GPS Coordinates: 28°23’25.65″N 96°42’21.66″W
Trip Questionnaire: Once you have arranged your travel details, please click on the link below. This will take you to an electronic questionnaire form that we ask you to complete and submit to The Fly Shop®. Please be sure to click the “Submit” button at the end of the form. The information provided will help us, and Bay Flats Lodge, to best coordinate your trip. THANK YOU!
Trip Questionnaire: Click Here
Getting to Bay Flats Lodge
Airport Rental Car Companies:
If flying in from outside of Texas all guests will need to rent a car and drive to the Lodge. There are many options to rent a car and you will simply need to check at your arriving airport for Car rental options.
Note on Arrival Time at the Lodge: If you and your party are delayed, or for any other reason anticipate not arriving at Bay Flats Lode until after 4:00 PM check in time, please call the Lodge and alert them to your estimated arrival time. This will allow them to organize your dinner service accordingly
Checking In at Bay Flats Lodge:
Upon arrival at Bay Flats Lodge, you will want to park your car and walk upstairs at the main lodge to the Dining room/Kitchen/Office. A Bay Flats Lodge representative will get you checked in with iPads and have you sign a waiver. They will take you to your room where you can clean up, and head to the outside dining area for appetizers at 5:30 PM, and Dinner is usually served 6:30 PM.
Checking out of Bay Flats Lodge on your last fishing day. Make sure to coordinate your checkout procedures with the host the night before departure. Anglers are always in a hurry to make it back to the airport following a full day of fishing. Invariably, guests forget to settle gratuities for Guide/staff. You should also have your bags packed and out of your room preceding departure for fishing the last morning. Depending on the number of guests arriving that day, you may not have the ability to take a shower before heading home.
If you are staying an extra night, it is a leisurely check out of Bay Flats Lodge following breakfast and return to Houston/San Antonio/Austin or Corpus Christi for your flight home. Official check out time is 2:00 PM.
Guides can provide all rods, reels, terminal tackle, and flies if needed.
Please let us know if you need guides to provide rods and reels.
- You need good polarized glasses and a GOOD RAIN JACKET year-round!
- Fall and winter trips can be MUCH COOLER on the water than you might expect from looking at the weather forecast. Make sure to dress in layers and be prepared to be chilly on the water – especially during morning boat runs.
Although rods and reels are provided, we always encourage guest to bring their own if you have them.
At least two quality set ups with your choices lying between 7 or 8 wt. Please have the appropriate line, backing and a reel designed for saltwater use.
Multi-piece 7 or 8 wt. fly rods in 9 foot lengths are our favorite choices. We like fast tapered saltwater rods that have been specially designed to handle windy conditions and deliver heavy flies accurately. Remember, most presentations are in the 10-50’ range, having a rod that makes short casts accurately is equally as important as having loads of power. We also always recommend bringing a backup rod in case of breakage. Brands we recommend are:
- Scott Fly Rods • R.L. Winston Fly Rods • Sage Fly Rods
100% of all redfish applications require a standard weight forward floating line, so do not bother with bringing any sort of sinking lines. We suggest the Redfish taper lines by Scientific Anglers or Rio. Nearly all presentations are at very short distances, so anglers want a heavy front tapered fly line for a little more assistance turning over heavier flies in windier conditions. Fly lines can easily break on debris or oyster beds so make sure to bring additional floating lines as backup.
Remember, all flies and leader material are provided free of charge by our guides. There is no need to bring any flies with you unless you want to fish your own patterns.
Redfish are not leader shy. Fluorocarbon leaders are the best choice. They sink quickly, and are more abrasion resistant than mono. Tapered saltwater leaders in 20 lb. test in 10’ lengths are what to bring. In addition, bring spools of 15 lb. and 20 lb. Fluorocarbon tippet. Change the leader out entirely when the old one is too short or too thick.
RED FISH FLIES:
Remember, all flies and leader material are provided free of charge by our guides. There is no need to bring any flies with you unless you want to fish your own patterns.
Texas Redfish are not very picky when it comes to fly selection. They feed on various kinds of baitfish, mullet, large crabs, shrimp, and any other easy meal that comes in their path. You will want a selection of both heavily weighted flies as well as lighter flies as well. For the most part, you can use heavy flies without fear of spooking fish. Just have a nice cross section of clousers, toads, spoon flies, spawning shrimp, and two-tone crab patterns.
