Guestbook

Hello Greg,

I truly enjoyed the fine food and service provided by your staff and you during my week on your ship. The offshore fly fishing for pelagic species was an entirely new and exciting experience for me, and it was the highlight of my trip. I am especially grateful for the your gift of the gyotaku tarpon print and your tutorial on making such images. The print will fit in nicely among other fish depictions on the walls of my home. And the print making will be passed on to my grand daughters for the fish they catch in our farm ponds.

Best wishes for good fishing and future prosperity,

Sherwood Chang

Tail end excerpt from a long email to a lot of followers copied to us from Harry Robertson of Hanover fly USA detailing his partys trip to join us…….Courteous friendly cairns airport staff and away we went. All the stuffing putting the fear into us about overweight was unrealistic, I realize that has to do with whom you deal on a given day... arrival after the restful and pleasant peek at the GBR for two hours and a timely efficient arrival and loading for the trip to our ship. He fit so well into the program I though Greg Bethune was a luggage handler...more about this Prince of a man later.

Ah, there she rocking at the pier...a general quietness as well all had misgivings about the ships size...boats can fool you when well designed as this one was. We were assigned quarters and told about the safety measures, met the crew and our mother hen, Naomi, and settled in for the voyage as planned. Gene and I are portly and I am being careful with the wording here. We could enter and use our stateroom one at a time or shoulder to shoulder but never pass each other without first alerting the coastguard in case the hull split.

The low point and high point of the trip were at dining tables. (apparently some upset at a Cairns restaurant explained in un related text earlier in this document .Greg) This will be my most long report and will have follow ups but Judd the chef was a five star find...what he wrought from the small well designed galley. He walked about with jumper cable combed(?) hair with a razor wit and ever-present smile. Then seemingly undaunted by the numbers he must satisfy, put on a dew-rag or do-rag (spelling?) from the survivor program on TV and orchestrate award winning dishes. Greg said he was the best he had ever had and he will be very,very hard if not impossible to replace. This takes an enormous weight off the Capt. when the weather frigs around or the fishing is so so.

The fishing was at about 60 % of what GB expected...lots of Tuna was our call but he said there should be more...the big surprise...Queenies. Took the pressure off the lack of Permit for the most part along with the GTs as you suggested. We saw them occasionally ripping by as is their way. To my knowledge none were cast to. Over fifteen species caught, and yes, I got my Barra and some Queens that were worthy of pictures and all my individuals in the group were all well satisfied.

I have been asked to write an article with details about the fishing for Paul Squires' club and will copy you on that at some point.

Now Greg Bethune aka Cap' Skippy, Rugged movie star good looks, absolutely in charge at all times. Clean well run program well thought through details...a professional in all ways. When we first met upon arrival, loading the gear then casting off I found him a bit aloof and not approachable. Not at all a fair assessment. Always there when needed, can tell a joke with few peers....answered the ubiquitous tour questions pleasantly and complied with almost any detail of a request. I would join him anywhere...anytime. We talked about a rather on the edge adventure to you know where and we will see to details and cost and be in touch... I will appraise you.

This report done in all candor will only be sent to a few...general stuff to individuals I will copy as I see interest. Ken Korth,

Thanks team, very well done in all respects.

Harry aka El Gitano

Greg, David and Peter I've just been going through the photos of the trip and wanted to thank you all for making it so enjoyable.
Many of the photos are truly outstanding and capture the memories.
I've also realized just how remote the locations were: Google maps doesn't even have names for some of the rivers we moored at!

