If Andros Island wasn't surrounded by so many other great bonefishing islands; If, let’s say, the ten other largest islands in the Bahamas did not exist including Abaco, Inagua and Grand Bahama, Andros Island would still qualify the Bahamas as one of the top bonefishing destinations in the world! Andros Island, at approximately 100 by 40 miles, is by far the largest island in the Bahamas. The backcountry of Andros is vast and filled with shallow flats, pale green creeks, mangrove cays and azure cuts.
The history of Andros runs deep. It was on Andros that both the Crazy Charlie and the Gotcha flies were invented and first used. It was at the island’s waist that some of the world’s first bonefish lodges were built. They were built for a good reason because here, smack-dab in the middle of the island, three shallow bights (North, Middle and South Bights) cut through the entire island. These bights create one of the richest bonefish habitats in the world.
If seeking to fish this area of Andros, one of the best spots to be headquartered is near the North Bight. The North Bight encompasses a huge and prolific area in itself, but this bight also gives good access to the productive ocean side flats that run up the east side of Andros and excellent access to the West Side. In this area, beginners can hone their skills on large numbers of small to medium-sized fish, but make no mistake, the experts love this area too! Trophy fish are routinely sighted making the greater North Bight area absolutely one of the best spots in the Bahamas to catch a double-digit bonefish.
We feel the best choice for anglers seeking to fish the North Bight area is with Big Charlie’s Guest House. Co-owner Charlie Neymour comes from a family of bonefish guides. This pedigree combined with a tremendous amount of experience has made Charlie one of the best and most requested guides on Andros. In 2009, Charlie Neymour and his wife Fatiha moved their lodge operations from Behring Point to this new facility in Cargill Creek. In addition to Charlie, his hand-picked team of guides is one of the best guide cadres in all of the Bahamas. From this new location, you can still fish the North Bight and the ocean side flats on the east side of Andros, but now in more comfort and with more amenities.
In addition, one of the main reasons to fish out of the North Bight is to get the chance to visit the uninhabited West Side of the island. If you’re willing to make a skiff run of a bit over an hour, the West Side still remains a wild place with lightly pressured flats and large populations of relatively uneducated fish. As we always say, “Good guides and stupid fish are a great combination!”
The West Side of Andros is one of the best “double-digit” areas in the world and is also one of the few destinations in the Bahamas for tarpon. Charlie and his guides are experts on tarpon and love to pursue them. Being positioned where the lodge is and with this cadre of guides, we feel Big Charlie’s is the best choice for those anglers interested in pursuing tarpon... and if you can’t find a ’poon, there are always the big bones! The guides from Big Charlie’s use Maverick and Dolphin skiffs, complete with poling platforms, 90 HP Yamaha outboards, long-range VHS radios, and roomy casting decks.
Big Charlie’s Guest House is located on the banks of Cargill Creek and can accommodate up to eight guests at a time. Each room is equipped with a/c, refrigerator, TV and a private bathroom. The bar area and dining room has a satellite TV and a large patio area overlooking Cargill Creek. Meals are special at Big Charlie’s and a pleasant surprise for many visitors. All meals are prepared by Charlie’s wife and co-host at the lodge, Fatiha Neymour. Fatiha is Moroccon, with a degree in hotel hospitality, so the delicious meals have an international flair and all guest services are top notch.
So, next time you’re thinking of fishing the legendary waters of Andros and want to stay at a smaller lodge where everyone goes out of their way to make you feel like one of the family, Big Charlie’s is the spot for you. Great guides, wonderful meals, comfortable accommodations and personal service are a great combination and at Big Charlie’s, it all comes at a very reasonable price.