I have said, and maybe even believed, I would not go back to chase bonefish in Hawaii. This video has me rethinking that.
I know it is tough. I’ve known very good anglers who have gone smelled of skunk, but I also know others who have smacked the fish of a lifetime.
My own Hawaiian experience is maybe colored by life experiences which have have nothing at all to do with bonefishing. I saw my first bonefish, to this day maybe the biggest bone I’ve ever seen, on a flat, on THE flat on Kauai. I had been looking for them all week and suddenly they were in front of me. My heart was in my throat. My hands were shaking as if I’d had a quadruple shot espresso. I sucked. I knew almost nothing about bonefishing, but I was casting at them (and being ignored by them). And then… then I heard the (increasingly in my memory) shrill cry from the shore from my ex-wife telling me it was time to come in and watch the baby.
Defeat… in many senses of the word.
Kauai was where we had honeymooned and it was where my parents were celebrating their 40th anniversary, bringing the whole family along.
Post separation I went back to Kauai to seek out the fish I had been called away from. I camped, cheaply and legally, a cast from the beach. I went out every day, all day, for three days. I got 4 casts. All brief. All failures. In the rain and just after the rain and just before it rained again.
I called it quits on Hawaii. I figured I had filled up the Island state with enough failures and I vowed not to return.
But, see… I never went to Oahu. I never fished where the fish are more consistently targeted. And videos like this one from Mike Hennessy of Hawaii On The Fly… well… maybe we could head to Hawaii. Maybe I should go out there, on those more well traveled flats to try my luck against one of the monsters.
I’d either fail or succeed and by now I’ve gotten more acquainted with failure and know it isn’t so much a life-long tag. I think I’ll put it back on the list.