By Jim Dickens
There are situations that are just comfortable and it seems it is different depending on who are and your previous situation.
After getting fit and cross country skiing in the cold winter darkness for several months, going to see my friend, Peter Perkins, in Bahamas turned out to be a perfect comfortable transition. Pete was renting a house with his wife Kit for a month and I went to stay with them for 5 days. Pete and Kit are warm, non judgmental people capable of being laid back on a warm tropical island.
A couple of other things that made this comfortable for me. Pete is the best fly fisherman I know including guides. I knew we would be fishing in the right places the right way. Another comment on that later. The other thing is Green Turtle Cay, a small island two miles long and 800 yards wide with about 500 people on it. There are no Marriott or Hiltons and the businesses are small locally owned and operated. Hence the division between the visitors and residents is small and you are as likely to see a resident enjoying the beach as a tourist. Things are a little worn taking the pretense out and making it more laid back. Hand your money through the window and get a fish sandwich and a cold beer and sit at the picnic table in the warm sunshine. Ahhhh!
Pete introduced me to a new fishing style which I found addictive. There are large sandy flats around the caribbean islands where the sought after bonefish patrol like wary ghosts. You quietly walk the flat searching for their moving shadows.
We had some poor weather, a cold front came through and some high winds, but I like being out in it. We saw an almost stranded Manta Ray, a couple of sharks, and many barracuda, pretty cool. While the fishing was difficult, we remained undeterred and still enjoyed wearing shorts and flip flops.
While searching for bonefish we did catch a few other species, Palmetto, Barracuda and Needle.
We did manage to catch Bonefish. They are prized for fighting above their weight and there was some question whether or not I would get spooled (where a fish takes all your line off the reel and breaks off) on one large one. For those of you who fly fish, Pete made a double haul 100 foot cast into a stiff quartering breeze right on the money and the fish missed. So he did it again and made the catch below. It was amazing.
If Pete and Kit are there next year, I’m going to try and come down as well. It’s great weather, a great place with great people and an addictive experience. Next year, better flats walking shoes, a boat to get to all the flats, and improved stealth.
It’s time to enjoy the rest of spring. Eleven days in Northern California should do it. Next blog post, California here we come!