Tuesday, October 16, 2007

How I Went Tropical to Fish for Salt and Fresh Water Species

Fish Migrate Like Birds Do

The migration of different species along the eastern U.S. seaboard kept me going on regular trips throughout most of the year. Spring meant smaller Blues and Weakfish. Summer offered Tautog with their bait-stealing expertise and tasty fillets. Fall almost always meant big, “slammer” Blues. Early in December, I watched for the full moon. Why? Because that was my cue to go for night Whiting. Often, this would be my last trip of the year until the following spring when the annual cycle would start all over again. Then I went tropical.

Going Tropical
But those, for me were the “Good Ole’ Days” from more than a dozen years ago. Now my lines part the waters of the South American Pacific Ocean and the turgid depths of Amazon River and Orinoco River basins. Now the razor-sharp teeth of several species of the Piranha family greet me as the rise above the water’s surface. Or at other times I play a three and a half foot long Dorado on eight to twelve pound mono as it leaps, rocks and rolls along with all other type of aerial acrobatics in a sometimes successful bid for more time gorging on schools of small bait fish. At least you’ll have some great stories about “the ones that got away”.

A Freight Train
Yet again, a muscle-straining tug-of-war ensues when I’ve latched into an underwater, runaway freight train called an Albacore which hits your bait or deep-running lure with such force your rod can be snapped as you wince in pain while the line makes hamburger of your fingers and palm. They used to laugh at me for wearing gloves in tropical weather until the first time one of my mates nearly lost a hand like that. Now I chuckle each trip as I watch them put on their gloves. They look at me funny when I chuckle, but then they all know why I smirk.

Photo: My local guide, Pepe, holds up the average-sized slammer Albacore that nearly took off one of my fingers

The Sharks
Then, there are the sharks. The Bull Shark is the worst. They come up very near to the surface when you’ve hooked one. They want to look at you, you see. They size you and your boat up – and then the fight is on. They try to spin your boat if it’s small enough. Or flip it over with a casual “bump” or two. They’ll swim under you, around you, dive, surface, swim in patterns or make runs. They twist, roll and execute all manner of maneuvers to foul your line, tangle it, break it or cause your boat or you to capsize, flip or sink. If that happens, you’re dead – literally.

Savvy salt-water fishermen almost never fish alone and use the largest boat available. That way, at least, you’ll have a fighting chance at surviving a hookup with a Bull Shark. Heck, who knows, if you hang in there long enough, you’ll even have a fair shot at boating the shark. That is if you’re stupid enough or knowledgeable and brave enough to want to.

Don’t be put off though. A world of exciting adventure fishing awaits any hardy enough to tackle these dangerous denizens on their own turf. Prepare well, have a knowledgeable local guide and pack a water-proof video or digital camera. Then get set for enough thrills to last a lifetime.

Prof. Larry M. Lynch is an expert author and university professor in Cali, Colombia. Now YOU too can live your dreams in paradise, find romance, high adventure and get paid while travelling for free. Need professional quality, original Salt and Fresh water Fishing-related articles or content for your Blog, newsletter, e-zine or website? For more fishing article samples, information, or a no-obligation quote e-mail the author at: lynchlarrym@gmail.com

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