Sailfish Capital of the World

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Pacific Coast of Guatemala - March 16th, 2016
  • Recorded:
  • Hot
  • 85 ° F 
  • Fishing: Excellent
 Larry and Joyce Stay  

It started as a dream to fish in the billfish capital of the world, the Pacific coast of Guatemala. It ended perfectly, a dream come true. In between, we had LOTS of fun.

I’ll admit it, I’m a little compulsive about some things. I do a massive amount of research before I travel. I pulled up every outfitter on the internet that offered packages for Guatemala. I built a spreadsheet of the boats they used. I found that more than half of them share boats among themselves. A couple of them don’t have their own facilities either, they put you up at nearby hotels.

I got quotes from about 10 of them and decided that the best combination of price, boat, and facilities was from the Buena Vista Sport Fishing Lodge, owned by Jody and Susana Elswick. info@buenavistasportfishing.com They offered individual rooms at no extra cost, a boat with a large fishing deck, shade and air conditioning (the Legacy), gourmet meals included and a great crew.

Larry and Barney flew down from Salt Lake. Paul flew down from North Carolina. Craig came from Texas. We all arrived within 30 minutes of each other and were met at the entrance to the terminal by Ulises, the general manager of the Lodge. He’s lived in the US and speaks great English. They loaded our suitcases and we loaded ourselves into a comfortable van. Water, soft drinks and beer were in the cooler for the 90 minute trip.

We were met at the entrance to the lodge property with tropical drinks and were able to stretch our legs and relax over some delicious hors d’oeuvres. We planned when we would meet for breakfast and leave for the boat and were shown our rooms. The beds were comfortable, there was nice air conditioning, cable TV, and very well appointed bathrooms. There were plenty of electrical outlets for recharging your devices, something often lacking in Guatemalan hotels.

We met for breakfast the next morning at 5:30 a.m. and had a great buffet with omelets, pancakes, fruit, black beans, fried bananas, yoghurt, cereal, etc. When the tides cooperate, the boats can dock right at the facility. However, if the tides are low when you want to go, it is better to leave from the marina, a 10 minute drive from the lodge. It was low tide so we drove over to the marina. We were underway a few minutes after 6:00 a.m.

 Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\E4E775EF-FA25-45BE-8235-C8112AFCB8A8.JPG

Our boat, the Legacy, was a 41’ Ricky Scarborough with a single 450 hp Cummings diesel. As I mentioned, there is plenty of space for two people to reel in their catches at the same time.

Our crew was captained by Cristobal and the mates were Anibal and Selder. We can’t say enough good about the crew, we all agree they were the best, extremely professional, friendly and helpful to a tee.

As we traveled out, the mates prepared the bait. Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\20160309_062719.jpg  They primarily use frozen, packaged ballyhoo, about 6” to 8” long. Description: http://www.alltackle.com/bionic_bait_ballyhoo_sizes.jpg  They tie 1 oz weights below the jaw and place a circle hook with pre-tied tippet under the lashings, point up. Description: http://speedybdo-31a2.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/circlebaly21.jpg

We went out about 32 miles. Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\DBD985C5-AF6B-41B4-8D7F-47DF6711563B.JPGThe seas were running 4’ to 5’ swells in regular sets as is typical offshore Guatemala. The crew rigged teasers from both outriggers. The teasers were 4 or 5 red plastic cuttlefish trailed by a squid tentacle skirt. The captain kept a squid tentacle skirt teaser in the center of the wake off a rod he rigged from the flying deck. The teasers ran about 10 or 15 yards behind the boat. The rigged ballyhoo were trailed about 5 yards behind and in line with the teasers. The line from the two rods ran through the outrigger to keep everything in its place. Everything was rigged to skim along the surface with maximum popping and splash.

As I had organized the trip the others offered me the first rod. We did not have long to wait.    Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\20160309_144905.jpg  Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\47E25910-F75B-4D37-8AFB-8F1099CE3123.JPG

We rotated catches among the four of us, each in his turn. The bite was on and the action was fast and furious. We often had double takes and a couple of times triples. Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\IMG_0968.JPG We had fresh fruit snacks mid-morning. The mates fixed a hot lunch between hookups. By the end of the day, we had brought and released 25 sailfish to the boat. That’s 6 sailfish apiece and 7 for me. AMAZING day.

