Saturday, January 22, 2011

Phil's Pinche Kayak

All boats need to be named and this name fits perfectly.

Friday, January 21, 2011

3 Days at Sailfish Bay Lodge (and a Blue Marlin on Fly!)

The Blue Marlin

The Blue Marlin leadered at the boat!

Fly fishing for billfish is extremely addictive.

After a while you begin to be lulled into a trance by the diesel motor. The rolling ocean gently rocks you as the sun warms your skin. Then it begins. The captain yells, "Vela, Vela, Vela" or in a higher more excited pitch, "Marlin, Marlin, Marlin!" and everyone jumps to their position. The mates tease the fish to within casting distance like a well choreographed dance. The sails turn black and the blue marlin's fins and stripes turn the most brilliant electric blue as they become enraged at the escaping teaser. Then the captain yells, "cast!"and throws the boat into neutral as you are shaken from your trance and thrown into the performance. It is time to shine as you make your cast (cast is sometimes a stretch of a description when it looks more like a flop and has little resemblance to the delicate presentation so often thought of with fly fishing). The boat's forward momentum pulls the line tight as you begin to "jig" strip the 6/0 Cam Sigler tube fly. You watch as the fish turns to face its prey and are surprised at how fast it closed the distance and inhaled the fly. There is no gentle hook set. You bury the hook deep in the corner of the mouth with a few tugs on the fly rod mixed with a rod set that would make most Bassmaster pros cringe (being sure you move the rod in the opposite direction of the fish's travel. The hook set is really you just trying to not have the rod pulled from your hands). The water explodes as the fish goes airborne and you wonder just what you were thinking when you decided you could catch a billfish on the fly.

Huge thanks to the crew of the "Gypsy" and to Sailfish Bay Lodge. You guys are amazing and I can't wait to come back.

The January fishing report from Sailfish Bay Lodge. We ended our trip with landing 20 sails and one Blue Marlin (Jan 18-20).

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

California Delta

I have heard so much about the California Delta and everything that I have heard is true. The air was filled with the calls of swans, sandhill cranes, snow and canadian geese. Around every bend in the Delta was a new and completely different body of water. Though the conditions were less than favorable the striper still showed up and gave us some exitement.