Stalk tailing bonefish on the world-famous flats and marls South Andros Island — the first choice of seasoned Bonefish anglers in pursuit of the most productive and scenic flats the Bahamas offers.
Bair’s Lodge is ideally located within striking distance of the remote south and west-side fisheries, while also offering wind reprieve across endless miles of flats in the adjacent creeks. Our lodge has come to represent the benchmark in terms of quality guiding, delicious food, comfortable accommodations, and courteous hospitality.
Bair’s Lodge on South Andros Island offers deluxe ocean-side lodgings in an attractive plantation-style building surrounded by palm trees.
The bright, airy lodge is nestled on a sparkling white sand beach. Stretch out and relax on the veranda. Enjoy a cocktail from the fully stocked bar, and breath in the laidback South Andros scene, where you’ll spot friendly locals and bonefish tails for miles along the adjacent shallow-water flats.
Living and Dining Rooms
Our unpretentious and air-conditioned living room and dining room areas have comfortable sofas, plenty of reading material and face the ocean. Here you will find your buffet breakfast laid out each morning.
The lodge has a main bar fully stocked with spirits, cold beers, soft drinks, plenty of ice, a blender, and mixers for cocktails. Satellite television has been installed for those who wish to catch up on news or sports during cocktail hour. Wi-Fi is available at the lodge.
Our shop is stocked with almost anything you could need, fly line, leader, tippet, and an excellent fly selection. Along with sun protection and Bair’s Lodge logo merchandise.
Two of the six rooms in the house open onto a long veranda facing the ocean, furnished with comfortable benches and tables to sip coffee in the morning and cocktails in the evening. There are rod racks beside the outdoor showers, and we have a hose with fresh water to wash down your tackle. From the veranda, you can walk to the beach, where the skiffs are moored. We also have comfortable lounge chairs and hammocks are available all over the property.
Bedrooms and Bathrooms
All of our beautiful bedrooms have terracotta tile flooring, white cotton sheets, as well as tropical-weight duvets, and plenty of down pillows. All rooms have A/C, lots of storage space, and outlets for recharging phones, computers, etc. En-suite bathrooms and full baths are standard, hot water is plentiful, and towels and laundry bags are provided in all bedrooms.
Fall Season (September, October, November)
Fishing in the fall months produces some of the largest fish of the year. The winds and tropical storms of late summer taper off and there’s little to no fishing pressure for many weeks. Although the traveling angler should not anticipate dead calm and can expect some clouds, these variable conditions generally allow for closer casts and multiple shots. In variable conditions the bonefish often are less spooky and skittish due to existing water vibrations and variable sunlight, allowing the angler to get closer to the fish and use stronger leaders. Even the larger fish are more approachable and might even allow multiple presentations. The fall weather is the most variable, but we often see some of the best bonefish landed this time of year, primarily due to the lack of pressure and forgiving conditions.
Winter Season (December, January, February)
In winter, we experience less cloud cover and more days of direct sunshine. The cooler weather, occasional cold fronts, and resulting lower water temperatures often result in larger schools of bonefish holding the deep water on the edges of flats and cays where the water temperatures are more consistent. This grouping or schooling of bonefish in deeper water often leads to our highest daily catch rates of the season. We have had individual anglers see hundreds of fish in these aggregations and catch countless fish in one session. The colder water can reduce the number of fish on the shallowest of flats, so we tend to see fewer tailing fish, but the ones that do venture onto the flats are usually large singles and doubles. Winter is also the time of year we experience the highest winds. On our windiest days, we utilize the interior creek system of South Andros, specifically Little Creek and Grassy Creek. The prevailing wind is usually from the north and east, so calm conditions can be found on the western lee of the island.
Spring Season (March, April, May)
Spring in the Bahamas is considered peak season, and for good reason. The weather is warm and the sunshine consistent and abundant. The winds that can produce cold fronts have faded and most days are pleasant. It is this time of year that we can experience dead calm and bright sunshine. These days are spectacular and visually stunning when the water is glassy and gin clear. In these conditions, you can see every fish on the flat and enjoy plenty of shots at fish. The clear, calm conditions also tend to require a stealthy approach and generally a longer, more accurate cast. Just as we can more easily find and see fish, the same holds true for them. The fish can be more difficult when it is dead calm and sunny, but targets are easier to locate. The warming water allows for more fish to be comfortable foraging in the shallowest, skinniest water. So, if sight-fishing to a tailing bonefish in ankle-deep skinny water is exactly what you are looking for, this is the best time of year. Finding, approaching, and making the cast to a tailing bonefish in inches of water also represents the highest level of difficulty and achievement in our sport.
