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Central Mexican Pacific Trip Jan 2007 - HPD

Page history last edited by PBworks 15 years, 8 months ago
Default Blinded By The Mexican Moon


A ghostly phosphorescence lights up the Mexican landscape. Burning like white fire, the full moon has seared an overhead path. The dunes, the palms, and the ocean waves stand naked in its brilliance. Cur dogs howl and half-wild roosters crow all night. Nothing dims the power of the spherical moon. As if a giant eye, it hypnotizes the water, the sand, and the fish. It blinds me as I step into the crystal clear predawn air. Our quarry is intertwined with the moon and it will require determination and cunning to shadow the influence of its commanding attention.


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The Mexican Pacific is a surf fishing paradise. Endless sandy beaches line the shoreline and limitless rocky points jut into waves. Exotic species lurk within casting distance. Big flashy roosterfish, bull dog jack crevelle, and huge cubera snapper are the stock fare. A myriad of other trophy species lurk for the intrepid shore angler to discover. For the fourth time, I have taken unfamiliar internet “volunteers” to an amazing spot. I’m not entirely sure why I do this. Maybe it adds an element of adventure into the whole affair. Maybe I enjoy watching someone “light up” when a dream comes true. Maybe I think surf fishermen should experience this special place before hotels and condos spoil its innocence. Someday I might tire of the risk of unknown companions. Someday I might charge for aiding accessing to this place and its fishing spots. That day is not today and Frank (Anchorman) from New Jersey has thrown caution to the winds and joined me.


We met at the airport and I could tell Frank had some travel stress. Maybe he was still wondering if my intention was to sell him to the slave trade. Without delay, Mexico reminded us of its need for flexibility and adaptability. I had switched jeep rental companies from my trusted source to a cheaper company. It didn’t take long to recognize a bait and switch scheme. Luckily, my trusted rental company was within walking distance and they recognized and accommodated me. A brand new Jeep 4X4 waited for us with muscular new tires and a swarthy suspension. The delay has cost us daylight but the three-hour drive through the rugged mountains was captivating in the evening twilight. I never tire of the vistas, the smells, and the views into a simple and rewarding way of life. We arrived in the dark, swiftly unloaded the jeep and took a walk on the beach. It was warm and the cloudy skies cloaked the stars. It would be difficult to sleep with all that water waiting for us.


Frank and I arose before dawn and readied the war gear. The 11.5 foot Rainshadow rods rung with low rider guides were custom made by ourselves and our long cast spinning reels gave them excellent distance capabilities. We used 30 and 50 pound PowerPro and Suffix braid joined to a 30-inch length of strong mono leader via a swivel. Our lumbar packs were loaded with extra reel spools, first aid kits, sunscreen, energy bars, cameras, and sunglasses cleaner. Two bottles of Gatorade fit into the side pockets of each lumbar pack. We wore quick drying nylon clothes and broad brimmed hats. Our tackle boxes hung form the lumbar packs and were loaded with Super Strike Poppers, Roberts Rangers, and various metals. The game is on!!


The dawn was fairly dark thanks to a thick cloud cover. I beat Frank to the beach and while he was still readying his rod I cast into a rock cove attached to the beach. On the second cast and fish rose up out of the dark surf and smacked my popper. This was a very good omen and Frank hurried down to see what I had on. My hopes were realized as a fine roosterfish came to the beach. We knew it was very late in the roosterfish season and this was the hope we needed to really juice us up!


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We whooped it up and proceeded down the beach while firing out 100 yard + casts. It wasn’t long before Frank had some pelicans try to snatch his popper. Three of them landed right on his splash down so he allowed the sinking Super Strike to settle in hopes of avoiding a bird snagging. He cranked it to the surface and something big and strong blasted the lure. Fish on! It took Frank up and down the beach and had its way with him. After a long and satisfying battle a very fine and large roosterfish revealed itself. Soon Frank had it by the tail and it was one of the finest specimens I had ever seen. It was a thick and broad @ 40 pounds and unblemished in complexion. The tall comb was flawless. It was a true trophy and Frank was juiced.


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Frank saw more fish in the same spot and he cast again. A HUGE fish pounded his popper. It turned broadside and thrust its tail out of the water. It looked to be in the 50 or 60 pound range. Alas, no hooks were buried home but the sight juiced our senses! No more fish were found by mid morning so I drove Frank to a beautiful spot to the north. Rocky fingers jab out from the sand beach and it’s a great fishing spot. The surf was high and the wind was strong but Frank got his first jack crevelle followed by several more.


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They were not huge but fun none-the-less. As the afternoon progressed the fishing digressed so we hiked out. A few jacks were given to my amigo Jessie who allows me to gain access to the ocean via his land.


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As we drove back to base, a large and hairy tarantula was spotted on the roadside. I wonder if tarantulas make good bait???


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The evening was spent at my good friend's restaurant with plates full of dorado fillets. The food and talk was excellent and Candies family is always a pleasure. Tomorrow dawns a new fishing day.



Franks roosterfish encounter of yesterday had made him sleepless. I slept like a rock but he tossed and turned all night. When the alarm clock jolted me awake at 6:30 AM Frank told me there had been a great wind last night. The curtains had bellowed and the palm tree outside the room had slapped with vigor. I glanced outside into what I assumed would be darkness. Stark and well-defined shadows stood out in a spotlight of brilliant light. I looked toward the ocean and the moon was huge and full. It had shined all night while scribing an arc directly overhead. A chill breeze blew through the open window. The air was cold and crystal clear. A major cold front had swept in on the wind last night and no clouds or humidity were in place to dull the full power of the moon.


