Trip Questionnaire: Please click on the link below. This will take you 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 the outfitter best coordinate your trip. THANK YOU!
Trip Questionnaire: Click Here
The most popular option in travel to Joulters Fly Fishing is flying to Nassau’s Lynden Pindling International Airport (NAS) and then taking a short, 12 minute flight into San Andros (code: SAQ) with Western Air. There are many options on many different airlines flying into Nassau. Western Air offers two daily flights between Nassau and San Andros: one at 7:00 AM and the other at 3:30 PM; the turnaround times are typically 30 – 45 minutes later.
Guests often fly in on the afternoon flight and make their departure on the morning flight. Scheduling your flights in and out of Nassau around 12 noon works really well and allows sufficient time to clear customs on both sides of your trip.
You can make a reservation on their website (www.westernairbahamas.com) or by calling them in the Bahamas at (242-377-2222). The round-trip fare on Western Air is usually around $150 – 160 per/person and can be paid online or at their ticket counter in Nassau. Keep in mind, this is the Bahamas, and things rarely operate on time. Sometimes these flights are late, and every once in a while, they will even leave early! So be prepared to be in the waiting area a bit ahead of schedule, and be patient and prepared to wait a bit. There is a decent bar, a Duty Free shop, and a Dunkin’ Donuts for food in the waiting area.
The other option into San Andros is with a private charter on Maker’s Air out of Fort Lauderdale – they offer a charter seat fare that is dependent on their current schedule. You can look them up on their website at https://www.makersair.com, although to book a fare it’s best to give them a call for available seats and pricing at 954-771-0330. These flights are more expensive but can off-set the cost of having to overnight in Nassau. With Maker’s Air, you’ll clear U.S. customs in Fort Lauderdale at their terminal upon returning back to the States.
If you are flying commercially into Nassau International Airport you will first clear immigrations, retrieve your luggage and clear customs. Once you have cleared customs, you will need to recheck yourself and luggage to San Andros (SAQ) at the nearest Western Air counter.
You must claim your luggage on your first point of entry into the Bahamas and clear immigrations and customs. Failure to claim your luggage will result in your luggage not showing up at your end destination.
Entry and Exit Requirements:
Travel by Air: All U.S. citizens are required to present a valid U.S. passport in order to enter or re-enter the United States when travelling by air. U.S. citizens do not need visas for short trips to The Bahamas for tourist/business purposes. It is important to note that although the Bahamian government only requires proof of citizenship and identity in order to enter The Bahamas, the U.S. government requires that Americans have a valid passport in order to fly home.
You will complete an immigration card upon arrival. It will be checked at your first point of entry and a copy will be given to you. Be careful not to lose this copy as it must be given to Immigration upon departure.
For charter flights only, there is a departure tax payable at the airport upon departure; the tax is $25 for most points of departure.
Upon exiting the International Arrivals area in Nassau, you will proceed to the Domestic area of the airport to the Western Air counter for check in (you will want to reserve these flights in advance, easy to do online). You will want to arrange your international airfare into Nassau either the night before (in order to catch the 7:00 AM departure), or before 1:30 PM (in order to have time to deplane, clear customs and immigration, and check in for the 3:30 pm flight to San Andros).
As aircraft flying to San Andros (SAQ) are often small twin-engine planes, we recommend carrying a maximum of 40 pounds of luggage, soft sided if possible.
When you arrive at San Andros* airport there will be porters available to help you with your gear from the plane to the curb. If we know what time your flight is arriving from Ft Lauderdale or if you are arriving by charter from Nassau give Makesha a call (WhatsApp) that day with your approximate arrival time and we will have one of our favorites (as in has a van for all your gear) taxi drivers there to meet you. ‘Just ask the porter or any of the locals that hang out at the gate leaving the tarmac for James Smith or Alan Russell and they will take you to the lodge. Makesha or Nadia, the lodge supervisor, should be waiting for you on arrival at the lodge. If not, you have their numbers and Nadia lives only two blocks away. She will let you in to your unit and give you your keys.
