Gilly Bate, southern chalk stream guide and Fly Odyssey UK Director…
The spring season on Anaa has just finished. Here is a great report from a US client who fished in late March, 2018…….
I had a great time on Anaa. Landed 10 nice bonefish, lost about that many more, and had shots at others. The bluefin trevally were picky, but did land a few along with a blacktip and a triggerfish, and capped of the trip with a GT on the flat.
I had an issue with hooks: most of my bonefish flies were tied on Dai-riki hooks … the points were bending before the hook penetrated. So I would emphasize to folks who are going to tie their own to be on a priemer hook. Alex came to the rescue with a couple of Mustads that I was able to whip up a few choice patterns.
Fly selection: I tied a bunch of patterns … I only fished 2, and I caught all 10 on a #6 or 8 sparsely tied tan crazy charlie w/ dumbell eyes. So I would potentially put more emphasis on a smaller heavy tan selection. We did have a low swell all week so were not in thin water, so others might have a different experience. For Bluefin we switched up the patterns more but we stayed with the larger versions: 3 to 4 inch surf candy style were a choice for Rafael and Alex, dark colors, but the last bluefin and the GT went for a chartreuse clouser (3.5″).
Rafael is amazing! He sees fish so far away that there is plenty of time to prepare … or should be enough if I was doing my part. He is always calm and never judgmental, even with a series of blunders on my part resulting in lost fish for the first morning. I am not a big talker, so we were a good match. For others that might be a point to continue to work on, for my part I enjoy the quiet until “fish comming”.
Alex was a great help and a pleasure to be on the water with. I have no doubt that Rafael and I could have (and did) fish together without Alex. As a novice to saltwater fly fishing the Alex was able to answer questions and provide information that would not have been possible otherwise.
The pension with Joel and the staff were great, they had enough english language among them to make my stay comfortable. Again Alex as an interpreter was great to understand more of the conversation.
It was an outstanding trip over all and very smooth logistically. I would definitely recommend it to friends wanting to fish for big bones and bluefin. A more experienced angler (and better caster) would have been more successful. I would probably not recommend bringing nonfishers unless they are very happy to sit in the boat and roast or walk quietly along behind. That is something that could be developed with some snorkeling or day trip excursions for non fishing companions … perhaps that already exists and I didn’t see it as I was focused on fishing. I would have been interested in a day or afternoon of snorkling myself since I do not have tropical ocean out my front door at home.
I’ve attached a few pictures, if you like any (and I have a bunch more similar) non compressed let me know and I will send off an uncompressed version.
Thanks to you and Katie for working through the booking process, and for working with ghe folks on Anaa to create a sustainable fly fishing opportunity.