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Flymen Blog

5 tips for your first DIY bonefish trip.

John Mauser fly fishing bahamas bonefish

Bahamas bonefishing on a budget.

My first trip to the Bahamas helped me realize how attainable it was, even though I had put it off for many years because I thought it was out of my price range.

Lesson learned.

We returned the following year and now the Bahamas has made it to the top of my list for DIY fishing vacations.

I’m learning more each time I visit, but I’d like to share a few thoughts with anyone who has considered scratching it off their bucket list.

Inside look: Designing the Fish-Skull Shrimp & Cray Tail.

Martin Bawden fly fishing Bahamas

Sight fishing for bonefish, permit, or redfish is one of my favorite things in life.

It combines many of the visual pleasures of fly fishing with some of the toughest technical challenges, creating a scenario in which so much needs to come together perfectly to be successful.

Travelling to a beautiful tropical location and searching for an almost invisible, elusive quarry among endless sand flats, palm trees, mangroves and crystal clear water is incredibly relaxing.

Then add the heightened sense of anticipation, the sudden jolt and adrenaline rush as you first sight the fish – heart pounding, panic setting in, and of course the pressure! Pressure from your guide, your buddy, and yourself to put together the perfect cast at the perfect time to deliver your fly to the perfect spot in the hope (or prayer) that you'll be rewarded. 

So much fun!

The idea for the Fish-Skull® Shrimp & Cray Tail™ first came to me during one of these trips to the Bahamas in late 2014. Out on a flats boat in the middle of nowhere, but somewhere between my fourth bonefish and third Kalik of the day, the idea formed to create an alternative to the established fly tying method of using bead chain eyes or small dumbbells to weight shrimp or small crayfish patterns. Continue reading