A friend and I are going to plan a trip to the Bahamas in March (not BobD's friend that I know of. Any suggestions for places to go? We'd probably be guided at least once. We'd probably enjoy fewer people around too.
Or else you can <!--http--><a href="http://www.webcom.com/cdk/islands.html" target="_blank">rent your own island!</a><!--url-->
I'll get some firsthand opinions for you from friends. My experiences have been limited to the keys, but there are some correspondents in bonefish country I am working with for future information.
My own plans include the Bahamas with my wife - we both like what the area has to offer. It would be pretty close to an ideal vacation for us... well unless she all of a sudden fell in love with steelheading
I have been fishing a few Bahama-islands, Cat Island, Eleuthera
and Long Island. For do it yourself, Eleuthera is great, but the best fishing
by far was Long Island near Deadmans Cay. You need a guide there. Lots of
flats, wading and by boat. Lots of fish per day. Excellent.
Thanks for the ideas. We thought we'd get a guide for a day, but then work our own schedule. We also don't need a fancy lodge. Could you ask your friend for more info on Eleuthera? Or ask him if he'd mind if I emailed him directly.
BTW, I started wrapping the guides back on that old 'boo rod. It should look pretty nice by the time I'm done.
As he mentioned in his email, he's happy to help us. Fisherman's code of ethics
Also Joel Moxey of Moxey's Bonefish Lodge replied:
Andros Island offers perhaps the greatest variety of fishing over anywhere in the World. You can wade or fish from the boat for different size of fish.
You can fish schools of fish by wading or you can fish for double digit fish cruising the flats by themseleves or in pairs. An endless expanse of backcountry strewn with mangroves on Andros' west side is so vast that it will take you months of fishing to cover.
Alternatively you can fish the bights or the east side of the island with its many ocean flats. You will find large schools of fish on the east coast flats and larger individual fish as well.
I've fished and dive Acklins Island extensively and recommend the Island for those who are looking for one of the remotest place on God's earth.
However, be sure and take plenty of insect repellent. Fishing promises to be good and you probably will not see another soul fishing the flats there. Good fishing.
We like Eleuthera because you don't need a boat to fish most of the flats. We are fully booked for March/April this year but have vacancies in November/December at only 695.00 UKPounds [=around 1,000.00 USDollars] per week [and also a vacancy for one person week commencing May 20th.]
See our website http://www.bonefishadventure.com for details
BfC & BfG
[Bonefish Carol & Bonefish Graham of BONEFISH ADVENTURE LIMITED]
Your ideal vacation thought is right up my ally. With all the work travel and long hours (mine) the wife's about to kick my a$$ (I don't get it kids aren't that much work are they?). I'm looking for suggestions keys are nice resorty place for Susan, fishing for me. After a some guiding I'd like to try this on my looking for direction.
andre (not the one above, wow 2 andre's on your list)
I have got "mucho" info on Eluthera. Give me a couple of days and I will dig it up and pass it along. Basically, there are many spots to wade fish. You move from flat to flat and fish the tides. A car/jeep is essential. I did all of this research as we where planning to get there last spring. My wife was pregnant at the time and the doctor recommended not traveling so we canned the trip. Like I said, I will dig up the info. The latest I heard is that the Hurricans have not been very kind to Eluthera but the fish are there....
This site will give you alot of info about the Island and a place called the Rainbow Inn. The Inn caters to folks who want to bonefish on Eluthera on their own.
Also, there is a place called the Laughing Bird Apartments which has a flat out their front door. Supposedly there are flats on the laft side of the Island for almost the entire length of the Island.
There is another WEB site but I cannot make out the address from the paper I have. Do a search on "Bonefish Beginnings" and it is an article on fishing Eluthera by a guy in the Boston area.
Finally, here is a response I got from someone who fished Eluthera on their own. Pretty self-explanatory....
We just got back from a ten day trip that ended on 01/03/00. The weather
for most of the trip was cool and windy. We stayed near Governors Harbor
on Balara Bay. We found good fishable flats at Balara, Governors Harbor,
"Girls Bank" on Harbor Island and by the airstrip/dump at the Governors
Harbor Airport. Overall the fishing was slow and I would have liked to
extended our range, but that was hard to do with a nice flat right in front
of our villa.
