Monster Hawaiian Bones- Chapter 2

Discussion in 'Trip Reports with Pics' started by Jordan Simpson, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. Jordan Simpson

    Jordan Simpson Active Member

    After many hours of internet research, trips to the local (and ONLY) fly shop, and many beers with the Coach, me and him headed out on a quest for monster bonefish.
    At this point, I was starting to get better at spotting fish but still lacked the ability to see them at a great distance, hence making the chances of getting good shots at them hard. These bones are spooky and didn't get big by being dumb. The locals here mainly (but not only) fish for the O'io as a food source, so many of the fish that get caught are netted and eaten. I'm semi okay with this as they are used as food and not simply just dumped on the banks. My only concern is conservation. That being said, the monsters that you encounter with Duff didn't get to be that big by being brave. Had they been more brave and less shy, they probs would've ended up as an O'io fish cake.

    On the days that me and Duffer got together out there, the winds weren't the best (variable winds- not the good Eastern trades) and the fish were scarce. We did see a few on those days but even then so, they just weren't very interested in flies or eating. I really don't know what they were thinking but when you find a spot where 20 or so different fish cruise in and off the flat just swim up and on, then sorta cruise and then disappear, you know somethings up. Still, we pressed on.

    On the last day I was there, me and the Coach met up for a late evening cruise to see if we could get one last chance at me hooking up. We rigged up the boat and headed out into K-Bay (Kaneohe) and checked out a few different spots. We ended up at one specific flat that Duff routinely see's monster fish. If you want to check out this spot, you will need to book a day with him as you will need a skiff/boat and will need to launch from Kaneohe Marine Corps Base- and you ain't going to be able to do that with anyone else because he's the only guide allowed to launch from there.
    Once we arrived on the flat, we started the stalking. We came across a channel that had clearly just, and I mean JUST, been picked over by some big bones. You can see the pock marks in the sand where they nose for shrimp and crabs- and these were still very fresh and dark- meaning that they were just there, and hopefully, still around.
    Well, after a few big tails were spotted well out of casting position and distance, we came across one that made both of our hearts race. Neither of us saw it until the very last second. Duff was scanning a bit farther ahead since he's good at it, and me being the rookie fish spotter, was scanning the closer water. This fish was facing us within 40 feet and I still didn't see it until the last second: just then it turned broadside to us and I yelled "Stop the boat, stop!". Too late, the boat got too close (my own fault) and the fish sorta hovered, then took off. I kid you not, easily 12lbs. Easily. Me and Duff just looked at eachother and were like "Huge. 12lbs if not more huge". It literally looked like a steelhead. This fish had shoulders. I know most bonefish, even smaller ones (I've caught two small ones last year there) have that sorta bend/arch/shoulder to them, but this fish had shoulders of a UFC fighing bonefish. Just massive.

    I never got a pull or a tug, a take or a look from one, but just the chance to spend time on the water with Coach Duff to cruise around an Island Paradise was well worth it. Sure, I never hooked up, but I:
    -learned to spot fish
    -added another 30 feet to my cast from a casting lesson in the park from him
    -got a wicked suntan
    -cruised around in a custom Andros Boatworks skiff
    -learned how to tie Hawaii-specific bonefish flies
    -spent time in some breath-taking scenery
    -fished a flat while F-18 Hornets boomed off above me
    -Learned about the cultural history
    -saw more turtles than I could shake a stick at
    -was humbled by the sheer size and intelligence of these amazing fish


    If I was to do it all over again, I wouldn't change a thing. Okay, I would- I would hook up and land a fish!

    Tight lines!

    Jordan

    Give the Coach a call 808-292-9680!
     
  2. Gary Thompson

    Gary Thompson dirty dog

    You didn't see any Navy nurses on surf boards? Or the chicks at the gas station.
    Come on, Hawaii is not just about huge Bone fish.
     
  3. Jim Darden

    Jim Darden Active Member

    That's the way it can be over there! It is like steelheading, sometimes it is incredibly easy and other times it is a zero but it is always fun. Those fish are the trophies of a lifetime and it is great just get a shot at one! The worst part about it is that there are bigger ones out there. Good story, sorry we couldn't meet up this year. You had the right guide, Duffer is the best!
     
  4. Jim Darden

    Jim Darden Active Member

    post script-As for Gary's comment about the chicks....obviously he hasn't caught one of those big bones or he would understand!!!
     
  5. Denny

    Denny Active Member

    I know I'm late to the party on this one, but great report and great attitude about the whole event! Like to see someone having fun and just enjoying the whole experience; good for you.