Renting Fly Gear/Guide Advice

Posted By: Jordy

Renting Fly Gear/Guide Advice - 01/02/03 08:15 PM

Hey All-
Travelling to your lovely slice of heaven in March for a 9 day vacation. I am a fresh water fly fishermen and was hoping to get into some of tarpon, permit and bonefish though don't feel like buying all the equip until I know if I like it. Where do I rent rods/reels/gear on AC?

Also, looking for a guide, and was thinking that I might do better if I work through "local channels" rather than through the resorts, any thoughts on this and advice on who to use?
Thanks All-
Posted By: rdb

Re: Renting Fly Gear/Guide Advice - 01/02/03 10:42 PM

From what I've seen in the past, I think you need to bring your own gear. See if you can borrow na 8 weight if you aren't sure you want to buy. An 8 is the best compromise for the flats.

For guides, I recommend George Bradley, 2262179 or Omar Arceo, who's number seems to constantly change. Both are good, and are bokable without going through a hotel.
Posted By: Jordy

Re: Renting Fly Gear/Guide Advice - 01/05/03 12:24 AM

Thanks for the advice, though I have heard that a 8 weight, though good for bonefish, will be too light for permit or mid size tarpon.
Posted By: Marty

Re: Renting Fly Gear/Guide Advice - 01/05/03 04:32 PM

the best fishing info is at:

There are prices, what to fish with, what to catch, lotsa good info there.

There there are also local folks who guide, who are not listed on the link above, and I will list a few of them...

The Guerrero brothers I've spent time with and know they have an environmental attitude. They give value while still leaving some fish for others. Everyone raves about their beach BBQ. Severo and his brother, Ramon Guerrero. Either one can give you a great day of fishing. Call Severo from the US @ 011 501 226 2324. Call Ramon @ 011 501 226 2325. They have been doing honest, reef friendly fishing for many years. They can also take you and your family on a full-day fish/snorkel trip for $ of the best bargains on the island when you figure in the beach BBQ w/ your catch. You won't find a better value in San Pedro. Price is for the boat for the day, I think up to 4 people. The Guerrero brothers live next door to each other. If one is booked, ask for the other one. Good luck! Remember, take some and leave some.

Some don't advise you about catch and release. Some will let you fish all day without regard to limit (although there is none, common sense should take over). Some charge too much for too little.

Omar Arceo, does a heck of a job. Gilberto or Tomas arranged by Amigo's de Mar...

A great guide and very pleasant individual is Luis Caliz in San Pedro, phone number 011-501-226-2785. Best time to catch him by phone is after 6 PM

Nesto Gomez { a very good guide}-- one of the best tarpon and bonefish flyfisherman! He works out of El Pescador.

For flat fishing call Eloy Gonzalez at 226-2337

Pedro (Pete) Graniel. First rate equipment, including boats, and does both offshore, reef and inshore (tarpon, etc.) Keeps his boat just south of town. Ask anyone how to contact him. He's well known.

A friend went with a guy named Vince Dawson, and their bonefishing and reef fishing experience was "legendary", according to them. They saved enough for a barbecue the next day (grouper and snapper) and it was possibly the best tasting fish we had ever experienced. You can make contact with him thru Rubys. He is magical on the reef fishing. He knows what is on the line as soon as it hits. Kind of fish, size, first name.

Contact Hillyboo @ 614-9515 or 226-3272, he is personal, and you go by yourselves... You can reach him when you get to the islands at Freedom Tours.

Here's some links to fishing threads on this board:


report, what to use, etc:

TIPS, guides perspective:

LOTS of info on fishing:

Fishing from shore or without guides:


Whereas 8 and 9 weight rods and lines are generally considered the standard bonefish gear on the Florida flats, smaller 6, 7 and 8 weight rods are more than adequate for the flats of The Caribbean. These rods are much more pleasurable to fish and cast with, and certainly provide a lot more entertainment for the angler after the bonefish are hooked.

The smaller rods (6 & 7) are great when there is little or no wind and an 8 weight rod has more than enough muscle to deliver a fly in even the stiffest of gales. Moreover, the 8 weight rod will double as the ideal rod for permit and light tarpon fishing. Many anglers prefer to have the larger rod rigged up and in the boat for the permit and a 6 or 7 weight rod with a floating line in hand for the bonefish that are routine. This also leaves the 8 weight a reserve rod and for extremely windy days. Ten and eleven weight rods are perfect for Central American Tarpon fishing.

The choice of rod length is important. Nine or nine and a half foot long rods are optimum. More line can be picked up off the water with the longer rods, with less surface disturbance, and without retrieving nearly as much of the previously cast line. Also, for the vast majority of flyrodders, greater distances can be covered and with less effort using the longer fly rods.

Unlike the reels that will suffice in most freshwater conditions, saltwater reels must have a minimum of 175 yards of capacity, more if you plan on landing a truly large bonefish. The drag system on the reel must be smooth and reliable, capable of running at high RPM's that are generated by the sizzling bursts that typify bonefishing. Also, the reel should be corrosion-resistent, unless they are cleaned daily. Some reels simply will not hold up in any saltwater because of the finish (two are the Orvis CFO and Hardy's Perfect series). Ross, Stutz, Pate, Marryatt, and the new Scientific Anglers System II (model 8/9) are all excellent for this type of fishing.

When you are casting to fish that are, potentially, as large as you are, there is no substitute for quality in a reel. Tarpon are capable of long, sustained bursts of speed and distance. Consequently, the fisherman needs a reel that has both a large (250 yards minimum) capacity, and a smooth reliable drag system. Anglers have their own personal preferences regarding direct drive vs. anti-reverse model fly reels, and even the professionals disagree. Whatever model that you choose, base your decision on how often you'll be using the reel and that you will, in all probability, only be buying one your whole life.

The best tarpon reels are the Billy Pate (tarpon model), FinNor, Ross, Fenwick, and Sea Master. Scientific Anglers' new System II model for tarpon is ideal for the angler that doesn't intend to do this kind of fishing often. Prices and availability vary, as does the manufacturer's ability to service and repair the reels.

A weight forward, bass bug taper or saltwater taper floating line is ideal for this type of bonefishing. Intermediate saltwater tapers are the answer for tarpon and permit fishing. Anglers should bring along some sort of line cleaner for the lines as well, since saltwater has a way of making them sticky after a few days use.


The two successful permit flies we have tried are the Jewett Blue Crab and the Spears' Permit.


Leaders (one new leader for each day) should be about 9 feet long and approximately 10 Ibs. strength. Windier conditions may necessitate shortening these. And, of course, tippet material in a corresponding size.

A leader snipper, hemostats, small fly box, hook hone, polarized glasses (amber is the favorite all 'round color), reel lubricant, tennis shoes (to dampen deck noise), a lightweight rain jacket for the occasion squalls on the flats, sunscreen and suntan lotion, lipscreen, insect repellant, and a wide-brimmed or upand-downer hat.
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: Renting Fly Gear/Guide Advice - 01/05/03 04:53 PM

Check out El Pescador Lodge - salt-water fly fishing is their speciality. They have a "fishing pro", casting lessons, great guides and for guests-only there is rentable gear.
Nice people, good place, grand-slam possibilities.
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