Feb 16

Freddy, Mike and Me

The weather on our first day at Abaco Lodge wasn’t ideal with a dash too much wind and a bit overkill on the cloud cover. It would also be the best weather we saw all week. Breakfast was good and filling, the coffee was hot, the rods were all strung up, initial bonefish flies had been selected and our fishing partners for the day were set.

This day I would share a boat with Mike Sepelak, who can also pen a pretty fine description of a day on the water. It was a lucky stroke Mike was going to be there when I was, as we’ve written plenty of facebook messages back and forth, but had never met in person.

As I got down to the dock I met our guide for the day, Freddy. I thought he looked familiar and when he broke out with a bit of song I knew I had met Freddy before back at FIBFEST II down at Andros South.

This was that Freddy.

Freddy, doing his thing at Abaco Lodge

Freddy, doing his thing at Abaco Lodge

Freddy had been my favorite guide down in Andros South because he was the most relaxed and fastest to laugh. He sang, often, from the poling platform and nothing seemed capable of beating back his enthusiasm or his sense of humor. He’s just good people. He’s the same Freddy now that he was then. Abaco Lodge has picked up a bit of an all-star.

Mike and Freddy and I got to work in the Marls and while Freddy hasn’t been over here from Andros for too long, he demonstrated that a life’s work spent finding bonefish in Andros translates very well to finding fish in Abaco. He put us on fish, pretty consistently, most of the day.

This was a good day for me, fishing wise. Every cast Freddy called for I served up. I saw most of the fish either before Freddy said anything or just as he did. I was seeing the fish, making the casts and wasn’t screwing things up. It felt like I knew what I was doing. I was on my A Game and it felt really good. I had a couple of fish taken on relatively long casts, maybe 60-65 feet and even dropped one fly about 6 inches in front of a bonefish that ate it immediately.

Mike with a bonefish hooked and playing.

Mike with a bonefish hooked and playing in a rare moment of fantastic visibility.

I love it when things work out.

Mike was into fish, but was getting in his own way a bit, finding new and inventive ways of screwing things up (probably because he didn’t want to use my flies), which we dealt with using humor. Mike is a fine angler and it wasn’t a skill issue, just an off day. I’d have my own version of that kind of day on my next angling day. It happens to us all.

Good times were had. It was a day I’d repeat a hundred times and enjoy every one.

Mar 15


Gink and Gasoline ran a story recently that featured Andros South guide Freddy (or Freddie, not sure which is right).

This made me happy because it made me think of my own trip to Andros South and my day with Freddy on the water.

This guy is fun to fish with.

This guy is fun to fish with.

Freddy was the biggest man with the smallest boat and was by far the most enjoyable guide I had that whole week. Freddy was just plain fun. He sang from the poling platform and joked and laughed and did all this while managing to put us on fish.

We ran into a bit of engine trouble that day while out on the West Side. That’s a long trip back with an engine that can’t get up on a plain, but Freddy was calm and smooth about even this. He suggested it was a good opportunity to troll for cudas, which we did and I picked up my first decent sized cuda.

The day was awesome and it does reinforce the idea that attitude matters… your attitude and that of your guide.

Thanks Freddy.

Nov 13

Gink and Gasoline Goodness

This is just good stuff from Gink and Gasoline.

“You picked a fine time to leave me Lucille,” Freddy bursts into song as Kent hooks up and is instantly deep into his backing. “Four hungry children and a wife in the fields,” this is hysterical in a Bahamian accent. Kent now has to stifle a fit of laughter while having his ass handed to him. As the fish turns sharply back towards the mangroves Freddy starts in on a chorus of “Baby Please Don’t Go.” It’s not yet 10 a.m. And this is already one of my most memorable days of fishing.

I have to say, Freddy was my favorite. The guy found the fish alright, but he was just fun and funny and easy going all day long when I fished with him back in 2011. Many Bahamian guides tend toward stoic. Freddy is charismatic. Love reading a story that involved Freddy in one of my favorite places, Andros South.

This guy is fun to fish with.

This guy is fun to fish with.