hello all,,,, just wondering about opinions on a trip I have coming up in january to Oahu. I'm fishing with a flats guide who fishes the coast line of Waikiki and I talked to him on the phone and he told me to bring a 6# setup for the bones there which can get over 9pounds. he says he uses 6# and its fine and I didn't ant to really get into it right there but i'm thinking the wind over there is ALWAYS blowing and putting a tiny crab fly in front of a bones nose @ 25yds in a 20 mile an hr wind must be a chore..
what do you guys think,,,, he said I can bring my 9# but he wouldn't go no more than 6???? and he also uses 17# flouro-carbon regular fishing line by Vanish... he has been fishing there for over 20yrs too so IDK if I should get a decent 6 # setup with a decent drag or just bring the 9..
I am afraid this guide is telling you what is best for him. He fishes in the wind every day and has a lot of experience. A 6wt is fine for Bones but not if the wind is kicking up. If it was me I would take an 8wt along with a 6wt. Have both rigged and use the one that best meets the circumstances.
It has a lot to do with your experience. I think that because you are asking this question you may not have a lot of saltwater experience. If that is true then I think you might have a problem with a 6wt if you just take one rod. Of course you should not be going with just one rod even if you take two 6wts. You could also consider a 7wt line on your 6wt rod. Especially if you have a fast action 6wt.
Frank I don't even have a good enough 6-weight--> I have a slow action 6# conolon rod from 1959 and I have a temple fork 5# thats not set-up yet ,,,,, I have 2 9's and a new 9 on order because thats all I do is fish for coastal saltwater fish here in Mass,,, I do want to try fresh for bass and pickerel.
Hawaii I'm going to get married so i figured I will be thee so long I might as well do a couple days fishing while the wife shops or whatever they do when they head off alone all the local guys here inlcuding one who has already fished with this guy say bring the 9 because a big bone fish triples his weight easy and I need a good drag..
in still have some time I guess I just didn't want o spend a ton of money on a set-up I'll only use once.
I fished for bonefish or o'io in Oahu twice. First time with 7wt in warm good season, and second with 9wt in winter low season.
This is what I can tell you about.
First, I can't believe your guide is telling you to bring only 6wt. That's the lightest you can go in Oahu for the wind and the size of fish. You should bring saltwater 9wt rod equipped with big stripping guide and butt power. You should also bring reel with descent disc drag with capacity of 200yds of 30lb backing line at least.
Here are the facts:
You will be asked to cast heavy fly which sinks fast to attract fish's attenton and stay on bottom while you retreive to mimic game's favorite food: mantis shrimp or crab. How heavy? It could be between 1/8-1/16 oz depending on sink rate.
Likely bottom where you will be fishing has coral formed on lava rocks leaving crevasse in between known as Hawaiian Highway, working like canal for bonefish to go between deep and super shallow, which has jagged edge. Some flats are more jagged, other flats are midler due to sand and mud piled in between. Size of fish are mixed betwen 4lb to 10lb. Altogether, it requires heavy tippet like 16lb-30lb at least. Then your final cast has to turn over leader in length betwen 9-12 feet. Your cast needs to have enough momentum to do this.
Strong Kona Wind is always blowing which disturbes the surface and gives you an advantage to get closer to fish as close as 30 feet, if you wade carefully. Fish are always on the move, so you could get as close as less than 20 feet. However, wind is your disadvantage, if it gets in your way before you make your final cast. You may want to change the direction of final cast before you shoot, because fish change directions often.
Once hooked, bonefish runs for its life heading for the edge of highway or flat where it sinks steep into the deep. You need a rod work to minimize the impact of this or bye bye bonefish.
That's pretty much the common knowledge of local fly fisherman.
Any of above condition could be overcome by your willingness to take challenge, then you make your tackle one step lighter.
I would take 7'11'' bass fly rod for 8wt and above and buy spey shooting head whose grain weight matches your rod. I would then tie directly to backing. You won't be using the full length of fly line
Please also know this that every cast counts especially in winter game, for it is often hard to spot one fish. Winter makes wind stonger and water colder.
