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Is Pink Fluorocarbon Really Better?

Is Pink Fluorocarbon Really Better?

I will tell you right now that I went full-in on Umpqua's Big Game HD Pink fluorocarbon tippet.  I have seen the advertisements and the pictures where you just can't see it once it hits the water.  It looks and is advertised as a bit of a game-changer.  I had to try it.  So I took some to the Bahamas and now twice to Belize.  Here is my experience:

Bahamas.  My fishing guide saw it and said "absolutely no".  I did not fish it.  We used standard clear fluorocarbon and it worked great.  There were a few days where I fished without the guide. The water was super cloudy and I had few shots at bonefish outside of the guide days when he took me to more protected areas where the water was clear.  So while I did fish it, I thought it was interesting that my guide was very against it.  

Belize - Summer 2023.  I used pink fluoro with 2 different guides, almost exclusively targeting permit. One of the guides thought it was pretty neat and the other was not impressed.  Neither of them asked me to change it though.  I had a ton of refusals from permit, but thats what they do.  I did not blame the tippet at the time, but there were about 6 times that my guide said that the permit should have eaten that presentation but didn't (that' also typical).  I should have changed it out on that trip and tried something else.

Belize - February 2024.  My guide from last year was the one that was not impressed with the tippet.  He let me know early on this time. But all he did was ask if I brought another type of tippet when he saw the pink stuff... We pulled into this spot looking for tarpon, but a big school of bonefish came in hot digging in the sand.  These bones should be easy to catch.  Its deep, they can't see us, they never get targeted here and they are digging really hard in the sand.  That means they are not moving away, they are comfortable and they are actively eating.  Its what you are looking for.

One cast right into the middle of the school.  Nothing.  Another cast, nothing.  Switch files, repeat.  Switch flies again, repeat.  This went on for way too long.  My guide looks at me and says "we need to change out that pink tippet".  

We changed to clear tippet, same length of tippet, same diameter of tippet, same fly.  Boom, fish on.  I caught a pile of bonefish for the next hour.  I even changed out the flies to use every one that had just been refused with the pink tippet.  That was enough.  I gave the pink tippet to another angler when I got back to the hotel.  

I am headed back to the Bahamas again this spring and will be only bringing clear tippet....

The author with a Belizean bonefish (caught with clear tippet)

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