Bahamas - New Operation on Crooked & Acklins Island

December 16th, 2014

With nearly 20,000 acres of flats, the Bahamas is the largest fishing area for bonefish in the world. Fish are larger than the average size as they enjoy the abundance of food that comes from one of the richest natural environments on the planet; the mangrove flats, irrigated and seeded every day by the rich waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico.

In the extreme southeast of the archipelago less than a hundred kilometres from the Haitian and Cuban coasts, Crooked Island and Acklins form an atoll over of 230 square miles. Its huge and shallow lagoon consisting of the islands of Crooked Island, Acklins and Long Cay makes a perfect wading area for bonefish and permit. It is particularly unspoiled and beautiful and with its 350 inhabitants it appears to be lost in time.

The average size of bonefish is about 4 lbs but much larger fish can be found on the flats. The island record is 17.6 lbs. Permit have hardly ever seen a fly here and are present in great numbers both on the flats and along the channels. Often they can be found hovering around large stingrays. Nice Caribbean trigger fish are also common on the coral flats and are not reluctant to take a little crab or shrimp imitation. Resident baby tarpon can be found throughout the year in some lagoons but most of the bigger fish arrive mainly during spring and summer. Barracuda up to 45 lbs, sharks, snappers, jacks and snook are some of the other species that are worth a cast as well as pelagic wahoo, tuna and dorado. The guides are all natives of the atoll. They have a wealth of knowledge and experience of this huge fishing area which is still unaffected by fishing pressure.

The lodge is simple and comfortable. Its perfect location makes it the only lodge that allows to fish the best area of Crooked Island and Acklins in the same week! It is run by a very friendly couple and consists of 5 large double bedrooms, all equipped with air conditioning, bathroom, sitting area, refrigerator and TV. Another building serves as restaurant and bar where cold beer will be waiting your return from the flats. The food is made of fresh products and local specialties such as the famous conch salad. In all, you will find Crooked Island and Acklins to be the ideal atoll fishing that is well preserved and shielded from mass tourism.

November to August

8 nights – 6 days fishing

2,890 € / per person sharing room and guide

Single boat sup. 1,200€

Included: domestic flight Nassau/ Crooked, accommodation 1 night in Nassau B&B, accommodation 7 nights in Crooked Island full board, organisation of 6 days fishing with 1 guide for 2 anglers, transfers in Crooked Island.

Not included: transportation to Nassau, transfers in Nassau, tips, single room sup. (€360), items of personal nature, travel insurance

If you would be interested in further details or an itinerary then please contact Peter McLeod alternatively call our office on +44(0) 1980 847389.

Deneki Lodges; Space Available in 2015

December 16th, 2014

Deneki lodges are comfortable but casual. You will find their service to be exemplary and courteous, but you won’t be pampered with luxury. The on focus is on providing you with the best fishing experience possible whether that be swinging for Pacific salmon or stalking tailing bonefish.

Here are two of their lodges that never fail to impress us and our clients:

Alaska West 2015 - Sunday to Sunday, 7 nights lodging / 6 days fishing for $5,995 per person.

The lodge is remote, situated on the bank of the Kanektok River. The river runs 110 miles from Kagati Lake to the Bering Sea in the Togiak National Wildlife Refuge. This is wilderness fishing at its best and the camp owes its abundance of Pacific salmon species to the fact that its location is on the extreme outskirts of civilization, read more HERE.

21 – 28 June: 17 rods
28 June – 5 July: 6 rods
5 – 12 July: 9 rods
12 – 19 July: 18 rods
19 – 26 July: 11 rods
26 July – 2 August: 12 rods
2 – 9 August: 7 rods
9 – 16 August: 4 rods
16 – 23 August: 1 rod
26 – 30 August: 12 rods

Andros South 2015 – Varying trip lengths available.

The lodge is located in the settlement of Kemp’s Bay on the eastern shore of South Andros Island in the western Bahamas. Andros sits in the middle of the Great Bahama Bank and is flanked to the east by “The Tongue of the Ocean”, a deep water trough that drops to more than five thousand feet not more than a mile offshore. Along the edge of the drop lies the third largest barrier reef in the world. Andros Island itself is riddled with innumerable tidal creeks and inland flats, all home to thousands of hungry bonefish, read more HERE.