- Clouser half and half: Baitfish, Chartreuse, Gray| Size 1/0
- Flashtail Minnow Clouser: Chartreuse/White, Purple/Black, Olive/White | Size 1/0
- P. Crabs Color: (two-tone) Olive, Tan, Brown | Size: 4, 2, 2/0
- P. Spawning Shrimp Color: Tan, Root Beer, Olive, Pink | Size: 2, 4, 1/0
- P. Mantis Shrimp Color: Tan, Root Beer, Olive, Pink | Size: 2, 4, 1/0
BOAT REFRESHMENTS & LUNCH:
Your guides are responsible for stocking the cooler and providing drinks. If you have a specific beverage you would like, please pass along this request to your guide. Lunches are provided by the Lodge.
Please buy your Texas saltwater fishing license before arriving.
Call 1-800-895-4248 to order your license or Buy License Here
The Guides are all experienced captains and fly fishing guides. They know how to navigate the labyrinth of sloughs, backchannels and bayous to get to the best spots depending on the time of year, weather, tides etc. They are also great fish finders with excellent eyes. It is pretty rare that you will spot a fish before they do. Listen to their instructions on distance and direction of fish and they know the best flies for the area. Listen closely to their instructions or have the angler in the middle relay the message to the caster on the bow. Don’t always leave it up to the guide on when to switch anglers on the bow and who get the shots. Volunteer to switch to keep yourselves fresh and alert.
A made to order breakfast is served in the Dining room usually between 5-7 AM. While you are finishing up breakfast, your guides will arrive and begin prepping boats and gear. You will typically head out around 8:00 AM. Depending upon wind and weather, your boat ride to your first fishing destination typically averages 10-45 minutes. The fishing day is usually 8-9 hours long and anglers are typically back at The Lodge between 3:00-4:00 PM.
Double occupancy rooms include two queen beds with pillow top mattresses and Marriott Luxury Hotel Bedding and Linens – this is as comfy as it gets. Each room has a full bathroom with shower.Fresh towels are provided in each room and widescreen HD TV with DirecTV and Free WIFI throughout the property. Single-occupancy is available upon request, but is an up-charge to the standard nightly rate.
They have over 20,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space to enjoy after an awesome hunt or epic fishing day. Gather around the fire pits, a huge outdoor kitchen, the cornhole courts, or relax at their smaller common areas. They also have meeting and conference rooms available for corporate groups.
Bay Flat Lodge serves wine with dinner. Bay Flats Lodge, does not carry a liquor license, so they are not allowed to sell alcohol of any nature. However, guests are allowed to bring their own adult beverages should they choose to do so. Alcohol is allowed aboard the boats if preferred, as long as no glass containers are used – absolutely no glass containers are allowed on any of the boats.
Come for the fishing, stay for the food. Bay Flats Lodge is famous for their unparalleled access to world class sight fishing, but that doesn’t mean they forget about the Food. Your plates will be piled high with fresh-caught shrimp, ceviche, quail legs and local fish favorites (and it would not be Texas without a little steak).
A hot breakfast with all the fixings is served bright and early to set you up for a great day, including: Scrambled eggs, homemade buttermilk biscuits, creamy sausage gravy, sausage kolaches, a variety of dry cereals, granola breakfast bars, fresh fruit, smoked applewood bacon, pan sausage, tortillas, coffee, tea, orange juice, and milk.
The Kitchen will send you off with a delicious packed lunch to keep you fueled up for your adventurous day:
Their gourmet sandwiches are made on Sheila Partin’s Jalapeño Cheese Bread stacked with four different meats and cheese. Plus, plenty of chips, cookies, soft drinks, and cold water.
The Dinner Experience at Bay Flats Lodge:
After a full day chasing redfish on the water, wash up and the evening meal starts at the outdoor kitchen.