I had billed this trip as not prime time for fishing. January is a transition when the warm water fish depart and the cool water fish return. I knew we would be lucky to find roosterfish and luck had been with us the first day. Last night's full bright moon and the newly arrived cold front sent a chill down my spine. If there ever was negative fish mojo this was it. My minds eye could see fish migrating all night long under the intense shine of the moon. I could not sense fish on the shore this morning.


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We gave it a go in the same morning spot as yesterday. I was cold in my long sleeved shirt and wished for the warmth of the rising sun. The water was distinctly colder as it washed upon out feet. We cast our hearts out. We worked poppers, Roberts Rangers, and metals with intensity. Frank is a good fisherman with stamina and fortitude. He poured himself into the effort but it was in vain. The fish had spent themselves in their moon illuminated night activities and now they were resting. The ocean had turned colder and the fish were not inclined to assert themselves. The cursed moon had hexed us.


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We decided to head south. Bone rattling rides to a number of fishing hot spots were fruitless. The moon and cold had sucked the life out of things. We tried everything. There was no quit in Frank. We headed north again and a single jack crevelle for me avoided a complete skunk. However even a fishless day in paradise is still good. The sights of giant saguaro cactus, close encounters with big black and white eagles, and wandering brahma cow herds are to be remembered. Even a brief connection with the simple and pleasurable life in this unspoiled place is comforting. The scenery was spectacular!


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Frank and I ate some knock-out quesadillas and octopus this day. We swilled fine Mexican beer and sucked in scruptious margaritas. We kibitz with Candies beautiful daughters and bathed in the flashing smiles of children. No fish? No problem. Tomorrow is a new day!


I tossed and turned during the night. Not catching fish gets under my skin deeply. I plotted, planned, and schemed in my slumbers. I tried to resist cracking my eyelids for fear the moon would see me but to no avail. Every time I stole a glance it was beaming at me with an evil grin. The chill breeze blew in the window. It was a relief to have the alarm clock go off. I had my customary breakfast of Cliff Bars, prunes, and Gatorade. Breakfast of champions! As we stocked our lumbar packs, I purposely left out my video camera. Surely if we were unprepared to document a monstrous catch, it would happen. I said my prayers to the fish God. Surely it was more powerful than the moon God. I vowed to fish all day. Surely we would catch fish.


Frank and I had planned to hammer the beach where we caught the roosters the first day. We would not leave midmorning in search of other places. We would stick it out. Up and down the beach we tramped. Cast after cast winged over 100 yards to the outside of the breakers. Poppers, Roberts, metals all had their turns. Nada. Nothing. Zip. Skunk. Zilch. The inflated moon had done it again. It was just as bright. I could feel it sneering at me. It was becoming bold in its triumph. I cursed the moon. I vowed it would not break me.


We took a break to lick our wounds and have some lunch. Frank spotted some eggs on the counter of the tiny restaurant and ordered up some huevos rancheros. They came to us stacked highly between layers of fresh corn tortillas. Wow! Now that’s a great way to pick up your spirits! Full bellies made us cocky again. Yesterday morning, my friend Juan had spotted many jumping fish at a particular spot about 10 miles to the south. We were off in a veritable cloud of dust.


When we arrived, the surf was breaking big over a shallow shelf point. It was pulling suspended sand off the beach creating a dingy water line that extended to just about as far as we could cast. Frank found a spot where the dingy water line was a little closer to shore and he caught several small jacks. He had multiple unhooked bites. Then the inshore wind picked up, the waves towered and the water became dirtier. Time to move.


We headed to a spot where a thousand foot trench approaches closely to shore. The sand shelf is very short there. When we arrived, we could indeed cast outside the dingy wave tossed water. I made my first cast and saw a multitude of fish chasing my SSLNP. Bam! Right in the suds something hammered my lure and took off at warp speed directly away from shore. Fights are usually parallel to the shore. Que pasa?? Ouch! The hooks pulled out in about 10 seconds. Frank was dancing in the sand. He had seen multiple groups of multiple species following my lure. He fired out and hooked up with a very large needlefish that gave him five seconds of aerial thrill before it departed with his lure. I headed down the beach and after a while glanced back at Frank. It looked like something was dragging him into the water. Que pasa again. I sprinted down the beach (OK, kind of a trot) and found him with a good battle on his hands. Evidently Frank likes to swim with the fish as he plays it (LOL). After a good workout (they don’t call them toros for nothing), he grabbed a flopping tail and had a jack crevelle that was worth bragging about.



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Frank was fishing a deep running metal and getting lots of action. I muttered as I ruffled in my tackle box. I had left my deep running T-Hexs at the hotel. The waves were picking up line and dragging my higher riding metal to the upper part of the water column. Frustration. I glance over at Frank again. He was splashing around in the waves again and I now knew this meant he was onto a fish. As I neared him he was shouting IT”S RED! IT”S RED! Frank had caught a nice cubera snapper.


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Frank had done it. He had caught the trifecta! Roosterfish, crevelle, and cubera. Very few people can say this. Much fewer can say they have done it from the sand. Congratulations Frank! You are a real fisherman with touch, technique, and fortitude. I’m a proud to have been a part of your moment.


Frank caught several other fish that day. The next morning we left. Frank and I said goodbye at the airport. Everyone that comes to this special place has a bond with each other. Only those of you that have been there know exactly what I mean. We call ourselves Friends For Life and sign our emails FFL. FFL, Frank! - HPD


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Postscript – I will be returning on March 12th with my son. He left for college last fall and we will hang out like a father and son should. The moon will be full again. I will shake my fist at it. I will aim carefully and let loose a mighty cast at it’s Cheshire face. I will blacken it’s eye. It owes me and I will make it pay me until it cries for mercy. Mark my words. I will have the last laugh. - HPD

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