10 – 17 January: 6 rods
24 January – 5 February: 5 rods
21 – 28 February: 3 rods
21 – 27 March: 4 rods
4 – 11 April: 7 rods
26 April – 2 May: 7 rods
2 – 23 May: 9 rods

If you would like more information on either lodge please contact us by email or call +44 (0)1980 847389

Cosmoledo atoll, Seychelles: a visual seasonal feast of GTs

December 16th, 2014

4 Weeks, 1012 GT’s, 11 over 1 meter, 4 over 1,10 meters and 2 over 1,20 meters. The largest measuring 1,26 meters.  The first part of our 2014/2015 Cosmoledo live aboard season has just come to an end and once again the GT figures have been astounding. Over the 4 week period 1012 GT’s were landed between the 40 lucky anglers who ventured out on the 4 trips. Not only was the amount of fish astounding but so were the sizes of these fly caught monsters.

Tight Lines Keith Rose -Innes and the Alphonse Fishing Co.

The GT honour roll

Bernd Elendt-Schneider 126cm
Rob Le Sueur and Bernd Elendt-Schneider 123cm
Vadim Titovets and Bernd Elendt-Schneider 118cm
Ian Hodge 119cm
Grigory Malshakov 115cm
Mills Shenk 113cm
Igor Perepletchikov 108cm
Justin McCarthy and Ty Pollock 106cm
Andrew Wadham and Vladimir Rybalchenko Jr 105cm
Dave Fast and Frikkie Botha 103cm
Ty Pollock 102cm
David Miller and David Reverdito 101cm
Vladimir Rybalchenko Jr 100cm

For more details on Alphonse, Cosmoledo and Astove or to hold space please contact Charlotte Chilcott or call us on 01980 847389.

Cosmoledo atoll, Seychelles: 2014 season roundup, 2015 dates

December 11th, 2014

The first part of our 2014/2015 Cosmoledo live aboard season has just come to an end and once again the GT figures have been astounding. Over the 4 week period 1012 GT’s were landed between the 40 lucky anglers who ventured out on the 4 trips. Not only was the amount of fish astounding but so were the sizes of these fly caught monsters. The tally of 1 meter plus GT’s reads as follows: 1 x 100cm; 2 x 101 cm; 2 x 103cm; 2 x 105 cm; 1 x 106 cm; 1 x 108 cm; 1 x 113 cm; 1 x 115 cm; 1 x 119 cm; 2 x 118 cm, 2 x 123 cm and 1 x 126cm.  The amount of other species like big Bonefish, Permit, Triggerfish and Milkfish were equally impressive and is synonymous with the remote untouched ecosystems like Cosmoledo and Astove.

Full season availability is below for Cosmoledo in 2015 and space will fill fast so please let us know if you are interested.

6 – 13 March
13 – 20 March
20 – 27 March
27 March – 3 April

- break -

6 - 13 November
13 - 20 November
20 - 27 November
27 November - 4 December
4 - 11 December

The costs remain unchanged on the 2014 season.

Fishing Package: US$10,075 per person (shared accommodation/3 anglers per skiff and guide)

IDC Flight: US$4,875 per person return Mahe/Assumption/Mahe

TOTAL: US$14,950 (includes non alcoholic drinks and conservation park fee of US$175)

For more details on Alphonse, Cosmoledo and Astove or to hold space please contact Charlotte Chilcott or call us on 01980 847389.

Alphonse Fishing News – 29 November – 6 December 14 – a 110 lbs GT & 3 sailfish in a day

December 11th, 2014

The incredible weather continued with light South-Easterly winds and flat calm seas.  The Milkfish have been here since October even though they have been considerably late in their offshore feeding due to the non-existent North-Westerly winds.  Not only did the Milkies start to turn up on the Western edge of St François but there were also some incredible achievements during the week that will not be forgotten by the anglers in years to come. Tim Aldiss caught the 3rd biggest GT ever reordered on Alphonse, measuring 132 cm and approximately 110 lbs.  To make things even more memorable the fish ate a fast-stripped  NYAP in an explosive manner. The offshore action was described as “off the charts” with 5 sailfish being landed in 3 outings. Russell Crafter landed 3 Sailfish in 1 day and Joern Heiner and Ursula Mazura landed 2 really big Sailfish after long fights. Joern went on to catch his first Wahoo on fly which was of significant size!

