“The Tale of WR: A Young Angler’s Triumph at Belize River Lodge”

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“The Tale of WR: A Young Angler’s Triumph at Belize River Lodge”

In the world of fly fishing, legends are made on the water, and sometimes, they come in the form of a 12-year-old angler named WR, short for William Robert. WR’s journey at Belize River Lodge began with anticipation and excitement, but little did he know, he was about to make waves that would ripple through the angling community.

March 16th, 2024, marked a momentous day for WR as he embarked on his second day of fishing. With flies meticulously tied the night before, WR set out with determination coursing through his veins. An early riser, WR had his rods and flies set from 5:30 am. The day as the river whispered secrets of Tarpon, Snook, and Bonefish, WR was ready to heed their call.

When the sun danced on the water, WR’s rod bowed with the weight of his first catch – a Tarpon, weighing in at 42 lbs! But WR was just getting started. With each cast, he seemed to summon the spirits of the river, landing not one, not two, but a whopping 10 Tarpon, along with 7 Snook and a Bonefish. His flies, crafted with care, proved irresistible to the majestic creatures beneath the surface.

Upon his return to the lodge, WR was met with awe and admiration from his fellow anglers and guides alike. When asked about his flies, even the seasoned guides couldn’t help but marvel at WR’s handiwork. After all, if the guides are asking for your flies, you know you’re onto something special.

But WR’s story doesn’t end there. Fueled by his success, he returned to his tying station and whipped up three more equivalent flies – the very flies that had enticed the Tarpon and Snook to dance on his line.


“We started out the day trying to get a bonefish. It was cloudy to start the day but we managed to see one tail about 40 feet out. I took a cast at him not knowing if he was following my fly or not, and about 5 seconds after, I came tight on an 2 pound bonefish. We tried a little more for some bones but  no luck. So our guide Pedro said: “let’s go try and get a snook and tarpon to get your slam.” I couldn’t say no, so we went into a small canal which was some peoples backyard. I was blind casting for about 10 minutes and then a local said that he had seen some rolling tarpon near a group of mangroves. Sure enough, I took a cast right by the mangroves and stripped my fly once and all I saw was a silver flash boil on my fly and I had a tarpon on. We landed it and my heart started to race as the day got later and all I was thinking was one snook that’s all I need. After a few more juvenile tarpon, I finally hooked something that was not a tarpon. My heart started to race knowing this was a nice snook. He came up to the surface of the water and BOOM! I had done it. I got my first grand slam on fly. I went back to the lodge later that day and was excited to say what had happened that day that will always stay with me.”

In the days that followed, WR’s triumphs continued, each catch adding to the legend of this young angler. And when his time at Belize River Lodge came to an end, WR was bestowed with the ultimate honor – the official Grand Slam certificate, certified by our lodge.

WR’s story serves as a reminder that age is but a number on the water. With passion, skill, and a touch of magic, even the youngest anglers can achieve greatness. So here’s to WR, a true angling prodigy, and to the countless adventures that await on the rivers of Belize.

Tight lines and happy fishing!



Author: Mia Paige Miles at Belize River Lodge

Co-Author: William Robert Sutherland