Wednesday, 29 December 2010

~William fuels up with morning coffee before preparing his skiff~

Unsung Heroes:

I've fished with many saltwater guides and can only say the team at Casa Viejo Chac are second to none. Aside from giving you an experience to remember they're extremely knowledgeable when it comes to the environment. Friendly and upbeat they understand our British sense of humour so a day with them is always fun. At the hub of a successful operation they're the unsung heroes and I'm already looking forward to seeing them in 2011. Fly Odyssey have reserved two weeks in Nov 2011. These trips offer great value for money and include accommodation, all meals, guides and fishing-for further details contact Mat McHugh:

email: tel: 01621 743711


~Marcus and Tara prepare to ferry lunch for our final day~

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

~Rosette Spoonbills and Herons look on at our rescue efforts~

International Rescue!

You encounter all sorts when out for a day on the flats of Mexico. A first for Pete Eville and myself was this troubled cruiser, she'd managed to run aground on a sand bar close to a long Island. Our guide Manuel decided to motored over and after attaching a stout rope (Pete's new leader material...), we were able to pull her into the safety of deeper water. Just as well really, as hours later a storm came blasting through. Good deed done, we went in search of a few more fish before light stopped play.


~Nearly there~

Monday, 27 December 2010

~Guide William cradles a good sized Bonefish~

Them Bones:

For my money, nothing beats wandering around in ankle depth water and targeting tailing Bonefish. Over the past few years, we've seen the average size of Bonefish in Ascension Bay increase. Some of my fondest memories included encounters with such streamlined and graceful fish. I was fortunate to enjoy several days tip-toeing through skinny water and flinging a shrimp pattern at some impressive Bonefish, roll on next year!


~Bonefish like this head my species list~

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

~An Infant Permit...........Stunning~
Little & Large:

Now, I know many of you think I'm not wired right, as permit really don't do it for me. Despite this I can be persuaded to go in search of these illusive if not downright moody creatures. And occasionally, things happen to fall into place. The baby permit above actually snaffled my fly before a huge bonefish.....not that I complained. However the fish below were sighted and cast to. Believe me, when you see permit like this tailing on a flat "buck fever" sets in. I now understand why you need at least 250 yards of backing on a reel, as their initial run beggars belief. We were very fortunate to interact with permit every single day of our visit, proof that above all else, Ascension Bay truly is a permit destination.

~My best to date, a huge permit in anybodies book~
(note the size of the eye.....)

~Jonathan with a decent permit~

Monday, 20 December 2010

~A handful of teeth....!~

Underrated Barracudas:

Wade across any bonefish flat and chances are you'll soon come across the menacing shape of a barracuda. And although needlefish are their common prey they're more than happy to snap up mullet and even bonefish. Many people pass them up, but believe me these fearsome creatures make for some of the most exciting fishing you can ever wish to experience. Firstly, they strike with lightening fast speed, before sprinting off at a rate of knots. Chances are they will then start tail-walking in a bid to shed the hook. Better still, Cudas are often in a feeding mood and because of their sheer size, are relatively east to spot, even during poor light. From now on, I'll always have a rod set up with a wire trace and baitfish imitation.


~An impressive set of gnashers~

~The remains of my fly following a single encounter~

Sunday, 12 December 2010

~Angry storm clouds gather over Ascension Bay~

Taking the rough with the smooth!

If you spend any appreciable time fishing in the Caribbean, it's not all roses round the door as sooner or later you're going to run into some pretty nasty weather. Thankfully this often proves the exception rather than the rule, but nevertheless, be prepared. A cold front from the north brought with it threatening cloud and some pretty fierce winds. Obviously, being hardened fishers, we battled through 2 days of adverse conditions and despite murky water, it was still possible to find the odd fish.


~Graham hooks a baby tarpon in a riot of mangroves~

~Such fish brighten up any dreary day~

Friday, 10 December 2010

~Guides need to adopt a stealthy poling approach during low water~

Low water brings out the Snook:

Whilst everyone bangs on about potential sport during a rising tide, fishing at low water has its benefits too. Not least the chance to get on terms with secretive Snook. These impressive ambush predators can easily melt away into the mangroves at high tide. Yet, come the ebb they're pushed out of their hidey holes. Now, cruising the margins, it's possible to target them using small streamers and baitfish imitations. Steve Langan (The Doc) and I had an interesting day chasing such fish. Admittedly, we'd started our adventure in search of permit, but things weren't working out, so quick to revise our plans, we went in search of Snook and were duly rewarded.


~Guide-Phillip and the Doc with a good looking Snook~

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

~Battling a tangle of mangroves gave you access to more remote places~

Mangrove Mayhem:

Mangroves constitute an important part of the eco system in Ascension Bay and whilst they might be cursed they hold many secret lagoons that teem in fish life. Battling your way through them is well worth the effort as what awaits you is often some of the most spectacular fishing imaginable. Obviously, you need to keep an eye for crocs and the likes, but even these can prove entertaining in their own way!


~ On the other side, a welcome bonefish flat.......pure paradise~

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

~Tackling up for toothy creatures.........!~

Avoiding the cold!

Ascension Bay in the Gulf of Mexico is currently a lot warmer than our weather trends here in the UK. I've been lucky to spend the last 3 weeks down there in search of many saltwater species, unfortunately there was no Internet access in such a remote place, so I'm playing catch up here. Despite constant travel the first morning of any new trip is always an exciting time. Up with the sparrows, our rods and leaders were assembled long before breakfast. And following scrambled eggs (Mexican style), we chatted our plans through over a cup of strong coffee.


~Inspiration can often be found in a coffee cup~
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