(San Andros airport is 10 minutes from lodge. If you arrive at Fresh Creek, Andros Town 1 hour south, just take any taxi to San Andros airport and local taxi from there.)
If taxi drivers are not there for any reason there are always other taxi drivers there and most of them know the “Sportsman’s Lodge” in Nichols Town. If not, or you have other transportation, the lodge is at the very end of Reeve St where it tees into Swamp St. at the ocean. When you come to the stop sign at the end of Reeves St you are literally aimed right at the driveway of the lodge so just go straight across the street into the driveway and the lodge is about 100 feet up the driveway on your right, an aqua blue building on the oceanfront.
The lodge will be stocked with mostly food for breakfast and a few snacks and lots of non-alcoholic beverages in the fridge. If you want any additional snacks or beer/liquor, the taxi driver will be happy to swing by the local market and/or the state liquor store on the way to the lodge. US dollars are accepted one for one so you don’t have to worry about money exchange but having small bills is recommended. Be sure and save any Bahamian dimes as they have a bonefish on them and make cool souvenirs.
Soon after your arrival at the lodge the chef, Makesha, will arrive with some Conch Fritters or like for hors d’oeuvre followed by dinner served in the early evening. She will also prepare your lunches and leave them in Tupperware containers in the refrigerator to put it in the ice chest provided by the guides in the morning. If you have any dietary restraints let us know ahead of time and we will do our best to accommodate you during your stay.
Makesha will also have a form to fill out and collect $20 each (up to one week fishing) for your fishing licenses, which she will pick up while you are fishing the first day and have for you that evening.
Typical Fishing Day:
After dinner, your guide we’ll come over to set the plan for fishing the next day. Typically, you will be picked up at 8:00 AM. Get all of your rods and other gear together that night so they’re ready to go in the morning, rods assembled ready to be put directly in the boat.
Lunch is taken on the fly and usually consists of delicious sandwiches, fresh fruit, homemade cookies, chips, waters and sodas. If you like the cooler can be filled with a few cold beers.
After a full day of wading flats, guests typically return to the lodge around 5:30 pm, in time for a quick swim and snorkel, shower, cocktails and appetizers (the best conch fritters we have ever tasted) on the veranda.
After each fishing day the chef will greet you with appetizers, typically conch fritters or the like. While you jump in the ocean out front for a swim, take a shower, or kick back on the patio with a cold one, the chef will put the finishing touches on dinner. Makesha is amazing and the entrees and side dishes feature lobster, conch or fresh fish as the main course. After dessert she will clean up and leave you and your friends time to unwind and chill.
Dietary restrictions and requirements:
Guests with dietary or particular requirements are requested to notify us prior to arriving so we can adjust to your personal needs.
Day of Departure:
Please reconfirm your flight arrangements with the lodge the night before departure. Western Air has two daily flights departing San Andros (SAQ) to Nassau (NAS), one at 7:30 AM and one at 4:45 PM. Most guests choose to take the morning flight, which matches well with midday departures home from Nassau (11:00 PM or later is recommended).
Should any problems occur during your travel, including significant flight delays please be sure to have the following contact information with you. Please feel free to contact The Fly Shop® or the lodge directly.
The Fly Shop®
(800) 669-3474 | (530) 222-3555 | E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org | web: www.theflyshop.com
(Check-in) Nadia Jones (242) 471-7279 Home (242) 329-2310
(Chef) Makeisha Lewis (242) 471-2726
(Taxi) James Smith (242) 801-7300
(Taxi) Alan Russel (242) 357-2876
(Guide and Partner) Elias Griffin (242) 471-5299
(Guide and Partner) Greg Roberts (242) 471-0117
Kent Rianda Cell or WhatsApp* (760) 914-1466 Office in California
In case of emergencies involving the death, injury, welfare, or arrest of an American citizen in The Bahamas or the Turks and Caicos Islands, please call (242) 328-3496 or 242-311-1181×9 during business hours, and 242-357-7004 at all other times. (Please note that the Duty Officer who answers this number will not be able to assist with visa or routine passport matters.)
