It’s UP and DOWN in Guatemala
If you know how to time it, and the rest of the variables that the “Fishing Gods” refer to when deciding whether to make your fishing trip to Guatemala something to remember, then the past few weeks have served you well. Kim Graham and party came down once again and hit the billfish hard – they reported passing landing their 1000th sailfish in Guatemala, so they are both doing it right and timing it well (and of course keeping count accurately!!).
Sure enough, they turned up again just as the moon was turning and had several fun filled days of pretty much nonstop fishing action with fish in the teasers consistently throughout the day. They also managed to hook and release a good sized marlin – which have been noticeable so far only by their absence this season until very recently.
The “UPs and DOWNs” refer to both the volatility of the fishing, but also to the weather. In conversations with other Captains and visitors, all have commented on the strange weather patterns and currents that have been prolific in most places this year from as far away as Ecuador to Mexico Mazatlan. Whereas we are normally blessed with warm and calm consistent weather patterns from November until May, we have been besieged this year with a series of small cold fronts (not to mention earthquakes !) that have travelled through the region. We have also had our weather influenced by some of the significant storms that have been hanging out in the Gulf of Mexico – and we are 800 miles and at least 2 good sized mountain (volcano) ranges away.
We had one of the “Shared Angler” trips down this past week also, which went well as far as the anglers were concerned – although the first and last fishing days they were faced with a strong 4 foot chop going out with seas that refused to lay down until early in the afternoon. This also coincided with the bite – as when fish were to be found, it happened mostly after lunch – but even then with a cautious bite that lacked aggressiveness and commitment on the part of the sailfish, making it very difficult for the fly anglers in particular to hook up consistently.
The trophy fish for the shared trip clearly went to Rob Sekely who struggled mightily with a Blue Marlin in the 300lb range. Unlike the sails that we had been seeing, this marlin was committed as soon as the belly bait was in the water and the scent permeated sufficiently for him to hunt it down. It is always a thrilling sound when you hear the International 50 zinging out line as the Captain kicks the boat into full throttle to ensure a good hookset. This marlin clearly got the message early on, and it only took one good look at the stern of the boat for it to hurtle off porpoising in the direction of Mexico. Rob was having none of it, and clamping down with the drag held on and turned the fish. Danillo the mate on the Reel Diver graciously brought over water for Rob, but at the Captain’s direction poured it instead over the reel to try and stop the bearings from melting – and then passed the remainder onto Rob to drink. First things first.