Yucatan or Baja...shore fly fishing advice?

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Polite, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. Polite

    Polite New Member

    it may seem a bit odd having a UK based flyfisherman on your forum, but the logic's sound; I need advice and I suspect there's more experience here than on the forums here in England (apologies to my home crew!). I'm tasked to find a 'family' vacation for next year by my good lady wife....and it's fair to say that the flyfishing options form a conserable part of my deliberations!

    I'm looking at a number of options in the tropics but I need to keep a lid on the cost. I've fished the caribbean and gulf coast of Florida before, but not with fly-gear. I'm trying to find a location that I can flyfish mainly by wading, on a DIY basis (though I will hire a guide early on to help get the measure of the place). Mexico looks a good bet and I've read numerous articles about both Baja on the Sea of Cortez, and the Yucatan region. Have any of you guys got any advice on places I can look at ? I need decent hotels or rental houses/villas and beaches to keep the wife and kids occupied, but easy access to flats fishing for me! A big ask I know, but there are such places! What areas should I consider? Any pointers? :hmmm:

    Fish-wise, I'm as happy as a pig in poo as long as I've got the peace of the flats/shore to wander and a crack at pretty much anything - Bones are a natural target (I've never had one yet!!) and Roosterfish look awesome. Heck, I'd be delighted with anything that makes my reel sing!:D

    Over to you!:thumb:
  2. Surf_Candy

    Surf_Candy Member

    give the froums at Dan Blanton a try as well. For accomodations you can also try www.vrbo.com - vacation rentals by owner - great site.
  3. Polite

    Polite New Member

    Ok, thanks - done that! I think I've used vrbo in the past - I'll have a look and await the wisdom filled words of those with experience of Mexico in the meantime!
  4. alpinetrout

    alpinetrout Banned or Parked

    If you're looking to keep the wife and kids entertained, it makes things more challenging. Most of the DIY beach fishing in Baja is in remote locations away from the tourist centers. On the other hand, DIY fishing is much more accessible in Baja. On the Yucatan, you generally have to hire a guide to take you to the flats by boat. The flats aren't just out in front of the hotels. There are exceptions to this, but again it requires getting away from the tourist centers.
  5. Polite

    Polite New Member

    Thanks - any specific suggestions?
  6. TimHa

    TimHa Member

    The Yucatan would be tough to find a spot to really combine fishing with family, unless the family likes it remote. Until you get down around Boca Paila bridge on the way from Tulum to Punta Allen there is really no opportunity for DIY fishing and there it is a push and you'd need a kayak and a ton of DEET to go fish and w/o a guide or lots of bonefish knowledge you could spend a week just trying to spot one fish. If you stay in Cancun you can get out on the flats with the guides that work at Villas Manglar at the south end of he hotel zone and Pesca Maya does day trips too from Cancun though it is a LONG haul down to their primary fishing grounds around Punta Allen. Great remote family trip would be Playa Blanca Lodge but this is like being in nice lodgings on Gilligan's Island and is very expensive.

    Baja has TONS of beach access and you can walk beaches in the mornning until you dread walking back in the heat. This good access is NOT around Cabo though. The Eastcape area has really good fishing from beach or boat plus some decent areas. We have done several family trips to the Los Barriles area where we rent a condo and I can fish, we can snorkel and swim in the pool, and we've also driven to pretty much every little village in south Baja and they are amazing. If you want a resort instead of a condo then stay at Hotel Buena Vista or Rancho Leonero. Again, a bit remote but from BV you can walk the beach into Los Barriles, fish up or down the shore for roosters, jacks, ladyfish, pompano, look-downs, .... or get a boat and go after dorado, mackeral, skipjacks or sailfish. All you need is an 8-weight and a #1 Chartruese Clousers and you are good to go on the beaches in Baja. You can day-trip down to Los Cabos and see the sights there if you want.

    Other options but again the good fishing can be more remote is the Bahamas. There you can rent a house with a bonefish flat literally in the back yard and have a DIY flats trip but you'll be out there away from everything else. Again though, unless you are an experienced bonefisher you'd be better off with a guide, even in the Bahamas these fish are not always easy to find, see, or catch once you do find and see them.