Hello All,
just a short message to let you know that we had a long but safe trip home !
Thank you very much for the great week we had with you guys, we'll definitly come back maybe next year on a great barrier reef trip this time !!! And I hope I'll send you some crazy french men as clients in the future.
We keep in touch for all,
best regards,
Herl

GREG,
GDAY I ARRIVED IN ABERDEEN WEDNESDAY MORNING 3DEGREE AND SNOW.
WOULD JUST LIKE TO SAY THANKS TO YOU AND YOUR CREW FOR MAKING OUR TRIP
TO THE REEF VERY ENJOYABLE. LOOK FORWARD TO 2012. GOT MY ROD REPLACED NO PROBLEM,
ONCE AGAIN MY THANKS TO EVERYONE FOR ANOTHER MAGNIFICENT TRIP
VERY BEST REGARDS
IAN HUNTER

Hello Greg; Our group had the most awesome fishing trip with you.
From booking, to flights, to get on board, everything was running like a fine tuned Swiss clock!!
Tropic Paradise left a most wonderful memory with us.
We all had a most exciting and fabulous fishing experience. Catching such a diversity of different species; to be part of a most pristine marine ecosystem is unforgettable and like a dream.
The delicious food served was a daily feast. Thank you Naomi, you outdid yourself!!
We all loved your great hospitality and your lovely smile.
Because of you Greg, each one of us never felt any pressure or discomfort; your total operation each day from morning to night is a great credit to you. You made this happen, you made all of us happy. Best fishing vacation ever - we'll do this again on the Great Barrier Reef with YOU. To you our very best wishes; the same to the crew.
0n the next full moon remember us - we were with you on the last one.
Have a splendid day.

morning Greg,
Trevor Costa from Environment (SEWPaC) asked that I pass on to you, and I quote "their appreciation for a job well done and for the generation of such a clear and concise report". Hopefully no more nets.......
John Marrington
Manager - Foreign Compliance Operations Torres Strait
Australian Fisheries Management Authority
Thursday Island QLD

7th April 2008

From the first e-mail contact, through booking, hotel arrangements, travel provision and pick up prior to boarding the excellent Tropic Paradise, Greg’s operation was characterized by a smooth, friendly efficiency seldom encountered in an increasingly impersonal world. Once aboard it became obvious that this philosophy continued into the actual fishing operation, with great food and living quarters and a warm welcome extended to both myself and my (non-fishing) wife. The fishing itself was nothing short of spectacular --- there is no hype attached to the claims made about it --- and it was enhanced by expert, patient and knowledgeable guides who bent over backwards to ensure that above all their 'guests' had FUN. I cannot recommend Carpentaria Seafaris highly enough. If you want fishing at its best --- go. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0m235WPMOc Bill and Isobel Macdonald, Aberdeen Scotland

To Greg and the Seafaris crew on the superb "Tropic Paradise", that was a fantastic week. There's not another mother shipping operation in the country that comes close to what you guys are doing, ESPECIALLY from the perspective of a fly fisherman. From the SUPERB meals, the fishing boats, the guides, and Alison's endless smiles, it was just brilliant. See you next year and every year after that!! Peter Morse

"This is my favourite trip on the planet... for me, it just doesn't get any better!" — Steve Starling, Fishing Writer & TV Presenter

Australia's Gulf of Carpentaria offers profound angling opportunities for both light tackle and fly anglers. The area is remote, pristine and loaded with exciting game fish; and booking a trip with Greg Bethune's Carpentaria Seafaris aboard the Mother Ship, Tropic Paradise is the only way to go in my experience. In all my years as a fishing writer, traveling to angling Mecca's world-wide, nothing has yet topped my trips with Carpentaria Seafaris, from action to service – the boat, the crew, the concept are hands down, the best on the planet! - Dan Blanton, Editor-at-Large Fly Fishing in Salt Waters Magazine; Fly Fisherman Magazine; publisher/host of www.danblanton.com – Fly Fishing – Panfish to Billfish

"Unbelievable", "ridiculous", "this is fly fishing heaven", "surely it cant get any better than this" are just some of the things you will find yourself saying as you experience the awesome fishing of this remote location. The diversity of bluewater, flats and river fishing in a single day combined with superb mothership accommodation, food and service provides an unsurpassed experience that has me coming back year after year. Mike 'Felty' Felton

