Thursday, May 22, 2008

Fly Fishing in Belize - Bonefish!

After three strait days of incredible diving in Belize, Kate and I decided to spend our last full day going at a little slower pace. Diving, it turns out, is exhausting - its sensory overload for a whole day. So while we have been having an amazing time, we thought we would change it up a little and enjoy another one of Belize's natural wonders - the fishing!

The coastal waters of Belize have hundreds of square miles of tropical flats which means tons of Bonefish as well as Tarpon, and the occasional Permit. We met up with a guide and headed out for a half day of fishing - our best bet was going to be Bonefish.Bonefish are amazing fish, I can definitely see the appeal to fishing for them. Its all sight fishing, you need to make nearly perfect presentations to the fish, and when they take the fly, hold on! When we first started out I had a little adjusting to do - these aren't exactly rainbow trout. They are nearly impossible to see, the guide however must have had some kind of x-ray vision and spotted them out as if they are wearing a neon signs on thier backs, meanwhile and I couldn't see a thing - even with polarized shades. He started calling out where they were: "10:00 - 40' out... a little further left... further left... NO! FURTHER Left... ok there... now drop it!" a couple of short strips of the line to work the fly (a Crazy Charlie) and FISH ON! Now when a Bonefish takes the fly, its almost like you were casting and hooked a stolen speedboat - the thing just takes your fly and never looks back until it completely runs out of gas. My first one took me well into the backing, then it just gave up and I reeled it in. Turns out it was only about 14" long!

Casting was a little difficult if you aren't used to casting a heavier rod at longer distances, the breeze was a bit of a double edge sword too. The wind on the water made it more difficult to see the fish - not to mention making casting more difficult, but without the breeze, wow, it was HOT!
Kate is a pretty good fly fisher but as I mentioned before, this was a bit different than nymphing for trout in Colorado. After some initial difficulty casting Kate got a little lesson from the guide and before long she had a tight line and a screaming drag!

We had a great day on the flats and thoroughly enjoyed our time in Belize. We got back to the dock just in time for lunch - fresh seafood of course - followed by a long nap! What a great way to wrap up an already spectacular vacation!
I think this one would make a cool postcard!

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