Summer Season (June, July)
The summer season is warm and sunny, similar to our spring conditions. The allure of the warm summer water includes a greater possibility of seeing and getting shots at Permit. While warm weather may extend into September and October, June and July might be the best months to target Permit in Andros. As the water warms up we see similar behavior from the bonefish that we witness during the winter cold fronts. The bonefish prefer the deeper water on the edges of the flats and cays for consistent water temperatures. As the fish school in deeper water, catch rates can increase significantly, and maybe – just maybe – there will be a permit cruising around.
Guests can reach Congo Town, in South Andros, on commercial Western Air flights from Nassau, or on Watermakers out of Fort Lauderdale. Airflight Charters are also available from Florida to Congo Town.
Bair’s Lodge is located on the eastern side of South Andros Island in the Bahamas.
Andros is the largest island in the Bahamas and remains one of the least developed. The island is divided by inland creeks and large channels called bights. The lodge is an easy 25-minute drive after arriving by plane to Congo Town. Situated between Deep Creek and Little Creek we are perfectly located to access the endless inland flats, with the option of running south or through the island to the fabled west side, where the island’s biggest fish roam.
Bair’s is located on the east side of South Andros Island, Bahamas. The lodge is a five-minute skiff run north or south to Deep or Little creeks. Advantage: no trailering required. These easily accessed “cuts” open up to more than 120 square miles of flats, swimming with impressive populations of bonefish in the 4-6-pound class. Our sheltered creek systems are both habitat and fish rich, and they offer anglers appreciated weather reprieve if the wind kicks up. Little Creek connects to the island’s West Side, which can be reached by flats skiff in about 45 minutes. There you’ll find some of South Andros’ largest bonefish—adult specimens that have been known to reach the trophy 10-pound mark. This is where anglers with sharp skills go to stalk larger singles and doubles pushing into skinny water on favorable tides. The pristine, undeveloped zone is protected by Andros’ West Side National Park.
The southern flats, on the other hand, are home to some of the least-pressured fishing in the region. Grassy Creek is a 40-minute boat run from Bair’s. Weather permitting you can ride on to Hawksbill Creek and as far as Cistern Point. This area is renowned for bonefish in high numbers. Home to endless wadeable flats, abundant schools, and very few competing skiffs and anglers.
Our guides are some of the best in Andros, and we’re proud to have them working with us at the lodge. Between them, they have more than 125 years of combined guiding experience at Bair’s and have extensive knowledge of the South Andros flats. They are professional, hard-working, and sincerely personable.
They also understand how tides affect bonefish feeding behavior and know where to go under different weather conditions. With their skills as captains and great eyes developed over years of spotting bonefish, they will put you on fish and give you as much or as little guidance and instruction as you want.
Each day, your guide will decide where to go based on the weather conditions and guest preference discussed with the lodge manager. You should express any special preferences to the lodge manager, such as wading versus boat fishing. If you only want to target large individual Bonefish, or if you prefer to fish large shoals of fish, just let us know. We will work with your guide and try to tailor your day accordingly!
Our rotation policy gives anglers the opportunity to fish with all six of these top-notch guides. Bonefish are pound-for-pound one of the strongest, fastest-running saltwater fish anywhere. They are also one of the coolest to have your photo taken with. Their scientific name is Albulidae, which means “white fox.”
Bonefish are noted for moving from deeper water onto shallow tidal flats to feed, where you can find and cast to tailing fish—one of the most challenging (and rewarding) saltwater experiences available. They typically retreat back to deeper water as the tide ebbs. Bahamas bones can reach upwards of ten pounds, but a more representative size would be about a third of that. A big bonefish, a lifetime fish, would be any fish equal to or in excess of ten pounds. Larger, adult fish break away from schools, traveling in singles and doubles and offering great sight-fishing opportunities on the flats of Abaco and South Andros islands.
As prolific as Bahamas bonefish are, relatively little is known about them. The Bonefish & Tarpon Trust (BTT) aims to change that and has been heavily involved in scientific research in conjunction with our lodges. For more information, BTT is an excellent, angler-friendly source. Visit tarbone.org
The typical trip does not fish on arrival or departure, but if time allows and guides are available, half-day trips can be arranged prior to getting here.
the airport to the lodge where you can check into your room, prepare gear, and spend an afternoon relaxing on the lodge grounds.
Here is a sample schedule of the daily program:
Bonefish are pound-for-pound some of the strongest and fastest saltwater gamefish. Their scientific name is Albula vulpes, which means “white fox.” But to anglers, they’re also known as “grey ghosts” due to their elusive nature and their ability to show up then seemingly vanish in an instant.