Another super week at Alphonse!  Tight lines from Keith, Devan and the Alphonse Team

For more details on Alphonse, Cosmoledo and Astove or to hold space please contact Charlotte Chilcott or call us on 01980 847389.

Alphonse Fishing News: 22–29 November 14, 2 permit and a GS

December 11th, 2014

Indo Pacific Permit are without doubt one of the most difficult flats species that can be caught on fly. This week started in an incredible fashion with 2 magnificent Permit caught on the first day of the week. Chantal Chone caught an impressive 67 cm fish while wading a spot called pancake flat. Tim Marks went one step further to achieve a “Grand Slam” by catching a Permit, GT and Bonefish all in one day.  Once again the calm winds with very flat seas persist through the week as the Milkfish threatened to feed on the Western edge of St François. Numerous fish were hooked and one fish in particular was fought for  1 1/2  hours before the hook pulled. Michael Clayton landed an aerobatic fish of 106 cm after a battle that lasted 2 hours.

Tight Lines from Keith, Devan and the Alphonse Team!

For more details on Alphonse, Cosmoledo and Astove or to hold space please contact Charlotte Chilcott or call us on 01980 847389.

Iceland - Reduced rate for August dates on Laxa I Kjos

December 9th, 2014

LAXÁ I KJOS has been described as “a salmon fisherman’s guilty pleasure”. This intimate river is more akin to trout fishing for salmon and is a hitchers’ dream. Small rock pockets, canyons and open meadows are perfect for single handed fishing with tiny flies. The river also has some huge sea trout adding to the excitement that start running at the end of July.

8-11 August has also just become available on the Laxa I Kjos at the reduced rate of £2,760 for the three days. you could add and extra day for four days 8 - 12 August at the rate of £3,660.

Get someone into salmon fishing? Free rod share
Have you ever wanted to take your other half or child and introduce them to salmon fishing? In 23-26 August on the Laxa I Kjos we have an incredible offer of £2,200 per rod. Combined with extremely comfortable accommodation, excellent guides and short travel time it makes it perfect to share your passion with a loved one.

If you would be interested in further details or an itinerary then please contact Peter McLeod or Alex Jardine alternatively call our office on +44(0) 1980 847389.

Indian Ocean Round Up From Our Returning Groups

December 9th, 2014

With our two groups returning from Alphonse and Cosmoledo last week the news from the Indian Ocean is of some tougher conditions but some excellent catches. Below is a sneak preview.

Charlottes’ hosted group on Alphonse had some bigger tides than expected which slowed the flats fishing for other species, but the offshore fishing was excellent. Russell Crafter caught a lovely 93 cm GT on the first day followed up by landing three sailfish in one day on the Tuesday. Tim Aldiss stole the show by landing the third largest GT ever caught on Alphonse at 132 cm, a fish of a life time, well done Tim! Charlotte’s full report will follow next week.

From Cosmoledo the group also had a fantastic weeks fishing and reported excellent numbers of GTs on the flats. Highlights for them were Frikkie’s 103 cm, Ian Hodge with a 119cm, Andrew Wadham with a 107cm and a lovely 59cm permit, and finally Ty with a 102 and 106cm. Full reports also to follow next week.

With the Cosmoledo season winding down the dates for the spring liveaboard season have just been released so if you would like the chance to experience this phonomenal fishery then please get in contact with us ASAP as space will go fast.

Availability:

6 – 13 March 15
13 – 20 March 15
20 – 27 March 15
27 March – 3 April 15

Fishing Package: US$ 10,075 pp (Single accommodation /  2 anglers per skiff and guide)
IDC Flight:  US$ 4,875 pp Return
TOTAL: USD 14,950
Includes non alcoholic drinks
Includes Park fee: USD 175

For more details on Alphonse, Cosmoledo and Astove or to hold space please contact Charlotte Chilcott or call us on 01980 847389.