10th May 2006

Hi Greg, Phil, George, Bubbles, Brian, Alli & Al,

Just wanted to drop you all a line to say thanks for the most amazing holiday experience of our lives. Extreme fishing in every sense of the word....sharks, crocs, cyclones, fish everywhere, exploding rods, awesome scenery, incredible food (including the best cheesecake I've ever eaten and I've eaten some good ones), laughs, excitement. The fishing was pretty good too!!
A particular thankyou to George and Peter for always finding something new and exciting around every corner. Also a big thankyou to Al for some great flyfishing advice for an 'agricultural' flyfisher more used to trout and 4 weight rods, even though he was off-duty. 6 days of fishing... around 120 fish between Sharyn and I.... 28 different species. The next trick is to slot another trip into a schedule that includes a promise of Disneyland to the kids!!
Many, many thanks and may your amazing jewel of Cape York long remain hidden and unspoiled.
Cheers, Tony

PS. As part of Phil's I.T. training, look up Google Earth on the internet if you haven't done so already....you'll get an amazing view of where you work.


2005

Hi Greg,

Just want to say that I had an awesome trip the other week with Pat and the Compleat Angler Crew. Everything about the trip was unreal. Not only the fishing, but the food, the boats, the crew, the location... everything. We caught more than I ever imagined and it exceeded my expectations by so much.
I showed the video and photos to some mates last weekend and one of the guys dads has booked a trip with you and is coming up in a few weeks. He couldn't believe that the fishing was that good. I've been checking out the website thinking about the barrier reef trip and have decided that I have to be there for it. The fishing looks ever better than the west coast. Pat tells me there are still places left and said that they've all booked and will pay at this season's price. If I book and send my deposit this week, can I still get on at this seasons price too? Thanks mate, I look forward to hearing from you.

Regards,
Murray Cassar

Greg,

Just a quick note to say how much we enjoyed the trip. Your team where the best combination of professional and friendly with Johns cooking lifting the trip from excellent to amazing.
You sell the trip as the best weeks fishing on the planet and it is hard to disagree. I suspect we may have to come back as we have now been spoilt for the rest of the world.

Best regards,
Danny and Ben Broughton

Dear Greg and crew of the Tropical Paradise,

Just wanted to let you all know that we made it home to Germany safely.
We are still trying to get back to our normal routine which of course is somewhat hard after such a wonderful experience. As I said this is definitely the best and most exciting trip I have done so far and I am sure we'll see you back on board of the Tropical Paradise again for a return trip.
As to Géza pics look great and we have enough good material for two articles. Should you need any pics for your website please let me know and I'll forward you a PDF with a selection of the pics. you could choose the ones you need then and I'll email them to you asap.
May we also express our thanks to your excellent crew which added to the success of this trip no end. Jade did an excellent job with the food, Phil and Jaryd were some of the best guides and guys I have ever fished with (went to great lengths to ensure we caught some fish with our modest skills; not often that a guide drives you with enthusiasm to a tarpon hole after a 11 hour day... says a lot about their attitude!!) and it was a joy to see the enthusiasm Nina has for fishing and living her dream.
Hope you'll be able to put up with more Germans in the future.
All the best, thanks a lot and see you all!!

Marcus and Géza

Dear Greg, Jenny and crew

Thank you so much for the wonderful trip again this year, Each year seems to get better than the last. You all put in so much hard work for us guests and it is very much appreciated. Thank you all once again for putting up with this old pommey and his lousy sense of humor. See you next year.

Ben

Hello Greg,
I wanted to thank you before too much time went by for the week out east in the GBR. As Stephane would say ... “was wonderful, wonderful” Not only was the fishing great, the food superb and the organisation faultless, but the company of both the staff and the other guests was truly outstanding. I really had a terrific time and would not hesitate in re-booking. If you are considering the trip with Stephane in March ’06 out to Ashmore etc.. I would be more than happy to be a part of it.
Please keep me informed and let me know what you need from me regarding deposits, commitments etc... Please thank and pass on my warmest regards to John, Gary and the lads.

All the best,
Malcolm Crane

8th December 2004

Dear Greg, Jen,& Crew......