Bonefish are noted for moving from deeper water onto shallow tidal flats to feed, where you can find and cast to tailing fish—one of the most challenging (and rewarding) saltwater experiences. They typically retreat to deeper water as the tide ebbs. Bahamas bones can reach upwards of ten pounds, but a more representative size would be about a third of that. Trophy bones are generally considered any fish equal to or in excess of ten pounds. Large adult fish break away from schools, traveling in singles and doubles and offering great sight-fishing opportunities on the flats South Andros islands.
- 7 weight 9’ (for delicate presentations on lighter wind days)
- 8 weight 9’ (fast action helps to punch into the wind)
- 9 or 10 weight 9’ (Barracuda and Tarpon)
Use saltwater capable reels with adjustable drags and capacity for 150 yds. of 20lbs. test backing.
7wt. Bonefish Line (tropic taper)
8wt. Bonefish Line (flats taper)
9 or 10wt. Tropic Taper (tarpon)
- Tippet Spools: 8, 12, 16lbs. Fluorocarbon
- Tapered 9’ to 12’ Leaders (8, 12, 16lbs. – Fluoro)
- Wire Tippet: 30lbs. or 40lbs. for Barracuda/Sharks
- Fluorocarbon Leader Material: 30-50lbs.
The list of options is endless and selections depend on the kind of flat you are fishing, its bottom color (turtle grass or sand) and depth. All flies should be size 2 and 4 hooks. A few “must have” BONEFISH flies include:
- Barracuda: Needlefish, Baitfish imitations, Large poppers in blood-red or other bright, attention-grabbing colors. The topwater takes are awesome.
- Tarpon: Small EP Peanut Butter or Purple Cockroach.
A brand new fleet of high-performance Maverick 17 Mirage HPX-Vs awaits you at Bair’s Lodge. These technical poling skiffs have stealthy, extremely quiet hulls that draw minimal water when pushing toward tailing bonefish in the ultra-skinny stuff. Open Water handling, on the other hand, is unparalleled, fast and smooth in the surliest conditions. Additional angler-appreciated details include lean bars and removable cushioned YETI coolers—because nobody wants lukewarm beers.
There are quality fly rods, reels and fly lines available at the Lodge for you to use if needed at no extra cost. Please advise us if your need for a rod/reel prior to arrival to ensure availability. Flies and leaders are also available for purchase at the Lodge.
While the lodge has a well-stocked shop, we recommend bringing the following:
Food in the Bahamas is the magical encounter between the treasures of the sea, history, culture and its people.
We pride ourselves on serving delicious fresh local produce, specializing in fresh fish (Mahi, Tuna, Grouper, and Hog Snapper), conch, and lobster. We carefully stock our larder with fine quality foods from the US and Nassau.
Every day begins with a full breakfast featuring a variety of cereals, as well as fresh fruits. Eggs will be cooked to your preference, with bacon, sausages, and grits. Hot cereals are also available to order. Our chef bakes bread, pastries, and cookies daily. Our coffee is made from freshly ground beans.
A daily lunch menu card allows you to choose the next day’s lunch and the contents of the boat coolers. After you return from fishing, you will find cold beers, spirits, and a blender for cocktails, as well as stacks of soft drinks. A wide range of local spirits will be available free of charge at the lodge.
Delicious appetizers are served before dinner on the veranda, so you can sample local specialties such as cracked conch, grouper fingers, and conch salad. Dinner starts with appetizers such as homemade soups or conch ceviche. Our culinary emphasis is on mixing local dishes with light fresh recipes such as snapper with mango salsa, and some barbecued fish. Desserts will vary from chocolate decadence to key lime parfaits.
House wines such as Malbec from Argentina, Chilean Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon will be served with dinner.
We can happily cater to special dietary needs. When you complete your pre-trip questionnaire please mention any requirements or food allergies you might have, so we can inform the chef. Salads are offered in our cooler lunches for those on low-carbohydrate diets.
The lodge has a good supply of drinking water from our reverse osmosis system. You will find water in your bedroom and your boat, and you can drink the tap water. In our arid climate, conservation is always appreciated.
High Season: October 1st 2021 – June 30th 2022
Our research and experience tell us that over 65% of anglers are also actively interested in bird hunting and big game hunting. If you are a part of that majority and are interested in adding variety to your sporting life, look no further than David Denies Bird Hunting and Red Stag Patagonia. All three brands are owned and operated by the same company, The Kautapen Group, and each operation is dedicated to making your outdoor experience fun, memorable, and productive.