They start with appetizers every night at 5:30 PM, including a range of local seafood and delicious bites hot off the grill. Some of the guest favorites include golden fried quail legs with an aioli sauce, bacon-wrapped shrimp diablos brushed with jalapeno kiwi jelly, spicy pulled-pork tacos topped with a zesty Pico de Gallo salsa, tangy south of the border Mexican shrimp cocktail, fresh red snapper ceviche atop homemade corn tostadas, authentic and traditional frijoles charros (cowboy beans) flavored with bacon, garlic, tomatoes, green chiles, jalapeños, cilantro and a variety of other spices, as well as skewered prime ribeye beef tips grilled to perfection.
Then comes dinner – four courses of incredible flavors, which could include:
16 oz. aged center-cut Black Angus ribeye steak accompanied by hefty stalks of fresh jumbo asparagus and creamy rosemary mashed potatoes, double-boned, center-cut pork chops with a balsamic glaze atop a bed of wilted spinach and polenta or roasted raspberry chipotle sauce brushed over maple-leaf-rendered grilled duck served with dirty rice.
DRESS ATTIRE AT BAY FLATS LODGE:
The atmosphere is very laid back at the lodge. You are on vacation! Please feel free to wear whatever is comfortable during the day.
BOAT REFRESHMENTS AND LUNCH:
Your guides are responsible for stocking the cooler and providing drinks. If you have a specific beverage you would like, please pass along this request to your guide. Lunches are provided by the lodge.
Bay Flats Lodge does have WIFI throughout the property. Cell phones will work well at the lodge, and often work in many of the areas fished.
MAID & LAUNDRY SERVICE:
The lodge has daily housekeeping/room service. Bay Flats Lodge can provide “basic” laundry service upon request – washing, drying, and folding cleaned clothes (dry-cleaning services are not available).
All our Captains we use are outfitted with top-of-the-line skinny water flats skiffs such as Hell’s Bay, Burton, East Cape, Maverick or Ranger boats that are perfect for poling in shallow water hunting Redfish.
Tipping is a personal decision based on good service and is completely at your discretion. The following recommendations are simply for your understanding of what the expected tip is for a satisfied guest. Feel free to tip a bit more if you are very impressed with a particular guide. Many clients will happily offer a larger gratuity to guides who help them catch a special trophy fish or work hard through difficult conditions. All tips should be given in cash.
- $10 for kitchen staff, per guest/day
- $10 for housekeeping, per room/day
- $100 per guide, per day
- $5 to $10 per guest donation will be matched by the lodge for fish habitat projects
Bay Flats Lodge is on Central Daylight time.
CLOTHING & GEAR
CLIMATE AND GENERAL CLOTHING:
Generally speaking, the Texas gulf has a very mild climate most of the year. However, if you are fishing in the autumn or winter months you should be prepared with cold weather gear. Make sure to check the weather forecast prior to packing and of course ask us for details if you have any questions about what to pack. When packing, keep in mind that the lodge dress code is extremely casual. Clean and dry fishing clothing is always acceptable at the dinner table. Other than your fishing related clothing, a couple of tee-shirts, and a pair of casual shorts or pants, we recommend only one set of street clothes for travel days. Pack lightly!
WINTER FISHING (DECEMBER 1 – MARCH 1):
Be prepared for colder weather! Make sure to have long pants, fleece jackets and/or vests, rain jacket, long underwear, a warm hat, and proper gloves. Temperatures can sometimes drop below freezing in the winter, and early morning boat runs can be frigid. Although you should also be prepared for milder conditions, you can never have too many clothes during the winter months. Dress in layers to accommodate changes in weather as well.
SPRING FISHING (MARCH 1 – MAY 15):
You can expect a combination of cooler days and milder days during the spring months. Typically, anglers experience cooler mornings that dictate a jacket and long pants in the morning followed by warmer conditions as the sun comes up. Be prepared with layered clothing to shed and put back on accordingly.
SUMMER FISHING (MAY 15 – SEPTEMBER 30):
The key to staying comfortable on the marsh in the summertime is to remain cool while protecting yourself from the sun. Lightweight clothing with plenty of ventilation is recommended. Odds are you will probably get wet when running in the boat or during a rain shower. You want your fishing clothing to shed water and dry quickly in the humid air.
