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Rod Hamilton

September 14, 2017

The best Bonefishing in Acklins, Bahamas

Region: Bahamas

General Info: If you want to get away from it all, Acklins Island in the Bahamas is the place to go. It’s not that easy to get to and once there you will find that services and supplies are limited. There is a gas station, small food store, post office and some small local restaurants. There is really nothing to do but FISH!!!.Acklins Island lies some 250 miles south east of Nassau and is around 95 miles long and 4 miles wide. There are approximately 500 occupants today living mostly on commercial fishing, bonefishing and the harvest of Cascarilla bark which is used as an ingredient to flavor Campari liquor.The bight of Acklins is the most well known feature on the east side of the island and stretches some thirty miles out to sea before it drops off into the Diana Bank which is now one of the most notable marlin fisheries. The Bight forms an area of shallow water which is often no more than 18” deep when 5 miles off shore. It creates a fantastic bone fishery with 100’s of square miles of flats and mangrove lined lagoons. Because of the limited services your best bet is to stay at one of the B & B’s or lodges.

Fishing Areas: Acklins Island is becoming one of the premier destinations for world-class bonefishing. Relatively undiscovered it is an angler’s dream. The fishery is nearly untouched because there is no tourism except for sport fishing on the island, the islands remote location and the limited air schedule.

The tidal flats and creeks of Acklins are a fisherman’s paradise. Acklins Island’s expansive flats offer anglers everything they seek in the Bahamas. The flats are vast, the waters are generally smooth and you can fish the central and northern portions of the island easily from one of the B & B’s.Just north of the airport road lies a road heading to the leeward side toward the pier where the mail boat comes in. South of this area lies a nice series of lagoons that provides some good fishing during the high tide and outgoing tide. Further north up the road is Snug Corner where there are a variety of very good flats that can be easily seen from the road. Across the street from Ivel’s Bed and Breakfast are some very good flats in Mason’s Bay. North of Snug Corner are some good flats but you have to walk to them. Some good water along the way but the walk is about 1.2 miles.From Ivel’s the north end of the island flats are only 30 minutes away.

Fishing Information: The average Bonefish caught is three to four pounds with lots of five pound fish around.There are excellent numbers of fish and it is not unusual on some flats to see 3 – 4 groups of 50 – 200 tailing fish in a group at one time.Here you will find hundreds of square miles of flats and mangrove lined lagoons. Some of the flats are hard to access and require long walks and have very rarely been fished. Don’t worry you will not be asked to do it if you don’t want to. Around 85% of the fishing is wading and stalking fish, the great advantage is that you are not sitting on a boat while your partner fishes. We have modern flats boats with comfortable seats and coolers. The average fisherman should catch 7/10 fish per day whilst we have had occasions when we have landed 10 fish in an hour and a half without mud fishing.

Fishing Information: The average bonefish is some 4/5lbs, remember even a 4lb fish can peel 50yds of backing offyour reel, and you could expect to see fish from 8 to 12lb most days. Whether you can catch them is another matter!! Recently we saw some twenty five fish in the 8 to 12lb range in the space of an hour, we landed one at 12lb plus which was nice. If you want alternative fishing there are jacks, snapper, barracuda, sharks etc. and the occasionally permit. Most of the flats are hard sand so you can wade bare footed increasing stealth, but bring your wading boots

Our favorite flies include #2-4 Gotchas, #4-6 Gotcha Clouser’s and Gold Shiner Clouser’s, #4-6 Spawning Shrimp, #4-6 Veverka’s Mantis Shrimp, #6 Tan Yarn Crabs, and #4 Borski’s Bonefish Critters and Bonefish Sliders. In general, the bonefish here are not spooky, so Clouser Minnows in a variety of colors are also a good choice in the many deeper water areas.

Getting Around: Getting To Acklins Island, Bahamas. There are four flights a week from Nassau to Acklins Spring Point. Monday & Friday Pineapple Air and Wednesdays & Saturdays Bahamas Air. You will be transferred to and from the Spring Point airport on AcklinsGetting to Acklins requires a stop over in Nassau as the Island flights leave at around 8.30am. We have a hotel contact which gives us advantageous rates about 15mins from the airport if you need it.

Contacts:Bahamas air: www.bahamasair.com
Pineapple air: www.pineappleair.com

Where to stay:

Ivel’s Bed and Breakfast
Chester’s Bonefish Lodge
Salina Point Bonefishing Lodge
Acklins Outback Fishing Lodge

DIY Spouse Rating: 2

Miscellaneous Information: Fishing the southern Bahamas, including Crooked and Acklins, is a way to play the odds against unruly weather patterns. March through July and October through November are prime months, with December through February having a good chance of nice weather. August and September can be great, but these are the prime hurricane season months. You need to have a rental vehicle here and the choices are limited. Most of the lodges and B & B’s have access to rental vehicles.

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