WhatsApp is the universal means of communication in the Bahamas and to/from from the United States. It is a free app for your iPhone or Android that will let you call, text, facetime, send files and photos all at no charge to anyone who also has the app.
You can download WhatsApp from the Apple App Store on iPhone or from Google Play on Android phones.
If the person you want to call does not have the app you can use the app to text them saying you want to connect with them with a link to sign up quickly so they can receive and send
The only two negatives about WhatsApp are that you many times need an Internet signal to use it and you must put the person in the contact list on your phone before you can initiate a call. You cannot just enter the number directly.
The only alternative when you’re in the Bahamas is to pay $10 a day for unlimited calls back to the US and if you’re in the US calling the Bahamas you will paying like a dollar a minute even with an international plan.
General Travel Information
Staying in Nassau
There are many options for your stay in Nassau, ranging from small family-owned inns situated in quieter areas to full-scale casino/resorts on Cable Beach and Paradise Island. There is an array of restaurants and clubs, day cruises and other activities. Below are some of our recommendations.
Orange Hill Beach Inn West Bay Street 242-327-7157 Email: Info@orangehill.com
- Orange Hill is a quaint family-owned inn 5 minutes from the airport. It is a convenient, economical choice for our traveling anglers. It sits across the street from a nice quiet beach and has a small bar/restaurant and a refreshing outdoor pool.
Sandy Port Hotel and Resort West Bay Street 242-327-4279 Email: email@example.com
- SandyPort Hotel is part of the greater SandyPort Development. It is located 10 minutes from the airport and can be a great choice for your over-night in Nassau. You will find a variety of dining options, stores and even a health club within walking distance of your accommodations. It has a relaxing atmosphere and a very professional staff.
British Colonial Hilton No. 1 Bay Street 242-322-3301
- The British Colonial is a beautiful, well-appointed, luxury hotel situated right in the heart of the action on famous Bay Street. The grounds are amazingly quiet considering where it is situated. It is everything you expect from an International Hilton property and places you within walking distance of all the shops and restaurants of downtown.
Atlantis Resort and Casino Paradise Island 242-363-2000 x 65401
- The grandeur of “The Atlantis” is hard to describe. It truly is a “mega” resort in the spirit of Las Vegas. It houses one of the largest aquariums in the world, a Vegas-style casino and numerous shops and restaurants. It hums with energy and activity 24 hours a day. If you are staying elsewhere in Nassau, it is worth taking a taxi to Paradise Island and wandering through.
Restaurants in Nassau
Indigo Cafe and Deli West Bay St. and Skyline Drive 242-327-2535
- Indigo is a relaxing, stylish Cafe with a very eclectic menu of wonderfully prepared foods. Choose from local Bahamian, Asian, and European cuisine, even an impressive selection of fantastic sushi! They also have a full service bar and espresso.
The Poop Deck West Sandy Port on the Beach/West Bay Street 242-327-3325
- An island favorite, the Poop Deck features a full bar, great steak, seafood and traditional Bahamian dishes
Twin Brothers Arowak Cay 242-328-5033
- Located at the Arowak Cay Fish Fry Grounds, Twin Brothers is a fun, relaxing place to enjoy great local Bahamian cuisine. It is a favorite among the locals. Enough said?
Clay Oven Downtown 242-325-8639
- A wonderful, reasonably priced authentic Indian Restaurant. This is where our manager eats when he’s in Nassau!
Green Parrot Paradise Island / Hurricane Hole Sorry, no phone # for this one
- A well-known, very popular outdoor bar and grill that sits on the Hurricane Hole Marina. This is a fun place to hang out day and night watching the boat traffic in and out of Nassau Harbor, while chatting with the crews of the many yachts that are parked in the marina.
