Sunday, April 21, 2013

Tulum Mexico

Ok so I haven't been Striper fishing as much as I thought I would. I have made a few attempts after my last post and genuinely want to get out there but the wind in late March and early April was relentless. I decided I would just take a couple of weeks and prepare for my trip to Mexico.
My wife and I had planned this trip way back in late December so by April I was so anxious I could hardly bare it. This was not planned as a fishing trip but I did get out for a few days to take a shot at some bonefish for the first time. I also had a couple shots at some big permit but didn't hook up.

We miraculously landed in Cancun on the 10th of April. I say that it was miraculous because I'm afraid of flying and every time I touch down I can't help but thank god that the plane didn't fall apart mid flight, causing a pressure suck that first takes the people wandering around in the aisles, then those who didn't buckle up tight enough, and then finally causing so much damage to the plane that it breaks in two and we fall from the air for a few minutes before splattering on the ground, or ocean we were just 30,000 feet over. But I digress.
The landing was pretty scary since the wind was howling at a sustained 20-25 mph. My first thought was, "shit, there goes my evening beach fishing session." But since this was NOT a fishing trip I wasn't too bummed.
We got our rental car after paying about 10 times the amount we were quoted online, they always nail you with the insurance, and got out on the Mexican highway on a 1 1/2 hour trip to Tulum. It was about 85 degrees and humid but we would be damned if we were gonna turn on the air condition. After all, we had been waiting for this kind of weather since December.
We arrived at our hotel at the end of hotel row at around 6pm. Tulum, if you've never heard of it or been there, is nothing like Cancun or its closer neighbor Playa Del Carmen just to the north. The hotel row in Tulum is what Cancun was like maybe 30 years ago. No buildings are higher than the palm trees and they're all ran on wind or solar power. Our particular little bunch of villas are built on the west side of the little beach road, about 10 kilometers outside of the town of Tulum. They have thatched roofs and no windows, just screens with shades you can pull down.

The whole Yucatan Peninsula is a dense jungle that pushes all the way out to the ocean. There are a shitload of bugs in the jungle so the mosquito netting on the bed came in handy. Also, it keeps out more than just mosquitos, which is nice.
We just chilled on the beach for the first few days. It took me a couple of days to acclimate to the hot, humid weather. I couldn't wear a shirt at all for two days because I'd immediately sweat through it.

The wind continued to howl without much let up which was nice for sleeping and laying on the beach, but I wondered if I'd ever get a shot at fishing on this beach. I decided I needed to get it out of my system so I called a guy named Craig that I had heard about who guides the flats that are only a half hour drive from Tulum. ( He had some availability on Monday so I booked him. He only charges $200 bucks for the day and guides from a Canoe which I thought would be great.
He picked us up at about 730am on Monday morning. I didn't see a canoe on his jeep so I was wondering what was up but he stashed it in the jungle by the flats.
Since it was windy it was tough to see the fish, and they were a little cagey. There was also a good amount of cloud cover which again inhibited our visibility but we had a blast.

Even though I had heard a million times about how hard bonefish pull, i was still shocked at the strength of these little fish. I had two make runs that were so hard and fast I though they were gonna be 16 inches long, but as you can see in the pic, that fish was only about 12 inches! They are amazingly strong fish. I can only imagine what it would have been like if I had hooked one of the big 10-12 lb permit we saw. I guess I'll have to wait for another trip to find out.
I went out on my own for a couple of mornings after my trip with Craig but was unsuccessful. If I had had more time I probably could have hooked some more fish but I had to take off at around noon, just when the sun was its highest and the visibility was getting good.
It stayed windy for the whole 10 days we were there so I never did fish the beach.
We miraculously touched down in San Francisco last night and now I'm covered in a wool blanket, in sweat pants, sitting on my couch writing this while Sports Center plays on the T.V. Back to reality.

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