Since the late 1990's my wife Pamela & I have been fishing the flats around Caye Caulker. Guests have asked many questions regarding fly fishing, the fish and various other items that hopefully I've been able to answer and make their stay at Iguana Reef Inn the best vacation they ever experienced. This latest update encompasses the novice or 1st time salt water fly fisherman. If you are experienced and would like to have your specific questions answered, you can contact me at [email protected]
Bring whatever fly rod & reel you have but you will enjoy marine fly fishing if you have an 8-weight fly rod and large capacity fly reel. I suggest the 8-weight fly rod for the - almost always - windy conditions. Most weight forward float bone fish taper fly lines are perfect. I suggest if you have an extra spool and weight forward intermediate sink tip fly line as well. In the flats you can use the float Line and in deeper water you can use the intermediate sink tip to get down where the fish are. After fly-fishing, rinse your fly rod & reel in fresh water so corrosion will not affect your equipment. After rinsing in fresh water, simply dry with a towel. I usually clean my fly line every other day with a fly line dressing (glide, etc.) Fluorocarbon leader is highly recommended. You can purchase a bone fish taper Leader from various mail order fly fishing catalogs or outlets (Cabela's, Orvis, Eddie Bauer. etc.). I like a 9' leader with either 8-12 pound tippet.
- Knots - I usually attach the Fly with some sort of Loop Knot to follow the Fly to act naturally or independently.
- Sun Glasses - Polarized lenses are very important and will allow you to see many more fish then with normal sun glasses.
- Hat - Wear a hat to protect your face and possibly neck protection against sun burn.
- Shoes - Flat boots, reef shoes or sandals should be utilized to protect against a food injury.
- Gloves - I sun burn easily and along with wearing a long sleep shirt & hat, I wear fishing gloves to protect the back of my hands.
- Carry a pair of pliers or forceps to remove the fly especially from game fish with teeth.
Most bonefish, permit and tarpon Assortments will get you fishing. These selections can also be purchased through mail order catalog & outlets (Cabela's, Orvis, Eddie Bauer, etc.). Many salt water game fish will take the bonefish flies so don't be surprised at what will be on the other end of your fly line. Bonefish usually take shrimp imitations, permit sometimes like crab patterns and game fish will take just about any fly that is in front of them. Tarpon sometimes like the "Streamer & Whistler" patterns. The tarpon & permit are the most difficult species to catch and if you are lucky enough to catch all three this is considered a "Grand Slam!!!"
Fly Fishing Around The Island
In the 1990's there were flats in front and north of the Hotel. With various Hurricanes, the sea floor/flats have been effective. At "low tide" the water is over knee deep. I fish up to my "elbows" every day and have caught my biggest bonefish ever in front of the dock at Iguana Reef. I wade out and fish the deep pools for game fish. If you don't want to utilize a Guide, you have to get into the water.
I hope these suggestions enable you to have an enjoyable stay at Iguana Reef Inn and also catch some of the "most sought after salt water game fish" in the world with a fly rod. If you have additional questions, you can contact me at the email address above.
Jack & Pamela Blake