FISH TALES ~ February 27, 2023
This year started out to be very exciting for the guides who have been training for the past 3 years. These guides have studied and practiced with our senior guides and finally arrived at the point where they were going to be tested for readiness. These young men were tried, tested and polished by M Caranci, who is a qualified FFI Certified Master Instructor. These guides finally had the opportunity to use all the skills they have learned and practiced over the past several years and were able to gain more knowledge and performance skills from Michael. Congratulations to these guides for all the hard work and dedication and time they have put into achieving their goal to become Flats Fishing guides at Belize River Lodge.
While the young guides were busy completing their training, we had a single angler, Dan L. fishing from the Lodge, who was very excited to finally be back to fish with John. He last visited us in 2021. This year, on the first day he caught eight Bonefish and one ‘Cuda; the following day was a bit slow, he caught three Bones two around 16” and one about 18”. For Belize these are considered bigger Bonefish as normally they run 2” to 3” smaller. He also caught two very nice Snook and two Jacks, both species gives a good fight on a flyrod. Then on Thursday he hooked and landed a 24” Snook, a couple of Bones and a Cuda. On Friday they went up the Belize River to Black Creek where Dan hooked four Tarpon and landed one; he saw a variety of crocodiles, Howler monkeys and many tropical birds. Due to a cold front which brought on water temperature changes, on this Trip Dan commented that even though he caught and landed less fish he was very pleased that the fish he landed were much bigger than those on his previous trip.
In early February, Darrell S. a long time BRL angler, visited Belize River Lodge once more where he spent a week full of active days, catching a variety of species, too many to list! He had an awesome time fly fishing for Tarpon and Snook, his overall total for his week was: landed 25 Snook, hooked several Tarpon and landed 4, caught 17 big Snappers and caught several species of Jacks, several barracudas, and an overall feeling of great satisfaction for so many good opportunities.
Henk and Joey, who were visiting several places in Belize, booked to fish with us for 2 days. This was Joey’s first salt water fishing trip and he was excited. Mike T gave him lessons and Joey said he learnt a few new techniques. Between Joey and Henk they caught 10 Bones, jumped and landed a 30 pound Tarpon and landed a Snook. They also saw several Jacks and casted to Permit, a good opportunity. Highlight of the trip for Joey was landing a Back Country Slam – Bonefish, Snook and Tarpon in one day. All in all, Henk and Joey said they had two great days.
A party of six went out to BRL’s Long Caye Outpost, this group included three professional fishing guides. Shelby hooked a lot of fish, and for fun they called her “the hooker”. Dan fulfilled his goal when he caught his first Tarpon; and to top it off it was a 70 pound Tarpon. Mags, one of the wives, said “there was such a large variety of fish, Tarpon, Snook, Bones, Jacks and Snapper.” They caught an unusually large Bonefish and took pictures to prove it. Before leaving the Lodge they all agreed that this was one of the best trips ever, more than they expected.
Matt and Naomi fished a half day up river and landed a 70 pound Tarpon. The following day they fished out to our Long Caye Outpost, for a few more days. Unfortunately, due to the changes in the weather, high winds, the fishing was slow. In spite of the weather they had a great time and they enjoyed the wonderful service of the Outpost staff. They loved the location and didn’t want to come in.
After having fished at BRL for many, many years Nick C. returned this February to fish by himself this time. Nick went out fishing each day and because he was fishing alone he was able to relax and enjoy the surroundings at his leisure while still enjoying the Snook and Tarpon fishery around the Lodge both flats and rivers. Each evening as we sat to enjoy appetizers, we shared so many fond memories of his many trips which included a great group of friends and anglers. Looking forward to many more walks down memory lane.
Fishing is fishing and reasonable to good weather leads to good fishing and tough weather, whether high winds, cold fronts, drastic water temperature changes all give opportunity for tough fishing. Our BRL crew always does our best to provide good food, good and friendly service and good guides and we always hope and pray, keeping our fingers crossed for “reasonable” weather conditions. Sometimes Mother Nature is nice, others times, not so much.
The flies used were some of our BRL favorites from our list of recommended flies. There were no spectacular crazy or new flies to mention.
There are still a few spaces available at BRL and Long Caye Outpost now through June if you are looking to fish for migratory large tarpon along with Bonefish, Permit, Snook and more. As a reminder, our “2 for 1” summer special begins on July 1st, something to think about when planning a summer/fall trip for our year round resident Tarpon, Bonefish, Permit and Snook.
Mike & Marguerite