Bahamas: Bonefishing Paradise & Family Trip we'll never forget
Picture this you're a family man or woman who's trying to find the perfect spring break. You have a couple different criteria to keep EVERYBODY happy. Yourself, you're an adventurer, you want to be outside chasing bonefish on the flats somewhere warm BUT you have a family that is equally if not more important than your interests. Now your family, they need activities, somewhere decent to sleep at night, FOOD, got to have great food, safety, and decent amenities. Now I'll promise you this, as you research for this place, the options become very limited. Now if you are willing to stay anywhere that has a beach and bonefish, easy to find. Now if you have a spouse that's a bit pickier, and for good reason, would like to stay at a respectable resort with activities for the family, it becomes much harder to find. Now after exhaustive hours of research trying to fill that criteria I landed on what I thought was the perfect blend. Kamalame Cay in Andros Island, Bahamas. The bonefishing should be good, amenities looked incredible, and plenty to do on this 100 acre island from adventuring out on paddle boards, to chillin' at the beach. I think we did everything in between, which is a big reason the trip was so memorable.
First off, let's talk about the fishing. I was there with a good friend of mine and fishing buddy, Tyler. A quick background on our fishing experience. We both picked up fly rods shortly after graduating college and were instantly hooked. Now we are both the type of people when doing something, want to give it our full effort and attention. Needless to say after a few years of fly fishing we had logged hundreds of days on the water, chasing mostly trout, steelhead, and any warm water species we could when time provided. I've done probably 10 days of saltwater fishing, and this was Tyler's first trip. He's a strong caster so that wouldn't be a problem, we just had to find the fish and put a decent presentation on the fly.
So here we are, DAY 1. We arrive at the island via seaplane (an experience on it's own, as it was something new to all of us). Tyler and I both have the itch, it's hard when you see new water not to immediately go rushing out and explore. But I think we did a fair job waiting to get settled into the room and making sure everything was good on the home front. Then we were off! Had a tip that the north end of the island on the "cay" side held bonefish. Not knowing what the ideal tide was we went searching for tails. We bee bop around the flats and cross a channel that would have most puckered up. But on the other side was what we came for, a mile or more of pristine looking bonefish flats. So i'm trying to explain what a bonefish may look like on the flats, and BOOM, there's a tail. Before you know it Tyler and I had split apart and were chasing separate groups of bonefish. I hear Tyler yell, "They're coming at me!" I'm watching him cast and as we all get excited, his tempo gets a bit quick, and the flies whipping around. I yell to him, "let the fly get behind you". He adjusts, lays the fly out, and BAM, hooked up! First flat, first fish, on his homemade fly, and handled it like an absolute champ. Lucky? Maybe, but that's not the point. The point is he got it done, and we got it done DIY on our first flat.
I'm attaching the video we made on the trip below. I hope you can take the time to watch it! The article will continue below the video.
After catching that first fish we were elated. High fives, and celebration weren't in any shortage. We got it done exploring our first flat. Personally on a side note, I don't know that it gets more rewarding to get it done DIY. Now don't get me wrong, having a guide and help is great thing to shorten the learning curve, but the personal reward of doing the research, putting in the work, and then actually having the plan come together is a feeling like no other. It's a memory that will last a long time, etched in my brain.
We spent the rest of the trip fishing, one day with a guide (you'll see in video), and went out on a half day charter reef fishing. The reef fishing was really a blast, and I'd recommend it to anyone that enjoys fishing. Saltwater fish are strong compared to freshwater, and we had the experience of getting our fish grilled up from the local kitchen. I'll give the kitchen some serious credit for the meals they provided. Lots of fresh fish, and all really well done. The service was really fun too, the island life was on full display. If you make it to Kamalame Cay, ask about the "Samson Special". We also tried to fish every day we could locally around the tide schedule DIY. It was fun and we worked hard, caught some fish, but the memory that sticks out in my head, was that first day, on the first flat.
Anyway, I hope you get to take the time to watch the video. It recaps the trip pretty well, at least the fishing side of it. Stay posted for part II of this article. I'll talk more about the resort and family activities we took advantage of.