Hope you have a great trip.
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Old 01-22-2008, 07:04 PM
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Wow, what a GREAT trip...Man, I need to get out more!

If you don't mind me asking though Trev, but how much did this trip run you?
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Last edited by Frogfish; 01-22-2008 at 07:26 PM.
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Old 01-23-2008, 05:08 PM
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what a way to pull it out! Last day saves!
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