GUANAJA DAY 5
The Big One and I took the day to go on a rogue two-man mission, exploring the flats past Mangrove Bight. We were delayed in our departure due to a feisty squall. Taking refuge in a small shack for about 10 minutes before we realized it was someone’s kitchen.
We check the canal that runs through the town because we had seen some fish in there before. Plus, local Intel classified this narrow stretch of water as a complete Snook zone. Nothing for our eyes today. But a man who lives next to the canal saw our interest in the water, and told us that he sees Snook the size of his arm swim through their every morning. He said they stack up behind the bridge, probably slaying little shrimp that get swept in with the changing morning tides. No snook, but The Big One managed to catch this barb wire fence! Tight lines brother.
Our days mission proved epic, but ironically yielded little success. The Big One lands a few fish, the skunk egg for me until later. We saw one massive tale wiggling above the surface, surely a nice size fish feeding on the bottom, tailfin up! Something that really gets the juices flowing, excitement brews, no movement though as we don’t want to spook the fish. We want to watch. We decide to give it a shot, Big One tosses a little fly next to it and… The fish spooks, darting towards the deep, leaving a rushing V on the surface marking his position and showing the speed and power of these fish.
We cast in unison, 20 yards apart looking like we are conducting a symphony to fish that are not obeying. The wind was brutal the whole week, so we cast in the same direction, the only direction possible, with the wind. I see a dark shadow slowly cruise in front of me and think it’s a shark. This fish was big, really big. “Hey man I think I see a shark swimming over to you…” The Big One, wading in deep water feels vulnerable and I point out the unidentified swimming object (USO). Turns out we saw a massive Tarpon. At least five feet. This is a fish tale, but it is true. We got no tosses in front of the majestic beast. It was just something to share the water with him.
We post up, enjoy whistling at the fish, and eat the most amazing coconut in the world. We sat on a log next the boat named “Just Deal With it” and watched how the tide came in and out over the conk shell infested beach. We were dealing with it the right way that’s for sure.
On our way back we stop by Sheridan’s house to say what’s Gucci. She smiles and welcomes us into her home like we are her sons, asking if we need water or coffer. Water. We need water thanks. She called herself our Island Mother, and that’s what she was. A homie for sure, kept us safe and somewhat tamed. But then again it’s hard to tame the Rogue Boys.
Back at our beach we meet up with the rest of the boys. They’ve been indulging in Mr. Grant and Jose’s two-dollar beer special. J is making a massive bonfire. As I couldn’t leave the day without a fish I travel solo down the other stretch of the beach.
Posted up high on a rock I cast into a deeper pool and land another small reef snapper. The fish gods are funny, but they helped me catch at least one fish a day. I travel further down the beach and find myself on a retired American’s dock. Forget her name, but lets call her Hermit. She told me the very first day that she sees Permit every night around 4:30 swimming around her dock. So I was just scoping.
Sunset. I had just caught another more sizeable snapper, and she applauded as I retrieved. As we sat, talking about Guanaja and the locals, I saw a tail. The infamous black tinted, skinny curved fin resembling a crescent moon. I scared her half to death when I shot up, “PERMIT”. I grabbed my rod in a furry and proceeded to tangle my leader and tippet. I watched in agony as the Permit tailed down the flat away from my rods reach. He waved to me in a mocking manner as the sun disappeared behind the horizon.