Finally back in the states and back HOME in Oregon Slammin Salmon !! After have having FISHED (2) OUTSTANDING trips with you this past May of 2004....I have been BLESSED, and have fished for 40 years as a GUIDE and OUTFITTER on 5 continents and many islands around the globe.. Your Carpentaria SEAFARIS trip is absolutely FIRST CLASS !! From Outstanding FOOD to Oustanding FISHING, you and the crew are true professionals, and I would recommend this trip as high as they come (perfect10).

Warmest Regards,
MIKE MORRIS

22nd September 2004

Dear Greg,

The memory of our wanderful holiday with you on Tropic Paradise is so alive! It looks like it will never ever fade away. I and my son (Fabio Elia, 14 years old) were expecting a lot from this fly-fishing holiday, more than 48 hours trip away from Italy. We have been fly-fishing in salt waters in countries like Belize, Mexico, Cuba and Seychelles - and fresh waters in many other countries like Argentina, Kola Peninsula, Mongolia and several European places - but we were spoiled by this experience! How could we imagine that we were going to catch Queenfishes in the early morning, three different kind of Tunas in the late morning, Permits at noon, Queenfishes, Giant Herrings, Mangrove Jacks and Barramundies in the afternoon, and Tarpons in the evening!!! All in one single day! How do you call this? An Indo-Pacific Grand Grand Grand Slam? How could I expect tha Grazia (my wife) and Gaia Camilla (our 11 years old daughter), without even trying to catch a single fish in their life before, were having a lot of fun fishing in your beatiful rivers, sight seeing, bird and wild-life watching, feeding the huge cods and sharks under the boat, shell collecting on the endless beaches, tasting the beauty of nature at sunset and walking with you in the bush, eating at the wanderful dinner tables set by cook Adam (oh yes this Adam fits well in your Tropic Paradise! Don't let him be tempeted by any Eve!)! Now we all feel as if we have reached the top and from now on it will all be a descent. I think this holiday should not become a term of comparison otherwise every other experience will be inevitably impoverished. It must and deserve to stand as THE unique fly-fishing week everyone can expect. We hope you and your government will be able to preserve the immense beauty of this pristine natural environment, we hope all the fishermen and visitors will understand that a place like this must be handled with extreme care and much love so that our actions will damage it as little as possible preserving it for the future. I and Fabio Elia say special thanks to Philip and Indo-pacific Permits; Grazia and Gaia Camilla say special thanks to Emily and her great company. We all say special thanks to you, Adam and your staff. Let us dream about joining you again in the next future.

Tanti carissimi baci Claudio, Grazia, Gaia Camilla, Fabio Elia Your italian friends.

Fishing Trip #417 August 18 - August 25 2004



25th November 2002

Dear Greg, Jenny, Phil, Zatch and Emily

Thank you for a truly memorable holiday - the more I think about it the better it gets. Dreamt all last night catching fish from the back deck of Tropic Paradise (which I never did) It really was a weird sensation as the end of the bed was the deck and the window past it was the water. And the fish just kept coming - it felt very real and I woke up exhausted. Thinking about highlights for me. The morning off the river catching the bludger trevally followed by barra off the beach, huge crocs in the sea, beautiful flocks of birds, sunsets and others too numerous to mention. Enjoy your well earned rest

Sincerely
Ann



28th September 2002Greg - just wanted to drop a note to say thanks so much for a wonderful trip. Lori and I agreed that this was the "trip of our lives" - it would have been near impossible for us to have any better of a time. You and your team (Jenny, Emily, Zach and Phil) were tremendous hosts, and The Tropic Paradise was beyond our expectations for function and comfort - we were both amazed that 17 people could be on a boat that size for a week and never feel cramped or crowded. The fishing, of course, was unlike anything we've previously experienced - I think we accounted for upwards of 20 species between the two of us. More impressive in my mind, though, was the operation itself. Your experience in running these live-aboard trips really shows in the details - it's clear that you have spent a lot of time thinking through how to make this a trip full of lasting memories for your clients. The food (The Food!), the videos that are carefully shot to capture the experience, the impression-print you made for Lori of her Tarpon - all exclamation points on a truly unique and first-rate fishing experience! Thanks again, and please pass on our regards to the crew - we will be back!

