MANGROVE CAY CLUB
The Mangrove Cay is in between North Andros and South Andros and is surrounded by the waters of the Bights. These bights are wide and meandering waterways that bisect Andros from east to west.
The Bights, known as the North, Middle and South Bight are themselves dotted with countless uninhabited cays and islets with shallow shores. One huge flat on the West Side of Andros Island “The Land of the Giants” has incredible numbers of very large fish that can be found on a consistent basis.
Mangrove Cay Club is located on the north shore of Mangrove Cay, and is smack in the middle of the best bonefish habitat on Andros. You have access to the North, Middle and South Bights, the eastern flats and the West Side of Andros, all without ever having to trailer a boat or taking a bone crushing ride in the open ocean.
Beginning saltwater anglers can be as much at home here as more experienced anglers. There was a time when most Andros guides believed the job was done when fish were spotted and pointed out. Mangrove Cay Club guides are not only able to put you on fish, but also guide you into hooking and landing the bonefish.
They are full-time professional guides who will make sure your days on the water are fun, safe, and educational. They have celebrated many first bonefish and many of the biggest bonefish ever taken.
Combining the guides, a vast fishing area, great meals, clean accommodations, and there is no better place to fish in the Bahamas.
At a Glance
Location: Mangrove Cay, Andros Island, Bahamas
Target Fish: Bonefish, Barracuda, Tarpon, Permit, Snapper
Time of Year: October - June
Lodge Capacity: 16 guests
Nearest Airport: Nassau International Airport (NAS)
Documents Required: Passport valid for at least 6 months beyond travel dates and with two blank, unstamped pages remaining.
The club’s unique location provides water access to mile after mile of prime bonefish water without ever having to trailer a boat or take a rough boat ride in the open ocean. You have access to all of the waters of the Bights, the eastern flats and the remote and legendary West Side.
It is widely known that bonefish follow the tides, using them to feed in shallow water. Tides on Andros behave in an odd way that works to an advantage. When the tide is low and rising on the east side, it is high and falling on the west side and vice versa.
This gives the guides the advantage of being able to move through the Bights all day, never leaving you sitting on a shoreline waiting for the tide to “be right”. Wow! This means there is no tide or moon phase that cannot be successfully fished at Mangrove Cay Club.
Andros bonefish are plentiful and average 3 to 5 pounds with regular appearances of fish 6 to 10 pounds. Several 11, 12 and 13 pound fish are landed every season. Daily recorded statistics prove that the waters just minutes away from the lodge are equally productive in both size and numbers. In fact, some of the largest fish have been taken within sight of the Mangrove Cay Club just across the Bight around Big Wood Cay and Moxey Creek.
Bonefish are seen in schools of anywhere from a few fish to very large numbers, often in the hundreds. Large fish tend to travel in singles and doubles although they can hang out in large schools with smaller fish.
The Bights and West Side of Andros have soft bottoms and are best fished from the bow of the skiff. Wading is done on hard, sandy bottomed flats which are all located on the eastern shores and the south west of Andros.
The lodge has boat access to the North, Middle and South Bights, the north and south West Side, the eastern flats and the Southwest cays of Andros. They are frequently asked if guides are assigned to certain areas to fish. The answer is no – the area is so vast there is no need for this restriction.
Your assigned guide will choose the flats you will fish from an almost unlimited number of options and his choices are based on tides, wind, weather. If you have a preference of which type of fishing you prefer (wading or boat fishing), you should let both your guide and management know before you go out so your guide can plan accordingly.
Guides are rotated during your stay, and you can generally expect a new guide to be assigned to you every third fishing day. The rotation is a good way to match guides with guests and provides the opportunity to enjoy old favorites, as well as learn from different guides during your week.
Most fishing is done from the bow of the boat giving you and your guide the elevation to see fish and the mobility to move from flat to flat.
For some anglers, wading is the preferred option. It may be your choice to wade alone or with your guide. Let your guide know, and he can plan to include as much or as little wading in your day as you desire.
Occasionally, wind can make fishing from the boat impractical and even getting to the flats uncomfortable. On these days, the lodge has the option of using The Big Boat (a 26’ twin hull with twin 150 hp engines) as a ferry to transport you and guides to lee shores and creeks for wading.
This program has saved the day when other anglers and lodges were resigned to a good book or a day at the tying table. These ventures can be very satisfying – in February of this year an 11# bonefish was caught, minutes from the lodge on a day that most lodges could not even get to the flats
Southwest Side of Andros – Wading Trips
Under the right conditions, they also use The Big Boat for transport to the remote and seldom fished Southwest Side of Andros. The area is a vast collection of hard bottom and sandy flats that are home to huge schools of bonefish.
