So what’s an angler to do when the winter wind blows and the water temps chill you to the bone? Yes, there are steelhead to chase. And if you don’t mind standing in a cold river all day, knowing you might never hook, much less land, a fish, then be my guest. But what if your body just aches for some warmth and some sunlight? Then you find an excuse to take the family to the Bahamas.My mother-in-law’s 80th birthday was a fine excuse. And Long Island, one of the “out” islands in the Bahamas, was the perfect place to spend a long week. I’ve visited more than a half-dozen islands in the Bahamas, and I have to say Long Island is one of my favorite islands simply because it offers so many ways to spend a day in the sun. Our family consisted of three serious anglers and three non-anglers.
Long Island is the ideal place to stalk some bonefish, cast to small tarpon or strap on some hiking boots and hike to the Columbus Monument on the north end of the island. Then, there are those deserted beaches to comb, collect shells and snorkel, or perhaps you would just like to lie by the pool, drink a Kalik beer and read a novel.
The locals are open-hearted and friendly and the food is good ol’ Bahamian down home cooking. This must read like an advertisement and that’s really not my intention. Next time I go to Long Island, I’d love have it all to myself. But if you do go, my favorite place to stay is Winter Haven, in Clarence Town. A rental car may be included in the room rate, which allows you to travel from one end of the island to the other. On your way to Sheep Beach, don’t forget to stop by the Goat Pond Bar and say hello to Suzanne for me.