Staying in Ft. Lauderdale
Here are a few recommendations for lodging and entertainment for our guests who have some time in Fort Lauderdale on either side of their trip to the Bahamas.
Courtyard® by Marriott® Port 400 Gulf Stream Way/Dania Beach, Florida 33004 954-342-8333
- The Courtyard at the Fort Lauderdale Airport is a hotel that’s just a couple of miles from the airport. The rooms are nice and the hotel shares a parking lot with the IGFA Museum, Bass Pro Shops, and the Islamorada Fish Company. The Courtyard provides free shuttle service to and from the airport. Ask for the Deneki Outdoors corporate rate.
Restaurants and Attractions:
Seminole Hard Rock Casino 1 Seminole Way/Hollywood, FL 33314 1-866-502-7529
- About 15 minutes from the airport and its hotels is the large Hard Rock Casino complex on the Seminole Indian reservation. In addition to the hotel and casino, the complex includes 18 restaurants in a variety of styles, all with outdoor seating, 13 bars and clubs, and some high-end shopping. The cuisine includes something for everyone, and the people-watching is a sport unto itself!
IGFA Museum 300 Gulf Stream Way/Dania Beach, FL 33004 954-922-4212
- If you want to see some really big fish, stop off at the IGFA Museum and Hall of Fame. It’s located very near the airport and the Wyndham.
Cell phones work most places, including around the lodge. Be sure you have a plan that allows for international coverage, however, or you may end up with an unwelcome surprise when your next bill comes! Always be sure to turn your data off when traveling International, too.
Internet / Wi-Fi:
There is decent, usually reliable Wi-Fi at Joulters Fly Fishing. This is a remote island and service can come and go…but most of the time it works great.
The electrical outlets are AC 110 volts (same as the U.S.) and most appliances will work fine. There is a hair dryer available at the lodge if needed.
Mosquitoes and “doctor flies” in the Bahamas are prominent during the rainy season, from March through September. Year round, tiny biting “No See’ums” can also come out at dawn and dusk and whenever the winds are exceptionally calm. The Bahamian doctor fly is basically a large horsefly on steroids, whose bite will draw blood. (Why do they call them doctor flies? “Because when de bite, mon, it feels like a SHOT!”) They prefer salt-coated skin, and love to harass anglers who are wading shallow waters and mangrove-filled areas. Wearing long pants and long sleeves while fishing, and insect repellent (with DEET) will deter these bugs. If you can find it, Avon Skin-So-Soft is the best deterrent for No-See-Ums.
The lodge does spray for insects regularly, and has Citronella Plants around the veranda, which is typically effective in deterring most annoying pests. Still, it’s a good idea to bring some bug spray just in case.
Gratuities at Joulters Fly Fishing come in two forms: daily tips for guides at the end of each day, and a single tip for the lodge staff at the end of your stay. The local economy here is cash-based, so the preferred method for tipping is in cash. Tips cannot be put on a credit card, and a check won’t do them any good. Please bring cash! $USD Dollars and Bahamian currency are interchangeable on the island, and either works fine.
Guide tips vary widely but have averaged roughly $80 – $100 per boat per day ($40 – $50 per angler if two anglers share a boat). Tipping for guides can be done at the dock each day or at the end of the week. If guides are tipped at the end of the week, you will need to indicate what amount is intended for each guide and on which day. If you intend to tip at the end of the week, be sure to let your guide know that at the end of each day. The best time to give the guide his tip is at the beach just before getting out of the boat.
Lodge staff gratuities:
Tips for the lodge staff are collected once at the end of your stay, and are pooled and divided among the entire lodge staff, including drivers, cooks, housekeepers, and the maintenance crew and host. Lodge staff tips vary widely but have averaged roughly $25 – $35 per angler per day.