FALL FISHING (OCTOBER 1 – DECEMBER 1):
Fishing in the early fall (September – mid October) can still be quite warm. Similar to the springtime fishing, come prepared for both cooler and warmer weather. By November 1st we recommend you bring some warmer jackets and expect to wear long pants almost every day. When the first major cold fronts arrive in November temperatures can plummet quickly from day to day. Be prepared for both mild and cold weather fishing as anything could happen with your forecast.
We recommend roller style, soft-sided duffle bags for nearly all our travels. Ideally you have a bag that adheres to airline size restrictions but it is still large enough to fit a couple of rod tubes, tackle, boots and other gear. If you have a particularly large bag, we advise you to communicate with your commercial carrier as well as the TSA regarding any baggage weight restrictions that might be applicable.
We carry many excellent sets of luggage by Simms, Patagonia and Fishpond. These bags are the ideal size, bulletproof, and are equipped with efficient roller systems. Some models also have separate compartments for storing wet boots and/or waders or even rod tubes. Don’t forget to mark your luggage with appropriate personal identification bag tags, supplied by The Fly Shop®.
Fishing shirts should be cool and dry quickly, have breathable flaps that allow air to circulate through, and should be easy to pack and maintenance-free. Patagonia and Simms make several different models and styles both in short and long sleeves. If you are bothered by the sun, we recommend the long-sleeved versions, especially in late Spring and early Summer. Proper fishing shirts also should be equipped with chest pockets for storing small items like tippet material or a cleaning cloth for sunglasses and camera lenses.
Fishing shorts should also be made of a synthetic quick dry material. We suggest shorts with pockets and belt loops for accommodating pliers. Skwala, Patagonia and Simms make excellent models.
Sun protection, rather than warmth, is the primary function of long pants when fishing in Louisiana late spring/early summer. Patagonia, Skwala and Simms make great pants and shorts specifically designed for fishing. They will protect you from the sun, are wind resistant, and dry quickly. Some pants have removable pant legs that zip off to become shorts. Most styles of pants are also suitable for wearing at the lodge or on your travel days. If your trip is in the winter, you will want some insulated pants that are wind and water-resistant.
LONG UNDERWEAR (Fall/Winter/early Spring Months):
Long underwear serves as your base layer of clothing throughout the winter season. You will want multiple pairs of both tops and bottoms to rotate throughout the week. Patagonia Capilene is a favorite synthetic long underwear in both short and long-sleeved models. The light and mid-weight models are used most on the average autumn or winter trip, however plan on having a few varieties of weights according to various temperatures. Patagonia also makes some wonderful woolen and synthetic base layers as well.
INSULATING THERMAL LAYER (Winter/early Spring Months):
Fleece jackets, vests, pullovers, soft shells, and pile jackets are your second major layer of clothing for both your upper and lower body during the winter. Again, wear synthetic materials rather than wool or cotton as they are lightweight, dry quickly, and wick moisture away from your body. Simms and Patagonia produce a variety of styles, weights, and colors. This is important for cold early morning boat rides.
SUNGLOVES / FINGER GUARDS:
Sun-gloves made by BUFF, Simms or Glacier Gloves are great for protecting your hands from the sun. We also recommend finger guards for protecting your fingers if you are not wanting to wear gloves.
For Winter and late fall, early spring fishing it is a good idea to bring some gloves. Fingerless insulating gloves are great for boat rides and cold days. We have had the best success with synthetic or wool gloves, rather than neoprene which retain water. Simms Half Finger Gloves and Flip Mitts are probably the best on the market.
ADDITIONAL CLOTHING & SHOES:
Tee-shirts, shorts, and lightweight pants will round out your everyday attire. Flip-flops, sandals, or tennis shoes are ideal for wearing around the lodge. There are no wading opportunities on the marsh. You will NOT need any wading boots or a hip pack.
Bay Flats Lodge use of skiffs aids you to accessing fish in shallow waters, stalls movement due to tide fluctuation, and is a very stealthy way to fish the area. When bow surfaces get wet due to crossing windy bays, this can take a toll on angler’s traction and movement on the boat. With any situation where demanding casts are a must, your balance and footing are the concrete foundation leading to successful casts. When it is hot, many anglers prefer to simply go barefooted. However, many anglers also enjoy wearing comfortable sandals or rubber-soled shoes for more traction and/or sun protection. During the cooler months, you definitely want some shoes that will accommodate warm socks and are water resistant.