The boat is operated by Captain Johnny Green and you are dropped off with your guide to wade the flats. Johnny stays with the boat and can be summoned to move you from flat to flat.
Because of the expense involved, we do charge extra for use of the Big Boat for long trips to the southwest side of Andros. The rate is a surcharge of $650, which can be split between 1 to 6 anglers.
Fishing off of the Dock
Many guests enjoy fishing off the dock at night. Shark visit the area around the dock in front of the lodge on a regular basis. There are many hook ups and some landings of bulls, black tips, lemons and nurse sharks. The lodge baits up heavy spinning reels with chunks of fish, cast it out and let it sit. You can watch the sharks searching for the bait. When they pick it up, the fight is on. The lodge supplies the spinning gear, hooks, bait and wire leaders. If a long day on the flats is not enough fishing for you, you can continue to fish from the lodge late into the night.
Andros Island is a marine wonderland. In addition to the bonefish, there are Tarpon, Permit, and a wide variety of flats fish such as snappers, jacks, and barracuda on the flats. Anglers are encouraged to spend some time chasing these fish during their week at Mangrove.
Tarpon are not present in area waters on a regular basis, but certainly appear at times. They range in size from 20 lbs to 200 lbs. Tarpon are the largest, strongest, and most acrobatic of flats fish. Even juvenile fish will put your angling skills to the test and strain your tackle. We highly recommend having a rod set up for Tarpon each day as the moment of opportunity does not last long.
Permit are seen on occasion. They are by far the most difficult, picky and frustrating fish you will encounter on the flats. Permit are very finicky about what they eat. They will often charge your fly, only to stop at the last moment and refuse it.
When you are presenting the fly, focus first and foremost on landing your fly near the fish and getting the slack out of your line. If the fish appears interested do nothing but let him eat. If the fish doesn’t seem to be reacting move your fly slightly. If he doesn’t see the fly cast again.
Barracuda are at the top of the food chain, and these flats predators offer some outstanding action on a fly or lure. They will strike anything that darts away from them in an injured manner. When hooked, they are some of the fastest and most powerful fish to be taken on light-tackle.
Andros also has good off-shore fishing available for Mahi-Mahi, Wahoo, and Tuna. If you would like to try some off-shore fishing, let us know and we will arrange it if conditions allow.
Mangrove Cay Club was designed to raise the bar on the level of comfort offered by a bonefishing lodge and have achieved a vision of “having it all”. The best access to an amazing fishery, a beautiful setting, comfortable accommodations, excellent food, attentive staff, professional guides, equipment that works and on site management.
The four spacious duplex cottages were designed for privacy and minimal intrusion from neighbors. The main lodge was designed for conviviality. All of the buildings are divided by a thick growth of trees and shrubs for privacy, connected by pathways and surrounded by meticulously landscaped lawns and flowerbeds.
Each of the four bungalows is divided into two suites, separated by a thick soundproof wall. The eight suites all have high cypress ceilings and a bedroom, a sitting room, an oversized bathroom and a private porch overlooking the Middle Bight. Access to the porch is through sliding glass doors from the bedroom, where two queen size beds face the sea. They can accommodate a maximum of 16 guests, a comfortable number to ensure high quality service and management’s personal attention.
It is a short walk to the main lodge. As you enter through the front door, there is a small shop and office to the right. Here you will find telephones and a laptop computer with wireless high speed Internet for your use.
The rest of the lodge is open with a large bar and sitting area at one end and the dining area and entrance to the kitchen at the other. There are also bathroom facilities for men and women. The dining area opens out on to a large veranda overlooking Middle Bight followed by a few steps down to the patios and a few more steps down to the attractive wooden dock. This dock is where guests are picked up by the guides each morning and dropped off in the afternoon, and where many evenings are spent fishing for sharks.
At the west end of the property there is a small sand beach. A jetty, built of native limestone is the best place on the property to practice a few casts. The chairs and lounges in the thatch roof gazebo at the other end of the seawall is the place to watch the spectacular sunset at the end of a day of adventure.
The lodge is one of the finest facilities in the Bahamas and is immaculately maintained by Liz and Alton Bain. They are part owners of the operation and their attention to detail is evident throughout the property. It is a wonderful place to relax after a great day on the water.