I would bring layer clothing and great optimism.
okay I'm getting ahead of myself but towards the end did you mean I should bring waders with layering clothing? I have them but I'm told to just bring wading shoes or canvas shoes because the water is warm there.
as for the 9# rod I use a Abel super 8 reel (so far) but I may get a Galvan torque 10 or nautilus 10/11 reel because I plan on bumping to a 10 or 11 towards the colder months here but I can still use those reels on the 9# and I'm kinda sick of listening to the abel reel's retreve clicking.
I'm just going to bring the 9# to Hawaii and I'll tell the guide to bring me a set-up if he wants me to throw something different,,,,, I'm not going to get a whole set-up just for one trip especially when everyone is basically telling me not to..
the spey shooting head in the same weight sounds reasonable because of the winds over there (hope they are not as heavy as aruba) and that would be a Floating line I think too..
thanks for all the info,,, its a ways away but I'll pull this thread up and post some pics in it when I get back (if I have the pics ha ha)
I run a bonefish charter on Oahu also, and without getting in trouble I hope, I will tell u exactly what to bring.
7# with floating line for variable winds to trades to 15knts, tapered tippet 50-20lb, 9' then u can add a tippet to the end for whatever the situation calls for, be it a 3' piece of 10#floro or some 17# mono, remember floro sinks and mono is almost neutral bouyancy so think of that with the depth and moods of your fish
swimming fish use fluoro, tailing fish use mono
9# with floating line for trades from 10-25knts when blasting and bucking the wind is neccessary.
just bring wading boots with long socks that u can fold over the tops of your boots to keep coral chunks from falling in.
flies in the natural colors work best, weighting is important to switch out with each different tide change and spookness of the fish, brown,tan, pink, white, orange
clousers, charlies, perfect crab and snapping shrimp patterns is all you need size 4-8 hooks, strong hooks!!! bead eyes to small barbell
also u should look into spending a few more bucks and going in a flats boat as your odds of seeing fish are about 40/1 from wading although Loui does find a bunch a fish make no mistake.
there are 2 companies that use professional flats boats
Captain pretty much said it.
Haven't tried the boating game yet, but I'm sure it will cover much wider area with mobility and gives higher observation post which make spottings lot faster and easier.
I tried a day in September 1998 and 3 days in February 2009.
15 spottings/day in the former, 4 spottings/day average in the latter.
Water was unusually cold in the latter which could happen again. You see how essential it is to increase the odds in colder season.
I'd add few more for helping the comfortable game from angler's point of view.
Poloarized sunglasses. Better have 2 shades. Need yellow green in dark, copper in bright condition. Hard to see green back bonefish against emerald green water even with glasses on until you get a hang of seeing "moving green water".
Hook sharpner. Your hook point becomes dull after hitting coral several times.
Clothing. Goretex rain jacket is an ideal. I'd pick a pair of quick-dry trouser over shorts for keeping your muscle warm for long hours of wading. It's not wader-cold.
Beverage and snack. For you will be "trekking" in wading game.
Mike thanks for the info,,,, I see you know who I'm going with? but your saying as low as 7# also, I'm also doing Peacock bass from a boat the next day with Hawaii bass fishing but thats more for fun with my wife and now I'm taking my little girl I think IDK and I told them just bring everything I need and I'll use that.
Location: Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
I was stationed on Ford Island in Pearl Harbor when I was In the Navy. I used to catch bonefish on the end of Ford Island with the old sea plane ramps on it. If you are looking at the side with the USS Arizona on it, its the end all the way to the left. I caught Pacific Tarpon there as well. There were lots of baracuda there also. Great place to fish, but I'm not sure how close you can get to the base. I was on a Fleet Ballistic Missile Submarine and our off crew office was there. I Loved the place. The wind isn't that bad there but it does blow fairly steady. Trade Winds you know. I caught my first shark there too. A Black Tip Reef Shark about three feet long. It followed till it got within a few feet of shore and I started walking down towards the sea plane ramp till it decided to hit. Flip flop trolling.