In recent years the southern tip and southwest side of Andros Island, Bahamas, has become one of the hottest bonefishing destinations in the world. South Andros is a relatively new spot on the angling map and is comprised of vast, unpressured flats, tidal creeks, mangroves and unique inland lakes. Few other locales offer such a diversity of bonefishing habitats, and visitors to south Andros can often experience all of them in the same day. Roaming these remote waters are schools of unsophisticated 2- to 4-pound bonefish numbering in the
thousands. Anglers will also find bigger, warier bonefish and the occasional double-digit giant in Deep Creek, Little Creek and along the west side.
I recently fished this bonefishing hot spot to see exactly what it has to offer and to investigate the area’s bonefish lodges. I visited Bair’s Lodge, Glatos, Andros South, Nathan’s Lodge, Sunrise Lodge and Mars Bay Bonefish Lodge.
Bair’s Lodge is the most centrally located of these operations. While there is good fishing just five minutes to the north in Deep Creek and five minutes to the south in Little Creek, the guides are willing to take long boat rides to the southernmost fishing areas. Consequently, I saw an enormous area of fishable water during my stay, including crossing through Little Creek to access the west side. This trip can take an hour or more depending on tides, but the protected creek offers a smooth ride and is home to some very large bonefish.
Bair’s has done an excellent job of hiring a team of guides whose skills are as
diverse as the south Andros fishery. I fished at different times with Leslie, William, “T,” Chip and Gary, each of whom has a different specialtyand takes a different approach to daily fishing. This guide rotation allowed me to experience each guide’s favorite spots and techniques.
In terms of accommodations, food and management I found Bair’s Lodge to be among the best lodges in the Bahamas. For more information on Bair’s Lodge please visit www.www.angleradventures.com/bairba.
Andros South, formerly the Bonefish Bay Club, has been taken over by Andrew Bennett who has had great success with his Alaskan fishing lodges. Andros South takes full advantage of the fishery’s variety. Andros South guides will fish the east coast and southern tip of south Andros as well as its west side. They are expert at navigating the maze of tidal creeks that runs through south Andros and can almost always find good, leeward fishing there.
They have also discovered a network of inland flats and saltwater lakes that can be loaded with fish under certain conditions. These areas cannot be accessed by boat and so are very rarely fished. A good deal of walking and bush whacking is required to reach them but, as an experienced bonefisherman, I enjoyed the novelty and ingenuity of these inland excursions. Andros South also offers exploratory blue water fly fishing for tuna, dorado, sharks and billfish aboard a 25-foot Power Cat with twin 150hp Yamaha four-stroke outboards.
The accommodations at Andros South are not as luxurious as they are at Bair’s, though they have recently been renovated and updated. They are now modern, clean and comfortable, and are all single occupancy.
Meals focus on freshness. Some of the dinners consisted of manager John Toker’s daily catches skillfully prepared by the lodge chef. The daily lodge operations run very smoothly and I found the staff to be friendly and attentive. For more information on Andros South please visit www.www.angleradventures.com/androssouth.
Being the southernmost lodge on Andros, Mars Bay Bonefish Lodge has the quickest access to the island’s southern tip and south east side. This equates to more time fishing. The pristine fisheries of Jack Fish Cay, Water Cay and Curley Cut Cay, which can be difficult to reach from other lodges, 20-30 minutes north of Mars Bay. Mars Bay guides rarely, if ever, venture north, preferring to take advantage of their proximity to the renowned flats of the south end of Andros.
Accommodations at Mars Bay bonefish lodge are clean and comfortable, but very basic. Bill Howard manages the lodge expertly and the chef offers very good Bahamian cuisine. The lodge does not offer many amenities, but it does offer some of the best bonefishing in the Bahamas.
I would recommend Mars Bay for the serious angler wishing to concentrate on large numbers of smaller, unpressured bonefish. For more information on Mars Bay please visit www.www.angleradventures.com/marsbay.
I would be happy to discuss these lodges or to answer any questions. Please call or email me for details or to reserve space in south Andros for this season.
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