The island seems to have been hit harder by the hurricane than we were
told. Cupid's Cay looks like a war zone and the club med resort was closed
when we were there (nice pink beach though) We had trouble finding any
really nice restaurants but you might want to check out the Buccaneer club
for conch and other local dishes, Mate and Jenny's for pizza or the Rainbow
Inn for dinner.
A jeep should be perfect for getting around, as many sections of the
highway are almost completely washed away (James Cistern is the worst).
Also, the access to the flats at the airstrip is via a rough track; beware
the wild dogs at the southern end of the point. We didn't rent a boat or
use a guide although we did see several local guides polling the flats in
front of the house that we stayed in.
All five of the fish I caught were on the same fly. A small #4 white/tan
charlie with grizzly hackle tips tied into the wing. My leader was 15'
long with a 10# fluorocarbon tippet. I would think that typical Bahamas
bonefish flies would work.
If you are bringing your wife/girlfriend, be aware that there is absolutely
nothing for them to do other than lie on the beach. In Governors Harbor
there is no shopping, no beach front restaurants, no sailing rentals or
kayak rentals, nada. For these kind of activities you will need do drive
50 miles north and take a water taxi to Harbor Island. You can fish on
Girls Bank while they shop and hit the blue bar at the Pink Sands resort.
Kayaks are for guest use only, but they wont know you're not a guest. (Of
course, Girls Bank is located next to the Harbour Island dump) You can
buy good fresh fish from the fishermen in Governors Harbor at 3pm everyday.
As it turns out, my fishing friend found a book waiting for him on his desk
when he returned to work. It was a guide to bonefishing in the Bahamas
featuring maps and descriptions of the best areas on each of the islands.
I don't recall the name, but I'll forward it to you when I get it. I
remember he said there were many flats around Palmetto Point, which we
didn't know when we were there. Also, I wouldn't go back without a
nautical chart of the Island. Most of the fishable areas are not visible
from the main road, so you may want to do some exploring.
Kevin, best of luck and let me know if you need anything else....
Nice bit of sleuthing John! The insight of the initiated always has such an urgent ring to it. I could see the white fangs of the wild dogs and feel all of that hurricane damage fade away as I (vicariously) turn my back to the shore and search the flat.
Unfortunately, the reality set in that my wife will require more than a place to sit in the sun... well after the first day anyway.
We hope to make this trip next winter with both of our interests in mind.
I can't wait to hear about Kevin and Steve's excellent adventure!
Thanks so much for the details. Matt Field, one of the other guys that is going, picked up "The Bahamas Flyfishing Guide" which may be the book you mention. It indicated that where we are planning to stay on Spanish Wells did not happen to have fishable flats right there, but they are all over near by. It looks like we will be renting a boat to get to them where we can beach the boat and wade to fish. I might try to go pick up the book myself.
The place we are staying, the Adventurers, is supposed to have recovered from the hurricane and is reopened. We'll see
It is 4 guys going down for an extra long weekend, so the accommodations do not have to be perfect and we won't have wives or girlfriends along this time.
Thanks for the tips on the flies. I'll be sure to have some of them with me!
BTW what was your experience with tides? I don't relish the idea of swimming after a boat in 'cuda laden waters!
My limited experience is to look for incoming tides at first light. This is of course assuming you want to fish flats. It can also work the other was with some deeper water and fishing the drop offs on an outgoing with heavier flies. I am no expert here though so I am hoping others can comment.
I have had alot of experiences with 'Cudas though ! I have fished in the Keys for them and landed several over a few days that where swimming in knee deep water. If I where you, I would be more concerned about any sharks that work there way onto the flats than the 'Cudas. My experience with 'Cudas is they took off after I released them and although somewhat brave, did not venture towards me. You know I saw something on sharks somewhere that showed pics of fishermen on a sandbar and there where numerous sharks 30 feet away and I do not think these anglers ever knew it !
Hey, how do we get a copy of that Bahama's Fishing Book ??