We rode a cloud of adrenaline back to the resort. We were met with a wonderful piña colada with shaved coconut and fantastic tuna snacks where we relaxed and recounted the epic battles of the day. Dinner was a gourmet feast featuring shrimp Canelones.

Day 2 was a repeat of Day 1 with 21 sailfish caught and released at the boat. We knew how to fight the fish better and were not so worn out at the end of the day. On both days we were extremely grateful for the shade of the cabin and the air conditioning where we could retreat until our next turn with a rod. More fruit snacks, cold drinks, hot lunch to keep us happy as could be while we brought an astonishing number of sailfish to the boat. We had another spectacular evening of tropical drinks, snacks and a meal.

Day 3 started out different. We only went out about 8 miles. The captain slowed the boat down and we quickly caught 4 Bonita tuna, about 2 or 3 lbs each. The crew rigged these up and we began a slow troll. Paul was up for the first rod of the day. The captain spotted a fish following the bait and the drag on the real was released allowing the bait to fall immediately behind the teasers. Captain Cristobal also put the boat into a turn. The fish struck and we knew it was something special, the rod was bent double.

Paul put all his force into it and could barely reel. Line stripped off with the drag. Anibal came over and hung on to Paul to keep him from being pulled overboard. The fish jumped and so did we. We had a marlin on the line! The captain used the boat to help Paul, skillfully maneuvering to bring the marlin to the boat without completely exhausting the fish (and Paul). Finally we had him and the mates both reached over the transom to see if we could haul him aboard. Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\20160310_075704.jpg  Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\20160310_075659(0).jpg

We had 3 other marlin trail our bait, but, no more takes. We sped up the boat and started catching sailfish again, ending the day with 15. That brought our totals for the trip to 61 sailfish caught and released at the boat, one marlin and 4 Bonita. EPIC would not begin to describe our trip.

We proudly flew the blue marlin banner from the outrigger on the way back to port. The tides cooperated and we were able to ride triumphantly back to the dock at the resort.

Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\IMG_0988.JPG Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\IMG_0990.JPG

Description: \\w12796\INV\Larry\Guatemala Fishing\20160310_162427.jpg

Thank you Jody and Susana, Ulises and the resort staff, and especially thanks to Cristobal, Anibal and Selder. You gave us the trip of a lifetime at the Buena Vista Sport Fishing Lodge.

http://www.buenavistasportfishing.com/

 

 
Pacific Coast of Guatemala - March 10th, 2016
  • Recorded:
  • Hot
  • 85 ° F 
  • Fishing: Excellent

FISHING REPORT

 

Group:       Larry Stay Group                 

Date:            March 9, 2016

Boat:             Legacy

 

               Sailfish     Blue Marlin   

Raised:                       25                    04             

Bites:                          17                    01           

Released:                    15                    01   

 

 
 
Pacific Coast of Guatemala - March 9th, 2016
  • Recorded:
  • Hot
  • 85 ° F 
  • Fishing: Excellent

FISHING REPORT

 

Group:       Larry Stay Group                 

Date:            March 9, 2016

Boat:             Legacy

 

               Sailfish     Blue Marlin   

Raised:                       47                                 

Bites:                          35                                

Released:                    21                       

 

 
 
Pacific Coast of Guatemala - March 8th, 2016
  • Recorded:
  • Hot
  • 85 ° F 
  • Fishing: Excellent
 

FISHING REPORT

 

Group:       Larry Stay Group                 

Date:           March 8, 2016

Boat:            Legacy

 

               Sailfish     Blue Marlin   

Raised:                       52                                 

Bites:                          42                                

Released:                    25                       

 

 
Pacific Coast of Guatemala - March 5th, 2016
  • Recorded:
  • Hot
  • 85 ° F 
  • Fishing: Excellent

FISHING REPORT

 

Group:       Harry Mason                

Date:            February 5, 2016

Boat:             Legacy

 

               Sailfish    Yellow fin Tuna  

Raised:                       25               01  (25 Pound)      

Bites:                         18                               

Released:                   14                      

 

 
 
Pacific Coast of Guatemala - March 5th, 2016
  • Recorded:
  • Hot
  • 85 ° F 
  • Fishing: Excellent

FISHING REPORT

 

Group:       Larry Abele                      

Date:            March 5 , 2016

Boat:             Legacy

 

           Sailfish     Blue Marlin    Wahoo

Raised:                 19                     01                     1 

Bites:                    14                       0                     1

Released:              07                       0      


100 Pounds Wahoo

 

 
 





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