Sincerely,

Greg Smith
Chicago, IL USA

 

Have a look at what one happy customer put up on his personal site.

"It's the fishing trip you will never forget"  



29th May 2002Good morning Joseph.

We just loved our trip on the wonderful Tropic Paradise. For us Kiwis it offered opportunities that are not available in our part of the world and your team certainly provided the experience in style. The whole package gave us everything we could have wanted on a fishing holiday(or any holiday in terms of comfort and good food)Greg Jenny and Zatch were great hosts. Our friends have been very impressed with the look of the vessel (took lots of photos of the TP as well as the fish)and the style of fishing ...having the use of the dinghy to go off and do your own thing with or with out a guide in the river or outside in the ocean. Clint was thrilled with the opportunity to catch Tuna and Saratoga on the fly. In fact he had a ball with his fly rod and got to catch something on every piece of equipment we had taken I just loved the fishing too but the most important thing for me was not being seasick so I could enjoy every minute of the trip. Now I know we have to be in Astralia in June 2003 do you have a trip running 21/05/03 to 28/05/03. Can you let us Know about availability "Take me to Tropic Paradise" Thanks for your part in making the whole operation work. We look forward to hearing from your again.

Cheers Brenda & Clint

18 December 2001Dear Greg and Jenny,

The time spent on your terrific boat was simply unforgettable. It was the most exciting fishing experience I've ever had. Each day was filled with great adventure and astonishing scenery. You truly live and work in one of the most beautiful regions on earth.

Much is said about the fantastic fishery that you are able to access for your clients and rightfully so. The fishing is magnificent. But is was your super efforts that made my trip so special. Both of you helped me feel so welcome. I really appreciate the opportunity to have met both of you and anxiously await the next trip with Carpenteria Seafaris.

Best Regards,
Kennedy Fung

10 August 2001Greetings Greg and Jennie from old John. Firstly, thanks to you both for topping up my memory bank with a heap of beautiful memories for me to re-live in the years ahead. As an 83 year old geriatric with a wonky knee I owe you a special debt. A concern that I could be a burden to you and others on board troubled me at the outset but, if you ever felt that, it never showed. Nevertheless, I was aware and very much appreciated the extra attention I received now and then, like Jennie's concern that I should protect my crook knee when climbing over the ship's rail and down onto the fishing launch.

I congratulate you both on the splendid enterprise you've built. The organization impressed me greatly -- no fuss, no pressure ; everything one could hope for just happened perfectly, as though it wasn't organized at all. The fishing, one could only have dreamed about. Then there was the pleasure of bonding for a week with a small group of very nice people in the appealing atmosphere of isolation from the rest of he world And the food... that was a real surprise. I didn't have any expectations about it, only that we would be well fed. The reality was that it was some of the best food I've ever eaten. The wonderful taste of Lobster Lasagne, the sushimi and the image of a table piled high with an endless supply of perfectly prepared mud crabs will stay with me forever.

I hope your future plans for Seafaris are fully realized and I wish you both good health and happiness in the years ahead. Once again, thanks for a great trip -- for me, the experience of a lifetime.