Fishing at Pira Lodge, Argentina, for golden dorado

December 8th, 2014

Pira Lodge is a wonderful place to visit, be that from an angling or non-angling perspective. The lodge is fantastic and the service is great. Beyond that, step outside the front door of your room and you have the Ibera wetland immediately in front of you; it’s twice the size of the Everglades and is the second largest wetland in the world, covering some 20,000 square kilometres.

Wildlife is abound in this area and it’s certainly a place to visit for more than just the fishing. However, the fishing is fantastic, especially for those happy with golden dorado between 5-12 lbs.

A place certainly worth visiting and the following images from a recent trip help portray why:

For more details on Pira Lodge or to enquire on availability please contact Steffan Jones or call us on 01980 847389.

Slovenia, September 2014 Part II: The Soča Valley by Alex Jardine

December 4th, 2014

Dawn broke on a damp and misty morning over Lake Bled as I hurriedly packed up my final belongings, today I would be switching from the Sava Valley over to the famous Soča Valley. On a map, these valleys look extremely close, although there is one key obstacle in the way… The Julian Alps. Stretching high into the clouds, this obstacle presents a spectacular journey quite literally through the mountain. During World War I tunnels were created through the mountains as routes to run supplies to the Front line. Now these tunnels are used as transport railways, in particular a car train that runs from Bohinjska Bistrica to Most na Soči. The train takes approximately 30 minutes and takes you through beautiful alpine scenery, an experience not to be missed.

Once we were off the train we crossed the Idricja River and headed to the Bača River. Like all the rivers I had seen so far in Slovenia, I was in awe of the clarity and blue hue of the water. Now we were in the Soča valley two things were different; the mountains were bigger and more intimidating, and the rivers were home to the mysterious marble trout (Salmo marmoratus).

During our journey to the river the sun had burnt through the misty start and the weather was warming up nicely. Keen to make the most of the good conditions, I strung up a 9 foot #3 with a 12 foot leader and a small parachute dryfly. Bostjan, my fishing partner for the day had a similar set up but went with a CDC dry.

We found beautiful pools where the fish rose confidently to our small offerings, the difficulty however, was that the hooks and tippet on the size 18 & 20 dries were tested as rainbow trout of 2-3 lbs tore up and down. In the deeper, faster sections we resorted to nymphing methods with great success, landing both good rainbows and beautiful pewter coloured grayling. The marble trout remained elusive and mysterious, maybe a new day and new river was to be the key.

My base now was the sleepy and traditional town of Kobarid, situated on the middle reaches of the Soča and a perfect location to reach various fishing locations. I enjoyed a good meal and an early night, hoping that this would be key in my quest for the marbles.

The next day I was met after an early breakfast by Luka and we were soon on the road, sun blazing down on us again. Our destination today was the River Tolminka, near the delightful town on Tolmin. Our first stop was a secret spot for Luka, a place where he regaled stories of large marble trout trying to eat fish that were already hooked. Interest and enthusiasm well and truly peaking I rushed a rod together with a nymphing set-up and hit the water.

We started well, hooking and landing several good rainbows that we sight-fished from a nice gravel run. Similar to targeting bonefish, the key was to look for the ghostly pattern change on the riverbed and hope that your eyes were not deceiving you! This was all well and good but to find a marble we were going to have to move away from open water and target gnarly sheltered areas. At the head of the pool was a huge overhanging piece of bedrock, the feature was bound to hold fish but the trick would be getting them out. The only vantage point was to position yourself on top of the rock and remain low and allow the nymph to drift under the overhang.

Sure enough, within a couple of drifts a smallish rainbow showed itself and was quickly returned. As we put the fish back we both noticed a subtle olive shape deep in the water and still somewhat hidden from view. Luka indicated that he thought it was a marble so we switched to a heavier fly to get down. A few casts later and the fish showed a little interest, all it took was a slight movement of the rod tip and the take was induced. As soon as the fish felt tension it disappeared under the rock. With some careful uses of side-strain and heart-stopping patience we manoeuvred the fish from the snag-riddled overhang and into open water. Soon the prize slid over the net. Joy, relief and jubilation came over me. The fish may not have been the biggest but this was a marble trout, a beautiful and challenging adversary.

