Friday, July 3, 2015

Belize Bonefish Bonanza - Photo Essay - Fishing Report 6-8-15 through 6-12-15

Sorry for the delay, but life has been busy lately! In Early June, I visited El Pescador for a work related trip, and it was another amazing trip. I went with a group of 7 anglers mainly from the Portland metro and surrounding area, and one of our group was from Texas. It was everyone's first time for a saltwater flats fly fishing adventure; except for Steve and I. Below is a photo journal of pics I took on the trip, of the fishing Steve and I experienced. The others in the group caught lots of fish, and had many great stories to tell, so this is just a little chunk of the experience from my camera.

You cannot control the weather, and there was a lot of cloud cover, a little rain (on day one only), and some super windy times this trip. That made for limited sight fishing opportunities. Day 1 proved to be so cloudy and thick, so we did what we could blind casting with not many fish we could spot with our eyes to "sight" cast to. It was a tougher day for hunting tarpon and permit. We didn't even try for bonefish for more than a few minutes here and there. Day 2  proved to be different regarding the weather. Casting in windy conditions is something I can do, and that wasn't the issue. The problem we encountered on day 2 (on the tarpon flats) was the wind churning up the flats into a murky mess; so while the sun shined the winds churned up the visibility. We did catch lots of bonefish on this day because the water was clear where they were. Instead of the water becoming brown while being churned up, it was an ashy aqua color. Steve lucked out with a tarpon that showed itself, and when he threw to where it was, he was rewarded with a detonating take. Day 3 had rather decent conditions, but we saw less fish than should have been around on the tarpon flats. We got into lots of bonefish, and I had a few shots at permit, but they were "Hail Mary" shots according to Emir our guide.
You have to take the Tropic Air flight to Ambergris Caye, and then a 12 minute boat ride to El Pescador once you get there.
We are all packed in and super excited to be at Belize! We are on the way to Ambergris Caye!
The view out the window of Tropic Air looking at all of the epic fishing potential spots.
A short walk from the Tropic Air landing strip to the dock where we take the boat ride to the lodge.
Time for a tune up after the long travel to get here! Lunch is served!
The little Hermit Crab was fast and scurried from one side of the lodge sidewalk to the other in just a few minutes.
 Casting instruction at the dock is something that you can take advantage of everyday, and good casting leads to more fish.
Truel helping Ken work on his cast.
Bonefish in the picture....see if you can spot it.
Truel, Ken, and Dan discussing casting dynamics......
Working on casting while at a young age can create good habits that last a lifetime.
The pre-fishing meeting the evening before the first day on the water in the boats.
Going over the layout of the land.
Where will the weather, fish, conditions, etc lead us.....?
The bar....loaded with fine cocktails and awesome appetizers!
View from the deck and outside edge of the bar
View from the dock looking toward the lodge
View from the dock looking outward
Night 1 Dinner - The best pork chop ever!!! Period!!!
A fly tying desk is available for anyone who wants to spin up some bugs......
Good morning to Steve and Emir......First day out on the boat. We are wanting to go for tarpon.
Tough conditions for tarpon with a thick sheet of cloud cover over the entire sky. Not what you want for sight fishing. 
Staked in and posted up for blind casting into probable channels. What else can you do with the given conditions?
A fish trap that indiscriminately catches anything and everything. 
Jack with a tarpon on. They scored nicely on their trip with several poons to hand!
Steve looking for the elusive tarpon.....
Hummingbird at the lodge....
Morning two - seeking some bonefish. Lots of clouds again, but some blue patches and sunny times.
Bonefish on !
We caught lots of bones on day two.
Steve with another bonefish zipping line off of his reel.....
We were tying into lots of bonefish, and after catching a lot of them; we decided to go to a tarpon flat.
Emir unhooking another bonefish....
Lots of cormorants were present where lots of bonefish were present.
Hard as a rock and swims faster than most fish out there....
Approaching the tarpon flats.....
We had to blind fish again because the wind churned the flats into a aqua murk, but a dark fly casted at a spotted rolling fish proved to do the trick. First cast with a black and orange Tarpon Bunny fly, and the fish crushed the offering.
After lots of aerials and tons of chaos, Steve wore the fish out, and Emir landed it. What a killer moment!
Unfortunately, I had one good tarpon eat that was on for two seconds or less (nothing done wrong to mess it up), but all I have to show is this little Barracuda. Hardly redemption, but it was a nice violent taker on my Black Death fly. Too bad it ruined my fly and 60# bite tippet. 

Emir did an amazing job as always showing us where the fish were, and how to get them.
Day three - Similar weather to day two minus heavy afternoon winds. We caught lots of bonefish again.
Emir holding up a nice hard-bodied turbo charged bonefish. 
Coconuts revealed how heavy the winds were on the last night of our trip while everyone was sleeping.
The bird feeders reveal a wide variety of beautiful specimens
Another fine specimen I was fortunate enough to see for the first time.
Hummingbird caught in flight in feeding mode....
This specimen was much more shy than the others, and didn't want its picture taken.
Frigate birds flying overhead.....
Flowers at the lodge....
The dock in the lagoon behind the lodge has kayaks and canoes to take out for your own exploration.
Go through the mangrove tunnel, and you have a giant lagoon to check out.
I have two more travel trips coming up soon, and there are open spots on both trips. There is a trip coming up at the end of August for fly fishing in Louisiana for Redfish, and that trip is the best possible first time saltwater trip available. The other trip is for trout, steelhead, or salmon in northern California, and there are available spots open on that trip as well. Email at if you are interested!!

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