Beverages and Liquor:
The lodge will be stocked with mostly food for breakfast and a few snacks and lots of non-alcoholic
beverages in the fridge. If you want any additional snacks or beer/liquor, the taxi driver will be happy to swing by the local market and/or the state liquor store on the way to the lodge. US dollars are accepted one for one so you don’t have to worry about money exchange but having small bills is recommended.
Joulters Fly Fishing is not your typical lodge. You’ll have your own two-bedroom, ocean front villa with a living room, bath and full kitchen and everything you need. The guides go home to their families after dropping you off in the evening and after the chef has served dinner, you are left with the place all to yourself.
The lodge features two units that face the ocean with a common area between them that leads to an extra ¼ bath and laundry room. Each unit has a living room/dining area, two air-conditioned bedrooms, each with two twin beds, and a full kitchen and bath.
There is a TV and Wi-Fi if you are inclined. A full enclosed patio, completely screened, runs the length of the building with comfortable patio furniture to relax after a “tough day at work”.
The full kitchen will be stocked with everything you need to make your own breakfasts each morning. The chef will have prepared the next day’s lunches before she departs each night. Two healthy sandwiches each, in plastic containers so they can be freshly assembled at lunchtime, along with chips, snacks, a piece of fruit, soft drinks, Gatorade, juices, etc.
Tackle and Equipment
The big draw – and primary focus – of Andros is the sight fishing for bonefish. The Bahamas offers some of the best bonefishing in the world. Bonefish on Andros range in size from 2 – 15 pounds. On the average, bonefish will be in the 3 – 5 pound range. Smaller bonefish (1 – 2 pounds) tend to swim together in large schools, a natural defense against sharks, barracudas and other predators. Large bonefish travel alone or in pairs. We have found that most times when fishing to big schools of moving bonefish, the largest fish tend to be in the back of the pack. Bonefish are active feeders and a variety of flies and fishing strategies are effective in taking them. One of the nice things about bonefishing is that the proper equipment needed to catch them successfully is also one of the most common fly rod weight and size. The following suggestions and recommendations should help in assembling your bonefish tackle.
We strongly suggest 9’, 4 piece travel rods in 7, 8 and 9 weights. In general, an 8 weight is considered the “go-to” bonefish rod. We prefer fast tapered rods that generate high line speed. Rods that have been especially designed for the rigors of saltwater fly-fishing are the best choice. In that category, we like Scott, Sage, Winston, and The Fly Shop’s Signature fly rods. Traveling with a spare rod is always good idea.
Fly reels specifically designed for saltwater fly fishing are important. Features to look for are smooth drags, plenty of backing capacity, and a sturdy, machined, aluminum, one-piece anodized frame. Large arbor reels are a great choice and retrieve line and backing very quickly. Manufactures to consider include the Abel, Nautilus, Galvan, and Hatch.
A weight forward floating line designed for the tropics is extremely important. We find these days that the Scientific Anglers line tend to cast the best out of the box, and last the longest, so we strongly recommend their brands for the flats. Their high-end Amplitude Bonefish or Amplitude Redfish lines are outstanding (though pricey), while the Mastery Bonefish or Redfish Warm lines are our favorite lines overall for value, quality, and durability.
These lines are specifically designed for saltwater fly fishing and have a special braided monofilament core that provides the proper stiffness to allow excellent shooting while resisting tangles, even in tropical heat. They are extremely accurate lines, and the running portion is a large diameter and floats on top of the water, making it a pleasure for wade fishing. Traveling with a back-up fly line is a smart thing to do. It weighs almost nothing, takes up little space in your luggage, and won’t spoil before your next trip.
We typically fish 9’ – 12′ tapered saltwater leaders made from clear monofilament or fluorocarbon, with 12 – 20 lb. test are the most popular choices. 12 lb. leaders are common, but there are situations where you want to go heavier, 16lb. to 20lb, making the release quick and easy. Scientific Angler Absolute Bonefish leaders are good choice. Go knotless with your leaders for a couple different reasons. First, bonefish have incredible vision and a knotted leader may become a disadvantage. Second, knots tend to pick-up tiny pieces of debris and vegetation. You should bring along some tippet material, clear monofilament and fluorocarbon in spools of 12, 15 and 20 lb. test. Fluorocarbon leaders and tippet are a great choice as they are nearly invisible in water, perfect for spooky fish in very gin-clear water. That said, fluorocarbon is quite a bit more expensive, and for budget-conscious anglers, regular mono leaders do work fine.
Day in and day out, year after year the standard “Gotcha” has proven to be a “go to” fly. If it were the only fly you brought you would do just fine. It was invented on Andros Island, and remains a staple there. The infamous “Crazy Charlie” was also created by Andros guides, and you’d be hard pressed to find a guide that wouldn’t gladly tie one of these classic patterns on any day.
The important factor in your fly selection is to have flies of varied sizes and weights to meet the specific situation. Since most of the flats of the Joulters are quite shallow, flies in this part of Andros tend towards #4 or #6. But it’s still a good idea to have a few #2s as well, for deeper flats or trips to the West Side.
Bring the usual suspects; Gotchas, Charlies, Puffs, spawning shrimp, etc, in white, pink, pearl, brown, and tan in sizes #2, #4, and #6. Most flies should have small to medium bead chains, but it’s also good to have a few weightless patterns, as well as a few heavier lead-eye flies.
- Gotcha: Size 2, 4 & 6… An absolute must have fly pattern!
- Crazy Charlie: Size 6 (tan, pink, brown, pearl)
- Mini Puff, Size 4 & 6 (pink & tan)
- E.P. Spawning Shrimp, Size 4, Bead chain and lead eyes, tan and translucent
- Miheves Flats fly, Size 6
- Beck’s Silli-Legs, Size 6, (tan)
- Bully Special, Size 4 & 6
- Ververka Mantis Shrimp, Size 2
- Kwan, Size 4
The main focus is on bonefish, but there are some opportunities for other species as well, and you may want to be prepared for encounters with these other great game fish, too.
Although tarpon are not what most fly fishers are chasing in the Bahamas, they are available. Tarpon in the Bahamas are most often seen in and around creeks or around freshwater springs and blue holes. Most tarpon in the Bahamas range in size between 30 – 60 pounds.
Fast action 9’, 4 piece travel rods in 9, 10, & 11 weights are standard for tarpon. For most of the fish you’ll encounter on Andros, a 10 weight is perfect. We like Scott, Sage, and Winston.
A heavy-duty saltwater reel is a must here. Look for a reel with a smooth drag, plenty of backing capacity (minimum 200 yards of 30-lb. backing), and a sturdy one-piece, machined, aluminum anodized frame. Manufactures to consider include the Abel, Nautilus Galvan and Hatch.
Leaders for tarpon can be simple, or complex. The knots used in building class tippet tarpon leaders take some practice to learn, and it can be very rewarding to acquire those skills. We often build a simple tarpon leader with 8 foot of 40# fluorocarbon followed by 2 feet of 60#, 80#, or 100# bite tippet.
If you would like to tie your own tarpon leaders, some good reference books are Lefty Krey’s “Fly Fishing in Saltwater” and “Practical Fishing Knots by Lefty Kreh and Mark Sosin.” We like to use clear, stiff monofilament or fluorocarbon when constructing our class leaders.
Ninety percent of tarpon fishing is done with a weight forward floating line and Scientific Anglers Tropical Titan Taper is our favorite as it quickly and easily loads larger tarpon streamers in the wind.
In general, tarpon flies for the Bahamas should be tied on 1/0 through 3/0 size hooks. Slight variations in shape and color can be all that is needed to entice tarpon into striking. Flies to consider are:
- Tarpon Rabbit Toad, Size 1/0 (purple/black, tan, chartreuse)
- Cockroach, Size 1/0 & 4/0
- Black Death, Size 3/0
- Tarpon Toad: Size 2/0 (yellow, chartreuse, red/black)
- Puglisi Style Streamers (black/purple, Mullet, etc)
- Boca Grande: 3/0 (green or chartreuse)
- Bigeye Tarpon: 1/0 (orange/grizzly, sand devil, yellow)
Permit can occasionally be spotted along the edges and channels of the bonefish flats, especially in the deeper flats near Lowe Sound and on the West Side. Permit in the Bahamas range in size from 3 – 40 pounds. Most often you will sight permit in deeper water (4 to 6 feet), along the edge flats or at the top of a high tide change. They call permit the fish of 10,000 casts, and casting to one of these sickled tailed ghosts is about as exciting as it gets. We recommend taking a 9 or 10 weight rod, and having it rigged and in the boat.
We suggest 9’, 4 piece travel rods in 9 or 10 weights. We like fast tapered fly rods that generate high line speed. Rods that have been especially designed for the rigors of saltwater fly-fishing are the best choice. We like Scott, Sage, and Winston.
Fly reels specifically designed for saltwater fly fishing are important. Features to look for in reels are smooth drags, plenty of backing capacity, and a sturdy, machined, aluminum, one-piece anodized frame. Large arbor reels are a great choice and take up line and backing very quickly. Manufactures to consider include the Abel, Nautilus Galvan and Hatch.
The Scientific Anglers Mastery Redfish Warm has been our favorite permit line for years. The newer Amplitude lines are even better (though they do come with a hefty price tag). It casts permit crab and shrimp flies with ease, and it’s very accurate.
Fluorocarbon leaders are your best choice for permit as they are virtually invisible in water, and abrasion resistant. Scientific Anglers Absolute Big Game Fluorocarbon Leaders 9 – 12’ leaders 16 – 20 lb. test is standard.
There are a lot of permit crabs being pushed these days, but we have found only a few that consistently take fish. Here they are.
- Bauer’s Fur Crab Size # 4 and 6 (olive &/or tan)
- Raghead Crab #2 Size (olive or Tan)
- Danger Muffin Crab, golden brown, ghost tan, #2, 4
- Enrico’s Spawning Shrimp Size #2 (tan)
- Squimp Size #2 (tan)
Barracuda, jacks, snapper
Barracuda in the Bahamas get big, and they are very aggressive. They attack a fly at an unbelievable rate of speed, and often skyrocket into the air when hooked. When hooked, few fish can match a ‘cudas initial run for speed and sheer violence…hold on!
Jacks are very fast, pull like a freight train, and will destroy both surface poppers and streamers. Watching them blow up on your popper while you strip it as fast as you can is a sight to remember. Endurance is their strong point, and no jack gives up without a fight that you will remember.
Flies for these fish are often large streamers and poppers, so 9’, 4 piece travel rod in a 9 or 10 weight are good choices We like fast tapered fly rods, that generate good line speed. Fly rods that have been especially designed for the rigors of saltwater fly-fishing are the best choice.
Fly reels specifically designed for saltwater fly fishing are important. The same reels you would use for tarpon or permit will work great for these other species.
Leaders for barracuda and jacks/snappers can be simple. We often build a leader with 8 foot of 40# fluorocarbon for jacks and snappers, and add a bite tippet of 40 lb. Rio Powerflex Wire Bite Tippet for barracuda.
