Thursday, May 31, 2007

Bonefishing in Mayaguana - 2007

Curtis Creek, Mayaguana Bahamas
I've decided to blog some highlights of my trip to Mayaguana. I am creating an annotated gallery to include all photography. When that's done, I'll post a link. Until then, I'll start with what this trip was all about: bonefish!

Bonefish - Mayaguana 2007
This fine specimen ate my #4 deep water shrimp fly, which is a variation of a Gotcha. Notice how it matches it's habitat, and it's hydrodynamic shape. They're like underwater cruise missiles. They race away with your fly at up to 32 feet per second. On the first run, that can be hundreds of yards. That is only part of the thrill.

Bonefish - Mayaguana 2007 - Grey Ghost of the flats
Bonefishing is hunting. There are no blind casts. You have to find the fish and present the fly in a way that does not spook this extremely wary fish. It takes nothing to spook them right off of the shallow water flats where they feed. This means that seeing them before they see you is critical. (On this trip, we waded.) Notice the chrome sides. They reflect the bottom so perfectly that often their shadow is the first thing you notice. This is not the bait soaking, gear chunking fishing. It's an active hunt and stalk.

Bonefish - Mayaguana 2007 - Release
All the bonefish we caught were handled gently and quickly released unharmed. It is best to keep them in the water while you remove the fly and take a quick photo. (My father shot the bonefish pictures.) This particular fish was caught and released on a Curtis Creek flat on a day where we had wind gusting to 25 mph and torrential downpours. I was lucky to spot and seduce this fish in a small window of sunlight. The wind, however, never let up. It took some stealth stalking in order to position myself upwind and present the fly to the fish. That is what bonefishing is all about. More to come, as I have time to upload and write...

No comments: