With the rebuild to Farquhar’s lodge progressing at full steam during the months of March and April, the atoll’s incredible fish population for the most part carried out their daily existence without the presence of anglers or guides. I say for the most part, as we were fortunate to sample at least one week of incredible flats & offshore fishing on Farquhar, albeit from Maya’s Dugong at the end of our Providence atoll season. It was a week I had been really looking forward to, this incredible atoll and fishery holding a very special place in my heart and which thankfully will again become my home for two 3 month stints per year starting October this year. But back to the fishing a bit later.
During every weekly changeover on our Providence season I got to spend an hour or two on Farquhar as we waited for the plane to arrive. I was amazed by the pace at which the IDC building team has worked on Farquhar. To give you an idea, the cleanup of the area between the slipway and the airstrip had been completed in less than 5 months, an incredible achievement considering the size of the area and the amount of fallen trees and other debris that was originally left over from the cyclone. On the building front, the staff have been on top of their game here as well. Every week new buildings were erected whilst others received their finishing touches, in a style and layout that I believe will make a huge impression on our guests. Anglers will now be accommodated in three separate duplex style chalets that overlook the lagoon. Each chalet contains two air-conditioned bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, the new layout certain to provide additional privacy and that finishing touch to a week of incredible flats fishing. The former guesthouse has been converted into a large dining and lounge area, which together with the new bar area is sure to provide an extremely comfortable and relaxed environment for our guests whilst enjoying a cold beer or nice glass of wine with their evening meals. All in all, it looks terrific and I cannot wait to welcome our guests in the new format this coming October!
And now back to the fishing during that one week. Our guests from England, Germany and South Africa had arrived with high expectations, especially considering the atoll hasn’t been fished for nearly five months. The good news is Farquhar did anything but disappoint! Plenty of GT action took place on the outer reefs as well as on the flats inside the lagoon, with all our guests sampling the thrill of GT’s charging in and eating a rapidly stripped streamer. This is clear proof that not only has the cyclone refreshed the system, but also that the rule of zero plugging and teasing for GT’s offshore, as well as on the atoll which has now been in effect for the last two and half seasons is really paying dividends. We are also seeing bigger and bigger GT’s coming onto the flats on a regular basis, so for guests looking for that real trophy GT, Farquhar is tough to look past. Our friends the Triggerfish were also around in good numbers, their colourful tails providing many memorable walk and stalk moments between guests and their guides. The hungry Bonefish were in good numbers and provided superb light tackle sport in some super skinny water. Farquhar’s infamous Bumphead parrotfish are present in good numbers as well, and despite us losing more than we landed provided some intense wade fishing sessions never to be forgotten. I for one cannot wait to spend hours and hours stalking these gentle giants come October! The reef species we encountered really have me excited for the coming season, the group enjoying some superb “Bommie Bashing” for Bohar Snapper, Groupers, Napoleon Wrasse, Bluefin Trevally, Emperors…the list just went on! So as you can tell, the fishing lived up to our expectations….in fact it was great!
So if I consider the fishing we experienced now, together with those three weeks in November last year, it’s little wonder I’m counting down the days until I strap on my wading boots for another gloriously long season on Farquhar. Below is a selection of images taken from the two periods. Myself and the rest of the guide team are really looking forward to this new chapter on Farquhar and hope to see you all out there someday soon!
Until then…Tight Lines
Matthieu Cosson (Head Guide)