Flies for Barracuda:
- Cuda Killer Size 4/0 (green/white)
- Pearly Popper Size 2/0 (green)
- Tandem Cuda Fly Size 2/0 (green)
Flies for Jacks/Snappers:
- Pearly Poppers Size 2/0 (blue/white)
- In-Shore Popper Size 3/0 (chartreuse, white, orange/yellow)
- Lefty Krey’s Deceive Size 3/0 (chartreuse, blue)
- GT Brush Fly Size 6/0 (tan, black)
Clothing and gear:
Joulters Fly Fishing is your personal vacation retreat during your time on Andros! Comfortable, casual wear is accepted and encouraged. Flip-flops, sandals, shorts, T-shirts…casual is king. Expect mid-80’s during the days, and high 60’s to low ‘70’s in the evening and early mornings. We recommend long-sleeved shirts and long pants while on the flats (these will help fend off Doctor Flies as well as sunburns!). Liberally apply a waterproof sunblock UVA/UVB of at least 30 SPF+ rating to all exposed skin including your ears and lips. Re-apply occasionally through the day and consider a wide-brimmed hat or Buff. After applying sunscreen, scrub your hands with a scoop of sand and water as bonefish can smell lotion on your fly and will quickly turn away.
Although casual tropical attire will generally work great during your time on the water, there are three fishing specific items that are critical for each angler to bring:
Even on sunny days we suggest including a light weight and breathable rain jacket in your boat bag. Boat spray can occur at any time and a cloudburst can form when least expected. Rain pants are not a bad idea to.
Polarized sunglasses with amber or copper lenses are the most popular, and having an extra pair in your boat bag is always the smart thing to do.
Since the flats that we wade vary greatly in their bottom surface (hard sand, soft sand, grass, coral) we do not recommend wading sandals; closed toe boots are greatly preferred. Most of the flats are hard white sand, so neoprene-type booties will work here, as well as the stouter wading sneakers/boots.
We are often asked about what socks work best, and strongly recommend the Simms lightweight neoprene socks. They are comfortable, and can easily be rinsed and dried for re-use (unlike cotton socks which get real nasty real fast in the saltwater and often need thrown away after minimal use).
Light weight pants are strongly recommended for both sun and insect protection.
Chest, back, or fanny pack:
You may be wading for hours and the boat will be just a spec on the horizon. Be sure to bring a wading pack to carry your flies, leaders, tippet, clippers, a water bottle, camera, etc.
Pliers, hemostats, knot tying tool, nippers, hook sharpener, easy hook release.
Fly Fising for Bonefish
Clothing and Equipment Check List
- Hat with bill and neck protection (a dark underside on hat bill is best.)
- Polarized sunglasses (copper or brown) – take an extra pair! Lens Cleaner
- Bandana (always a handy item for neck protection, lens cleaner, rag etc.)
- Long sleeve shirts (light colors, light weight such as The Fly Shop, Simms or Patagonia)
- Short sleeve shirts
- Buff® Face Mask (great for sun protection of face, neck, ears, nose, etc.)
- Long pants for wading (light colored, light weight cotton)
- Shorts (much of the time you’ll wear these)
- Sandals, flip flops or camp shoes
- Deck/Boat shoes (no laces, non-skid) Crocs are excellent!
- Specialized flats (wading) boots or booties Neoprene socks to be worn with boots or booties
- Raingear (very light weight and packable)
- Sunscreen (at least SPF 30+, waterproof, PABA-free, UVA, UVB)
- Tools: Nippers, good pliers and hook sharpener.
- Lip balm with sunscreen (highest SPF you can get)
- Insect repellent with DEET 30%
- Camera, extra batteries, charger and memory cards
- Waterproof bag and Zip-Lock Bags (to carry camera, other gear while in the boat)
- Small flashlight or headlamp
- Zip-lock bags
- Garbage bags or waterproof bags for laundry, wading boots
- Smart Phone, tablet and charger
- Sun gloves, Striper fingers, Flexx Rap Tape
- Passport and travel documents
- 2 Copies of passport (***packed separately in Ziploc bags***)
- Airline tickets and itinerary
- Cash (small bills for tips, bar tab, gift shopping, etc.), credit card
- Notebook and pen
- Emergency telephone numbers
- Liquor (if you wish special brands)
- Toiletries, including shampoo, hand lotion, bandages, roll of athletic adhesive tape
- Aspirin, other over-the-counter medications like antacids
- Prescription medications (packed in your carry-on bag)
- Prescription glasses