Guests at Bay Flats Lodge are fortunate to enjoy a solid 8-9 hours fishing every day on the boat. These long days add up fast to wear and tear on your feet, back, and overall posture. For those with flat feet that result in painful hours standing on the bow a boat shoe with good support is an absolute must!
Most Guides prefer to present the guests to the fish via sight-casting from the front deck of a technical poling skiff in skinny, clear water. Where guests will switch off casting from the bow of the boat. However, there are wading opportunities if guests want to wade fish.
When wade fishing in coastal waters during summertime, flats boots (with ray guards) are recommended with Simms light weight neoprene socks, and then chest waders and wading boots for wading during wintertime. However, wade fishing is typically practiced by anglers who prefer presenting artificial baits via conventional gear. Bay Flats lodge has waders and boots for rent at the lodge.
A high quality, lightweight rain jacket and pants is another essential piece of clothing while in the marsh in the summer. A heavy-duty rain jacket is necessary for late fall/winter/early spring times. Patagonia, Skwala and Simms make great lightweight/regular rain jackets that will keep you dry during rainstorms or while crossing choppy water on a lengthy boat run.
This is your most important piece of equipment for any type of sight fishing. Red fishing is primarily all sight-fishing. Without the ability to see the fish you are stalking, you put yourself at a great disadvantage. Copper and Brown lenses are the best choice for this type of fishing. Yellow lenses are great for mornings, late afternoons, and cloudy conditions. Always bring two pair of polarized sunglasses in case you lose or break a pair. Smith, Oakley and Costa Del Mar make a variety of stylish frames to choose from. We can special order bifocal or trifocal lenses for many of these frames with enough advanced notice. A lanyard or “croakie” “Cablz” is also invaluable in order to keep from dropping or losing your glasses.
Bring two hats or caps for sun protection. If you are sensitive to the sun, make sure to bring a hat that covers your head as thoroughly as possible. Hats that have dark colors underneath the brim help to reduce glare from the water aiding in spotting fish.
The sun is very intense even on cloudy days. Pack some sun block and lip balm with a minimum of 30SPF UVA/UVB. There is a product on the market called Smart Shield that is a totally organic bug repellent/sunscreen and works well. There is also a product on the market called a BUFF that has become fashionable with serious anglers on the trout stream as well as in the tropics. It is a comfortable, lightweight, and breathable garment that functions similar to a bandana and will keep UV rays off of your head, neck, and ears. We carry several models and styles.
Unfortunately, the areas around the marsh and banks are home to mosquitoes… particularly in the evening and close to the banks while out fishing. A good quality insect repellent with DEET will keep mosquitoes away.
A boat bag is important for carrying your tackle and gear with you on the boat each day. Running in the boats over open water oftentimes sprays mist into the boat, so you should have some type of waterproof or water-resistant bag with you in the boat for storing cameras, lenses, tackle, flies, extra reels, spools, sunscreen, rain jackets, spare reel parts, bottled water, snacks, or anything else you don’t want to carry on you while fishing. Patagonia makes a wonderful 99% waterproof bag called the Great Divider. It is also the exact dimensions of the under-seat storage area on an airplane.
We often use the Great Divider as our carry-on luggage. Simms and Fishpond make very comparable product in several sizes as well. Everything stays dry, salt free, and out of the humidity.
PLIERS & BELT:
Although your guide will be equipped with pliers, we recommend a quality pair of corrosion resistant pliers as an essential tool when fishing… especially for bigger Redfish. Pliers by Loon, Dr. Slick and 3-Tand aid in hook removal, cutting heavy monofilament, and tying big game knots. All pliers should be kept in a sheath and have a check-chord to avoid dropping them overboard. Don’t forget to bring a synthetic belt to be worn in order to accommodate your pliers’ sheath.
TOOLS & GADGETS:
Items like nippers, hemostats, and hook hones are necessities in every fishing pack. The tools can be kept on a retractor or on a lanyard. A Leatherman multi-tool is also a nice extra to have in the boat bag.
