Montana winters are long, and often brutally cold. Skiing and snow are a part of life in the mountains but after freezing your ass off for a few months, sometimes you just need some sun and saltwater to loosen up the icy cold joints. So a few of us from Trout Stalkers decided to book a Bonefishing trip with Yellowdog Fly Fishing Adventures to Andros Island, Bahamas..
Andros is the largest of the inhabited islands in the Bahamas. It is an actually an archipelago divided into three main “Bights.” Andros is 104 miles long by 40 miles wide at its widest point which makes for miles and miles of perfect, white sand flats infested with Bonefish! This is why we decided to hop a bird out of the mountains and head for the mangroves in search of some giant bonefish!
We planned our trip with two separate lodge destinations to experience some variety; The first was a DIY fishing lodge, Mount Pleasant, where you have the amenities of a fishing lodge with meals and maid service but you are on your own to wade fish a few different flats right at the lodge with a few more flats just a short drive away. Mount Pleasant is a perfect lodge for the more experienced angler that understands the flats game, likes to wade and wants to get better at fishing for bonefish on his/her own. The main flat at Mount Pleasant is called White Bight. It’s a huge flat and on the right tides it offers some of the most insane bonefishing out there. White Bight is a short walk up the shore from the lodge. You can stalk fish as you make your way to the flat.
With us having a bigger group and a few other fellow guest at Mt. Pleasant, some of us decided to space out and travel to another flat called Curly Creek. Curly Creek is another amazing area that has three different creeks that dump into the flats. We were able to get into huge bonefish (4-8 lbs.) with multiple schools traveling through on their hunt for crabs and crustaceans.
One of the biggest factors in flats fishing that you have to deal with and have absolutely no control over is weather. This is why whenever you plan a flats fishing trip you have to plan multiple days. The first two days at Mount Pleasant the weather was awful. Rain, clouds and wind! We were still able to catch multiple fish each day but we also spooked a lot of fish that were only 15 ft away because we just couldn’t see them in time to make a cast.
The second half of our trip we moved down to Big Charlie’s Lodge located at Cargill Creek. We had scheduled three days of guided fishing with Big Charlie. Fortunatley the weather came around and decided to work with us. Big Charlie’s is located right on a tidal creek where Charlie and his guides dock their skiffs. After breakfast you just walk down to the creek and jump into your guide’s boat and go.
Guided flats fishing from a skiff is a completely different experience from walking the flats. When wading the flats on your own you really have to know tides, places to fish and other unexpected conditions. With a flats boats you can jump around to different places throughout the day. I fished with a guide named Eddy for the three days jumping from around from Diamond Bay, the Dressing Room and Spice Harbour and a few other different locations. We found, and caught plenty of good size Bones at each stop.
Andros Island is a special little corner of our planet. Very few inhabitants, tons and tons of bonefish swimming around in beautiful, crystal clear water. If you haven’t done a saltwater fly fishing adventure this could be one of the best places to start.
On any remote destination trip like this you need to be prepared with the right clothing and gear. We each brought multiple rods in different weights, and thank God because I broke the tip off of one of mine early on and luckily had two others to fish with. Light rain jackets are a must for both rain and wind. Good quality wading boots help out drastically when spending hours upon hours walking the flats. Flies, lines and tippet are all place specific with Andros. Floating lines, 12 to 15 ft leaders and 8 to12 lb. tippet are the norm. Tan colored flies caught most of our fish but pink also worked well.
Trout Stalkers is an official Yellowdog Fly Fishing Adventures agent. Let us help you plan your next fly fishing adventure!
Now back to winter...