Tag: Mike Dawes Fly Fishing


Guyana = Arapaima

Having your expectations blown out of the water is refreshing and rare in remote fishing these days, but we were not complaining at the end of our week in Guyana, quite the opposite really we had a pretty nice party in the Jungle.  Expectations for me these days often have nothing to do with the fish (I am not going to lie I wanted to catch an Aarapaima on the fly badly) as it is fishing etc. etc. etc., I find myself looking at the resource, guides, facilities, wildlife and the presence of fish or the fishy feeling more so than a hero shot.  My expectations were exceeded in all of the departments.  To think that in the rest of the word these fish are endangered, over harvested or extinct and the folks in Guyana in conjunction with Costa Del Mar and under the guidance of Matt Breuer and Oliver White, had the foresight to protect their resource and create a kick ass fly fishing program that sustains a local tribe and additionally protects their culture is an amazing feat.  Good on you all and thank you.  I will add that everyplace we went to over our 6.5 days of fishing we saw Arapaima.  I will also add that it is not a bad place to spend your 40th birthday, here are some photos form halftime:

our ride in

bent 6/0

bent 6/0
tarpon esque
not quite ready
restaurant and the laughing arapaima bar
the coz with his first arapaima
the coz with his first arapaima
banks beer brewed in the one and only - Thirst Park, Guyana
banks beer brewed in the one and only – Thirst Park, Guyana
another one not quite ready
some fine machete work
sunset shooting
guyana crib
big boy
big boy
the crew – time brune, nick “the coz” oximek, jed mixter (the jerseys were supposed to say guyana!)

We will be back…………………………………………………………………………



















Back to the Amazon!!

Looking forward to heading back down to the Amazon in a couple of weeks, truly an amazing place!  Here are some pics from the trip last year with Jeff Currier and crew !

One of our camps on the way upriver!!

Currier with a Bruiser!!

Caiman looking for a peacock!!

Boca Grande


Brew on the Equator


Tim Brune with a nice Assu!!

Nick the Coz Cozmo!!!

Wading the flats!!

Can’t wait to return……………………….







Bhutan – Winter Exploratory Fishing


The new Buddha Statue in Thimphu standing 170 feet tall !!

It’s been awhile, actually 8 months,  so I guess I should start at the beginning of 2013.  I was given an incredible opportunity in January to explore remote regions in Bhutan with Jon Miceler who has pioneered the Himalayas since the late 80’s, to look into the feasibility of finding new Mahseer water and do some Trout fishing along the way.

Bhutan is one of the countries I have wanted to visit so needless to say when I landed in Paro I was very excited for the Expedition


Paro in the evening

After spending a couple of days in Paro and Thimphu, I thought the layout of the country would resemble the valleys of both, but I was very naive and quickly learned when we started that it would be very different.  The parts of the country we drove through was some of the toughest terrain I have ever experienced and the driving was very challenging to say the least!


Just another road to a river !!

The journey was amazing and challenging, we found some great water to explore for Mahseer in the future during their spring time migration.  I had some very productive winter fishing for Brown Trout, saw some amazing wildlife including a Golden Langur (only place in the world to see them) and was given the opportunity to visit places in Bhutan few have ever been.

Bhutan is a true Kingdom and the culture and people are incredible.  It is certainly the most unique country I have ever traveled to and I look forward to going back in the spring time!!

I will add that it seems as though Bhutan is changing very quickly and if you have ever wanted to visit Bhutan I would go now !!

Here are some more photos from the Journey


A nice winter Bhutan Brown Trout


The Demons Palace

Golden Langur

Golden Langur


Yak in the snow


Forrest Officers inspecting a rare sight for them !!


Spinning the prayer wheel on the hike up to the Tiger’s Nest Temple


Lighting prayer candles


Masheer hole after a confluence ?? I will be going back during the migration to see at some point…………………………..










Deep Water Cay

I first stepped foot on the sand at Deep Water Cay when I was 4 years old thanks to my Grandfather building a little cabin there in 1959.  Even before our son was born I was thinking how important it would be to make sure that his feet touched the same sand, fourth generation.  So Jenn, Cooke and I packed up and made it a reality this winter

Cooke checking it out

Cooke checking it out

While the sand seemed familiar the upgrades to the facilities were quite impressive!!

