This will be our first trip of 2018 and it is scheduled for the last week of March. After several trips to this lodge we are confident this could be the trip of your lifetime. A great option to cut your teeth on saltwater fishing because of the variety of fish available. There are lots of bonefish and the guides can put you on schools or individuals/small pods of tailing fish. If you’ve never fished the flats this is the place to start. For the more experienced fishers there are opportunities for permit, tarpon, large jacks, barracuda, snook, ladyfish, cobia and more.
Accommodations are a private house on the beach with a dock where the guides will meet us. The lodge owners are fantastic people with years of experience running lodges/outfitting businesses in Michigan, Alaska and Belize. Breakfast and dinner are served in a community dining area. Lunches are provided on the boats, or at the house if you are not taking part in another activity. The trip includes 7 nights and 6 days fishing and there are separate rates for non-fishermen. You can also trade one of your flats fishing days for reef fishing, blue water fishing, snorkeling or diving. If you are there as a non-fisherman you can add these same activities or a day or 2 of flats fishing. The town of San Pedro and public beaches are a short golf cart ride away. The house has a private wading pool and SUP’s and kayaks as well as golf cart transportation are included in the trip.
The official language of Belize is English and they readily take US currency at a fixed exchange rate of $1 US to $2 BEL, making communication and travel straightforward. Don’t miss out we only have 8 spots. Diana and I will be hosting this trip together. This trip is being run in cooperation with The Laughing Grizzly Fly Shop in Longmont, CO so deposits can be made at the shop or by calling 303-772-9110.
Horse Creek Ranch – SE Wyoming
We have 3 dates for this ranch and these are our day trips. This is a unique opportunity that provides a great deal of variety (rainbows, cutthroats, brown, brookies and if you’ve very fortunate perhaps a tiger trout). There are 17 lakes on the ranch and only one group of fishermen at a time are taken by the outfitter. We won’t fish them all, but having so many allows the outfitter to spread out the pressure so the same set of lakes does not get fished repeatedly.
The lakes are relatively shallow and small enough to effectively fish from shore. I’ve never done it, but if you’re inclined to use a float tube you could. Lots of aquatic life makes for fast growing, stocky and healthy fish. If your timing is right hatches can be very prolific. Wildlife abounds on the ranch and while they may be tucked up in the trees, there is the chance you’ll see deer, elk, antelope, hawks, eagles, waterfowl or other small game. They don’t make many appearances, but mountain lions, bears and bighorn sheep do live on the ranch.
You won’t want to miss this and the price is similar to a guided trip in Rocky Mountain National Park. This trip has booked very soon each time we’ve announced a date. Our first two dates were in 2017 and each booked full the day the date was announced. We have actually booked up our first trip for 2018 before the dates were even announced (We will take names for a back-up list if that date appeals to you). Don’t procrastinate on this trip, based on this history the dates won’t be open long.
Deschutes River – Oregon
I run out of words to describe this trip, but then I do love steelhead. Prepare to spend 3 uninterrupted days and 2 nights on the river. We can fit 5 people, we have 3 boats, so this trip can fill up quickly. Last fall is being called “the best worst year in recorded history.” What does that mean? Well, numbers were actually low last year, but apparently everyone knew this and the river was empty. I didn’t get to make the trip, but Lauren from The Painted Trout in Dexter, MI accompanied the group in my stead. Both Lauren and Rob with Watertime Outfitters (our outfitter for the trip) told me there were few anglers on the river so they had their choice of the premium runs and the fish were un-pressured so catch rates were very good. This year has a chance to be very high runs. The fish expected to return next year were smolts when there was record run-off so their trip to the ocean was fast and relatively safe. Lots of things can happen during their time in the ocean, but their first hurdle was cleared very successfully.
This experience is very unique in that we float through a long road-less area and camp on the river. Rob has a dedicated boat that carries the camp/cooking gear and has everything set up when we convene for lunch and again at each nights camp site. We’ll have a quick breakfast with coffee in the morning and a hot breakfast cooked in the boat once we’re underway. We’ll all meet for lunch, again a hot meal, and then finish the afternoon and meet at the evening camp site where a hot dinner will be underway. Steelhead are the primary focus, but we’ve also caught many redband rainbows, at least one brown trout and at least one bull trout.
Swinging flies with 2-handed rods are the best way to go and if you haven’t done it I can help with the casting if you’re in my area and Lauren has arranged classes for those in Michigan. Rob and the guides are excellent instructors and will be a great deal of help if you’re just beginning. If we let Ron know ahead of time he can also provide equipment if you don’t have it. Get in touch with me soon on this awesome opportunity to fish a historic MW steelhead stream. This trip is run in conjunction with The Painted Trout in Dexter Michigan so deposits can be made at the shop or by calling 734-580-2102. Cost on this trip last year was $1275 (a crazy bargain!) but Rob said he may have to raise it slightly for next year. I hope to have that information soon, but I’m expecting $1300 give or take a few dollars.