If you have ever stood on the bow of a boat in the tropics scanning for bonefish, tarpon, permit, you know that heart racing, rubbery knee feeling you get when you spot a fish or hear your guide call out, ” fish, 60′ eleven o’clock”. It’s truly a rush like no other in fly fishing. Chasing gar in Virginia will give you that same feeling without actually having to be in the tropics.
If you have either taken smallmouth bass or trout float trips with us or anyone else in the past, gar trips are much different. Although, the boats are the same or similar to the boats we use for all floats and accommodate two anglers, often times only the angler on the bow casts to the fish. Just like flats fishing anglers will take turns on the bow of the boat throughout the day. There are places on some of our gar floats where both anglers getting out of the boat and wading over to the fish is a very effective and exciting way to target them. Gar are often found in pairs and schools. Although, finding one swimming solo is never out of the question.
Gar in general are aggressive and vicious feeders. The fly patterns we use to target these fish produce some very visual and violent strikes. After a hard strip set is when we get the answer to the big unknown? What is this fish going to do? It seems every gar has a different attitude when it comes to the fight. Some really don’t put up much of a fight while others will jump, tail-walk, put you deep into backing, you name it they will do it. There’s only one way to find out. Let’s go set the hook.
Update August 11, 2017. The gar bite is great. Sight fishing couldn’t be better. Water levels in the Rivanna are very low. If you don’t mind getting out of the boat and doing some wading you should be rewarded with some outstanding gar action.
Half day floats start at $275.00
Full day floats start at $350.00
Barracks Road Center
1129 Emmet Street #26
Charlottesville, VA 22903
Mon - Fri 9:00am - 8:00pm
Saturday 9:00am - 6:00pm
Sunday 10:00am - 5:00pm