John Whalan

13 July 2001

Dear Greg and Jenny,It is difficult to reduce to writing the experience we had on our recent trip on the Capricorn Mist.I have fished most of my life, have my own boat and have been lucky enough to travel far and wide in the pursuit of all manner of piscatorial quarry.Prior to our trip with you, I expected a lot, both from my reading of the Cape York area and reviews of your operation in particular. Quite simply, the reality far exceeded all expectations at all levels. Statistics tell only part of the story - over 40 different species of fish between 4 of us with most of us catching well over 30 different species each. We lost count of the number of fish caught before noon on the first day! But it was the quality and diversity of the fishing that is the real story. Catching longtail tuna, huge trevally, monster queenfish and mackerel in the morning, coral trout, red emperor and fingermark at midday, barramundi, mangrove jack and tarpon in the early afternoon and into the freshwater for saratoga in the late afternoon. All on either a 6kg baitcasting rig or 2kg spin rig and all on lures or flies!The breakfasts, lunches and dinners were unbelievable - the quality of the food and cooking was first class and completely unexpected. Fresh crayfish lasagne, just caught spanish mackerel and large mouth nannigai, homemade sushi rolls, rib eye steak and the best meal I've ever had in my life - Greg's chilli mud crab claws (all 40 of them!)But it was not just the fishing nor the food that made it so special. Your hospitality, friendship and operational prowess. The 300 1b cod living under the boat. The sunrises and sunsets. The beautiful estuary and river systems. The comfort and functionality of the Capricorn Mist. The crocodiles, sea eagles, dolphins and wild boar. The stars at night - I could go on forever.Highlights - there were many and each day brought a new adventure. But, for me was the longtail tuna on 2kg, the saratoga, the sightfishing for permit (one of which my brother caught on the first day!), the fact I could use 6kg or less the whole trip (and the wonderful bruises and aches associated with doing that for 8 days), the extraordinary fighting qualities of every fish, large and small, your excellent company and, of course, the mud crab mayhem!Really it was not a fishing trip, it was a five star adventure of a lifetime and an experience that will live with me for the rest of my days.Thank you.I unreservedly recommend this trip to anyone, whether an experienced or inexperienced angler, whether male or female and of whatever age.

Tony Rein


"I've been fortunate enough to fish some of the world's finest waters. I've caught Atlantic salmon on Russia's Kola Peninsula, steelhead in British Columbia, bonefish at Christmas Island and giant bluefin tuna off Nova Scotia. Yet there's one destination - and one charter operation - I return to year after year without fail. That place is the north western coastline of Australia's remote Cape York wilderness, and the operation is Greg and Jennie Bethune's 'Carpentaria Seafaris'… As far as I'm concerned, there is no better nor more consistent sport fishing to be found on this planet!"

Steve Starling, Fishing Writer & TV Presenter


"Excellent fishing and great company, the best trip I've been on"

Jim Harnwell, Editor Fishing World Magazine


"The best weeks fishing in tropical Australia"

Jim Allen, Owner of The Complete Angler chain of stores


"Best value, best quality fishing trip in the world, I'll be back next year, for the ninth time "

Sydney businessman & world traveling angler Ernie Allen


"We have filmed over 30 stories in the last 5 years. Greg and Jennie's professional, first class operation is second to none. The fishing is fantastic and we never leave empty handed, we will keep coming back"

Mike Dickinson, Producer Rex Hunt Fishing Adventures.


"An unbelievable experience! The diversity and quality of the fly fishing in these unspoilt waters has to be seen to be believed. Every day produced big fish and memorable moments. Greg and Jenny run a great operation and worked exceptionally hard to make our week aboard "Capricorn Mist" the success that it was."

Mike Felton, Felty's fly's and reels

May 11, 2001

The Angling Report
9300 S. Dadeland Blvd.
Suite 605
Miami, FL 33156-2721Gentlemen:I have just returned from probably the most incredible fishing trip that is available in the world. The trip is on a 40 foot Troller with a flying bridge, which can comfortably accommodate six anglers, the captain and his wife or a total of 8 people. Minorly cramped, but certainly doable.I have fished around the world and this is, by far, the best fishing that I have ever experienced or that anyone will ever experience.The variety of places to fish, the variety of fish, the ability to fish out of the wind, because you are on the west side of the Bay of Carpentaria where the prevailing wind is from the east and therefore you are protected, makes every day marvelously fun.Without reservation, without hesitation, I would recommend this trip to anyone who is willing to do the two days of flying to get to a virgin part of the world, which is still undiscovered.If I can supply other information, please do not hesitate but to let me know. I am also aware that of the 19 weeks that Seafaris charters for next year, seven or eight are already booked.Warmest regards,

David B. Heller

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