See dem bones?

It was December, Grand Bahama, East end of the island.  We were floating in maybe 2 feet of crystal clear water, turtle grass gently swaying in the current below us as we  rode silently on the tide.  This was my first time in a flats boat on my first Bahamas trip.  My dad was in the boat, the guide was on the poling platform and I was up.  My rod was poised, the fly was between my fingers, I had line out and ready and my eyes were scanning the water in front of us behind my polarized lenses.  I was ready to make this happen.

The guide suddenly speaks, “Bones, sixty feet, do you see dem?” he asks, pointing in the general direction.

“No” I say… I see nothing… just the uneven patchwork of the bottom… I see nothing.

“Right der,” says the guide, “moving left to right, twenty fish.”

“I don’t see them” I say… again… nothing. I’m starting to feel equal parts nervous and stupid.

Then… the guide says it… maybe the best line to a rookie bonefish angler in the history of bonefishing.

Ray Charles could see that school mon!”

Suddenly, I see the fish… all of them.  How  did I not see them before?

The cast is made, the bone is on the fly, the fight is on and the fish is landed.

In this picture, Ray was tracking a school of bones just off camera.

That Ray Charles line still cracks me up.  The main issue for me continues to be just seeing the fish.  I can make the cast, I have confidence in the tackle, but if you don’t have a target, you are just standing there with a stick in your hand.

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