The new docks and shop

The new docks and shop

While the facilities have changed and  improved immensely, I ran into plenty of familiar faces

Jenn and Meko Glinton

Jenn and Meko Glinton

My Grandfather, Father and myself have all fished with Meko’s father Stanley over the years, it was great to spend time with Meko talking about our younger years.  Then I ran into William Pinder and even got David Pinder Sr. to join Meko and I on the boat on the last day!!

William Pinder with a nice bone

William Pinder with a nice bone

David Pinder Sr. and Meko

David Pinder Sr. and Meko

It was quite a walk down memory lane and I look forward to returning to Deep Water Cay sooner than later

Nice Mutton that was wagging his orange tail in the air before the storm came in!!

Nice Mutton that was wagging his orange tail in the air before the storm came in!!

Nice Deep Water Bone !!

Nice Deep Water Bone !!



The Scorpion Expedition

I remember reminiscing with my father when we were able to catch up after I had been on some recent fishing adventures, it always involved him chewing on a swisher sweet, relaxing in a chair with a diet coke and looking at me in that fatherly way, “So where have you been”  “how big where the fish” “would you go back”  I wish I had the opportunity to sit down with the old man another time and tell him about this one……………The Scorpion Expedition was one of the best adventures I have ever been a part of.  First there was the crew, RA Beattie, Sandflea, Jose “Careto” from Punta Allen, Bear Holeman, Perk Perkins, and Ryan Buccola from Bend.   I was honored to be a part of this crew and can honestly say I have never been a part of a crew that went on an exploration and got along the way we did, it was special

The Scorpion Expedition will be released on the Fly Fishing Film Tour in 2013

Then there was the place, the natural beauty of the Scorpion Reef cannot be expressed in words, it is as if someone dropped the Seychelles in the Gulf of Mexico, here are a couple of scenes from the reef……….  (all Pictures were taken by RA Beattie)

Paradise found

This was my camping spot, not sure I will find a better place to hang a hammock in my lifetime!!

Then there was the fishing which was just a bonus to an extraordinary exploration, plenty of more to come on this one………………………………

Sandflea hooking up at first light!!

A special thank you to ORVIS for making this expedition happen, they were instrumental, along with our other sponsors: Yeti Coolers, Pescadowear, WorldCast Anglers, Breedlove Guitars, Chums, Maya Solar, Nu CastMontana Fly Company, Howler Bros………………THANK YOU

More to come…………………………..








New Shuttle Ride & The Shoe

In order to get lost these days you need your own shuttle, so I copied a good friend of mine Bill Paju and did just that

The new shuttle ride, 1977 Yamaha TY 250

Mikey Hemkens and I got lost for a day and found some nice Cutty’s, even better we did not see a sole


Lost with a nice Cutty

When trying to get lost, sometimes you run into a road block


Yes that is Mikey on top of the Road block

Since we were told we might not be able to find where we could take out from the river, Mikey found an old shoe and hung it from a tree, we thought we had past it hours prior to turning the corner and finding THE SHOE!!

THE SHOE!! Finally before dark

Of course the new shuttle ride did not start, but eventually the old gal turned over to end a great day……..Oh yea we fished with the new H2 Helios from ORVIS………………………..get ready!!!!!



Clark Smyth, The Cicada & Mr. Salmo Trutta

It’s been awhile for sure, missed the March Merkin update, another stellar trip to Playa Blanca, the Big Bugs on the Henry’s and some Head Hunting on the MO, but livein the now I guess……..

Had a chance to meet up Clark Smyth of Rock Creek Anglers a couple of weeks ago for some big dry fishing in Wyoming.  Clark had a winter filled with medical surprises so it was nice to spend some time together and watch some big browns eat some big dries!!  The Wind River Canyon is a special place to float and while I have endured my fair share of punishment I have also seen some very,  very,  special days.

Clark Smyth with a nice Wind River Brown












While we had some good expectations for the day, the fishing exceeded  them and the variety of takes were truly amazing.  From the drop back tip up just whites of the mouth, to the full blown bowling ball dropped off a cliff takes, the day was truly an amazing visual experience.