While poling in a boat searching for Reds, it seems like glasses are always getting wet when landing unruly fish or on boat runs. This can be quite frustrating if you are not prepared with a quality lens cleaning/drying cloth. Consider taking one of Chum’s Lens Cleaning Kits or something comparable to wipe the water and sweat off of your glasses. Tip: Always grab some toilet paper, Kleenex, or a napkin and store it in a shirt pocket within an empty leader package to keep it dry. The freshwater in the cooler is always a good spot to rinse your lenses as well.
TRASH BAGS & ZIPLOCS:
Always throw in a couple of small trash bags for packing any wet or dirty gear for the trip home in order to keep mildew from spreading through your clothing. Having some Ziploc baggies on hand are also a good idea for keeping camera equipment or papers dry in your boat bag. We also recommend the TFS Wader/Laundry Bag as this folds flat for packing and is perfect for separating your clean and dirty clothes on the way home.
FIRST AID KIT & TOILETRIES:
A simple first aid kit with Band-Aids, alcohol wipes, Imodium, waterproof tape, and Dramamine for motion sickness is always a good thing to have on hand. The lodge provides shampoo and soap but does not have other personal items like razors, deodorant, shaving cream or toothpaste. Make sure to bring your own.
FLASHLIGHT OR HEADLAMP:
A flashlight or headlamp can be an invaluable item to have while travelling or walking back to your cabin after dinner. Our favorite is the Loon Nocturnal headlamp. Headlamps are great for reading at night while your roommate is sleeping, and free up your hands to get organized in the dark.
OTHER MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS
Measuring Tape, Camera and storage cards, Battery operated Alarm Clock (cell phone), Extra Batteries and chargers, Knife or Leatherman Tool
EQUIPMENT & ACCESSORIES
Marshy flats mud and Saltwater has a way of making fly lines sticky and dirty after a few days of use. Anglers should also bring along some sort of line cleaner to keep your fly line in good working order. Rio and Scientific Anglers both make excellent products.
For anglers who prefer to carry on rods, you should strongly consider investing in multi-piece rods (4-piece) that will fit in a quality rod carrier. This makes it simple to consolidate all of your rods into one case and is less alarming to airport security. Our favorite is the Fishpond 4-piece carrier called the Dakota Bag. It holds numerous rods as well as room for reels and other carry-on approved tackle. Simms and Sage make quality products as well. Another option is the Patagonia Travel Rod Roll which carries several multi-piece rods.
SPARE PARTS & LUBRICANT:
Locate a very small fly box and stock up on any extra spare parts applicable for your reels. Today’s quality fly fishing reels are very sophisticated and have a few moving parts including springs, o rings, drag knobs, pawls, etc. that will wear out after significant usage. It is also a good idea to have an old toothbrush for cleaning and some synthetic lubricant on hand as well.
MAINTENANCE AND STORAGE:
It is very important to rinse dirt and sand from the inner workings of your reels, rods, pliers, fly boxes, etc. following every day on the water. A quick freshwater rinse will keep reels working correctly and keep all of your equipment in good working order. Once you arrive home from your trip, you should take apart your reels and soak them in soft soapy warm water. A light coat of synthetic oil on the surface of your reels is also a good idea before storing them. With fly rods, make sure to wipe them down with some Windex or 409. This will keep the glass finish looking sharp and prevent rust from forming in the guides and reel seat.
Using the Clock to Spot fish
On the flats, your guide will often spot fish before you do. When this happens, your guide will refer the numbers on a clock to give you the fish’s general direction. For example, the bow (front) on the boat would represent 12:00 O’clock. Exactly perpendicular to the boat off of your right shoulder (starboard) would be 3:00 O’clock; perpendicular to the boat off your left shoulder (port) would be 9:00 O’clock, etc. In addition to the direction, the guide will also refer to a distance measured in feet. For example: “Okay, two fish coming at 11:00 O’clock — 50 feet”.
Bay Flats Lodge Contact Information
If you have any problems during your trip with missed connections, or want to leave an emergency number for family members or office:
The Fly Shop:
530 222 3555 / 800 669 3474 / firstname.lastname@example.org
BAY FLATS LODGE
391 BAYSIDE DRIVE, P.O. BOX 580, SEADRIFT, TEXAS, 77983