Fly Fishing for Bonefish in Roatan

Kelley and Bonefish

At Mango Creek Lodge, your primary target will be bonefish. Roatan’s bonefish are plentiful and can be easily found throughout the year. While wading the turtle grass and coral flats of Roatan’s East End, your guide will spot bonefish tailing, cruising in schools, and mudding on the flats. Roatan’s bonefish average 3-5 lbs. Although rare, we have also seen bonefish as large as 8-10 lbs. Roatan’s bonefish are generally larger than those found in other parts of the Caribbean; however, they can also be more difficult to land.

Zach from Montana with Bone

Make sure you gear up with the appropriate  rodsreelsline,leaders, and flies.

Rods

For fly fishing, the best all-around rod is a 9-ft 8 wt. In lighter winds, 6- and 7-wt rods make it easier to avoid spooking fish, and a 9-wt might be helpful for casting on windy days.

Reels

Reels that match the weight of rod are sufficient, and 100-200 yards of 20-lb backing should suffice when the big bones make their first run. The most important thing is that your reel have a quality drag system.

Fly Line

The best line here is the weight-forward, floating line. A spare reel with intermediate sinking line can come in handy for deeper bonefish. The lines should have a braided monofilament core– perfect for fishing in the tropics. This prevents the line from knotting up by keeping it stiffer in warm, tropical conditions.

Leaders

An 8–12-ft tapered leader of 10-lb test will work for most situations at Mango Creek Lodge. You should also bring along a spool of 10 or 12-lb tippet.

Flies

The best bonefish flies for Roatan are unweighted and have weed guards to prevent them from snagging on the coral and turtle grass flats. However, a few weighted flies may come in handy for deeper water or mudding fish.

Note weed guard

Consider bringing:

  • Bonefish Bitters (orange/olive, amber, chartreuse) #6-10
  • Shrimp patterns #6-8
  • Horrors (orange, olive, tan with brown wings) #6-8
  • Gotchas  (gold & pearl) # 4-8
  • Clouser Minnows (tan, olive) #4-8
  • Puffs (pink, white, or tan) #4-8
  • Slamaroos #6-10
  • Crazy Charlies (tan, pink, white & brown) #8-10.

Enrico Puglisi is an excellent source for flies

email enrico@epflies.com

 

 

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