Thursday, 5 February 2009

The jacks have saved us

  • The fact that the jacks have been obligingly hitting the flies have saved us big time - there is nothing you can do when you get the kind of weather we have been getting out here in Belize, but you might as well go and nail a few hard fighting jacks when the tarpon and permit are keeping their heads down. It has been that (comparatively) cold here today that any self-respecting flats fish has long run for deeper water.
  • The weather we have been getting out here sounds like nothing when compared to all the snow and cold I keep reading about back home, but for a place like this it has been pretty extreme. Wednesday was really bright, perfect for photography, but the wind was literally hurtling down the coast and causing the flats to go all milky and cold. Tarpon, bones and permit hate this !! We tried really hard but could not find the fish, so on the way back to the lodge we stopped to smash a few jacks - they were somewhat obliging. Nothing huge, but a blast. I even picked up a fly rod and (very badly) cast a Clouser Minnow out and nailed a few fish. James and I had a competition to see who could give the least amount of line to a hooked fish, and I am proud to say that I won - not one jack took a single millimetre of line off me. Very silly, but great fun.

  • The wind was pumping even harder this morning, so our guide elected to run us miles south to try and find clearer water and the fish, but by the time we got there the rain was lashing down in a huge way - not great for flats fishing !! In fact I have never felt so cold in the tropics, and although that might be hard to believe, put a howling wind and lashing rain together and it was feeling more like fishing back at home. Granted, there was no snow, but with our luck I would not have been that surprised if James and I had got a dumping of the first ever snow they have had here !! This place chucks up some seriously good fish, but we have just been dealt a bum hand with the weather. In the bar there is a photo of a 197lb tarpon taken on the fly in 2002 - that is how good it can be here, and when the weather behaves, anglers get multiple shots at tarpon, permit and bonefish. I will be coming back to nail this stuff properly on camera......

  • James and I are flying back to the UK tomorrow and if all goes to plan we should be landing at Heathrow just after 9am on Saturday morning. I am really hoping that the adverse weather at home does not prevent me getting back home to see my girls and of course make the 3pm kick-off for England v Italy in the opening match of the Six Nations rugby. With Saturday being my birthday, surely a good result might be on the cards ?


Nick Hart said...

Hi Guys, sorry to hear about the weather out there. Jesus, you should see it here! Sat writing this at 7am and the snow is still coming thick and fast. Hope it is all ok for you coming home. 200 people trapped on the A38 last night needed to be rescued by Police and the Army!!! Who knows Henry, maybe we can get a snow feature on Tuesday, all be it we can actually get to a venue! Its at times like these that I relish my Toyota 4 x 4. May give work a miss today for a session on the slopes with Chester! Safe journey home. Cheers, Nick.

Anonymous said...

I'm not jealous, not really, not much :) Going out to try for some coddo's of the lancashire coast on sunday low water - i believe it's going to be snowing - are fisherman bonkers? YEP!

Sea Fishing and Walking in the UK

Henry Gilbey said...

Nick - hoping the snow might clear a bit and allow me to get home tomorrow morning. Have seen the snow on your blog, mad !! Hope we get out on Tuesday, would be very cool to shoot a feature in the snow, but you know my Focus - the 4x4 capabilities of a hamster. There is always a way though. Have fun with Chester on the slopes, got to do that with my two when I get back.

Stu - go get 'em !! Yes, we are all a bit mad, we have to be. Codding in the snow is proper fishing - not like us complaining about the cold out here yesterday in the tropics !! I was shivering on the boat yesterday, how tough is that ?