  7. Denny

    Denny Active Member

    Good stuff.

    To me, the Baja fishing is exponentially better from a boat than it is from the beach. One of the nice things about fishing in Baja is, if a person tires of fishing from shore, a panga and driver are available at very reasonable rates. Baja fishing is still one of the greatest values out there, IMHO.

    If you are adamant your trip will be all DIY, and the DIY includes the family, then my vote would be the Bahamas.
  8. golfman65

    golfman65 Guest

    Do any of you use two handers from the beach or boat down there? I am dreaming of one day having time off to use my in laws or friends condo's down south...Hate double hauling though and would rather use my switch..
  9. Polite

    Polite New Member

    Fantastic information guys (special thanks to Tim) - it's certainly helping me form some opinions! If you had to rate Baja against the shore fishing on the Florida Gulf coast, how does it stack up? (I'm thinking early July).

    Ref. Bahamas, I have looked at some great houses on Eleuthra, but flights from the UK aren't cheap. Weirdly, it's way cheaper to fly all the way to west coast of Mexico! (Demand I guess).
  10. Pez Gallo

    Pez Gallo On the hunt for grandes

    Greetings Polite...welcome to the board. I live here at the East Cape in Baja California Sur. As the others have already informed you, there is fine beach fishing to be had in this area. In early July you could expect opportunities at a variety of species: jack crevalle, ladyfish, pompano, and roosterfish being the most common catches. Baja is a great place. If you decide to visit here I'm sure you will have a great time. Saludos...
  11. 6wt

    6wt 6wt

    My wife and I will be targeting jack crevalle, ladyfish, & pompano from the beach in the Cancun area in mid December. May we ask for FF strategies for these fish? ie. fly, what type of beach area to look for, presentation & retrieve? Thanks! Craig
  12. Denny

    Denny Active Member

    Baitfish. Simple patterns, like deceivers, sea habits, etc. will work great. A good all-around size is 3" (for the fish you will find, a #2). The little fellas, particularly the jacks, can take a 2/0, but the ladyfish will be easier to hook with a #2. A good #2 will catch a big fish. White over white, gray over white, olive over white, blue over white, you get the picture. Blanco, baby.

    Casting to structure works best, if structure is available, but most of these fish will be found cruising sandy beaches. An intermediate line is tough to beat to achieve the depths you want to fish.

    The further you can cast, the better, particularly from shore. If you are up for getting a new line, you might want to invest in an integrated shooting head line, like an Outbound, 40+, or Streamer Express. They are a little easier to cast than an old school shooting head system, but I prefer the latter.

    Use a stripping basket. I know you want a collapsible basket, but the bucket style baskets are so, so much better. Get about 80+' of line in a collapsible basket, and you'll have a collosal mess when trying to shoot line out of it. Been there, done that years ago.

    Generally, the faster the retrieve, the better. Learn to retrieve with two hands.

    It's not complicated.
  13. 6wt

    6wt 6wt

    Thanks Denny! I will tie some up. Deciding which line to take with my reel has been a toss up as i have both a Rio multi-head system, and, a SA Bonefish line. We will be also pursuing bonefish on the flats a couple of times. It is probably my casting ability, but the floating line on the RIO does not "delicately" lay down on the water when shooting line:) I was thinking of taking the bonefish line with a long leader and using clousers and/or wrapping my deceivers with lead wire to get them down. Thoughts?

    On the bucket style basket, we thought of going to a mega store upon arriving and purchasing a rubbermaid wash basin, ie rectangular and about 4-6" deep, and using epoxy to affix several conical cups upside-down inside the basin to serve as aids to keep line from tangling. And, attaching a wading belt. Does the 4-6" depth sound good? or, go deeper?
  14. bjgavin

    bjgavin Member

    Fishing the Gulf coast in July is doesn't get much easier. Snook move out to the Gulf in the summer from the backwaters and roam up and down the beach in about two feet of water. Close enough that if the wind comes up and the waves get over a couple of feet you can't see the snook because they are under the breakers. I was down last June and catching snook on the fly in less than knee deep water. So if you are looking for a lot of action and fish up to 30-36" Florida in July is a safe bet.