MRU - Mauritius
October to mid December -
Early April to early June
8 guests on board per trip
Bonefish, Indo Pacific Permit…
Cargados Carajos Shoals (also known as the Saint Brandon Rocks) are a group of about 50 small islands and islets on an extended reef in the Indian Ocean, Northeast of Mauritius, the islands have a total land area of 1.3 km². The reef measures more than 50 km from north to south, and is 5 km wide, cut by three passes. The reef area is 190 km². The islands are classified as a dependency of Mauritius, which is more than 300 km south, and are administered from Port Louis.
Bonefish, Indo Pacific Permit, GT’s. This is a fantastic large bonefish oriented destination and the other species, while often plentiful, are to be considered a bonus and cannot be guaranteed.
SEASON OF OPERATION
Due to seasonality and weather, the fishing season is split in two: From early October until mid-December and from early April to early June.
ARRIVAL AND DEPARTURE LOGISTICS
This is a 9 day trip on board the MY Gryphon Mothership. There are 12 daily international flights into Mauritius and because of the early 7 am departure schedule, all guests will need to fly into Mauritius the day before the MY Gryphon is scheduled to depart. On the way out it is possible to fly out the day you get back to port, so long as it’s a late afternoon or evening flight. The airport is a 45 minute drive from Port Louis, where the MY Gryphon is moored and all guests will need to be on board at least 30 minutes prior to the 7 am departure. Once all guests are on board and settled into their cabins, the MY Gryphon will steam in a north east direction for 24 hours, until it reaches the Cargados Carajos Shoals (St. Brandon’s) early the next morning. Please note that the only way to get to St Brandon’s is via the Mothership as there are no airstrips on any of the islands at the St Brandon’s Atoll. The Gryphon has stabilizers that greatly reduce the roll and the trip up and back is both relaxing and comfortable. Upon arrival, guests will have a full 7 days to explore and fish this incredible ecosystem.
The Gryphon is a 96ft motor yacht with a 23ft beam and a 7.5ft draft catering for long range expeditions. She can accommodate up to 8 fly fishermen, 4 guides, as well as a crew of 5 who cater for your every need. A large and spacious vessel boasting two stabilisers which make her extremely stable, she has a top speed of 13 knots. She is very comfortable and the perfect base with which to explore St Brandon’s in comfort. It would be difficult to find a better boat from which to do the crossing as she has all the extras like a TV, DVD player and card table to help pass the time. The Gryphon is a three level vessel which offers 4 spacious guest cabins situated at the aft of the lower deck. Each has a spacious en-suite shower, basin and flushing toilet. All cabins and indoor dining or entertainment areas are fully air conditioned, allowing guests a chance to relax in a comfortable environment after a long day’s fishing out on the flats. On the mid deck she is spacious and boasts separate salon, dining area and aft seating area all with a magnificent view of the surroundings. This area is perfect for dining, sundowners and general relaxing. The stem of the vessel has a set of stairs leading down to the aft deck which is perfect to fish from. This feature also allows for a safe and comfortable transfer from the tender boats to the main vessel. All meals are served in the dining room or aft deck with the chef preparing a mix of Creole and international food. Although the Gryphon does have a selection of wine and spirits on board for sale, we do however recommend all clients bring there own bottle of preferred spirits as we cannot guarantee availability at the time of your trip. All mineral water, soft drinks and local beers are included in the price of the trip.
Angling capacity is 8 guests on board per trip
St Brandon’s (Cargados Carajos Shoals) is comprised of a vast network of sand flats, coral ridges and channels that run through a myriad of unparalleled angling opportunities. The magnificent condition of the coral and the lobster infested outer reefs is proof that other than a small population of Creole natives who live on Raphael Island in the north, this area has seen very little human pressure and interference.
The exquisite flats that dominate the landscape of this area are predominantly made up of a white hard packed sand base. For those who like to wade and site cast to large bonefish in skinny water, there are few more gratifying fisheries on earth. While there are fishable areas at St. Brandon’s that are comprised of broken coral, by far the majority of the atoll is easy to wade. First light brings new opportunities and the entire operation on board the Gryphon is geared towards getting up early and getting out on the first time. Most guests prefer to spend the entire day out on the flats, fishing whatever options present themselves. This means bringing a packed lunch when guests leave the mothership in the morning. However, if guests would prefer to head back to the Gryphon to relax and get out of the mid day sun in an air-conditioned environment, we can set it up so that one or more of the tenders head back to the ship for lunch. It’s entirely up to our guests. The fishing schedule for the next day is established the night before, when the clients and guides will discuss angling priorities, tides, weather, and other factors that may influence the following day’s fishing.
In terms of species, St Brandon’s offers the finest big bonefish opportunities that we know of. Fish up to 15 pounds have been caught during the last year with larger fish routinely seen and cast to. On an early incoming tide, guests can expect to see a combination of huge schools of bonefish, along with large cruising singles and doubles. The hard packed white sand flats offer superb visibility and anglers can see waves of bonefish and other species coming in from a great distance away. Aside from the consistently outstanding big bonefish opportunities that St Brandon’s offers, this remote location also offers anglers perhaps the finest Indo-Pacific Permit fishing on the planet. Also known as “Golden Permit”, these notoriously finicky eaters are found throughout the atoll and if guests are willing to specifically target them, multiple shots at these beautiful fish are generally available each day.
GT’s or “Geets” are also a common occurrence at St. Brandon’s but fishing for this powerful flats adversary can be hit and miss. There are days when you’ll see upwards of 100 GT’s muscling through the shallows and then none for a week or more. When you do find them they are often big and fish over 100 pounds have been recorded. The electric Bluefin Trevally is also available at St Brandon’s and as this species goes, large fish over 20 pounds have been caught several times. Other trevally species that can be encountered on the flats include the Golden, Yellow Dot, and the Green Spotted Trevally.
BOATS AND EQUIPMENT
The Gryphon has four tenders that she travels with on the trip up to St. Brandon’s. These are locally built mono hull 17 foot boats that are powered by twin 15 horse powered 2-stroke engines. These boats are ideal for much of the area at St. Brandon’s because they draw less than a foot of water, allowing guests access to some of the best skinny water sections of the atoll. Each boat is skippered by a qualified guide who has a full skipper’s ticket.
There are a variety of international flights into Mauritius each day from South Africa, Dubai, Europe (London, Paris and Germany) Singapore, Kuala Lampor and the Seychelles. All guests will need to fly in to Mauritius the day before the trip. The MY Gryphon is set to depart the following morning from Port Louis. It is also advisable to fly out the following day, after you’ve returned from St Brandon’s, rather than trying to get out the day you get back. Once everyone is on board the Gryphon, it departs for St. Brandon’s at 7 am. Guests can relax, read, organize equipment and socialize while the yacht steams northeast up the Madagascar Trench on her 24 hour journey to the fabled fishing grounds of the Cargados Carjagos Shoals. Guests can anticipate arriving at St. Brandon’s at approximately 8 am the following morning and should anticipate being ready to fish shortly after arrival.
Slipstream is a full service travel company that can handle international airfare, your accommodations in Mauritius, Global Rescue Emergency Evacuation Policy, travel insurance, as well as a host of other services relating to your trip. Please contact us directly at 1 866 644-7703 if you’d like assistance.
INCLUDED IN PRICE
6,700 EUR per person DBL
NOT INCLUDED IN PRICE
RATES FOR 2016-17