So this week the weather allowed for us to go and have a look at an area we have been trying to get to for a very long time. Unfortunately we have have been hampered by weather in our previous attempts. It is no surprise that we took this window of opportunity happily.
To break up the 8 hour sail (and to ensure we arrived at the new flats during a good light period that would enable Alan, our skipper, to negotiate the tricky and yet uncharted passage to our preferred anchorage) we decided to stop at a flat we are getting to know quite well en route. This allowed a solid half day fishing, before heading off early the following morning for the remaining 4 hours sail time.
The fishing turned out to be quite exiting on the first afternoon. With a change in wind direction, we experienced quite a difference in the water level, which made things very different to the last time we were here. There were no permit this time round, but an increase in shark activity and some good size bluefin trevally cruising the flats. Added to this we came across some really nice bonefish. No one got a proper shot at the bonefish, but the GT fishing made up for it. During the last hour of daylight we had some really spectacular GT action! Werner got schooled by 5 monster GT’s ripping his fly lines to pieces. Carl managed a really big bohar snapper, some bluefin, and an orange spot trevally as well. Quite an exciting start to the week!
We headed off to the new area at first light the following day. The area looked very promising, as we had expected after the 18months of research. We were surrounded by some spectacular flats, as well as numerous small islands with some serious drop offs!
We saw some good sized bonefish and trigger fish on some of the flats, but it was the number of GT’s in the area that really got us pumped up. The majority of them were taken while teasing over the deep drop offs! The sight of 4 or 5 really ticked off GT’s coming in on the tease and wanting to smash it to pieces was not just a once off occasion, and kept the guys really entertained. Everyone tucked into the GT’s, with Werner taking the spoils by landing a brute 110cm fish.
In between all the GT mayhem the guys also landed some nice sized bohar snapper, and a big hats off to Carl who landed a really nice Mangrove Jack as well!
The last two days of the trip were spent cruising back to where we started, and stopping along the way for sessions on various flats. We stopped for another half day session on the ‘permit flats’. This time round, with the winds blowing from the north again, the flats were back to lower levels. We had good shots at some big permit feeding on the inside of the flat, but sadly none were hooked. Interestingly, we noticed increased barracuda activity on the edge of the flat. The guys took full advantage and hooked some brutes. But, with a mouth full or razor blades the odds were stacked against us! Carl came up with the goods and landed a really nice fish. While the others were left with bruised egos and bloody knuckles. During the last hour of daylight a bunch of smaller GT’s moved into the area, and we managed 5 fish in short succession.
All in all everyone had a great time. A big thanks to Cassim, Carl and Werner for sharing this adventure with us. The weather looks good for the coming week, and if we can draw attention away from the GT’s, hopefully we can get some good conversions on the bonefish, permit and triggers we have been seeing around.
Till Next Time
Mark and Fede – TF Exploratory Crew on location