We hosted two groups here on the island, had one day charter out of the Boca Chica, and fished eight days the second half of the month of January 2016 here at Sport Fish Panama Island Lodge. The water temps cooled down a bit in certain areas but still remained high for the most part here in the Gulf of Chiriquí. The warm water wasn’t bad for the Sailfish but seemed to push out the numbers of marlin we had the weeks prior. Even though the water has been warm from these El Nino conditions we are still finding some good fish!
A great bunch of guys from Maryland Charles, Mike, DJ, and Harry fished with me for 4 days and we had our sights set on a Marlin. No problem finding the Bonitos we use for live bait but we did have a problem finding a Marlin! A couple of possible shots we had at Marlin failed but we did get a few nice Sailfish. Matter of fact one day we popped all 3 of the 4 guy’s Pacific Sailfish cherries! Again the warm water really slowed down the bite with the Marlin…we had nice clear blue water, some bait around, but just couldn’t get it done Marlin wise. They did get a hell of a consolation prize though…an epic battle with a monster Yellowfin Tuna that none of them will forget! On the second day a buddy of mine said he was hooked up on a big YFT so we rushed out a few miles to his location and sure enough found a pod of Porpoises and birds working hard. We were out of live Bonitos so I decide to troll some dead Ballyhoo over the area. Next thing we see are some big splashes of Tunas busting the surface and then I see a monster mark on the sonar of some BIG fish down 50 feet. All of the sudden….WHAM! of course…the smallest sized rod/reel setup we have dragging baits a Shimano Talica 20II matched with a Tallus rod and 65# braid gets hit and is screaming off line! It’s Mike’s turn and as he gets strapped into the Aftco fighting harness we don’t realize how big the fish is. But after the nothing less than an epic battle, two and a half hours, and eight turns of everybody fighting the fish we realize how big it really was! It was all of 225 pounds and fought like it too! A definite testament to our sponsor’s quality tackle/gear that we use here at the lodge…as the Shimano Talica (spooled with 65# Diamond Fishing Products Momoi Diamond Braid line and wind-on leader), Shimano Tallus rod, and Mustad 9/0 Demon Perfect Circle hook all performed flawlessly! And over the next couple of days Chef Mark made up sushi, sashimi, and Tuna steaks that were out of this world! Thanks guys for the business we had a great time too! I hope you can make it back sometime so we can get another shot at that Marlin!
We fished one day charter with up and coming angler Brooke Thomas, her Mom Gina, and Step Dad Steve. Brooke I think was definitely more excited than me to get out on the water and catch something! Unfortunately the bite was super slow and most of the day we didn’t see much. A bunch of action with diving birds and bait…but no fish. We missed a couple of Sailfish bites but then she did manage to put the hook in one and she caught, tagged, and released her first Pacific Sailfish. A big one that went probably 120 pounds! The day was coming to an end and it was time to head back to Boca Chica. On the way in we noticed a couple of nice logs floating and we decide to give it a shot. Boom! We got a nice 25# Bull Dorado and a nice cow to end the day! Great day on the water with Brooke! Check out her Instagram at @thebrookster.
John and Pete from New York and Florida joined us for three days of fishing and again…. we were swinging for the fence to get that Marlin. It was pretty relevant that it was going to be tough as the water again was warm and this time it was hard to even catch Bonitos as there were few around. We did although get a few nice Sailfish…Pete’s first…and mixed it up a bit and wound up with a pretty productive trip! John got the Cubera Snapper he was wishing for as well as Mullet Snapper, Horse-Eye Jacks, Needlefish, Jack Crevalle, Roosterfish, Yellowfin Tuna, and a nice Almaco Jack! One of the highlights of the trip was on the last day we got into a pod of Porpoises working bait and the guys got to put the hooks into and do battle with a couple of impressive back to back Yellowfin Tunas! Very cool clients and a pleasure to fish with these guys as well! Thanks for the business!
Enjoy the pics…
Capt. Shane Jarvis
Sport Fish Panama Island Lodge
Isla Paridas, Panama
Panama Cellular Phone 011-507-6675-7191
US Toll Free 866-245-1492