Tracy&James | Thursday, 22 March 2018
At long last it’s time for Tracy and I to pack for our bonefishing trip to the Bahamas. Previously we wouldn’t even start planning our spring fishing until the New Year, however with the duration of our trips getting longer (6 weeks this time) it is necessary to book the accommodation early in order to stop someone spoiling our plans by reserving a week in the middle of when we want to stay. As such it’s been a considerable wait.
Now that the fly boxes are packed, my output of the last few months doesn’t look as impressive as when they’re spaced out on foam mats. Splitting them between mine and Tracy’s fly boxes makes me think I should have tied a whole load more. My tying was curtailed by a lack of hooks though, so I’ve made a mental note to bulk buy next time I see them in stock.
Tracy’s contribution has been one fly! She assures me this is a killer pattern and it’s all she’ll need for the holiday. My money is on it unravelling after her first fish though (maybe before), as I don’t believe it was tied with sufficient tension (that’s if a cuda doesn’t get it first). Talking about the first fish, this year I intend to secure a hat-trick of curry wins (the prize for our first bonefish of the year competition). I have a plan that involves me asking Tracy to park the car whilst I sprint off in the direction of the flats.
In the week we arrive there are low tides (on the Caribbean side) in the middle of the day. This is perfect for a number of marks that we already know quite well, so I’m optimistic that we’ll see bonefish unless things have changed significantly from last year. If someone was going for just a week-long trip to a flats destination I’d recommend that they pour over the tide and moon phase data in order to select an optimum week. However, for a month or more they’re going to get a bit of everything – daytime lows, daytime highs, spring tides, neap tides, new moon, full moon etc., etc., so it doesn’t really matter when (so long as they have the data for any given day and a plan). For a short visit to a new destination I’d also recommend employing a guide, thus relying on their plan for any given conditions. Staying for longer gives the option of being able to figure some things out for yourself, if you’re that way inclined and are prepared to put the effort in (the Ocean is a big place and the fish are very localised and tidal).
A new addition to our tackle for this year will be a #5 weight line, not for fishing with but for distance casting practice (if we get any spare time). With the world championships fast approaching we both need to tune up a bit. It’s not as if we need to take an additional rod though as we both intend casting it in the competition on Tracy’s shark rod.
Next week, all going well, we’ll be reporting on our first week of flats fishing.