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By D. Roger Maves
“Have you ever heard of Micronesia?” That’s the question posed by expert fly fishing guide Trapper Rudd for folks looking for a new idea for a fishing vacation. “If nobody really knows where this country is, it’s probably got some fish and it sounds interesting, people might be interested in hearing about it and that’s really kind of I think the attraction is finding these places that are on the map,” explains Trapper. As a founding partner in Sporting Life Adventure Travel, Trapper has made it his life’s work to seek out those “final frontier” kinds of adventure destinations for the ultimate in fly fishing vacation. Clearly, Micronesia hits all the right spots.
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Fly Fishing Micronesia - A Fly Fishing Adventure
Trapper Rudd is always going to somewhere exotic in search of new places to fly fish. Putting together a trip to a place like Micronesia is no easy task and the results are always unknown. Join us to find out how a trip like this comes together from the initial concept to hooking up with new exotic species like Indo-Pacific tarpon, permit, bonefish and giant trevally.
Thanks to Google Earth, Trapper was able to zero in on Micronesia as a unique location for an expedition. As for the official geographical designation, “Micronesia is a sub region of Oceania, comprising thousands of small islands in the western Pacific Ocean. It is distinct from Melanesia to the south and Polynesia to the east. The Philippines lie to the west and Indonesia to the southwest.” In other words, go to Australia and turn right.
When Trapper picks a new locale, it’s not just about the fish species, although that’s important. He likes to find destinations that also offer up distinct cultural experiences and can help promote a local economy. And don’t discount the sheer joy of telling amazing stories about your trip.
For the Micronesia trips, Trapper makes the tiny island of Kosrae as the idyllic base of operations. As with other islands in the Micronesia chain, Kosrae (pronounced kosh-rye) has its own language and customs. To get there you would fly through Los Angeles over to Honolulu then south to the Marshall Islands. From there you would hop over to the Kwajalein Atoll and then onto Kosrae. Long flight? Yes. Worth the trip? Absolutely.
As to the fishing, Trapper has found that there is a bountiful array of inshore species and alternative flat species like blue fin trevally and like golden trevally or Indo-Pacific permit or giant trevally. This inshore fishing happens around pristine reefs that encircle the island and drop off into thousands of feet of water. One thing you’ll discover about the locals is that they are generational fishermen who make a living and feed their families from the seas. They also eat just about every kind fish they find. “I think for aquarium hobbyist or guys that keep salt water tanks and stuff, a lot of those coral fish that you would find on the reefs are often in the frying pan in these islands,” explains Trapper.
It is these local fishermen who become the best tour guides for a fly fishing adventure. They know the tides and the shorelines. They will also happily escort your around the reefs in the panga boats which Trapper calls the “minivans of the ocean.” These durable crafts can haul 2 tons of oranges of four fly fishermen and all their gear.
Speaking of gear, Trapper recommends sturdy three-piece rod tubes to transport your rods. The best rod tube is just 33 inches long which means it can fit into a plane’s overhead bin. Pack a couple of reels and flies in your carry-on and you’ll be good to go. Although, don’t be surprised if the locals look at your gear with a quizzical eye. After all, they do all their fishing with a Cuban yo-yo which is just a giant wooden wheel with a line wrapped around it. Trapper paints the picture, “They would go out and stand on reefs with a chunk of octopus or a whole octopus and they would just wing this thing out there with incredible skill and they would land 65-pound giant trevally by hand. I mean to see stuff like that and hear these stories about their successes is just awe-inspiring.” Do you need any more motivation than that for a fly fishing adventure?
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