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Old 05-10-2013, 03:23 PM
snook snook is offline
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
snook will become famous soon enough
Default Re: Hacking my way through hyperbole

Since several folks offered helpful advice on my original question I'm following up with a report.

Mangrove Cay was, in a word, great. The little spot where we stayed was perfect, at least to me: lovely in a muted way, no-frills, clean, remote. Yes, I caught bones in the waters out front (and to the left/right) of the hotel, but it was tough going since the wind blew like stink most of the week. Cloudy days added to the crappy visibility. On the single guided day I caught several nice fish in the 5-8 lb. range but only logged about 3 hours of fishing before squalls sent us flying for the dock—bye bye dreams of fishing the fabled west side.

In a nutshell, the DIY stuff was tough going, the guided fish relatively easy. I'm sure that's the case in most fishing destinations, no? As the week wore on I explored more remote spots on my own and finally found large schools of spooky fish...late on my last day there.

As for rods, I used a 7 wt a great deal of the time, but when the wind became tolerable in small stretches I actually used a 5 wt overlined with 7 WT WF line with little issue (though, as noted above, the Jim Teeny 5 I own is more like a hefty 6). I never strung up my new 8 wt, though I can see why some folks say that it would be effective in the heavier winds. I just hated the idea of chasing those smaller fish with an outfit I will use for mid-sized tarpon back home. When I mentioned that to the guide he laughed and said "wait 'til you hang a 10-plus pounder, mon, then you tell me who has dee advantage." I'm sure he's right. He did, however, like the way my 7wt (TICRx/Galvan T6/Rio 7) outfit performed. On one occasion a hefty bone appeared suddenly on right side of the skiff. I made a short backhand cast into a stiff wind that fell a bit short, flicked a cast in front of the bow as the fish spooked left to right, then sent a long overhead cast to the right with the wind as the fish disappeared...only to have the line go tight 60 yards away with the biggest fish of the day. Getting applauded by a surprised guide does wonders for the ego, as did the fact that the bones I caught all took simple (and pretty damn ugly) Maribou flies I tied myself. Of course, I also hooked a fat fish on that same outfit earlier in the week that smoked off 60-70 yards of line and wrapped my fly—and my shattered confidence—around some coral.

As for Andros, it it what it is: wild as a march hare, windy as all get-out, buggy and then some, unrefined, somehat polluted, populated by natives who are generally friendly and often drunk, a bit hairy to reach via a dilapidated little plane, stunningly beautiful in spots, relaxing, and, if I'm honest, better suited to a guy's trip than a married retreat. If I go back with the wife we'll probably hit a more populated island, but if I get a hall pass I'll be back on Andros before you can say "Beeg bone, two o'clock."

Anyhoo, thanks again for the helpful advice. It served me well.
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