The kitchen is well stocked with a variety of fresh, fine quality food, and supplies. Most dinner menus are based on fresh local seafood. Commercial fishermen really do pull up at the dock with their fresh catch to allow the chef to make his selections. Lobster, grouper, snapper and conch all make regular appearances.
Healthy style cooking is practiced, such as limiting fried foods, serving mostly seafood grilled or poached, and using only fresh fruits and vegetables. They also offer classic cuisine, Bahamian favorites and indulgent deserts.
The dinner menu is posted every morning before you go fishing so that you may request a different entrée if you wish.
Coffee and tea delivery is now available between 6:00 am and 6:15 am. Breakfast begins at 6:30 am with coffee made from freshly ground beans (roasted in Nassau), an assortment of teas, fruit juices, cold cereals, fresh milk, yogurt, fresh fruit and freshly baked pastries (muffins, biscuits, bagels).
Hot breakfasts of eggs, bacon, sausage, grits, pancakes or French toast are served beginning at 7:00 am. Feel free to request anything you like – hot oatmeal or a fruit salad perhaps?
Lunches are packed in coolers of ice and taken out on the boats. Guests are invited to create their own lunches from a selection of breads and rolls, tuna salad, ham, roasted turkey breast, smoked turkey, salami, roast beef, beef bologna, with cheeses, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and onions and of course, peanut butter and jelly.
A fresh green salad is also an option. All are laid out buffet style so you can make your lunch to your preference. Freshly baked cookies, granola bars, potato chips, and fresh fruit complement the selection and make for a great lunch.
Bottled water is packed in your cooler by the guide and soft drinks and cold beer are picked up at the bar. Let the staff know if you would like iced tea or hot coffee on the boat with you.
Snacks are on the bar when you come in from fishing and can be a bowl of mixed nuts, freshly made guacamole with fresh fried tortilla chips and salsa, seasoned potato chips, cheese and fruit plates, pates, crackers and dips or quesadillas.
The bar is well stocked with beer, house and premium wines, quality liquors, liqueurs and sparkling waters. Most beer, wine, liquors, and mixers are complimentary. There is a charge for premium wines and liquors. You are also welcome to bring them with you.
Dinner begins with hors d’oeuvres at cocktail hour, 6:00 pm. Cracked conch, conch fritters, grouper nuggets, stone crab claws, hot lobster dip, crudités and chicken wings are some of the items you will find on the hors d’oeuvres table.
Dinner begins with a salad or a soup. Some of the favorite soups include Bahamian conch chowder, cream of lobster, ginger and carrot. A house salad of crisp greens with a variety of salad vegetables, Caesar, spinach and grilled shrimp salad with mango dressing are some of the salad course offerings.
Seafood entrees are the chef’s specialty. Grilled fish with fettucine, sauteed grouper in lemon broth with risotto, grilled lobster in cognac sauce, and snapper in pineapple sauce are some of the dishes you will see posted on the menu board.
All deserts are homemade. Desserts include killer key lime pie, Grand Marnier soufflé, mango cheesecake, coconut pies, homemade ice cream, and outrageously fudgey brownies served with ice cream and chocolate sauce.
A selection of red and white house wines are poured with dinner and the list includes chardonnays, pinot Grigio, sauvignon blanc, cabernet sauvignon, merlot, shiraz, and pinot noir. You may also choose from the premium wine list.
To get to Mangrove Cay you will need to make travel arrangements to Clarence A. Bain Airport on Mangrove Cay (MYAB) by private charter from Ft. Lauderdale or by commercial flights via Nassau. Once you arrive in Mangrove Cay, you will be met by a representative of the lodge who will transport you to the lodge (a short 15 minute drive). On your departure day you will be driven to the airport according to your flight schedule.
US citizens are required to have a valid passport that does not expire within six months of trips dates. Please be sure that your passport has at least two blank, unstamped pages remaining in back, and that it is not torn, delaminated or damaged in any way.
Per-person Fishing Package Rates for Fall 2019/Winter 2020 Season
Double Occupancy/Shared Guide
7 nights/ 6 days – $5,775
6 nights/ 5 days – $5,100
5 nights/ 4 days – $4,410
4 nights/ 3 days – $3,570
3 nights/ 2 days – $2,675
Included in Rates: Lodging, guided flats fishing, all meals, round trip airport to lodge transfer, room taxes, and beverages including house wines, bar liquors, beer, bottled water, soft drinks.
Not Included in Rates: Air fare; some wines and liquors, gratuities, Bahamian departure tax of $29 where applicable, and items of a personal nature (telephone calls, fly shop purchases, etc.). 7.5% VAT is added to all prices.