Now that we had landed both a marble trout and several rainbows it was time to target the grayling to complete a Tolminka Slam. We header up river to a beautiful open pool, shaded on the deeper edge by a row of trees, a perfect lie for our quarry. Soon enough, a couple of fish were rising in the shade, a quick change of leader and fly – now a size 16 CDC dun and we targeted the back fish first. First cast, it reared its head and snaffled the fly. The run took it straight downstream of us, not a grayling but a beautiful rainbow in excess of 3 lbs. The front fish was much harder to trick, maybe wary from the previous battle. With some changing of angles and persistence the second also reared its head and swallowed my offering. The fight, now, was much different. Not running but pulling deep. Could this be our grayling? Sure enough, as the shape moved into the bright light of the pool the long sail-like dorsal fin became visible. A wonderful golden olive grayling was soon resting in our net, a quick photo and our Grand Slam was complete, and before lunch!

The afternoon brought us some technical and hugely rewarding dry fly sport for more grayling and rainbows. By the end of the day the strong runs and deep diving fights had earned us a cold beer and hearty meal. The next day was to be my final day on the water, and my introduction to the mighty Soča.

As an avid trout angler I had wanted to visit the Soča for many years. Overnight the weather had changed dramatically, the clouds had rolled into the valleys and rain was hammering down on the mountain sides. The rain had added a slight milky colour on the water, still clear but tainted. The misty clouds hung in the valley adding a new dimension to the landscape.

Our location today was the middle reaches, the river here is braided. The river cuts its course through a huge riverbed, that is mainly dry, a flood plain for the snow run-off each year. This river suited me as an angler, it was challenging, infuriating yet ultimately rewarding.

In the wet and misty morning it did not take us long to find pockets on fish. They were not, by any means, easy and required numerous fly changes. We found success on tungsten-beaded size 16 pheasant tails. The fish liked the small subtle nymphs but it was important to get the flies down to the fish as they seemed to not want to move a long way for food.

To my delight we managed a marble trout and several rainbows from our first stop, my mind was once again drifting off about finding a grayling to complete a second slam in two days. We hopped back in the car and moved to our second location. Here, we stopped by a bridge and in true angler fashion we had to take a look over the edge… I couldn’t believe my eyes. Mid-water there was a shadowy outline. A fish that made the full timber log by its side look like a twig. With excitement we clambered down the bank, changed our leader to 15 lbs and our fly to a bunny-streamer. However, within one cast, like a ghost the shadowy outline disappeared into its hiding hole. We estimated the fish at 17 lbs, one for another day perhaps…

We continued on with our nymphing setups and caught another small marble and several rainbows. Bostjan also caught a grayling. He then put me on the run and soon enough my line twitched, indicating a take, but over excitement got the better of me and the sharp strike resulted in a flash of silver and my grayling opportunity had gone!

I may not have managed the Soča Slam but this river had truly captured my admiration. I had worked hard and been rewarded with marble trout and rainbows but the river was keen not to give away everything. I had been shown glimpses of why this river is revered in European fly fishing.

Slovenia is much more than just a fishing destination, it is a country steeped in history and beauty. On the morning of my flight Bostjan kindly drove me up the Soča valley, a beautifully carved series of mountains, gorges and side streams. The valley is filled with testaments to its history, from Mountain forts and WW1 burial sites. Our journey then went over the top of the Julian Alps, a climb high into the mountains and the clouds, this was a route built by the Russian prisoners of war. You descend down into the Sava valley on the other side, and soon I was returned to Ljubljana airport.

As with any trip, it went far too quickly. The fishing had been rewarding and fantastic, the river and weather had been kind to me and the country had ultimately captured my fishing heart. I will be back, there is unfinished business with some Soča grayling and a monster marble trout.

View Slovenia Part I HERE.

If you would like more information on the fishing in Slovenia please contact Alex Jardine by email or call our office on +44(0)1980 847389.