Apr 18

Bahamas vs. Belize

Watching Buccaneers and Bones just now and they are having a Bahamas vs. Belize comparison.

I’ll be heading to Belize for the 4th time on Sunday. That’s going to be great.

Later this summer I’ll be heading to the Bahamas for trip #8.

They are just different places. It isn’t really fair to compare the two, but, let’s do that anyway.

Bonefish – The Bahamas wins this one. There may very well be 5 pound bones in Belize, but there are many, many more 1 pound bones. There are Bahamian islands with small average sized bones, but the Bahamas also features monsters, ten-plusers. The Bahamas is just such a pure bonefish fishery, it isn’t really a comparison. So many flats, so many islands and the bones are just THE species to chase.

fat backed bonefish

Tarpon – There ARE tarpon in the Bahamas, but you don’t head to the Bahamas to go tarpon fishing. Belize is going to win on that front. That’s where I caught my first tarpon and where I lost my first larger tarpon. Tarpon are what make Savannah Caye a well known spot and there are other known tarpon spots in Belize as well.

The final piece, the tarpon.

Permit – Ya know… I don’t know. I’ve heard some great stories of permit fishing in the Bahamas, but if you want to catch your first permit, you are more likely to go and have success in Belize, so, I’m going to say Belize. Belize is where I caught my first (only) permit, although I certainly have seen some in the Bahamas as well (big ones too).

Grand Slam – If you are looking for all three, you are going to head to Belize. I’m proof you can make that shite happen.

Beer – The beer of Belize, Belikin, isn’t even 12 ounces. Kalik and Sands take this one.


Guides – Toss up. I’ve had some amazing guides in Belize. I’ve had some amazing guides in the Bahamas. Generally, the Bahamas is known for bonefishing guides and Belize is known for permit guides.

Freddy, doing his thing at Abaco Lodge

DIY – There is just more area in the Bahamas. You can DIY in Belize, sure, but you just can’t beat the square miles in the Bahamas.

Snook – Belize… not many snook in the Bahamas. Sure, there are some, like this one from East End Lodge, but you are much, much more likely to get into a nice snook in Belize.

My Belize Snook

I love Belize. I love the Bahamas. This year is a very, very good year, as I’m going to visit both. The very best situation is when it isn’t either/or, but both.

May 12

Bonefish Shirt Week – Black Fly Outfitters

OK… bonefish AND Kalik?  Yeah… a winner from Black Fly Outfitter and Vaughn Cochran.

You can find this shirt here.

Well done Vaughn... I own this one, FYI.

Jun 11

Need a new t-shirt

Check this one out from Black Fly Outfitter

I like it.

Oh Kalik, I could never be mad at you.

Sep 10

Bahamian Kalik Beer

Wishing I was having one of these right now… as it would mean I was just in from a bonefish flat somewhere in the Bahamas.

As with any other national treasure, the owner country is selfishly possessive. To have a Kalik , you have to go to the Bahamas.

via Bahamian Kalik Beer.

Jan 10

Grand Bahama – Day 4 – The Wind

I could hear the wind last night… it was blowing hard.  Weather.com said the wind today in Freeport was going to be around 17 mph.  The wind on the East End had to be harder.

When I got to the first flat there were waves… waves are not good for sight fishing for bonefish.  The water was churned up and visibility could be measured in inches, not feet.

Second stop and it was just as bad.

Here’s the flat yesterday…

Same flat today…

Oh… that’s not good.

This was going to be a tough, tough day.  Forget that the wind  had to be blowing 25 mph… there was no seeing the fish.

So, what do you do when you are on a fishing trip and the weather doesn’t cooperate?  You go fishing.

I drove as far east as I could and found a beached barge I remembered from my first trip.  Put on a clouser and went in search of something that would eat.

skunk breaker, but no bonefish (a nassau grouper, me thinks)

skunk breaker, but no bonefish (a nassau grouper, me thinks)

Also found a cuda.

Little Cuda

Little Cuda

This guy didn’t like the windy conditions either.

I found a flat that was sheltered and the water was clear… but the fish weren’t there.



I tried a road I had been told about heading to the North side of the island, that would have been sheltered from the wave action that had dirtied the water on the South side… but it was too much for my mico-compact.

Basically, it was not going to be a good bonefishing day.  So, I went to Geneva’s and had some cracked conch and Kalik.

Tomorrow I fly out, but not until 2:00, so I have some time to try for bones in the AM.  If the wind isn’t as bad (and it isn’t supposed to be as bad tomorrow) I might have a shot.  The temps are supposed to be cooler, but, you go fishing when you can, not only when everything is perfect.

Oct 09

Bonefishing – Brotrip?

I was surprised to see the title “Brotrip in the Islands” of the Bahamas pop up from the Bahamas Media Center yesterday.  Not sure if they meant Brocation, but they do seem to be trying really hard to get to a younger American demographic, God bless ’em.

Basically, this is a trip for you and your “bros” to head to the Bahamas and go bonefishing.  This is the “Acklins and Crooked Island Bonefishing Adventure” and INCLUDES a case of Kalik per room (not per person!!!!! Booooooo!).

Kalik, the beer of the Bahamas

Of course, there is more…

  • Three full days of bonefishing
  • Four nights in a air-conditioned, double occupancy room
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily
  • Complimentary use of kayaks, bicycles and other non-motorized water sports equipment
  • Airport transfers

All this for $500 a day.  It’s not a horrible rate, although I wouldn’t call  it deal of the century either.  All the details can be found here.

This is only good through the end of December, which makes it a bit of a rush job.  I guess the Bro’s in question don’t have wive or children to negotiate with.  Flyfishing is dominated by males, although there are certainly many women in the sport.  It is equally true that flyfishing is not, primarily, a young man’s pursuit.  Just walk through a Fly Fishing Show, or ISE and you’ll soon get a feel for the greying of our sport.  Visit a fly club and you’ll be convinced no one under 40 owns a fly rod.

I hope they succeed and that hundreds of guys descend on the Bahamas to drink their case of Kalik and catch some bonefish.  I’m in that group that think the survival of anything rests in the number of people who care about that thing.

Sep 09

Beer Blog and Belize

It is just a simple truth that many of life’s best things start with “B.”  Bonefish, of course… bacon, butter, blues, BBQ’s and Beer.

It is also true that some beers can bring a sense of place with them.  For me, Moose Drool Brown Ale will transport me back to Montana and Kalik will make me think of the Bahamas.

Belinkin of Belize

I found Captain Keith’s Beer Blog where he draws the connection between a bonefishing trip he took and Belikin Beer, the beer of place of Belize (which also starts with B, reaffirming my initial comment that good things start with B).

I was surprised, upon really looking into it, that there is no Bonefish brand of beer.  There are a host of great trout themed beers out there.  So, I call on bonefishing brewers to get busy and bring us a Bonefish brand beer.