Published in the Miami Herald 6/19/2013.
In 1981, I caught and released my first bonefish using spinning gear and a dead shrimp at a remote island fishing lodge off the east end of Grand Bahama Island called the Deep Water Cay. My guide was David Pinder, a polite, soft-spoken resident of nearby McLean’s Town who poled the fiberglass skiff over the flats using a hand-hewn pine bough. The 2½-mile-long island’s lone diesel generator went on the fritz and there was no air conditioning until a repairman flew in from the States. He had to wait until low tide to land his single-engine plane on the dirt air strip. It was July and hot, but I caught and released nine bonefish in three days so I didn’t care. It was fun.
Fast-forward to May 2013: I returned to the Deep Water Cay – now powered by multiple diesel generators and accessible by a paved runway that can handle jets—and released a bonefish on fly rod out of a modern carbon/Kevlar skiff guided by Pinder’s 45-year-old son Joseph. While the elder Pinder, 80, is retired from guiding, his legacy continues: Joseph, another son, William, and a grandson, Omeko, conduct guests on fishing excursions from the resort. And the bonefishing is still bountiful: In 3½ days, guided by William Pinder, Dr. Charles Rosen of Miami Beach released 41 bonefish on fly rod to 7 pounds.