We have come to the end of another exciting season, finishing it off with some exceptional blue marlin fishing. Our bookings were good throughout the season despite the recession and those that fished these productive Guatemalan waters all had wonderful trips enjoying the special service, fantastic facilities, wonderful cuisine and of course the unparalleled billfishing.
May started off slowly for our friends from East London, South Africa, Arthur Kidson, John and Andrew Keil. The 3rd of May saw them start their trip with 5 sailfish releases and a 550 pound blue that got tip wrapped and broke off after some crazy jumps in roughish water. As far and wide as we ran over the next days we just could not find any fish, although water looked good and at times there was showings of good bait. We did however all enjoyed our time in Antigua together and it was great sharing in some good home grown company.
Jim Ryaby and Dan Grande of New York saw it slow on the 7th but things picked up on the 8th to release 6 sails from 9 bites with a blue that would not play. The next day saw 9 sailfish releases and another blue that would not bite to see out a fun trip for the doctors.
Our neighbour and friend Dr. Scott Lund was with us the 11th and 12th of May to see him release a spectacular 325 pound blue on 20lb tippet fly gear. With an incredible bite and series of jumps, Scott had the fish boat-side after 30 minutes and we were able to retrieve the fly, prior to reviving and leasing the certain world record size blue, for one of the season highlights. Catching blues on fly is the pinnacle of team work, and a very special event for all, especially with fish over 300 pounds in size. Scott released another 6 sails on fly over the two days as well as enjoying a magical round of golf at the new Antigua Golf Resort to see out an unforgettable trip.
Joe O’Brien from Boston was with us the 22nd and 23rd and we were able to tease in a feisty blue to which Joe made a fine presentation of the fly then hooking and fighting the blue before pulling the hooks but still making for an exciting day. A few sails over the two days saw out the season on the long wand for one of most loyal anglers.
Guatemala saw some unusually early and heavy rains in June which shut things down for us for a while. Our friends Charlie and Diane Levine of Marlin Magazine were down with us for a week of good times in Antigua while we managed to get in a day of fishing on the 28th with Diane catching her first pacific sailfish in fine form as the couple released 6 sailfish between them.
Scott Lund and his wife Kristy were back with us the beginning of July for an exceptional trip. The 5th saw Scott starting off with 6 yellowfin tuna around some spinner dolphins, latter adding a 250 pound blue and a sailfish on fly for an exciting day. The next day we did what nobody in Guatemala has ever done before. After an hour of trolling the inky blue water on the drop-off we had an aggressive 200 pound blue marlin tease in and with a perfect cast, head and shoulders bite, and an amazing series of wild jumps during which we stayed attached, we got the release to retrieve the fly. An hour latter we had a second blue up which also teased in for another spectacular bite which Scott hooked and within 5 minutes after some down sea jumps and quick boat handling we had our second blue marlin release on the fly on the same day, a first for Guatemala. Only minutes latter a 300 pound blue was up on the long rigger and we had it teased right into the zone but it did not see the fly in the white water and faded away. Knowing we were in the right area and the bite was on, spirits were high. It was only a matter of time and not before too long we had another blue up on the bridge teaser. It teased in hot and climbed all over the fly. With a perfect hookup we had the fish jumping all over. After a short while we had the 175 pounder going down sea with us in hot pursuit. For some seconds the fish was within 15 feet of the rod tip and inches from the 12 foot leader for the release. With a final jumps right behind the boat as we powered after it, the marlin gained it´s freedom as it´s bill cut the light 20 pound tipped only 12 inches from the hooks. We just couldn´t believe the day we had been blessed with and ran for home, rum drinks flowing, high-fives all round and looking forward to when we start doing it all over again in October.
The succesful season we have just experienced would not be possible if it wasn’t for the loyal support of ALL our anglers, Decisive´s owner, and the wonderful companies like Alutecnos, Eagle Claw, Pelagic Offshore Gear, Legend Lures and Big-T lures that make this all possible and to whom we at Guatemalan Billfishing Adventures are most grateful….THANK YOU!!!
Until we start again in October, tight lines, circle hooks and healthy releases.