Fishing Report - 4/9/17
Into our third season of full ownership after taking over and revitalizing this incredible operation Julian Gustin created, we're busier than we could have hoped for. Little things like fishing reports get pushed aside in favor of buying new equipment, shipping supplies, traveling, selling trips for later this season and for 2018 (we're already almost half full), and hosting guests. This week my notes said "Keenen Group" in honor of Terry Keenen and friend Paul Duke who first visited 9 trips ago, Terry couldn't attend, but Paul spearheaded a solid group of returnees, and as always, they turned a few newcomers on to the amazing Pesca Panama experience.
I'm always writing about the variety of species we have here, unique to any other place I've found, and we certainly experienced this; pompano, really large rainbow runner, different snapper and grouper, roosters, cubera, crevalle, horeseye jacks, trevally, goldens, almacos, AJs, bonito, hounds, 'cuda, black marlin, and even wahoo. We looked for and found large mahi right next to shore in a few secret coves. I stalked two big schools of juvenile blacktip shark, catching one after another until I tired of trying to unhook them without getting hurt. Mike and Joe kayaked a remote river and climbed a waterfall, had a meeting of the minds with a large croc (both the croc and Mike almost fainted, then tore off in opposite directions), and we teased a 300lb class bull around the Barge over cocktails. There were many firsts for anglers on this trip, particularly the new guys, but this was a classic yellowfin week, and even for the veteran returners, many of them caught their biggest ever. Two weeks ago plenty of 60-200lb. tuna were caught. Last week, more in the 100-250 range. This week the A YFT Team showed up - time to put the spinning gear aside for the most part. YFT from 40lbs. to a taped 316lb. were caught, but most fish we fought were close to 200, many were mid 200, some monsters were lost, and we saw airborne fish bigger than we hooked. A Team.
Paul took his biggest ever - 230+. ALL newbies took large fish, and Marshall added a 50lb. rooster. The capts were taking length and girth fishing line lengths and I was computing them at day's end - 74", 7”, 78”, 79” and fat, 77” and slender. Everybody was pumped, knowing there were lifetime fish out there. Tim and Marshall rotated on the 316 pounder, largest we've boated in two years - congrats guys. One angler beat a 250lb. in 30 minutes, four others fought a 285 for over 3 hours, not the size of the dog in the fight; rather the fight in the dog, and of course where the hook sits, how fresh they are, and so on.
Watching these guys enjoying their evenings, listening to the stories of crazy days fishing (" two black marlin swam right past the boat… then another… we got a fresh bridled bonito in the water and the marlin swam right past it and ate a 4" chunk of sardine!") made me again appreciate why we got involved in making sure Pesca Panama didn't fade away. There's no place quite like it. And heck guys, I know I had as much fun as you all did.
Helluva group, can't wait to do it again with you next year.
Capt Mike and the entire Pesca team, including those onshore and for sure Ted and Eben up north, we thank you guys!
Next time — Capt Mike Augat
Co-Owner Pesca Panama
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