Los Roques, Venezuela
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Flying into the coastal City of la Guaria you immediately notice the mountains looming high in the background. This was our stopping over point for the short 35 minute flight to Los Roques, a small archipelago 80 miles off of the coast of Venezuela. Today there is running water and a/c, but just little more than 10 years ago locals
had to walk to wells to get their water.
Whatever you've heard or read about Chavez you'll soon forget upon arrival. What you'll remember are the friendly people of Los Roques, the gorgeous ocean beaches and the fishing. Temperatures on Los Roques average around 85 degrees everyday and this offered us a welcome respite from our cold winter.
What I remember are the many above average bonefish that were incredibly strong fighters. The great thing in Los Roques is that we got many shots at bones everyday, and even on the couple overcast days we had everyone still caught many bones. These bones were not line shy either, and we often used 20 lb test Tippet.
There were some barracuda but not that many and we never saw a shark. These bones do not have many predators thus there is a Very low mortality rate after release. Combine this with low fishing pressure, no netting in the Los Roques national park where we fished, plus an abundance of food in The form of sardinas, and this makes for one he'll of a bonefish destination.
Did I mention there were plenty of tarpon around to keep things interesting. As well as jacks, snapper and bonito. And bonefish on a dry fly! These bones eat a floating minnow imitation like huge browns gulping a green drake. It's the only place I have ever head of where you can catch bones on the surface.
Posada Acuarela was a great place to stay with gourmet dinners we'll not soon forget. Each dinner consisted of four courses. The first was usually fish ceviche made of fresh Tuna wahoo or snapper, or a delicious soup. Next was the pasta dish. Third course was usually fresh fish, wonderfully prepared by Angelo or Mimo, our Italian chefs. Finally was dessert, usually a flan or light pie. The dinners were one of the highlights of the trip.
Los Roques is a small, quaint island that is Very safe. And flying into to Caracas is not an issue. You actually fly to la Guaria which is far outside of Caracas.
We had good guides and very seaworthy pangas, custom made for Sightcast, the outfitter on Los Roques. The manager of Sightcast, Ramon, lives on Los Roques and is there every day to ensure everything runs smoothly. Sightcast gets very high marks from me, and they handled everything seamlessly.
I will miss evening dinners at Acuarela with Mike, Rod and Steve, the beautiful Pancake flats where we looked for tailing bones, walking along gorgeous beaches where bones ate on the surface, and hunting tarpon in the lagoons. But we'll return next year for another wintertime adventure