Aug 16

Maui fly fishing and the continued lack of an HI bonefish

I went out with Captain Jon Jon today in his two person kayak to hit some spots in Maui on my family vacation.

One of Capt. Jon Jon's two man kayaks

One of Capt. Jon Jon’s two man kayaks

Sadly, there was no bonefish hooked.

Still, it was a good time. I learned a lot and I can see the potential.

We started off with spinning rods, trolling flies, as we made our way out to where he wanted me to focus. We picked up a couple jacks/trevally (little ones) this way, which was fun.

When we got started actually fly fishing, it was blind casting in spots Jon Jon knew held fish… educated blind casting, if you will. Some of this was in water that was a bit deep as I had a few swells come up to my armpits (my double haul starts falling apart in water that deep). The bones just weren’t with the program though. Captain Jon Jon said he saw several, but my eyes have never been good at spotting deep bones and I didn’t see them.

We finished the day on a spot where I had excellent vision into water that was maybe 3 feet. If a bone had crossed within 60 feet of me there, I would have seen it. Alas, it was not to be.

As we made our way back in I was trolling a fly with my fly rod and managed a nice bar jack, which may be my first such fish.

My Maui Bar Jack

My Maui Bar Jack

The whole thing started at 6 AM and was over at noon, giving me time to get back to the family without my wife being left on her own too much. It was a good excursion and Captain Jon Jon was knowledgeable and personable.

If we come back to Maui, I’ll be looking him up again.

Jul 16

My next bonefishing trip… Maui?

First off, let me tell you I always heard there weren’t bonefish in Maui. There aren’t the big flats where anglers can target them and so, while they might technically be, ya know, in the area, they weren’t really something you could target.

Well, guess what? I’m (most likely) going bonefishing in Maui come September.

I’ve made most of the travel plans since I married my wife 4 years ago and there has been one pretty decent constant… fishing. We honeymooned in Belize, visited Florida and the Bahamas twice. So, she said she wanted to go to Hawaii and, with a track record of things going pretty much my way to date, I said “sure.”

My history with Hawaiian bonefish is not glamorous. I’ve pretty much had my ass kicked by the O’io (Hawaiian for bonefish). The first bone I ever saw was on Kauai and it was massive, well over 10 pounds. I didn’t catch it. I haven’t caught any of the bonefish I’ve seen in Hawaii (a number I’d put at about 20). I’ve caught bonefish in the Bahamas and Belize and Cuba and I even managed the world’s smallest Florida Bonefish, but Hawaii has been another story.

Thinking there weren’t even bonefish there and with the poor history, I was surprised to find a guide in Maui, who, it sure looks like, catches bones in Maui (Captain Jon Jon).

So, I’m booking him for a trip when we are there for Labor Day. I have no idea what to expect, but I’m game.

I think they deal with a lot of novice bonefish anglers. Captain Jon Jon’s wife handles his bookings and she told me that, if I’d like, Captain Jon Jon can do the casting. Not being a really prime bonefish location, I’d imagine he gets a lot of people who haven’t done it before, can’t cast in the wind and have no idea what a double haul is and so, in that situation, you might do the casting. These guys are probably not the same guys who go to Andros or Los Roques. These are the bait guys from Tennessee who have never picked up a fly rod before and instead of starting at the beginning, are jumping right to the top.

I let her know I’d do my own casting and that I’ve cast in the wind before and that I’d do a half-way decent job of it.

Looking forward to seeing exactly what this game is about in a place I didn’t even think it was possible.

I’ll try to get an interview with him and put it up as well.