This fish chose to go with the bowling ball take

This one just dropped the tail


This one ate like he forgot something and went to get it

Special day!!




Nicaragua – The Rumble in the Jungle

Steve Tatigian, Jed Mixter, Ned Hutchinson and myself flew to the Atlantic Coast in search of River Tarpon and Snook.  Despite the conditions the trip turned out to be quite the adventure.  We flew into Bluefields and stayed at the Casa Rosa lodge which was right on the water and the food cooked by Mama was excellent!!  We fished for Snook in the rivers the first day with some good success and then the next day we headed North by boat at day break  for an incredible adventure !!  There had been a good amount of rain prior to our arrival, so a lot of the areas we were intending on fishing were off color, we still found some incredible Tarpon Lagoons with fish rolling everywhere, I can only imagine what it would have been like if the water was clear, maybe I will have to return.  The adventure itself was well worth it, a trip that is truly unique……..

(Photos taken by Jed Mixter)











Jed Mixter


















































The shakedown that ended well up North (left to right) Marco, Jefe 1, Mike Dawes, Jefe 2, Steve Tatigian, Ned Hutchinson













After our adventure we flew back to the pacific side to meet up with the crew for some surf at Los Cardones, amazing trip.

The Monkey Winner!! Steve Whitney on the board, Congrats!!



Baby Tarpon on Dry Flies

Last August in the midst of recovering from shoulder surgery on my casting arm I was headed to Isla Holbox with some friends to catch up with Sandflea and the boys.  The trip was planned, the shoulder surgery was a surprise, but I figured I would just make the best of it (or have fun watching!!)

Baby Tarpon eating a dry fly



I arrived a day ahead of the group and was talking with Sandflea about how my left handed casting with a 12wt was going to be a little different than the 5wt I had just left at home.  Sandflea said he knew of a place very close where tons of baby tarpon had congregated, I said let’s go………..

I had brought down a bunch of smaller foam poppers that would pop on the first strip and the wiggle back to the surface, the takes were amazing!!

Some of the takes were down right explosive


When the rest of the group arrived I talked Nick the “C” Cozmo into spending a day fishing for the babies, it was a tough question because I could tell he wanted to fish for the big boys and it was a short trip.  Once he heard that we were getting them on dries, he was ready to go……..

Eat into jump














Explosive take and jump













Cozmo with a baby gone vertical

























Like the Old Man used to say “opportunity in every situation”, had I not had shoulder surgery I would have never experienced these fish eating dry flies

Cozmo with a big leap

















Myself, Bart "ZZZaaabbaaarrff" Langlois, and Sandflea on our way














The Crew, Kareto, Cozmo, Bart, Sandflea, Dawes, Eaton







We found the big boys as well




Playa Blanca = Playa Permit

Just got back from another successful trip to Playa Blanca.  The last four trips  have been very good and the Permit fishing seems to be getting better and better.  We had an excellent group of 14 anglers and as always the lodge and staff were excellent.

17 Permit were caught for the week which was impressive as not everyone was fishing for permit.  There was some great Tarpon and Snook fishing and the Bonefish were plentiful and tailing.

I loved hearing the stories during the week of several people holding the Tarpon Fly in hand on 50lb shock, while in search of baby tarpon, seeing a Bonefish, throwing the Tarpon Fly at the Bone and watching him eat it on 50 lb shock!!

Says a lot about the area in which we were fishing.

Heading back at the end of March.  Some Permits shots from the group!!

Early morning, new fly!!





Grant Wood with 1 of 2, his first congrats Santiago!!!!

Austin Watson's first permit that ended with a Grand Slam!!!!

Jon Fenn, with 1 of 4, his first as well Congrats Jon!!

Don Watson with a great fish!!!!

Chuck Moos with a fine Permit

Jim Hickey with a nice sickle fin!!

The Fall Classic Crew!!!! (In order left to right) Jim Finley, Bill Egan, Mike Dawes, Alex Maher, Don Watson, Sara Cart, Austin Watson, Ben Cart, Jon Fenn, Dale Endris, Grant Wood (Santiago), Jim Hickey, Chuck Moos, Susie McDowell