** Bahia Solano Fishing Report

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This is this week’s Bahia Solano Fishing Report and Photo Essay.
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Flying over Medellin.

Any doubt about us being in the tropics was shattered when we got off the turboprop in Bahia Solano. Soldiers, heat, mud, dogs, chickens, the smell of meat charring over charcoal, lush green landscape, trash, vultures, beautiful, hospitable brown-skinned people, conversations at the speed of light. I was back in the jungle and it was awesome!
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View from my balcony at Playa de Oro Lodge.

We took a truck to a boat to the Lodge Playa de Oro. Our hostess was the gracious and charming Isabel Palacios. The rest of the group consited of Rodrigo Teixeira, a production coordinator for FishTV (http://spottedtail.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2cf266c40f1149c555ceaf4d4&id=0d91111092&e=bcf0376f47) , Ricardo Canali, owner of Real Pesca (http://spottedtail.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2cf266c40f1149c555ceaf4d4&id=3257867bfd&e=bcf0376f47) , Johanna Garavito of ProColumbia (http://spottedtail.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2cf266c40f1149c555ceaf4d4&id=251e57284f&e=bcf0376f47) , and our guide, Alejandro Linares, who also owns the El Pez fishing tackle store (http://spottedtail.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2cf266c40f1149c555ceaf4d4&id=95ee28b4df&e=bcf0376f47)  in Medellin. As an English speaker I was linguistically challenged.
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From left clockwise: Isabel, Ricardo, Rodrigo, me, Johanna

We ate a delicious lunch- fried wahoo steaks with fixins. As wonderful as it was, the birds stole the show. One hundred five species of birds have been identified on the lodge property alone. They are beautiful, brilliantly colored, and not at all shy. I hadn’t even touched my tackle yet, but everything was fantastic.
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The birds stole the show.

A two hour boat ride straight out into the Pacific under a sky threatening rain started our first day of fishing. We planned on trolling for sailfish, tuna, and mahi at what Alejandro told me was the Panama Current. We trolled without success long enough that I took a nap on the boat’s deck.
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The boat ride out.

Alejandro finally gave up on the trolling. We went to a point of land where huge boulders pierced the surface of the sea, providing habitat for frigatebirds, boobies, and other seabirds. Alejandro handed me a large spinning rod with a giant popper attached. When I asked what we were fishing for he said, “Pargo. Atun.” Cubera snapper and tuna. OK. I’d never caught either so it was fine with me.
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We fished around these rocks.

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This plug weighed four ounces. Tossing and working it was WORK.

Using that outfit was serious work. After a while it was rest time for me. Ricardo had a bite, something that screamed line off against a very tight drag. But the hooks pulled lose and we never saw the creature.
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Alejandro battles a pargo.

Alejandro was like a machine, tossing the popper a mile and working it back with powerful sweeps of the rod. A fish finally came up and ate it- what a fish! Pargo, muy grande! The snapper weighed close to 70 pounds, the biggest one Alejandro had ever gotten. After we photographed it, to my surprise and relief, he released it.
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It was a beast.

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It wasn’t my fish!

Even after that it was a bit of a shock when a fish nailed my plug. Against a drag that I could barely pull against the fish made a powerful run. It was a tuna, not even a very big one. Man, they can pull.
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The tuna weighed less than 10 pounds, but they were all business.

That fish was not released. Nor was the next one I got. Alejando got a third.
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One of Alejandro’s tackle boxes.

We had tuna sushimi and tuna cerviche as appetizers at dinner that evening. They were both heavenly.
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The weather the second day could have been better.

** Inclement Weather
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Rain greeted us the next morning. Near the lodge we cast lures for tarpon and roosterfish. An hour’s work netted no results, so we went back to the pargo spot. The rain just got heavier, the wind windier. I broke out the ten-weight. Carrying it to Colombia would have been stupid had I not used it. I got one blue runner, not exactly the fish I had in mind.
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Johanna had never caught a fish before.

Although there were three tuna caught with plugs, there were no pargo this day. With the weather deteriorating and the fishing slow we decided to bag it early in the afternoon. The ride back to the lodge was memorable for all the wrong reasons- big seas, heavy rain, everyone soaked and miserable.
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Atun! Johanna is a happy girl.

** Last Day at Bahia Solano
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The next morning I had some time before our flight back to Medellin. I used it to photograph some of the birds and sights around the lodge.

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My trip to Bahia Solano was way too short, unfortunately with uncooperative weather and fairly uncooperative fish. February is supposed to be the best month for fishing there. I’m looking for a way to clear my calendar for a couple of weeks.

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For more information on Bahia Solano and the Playa de Oro Lodge, visit http://spottedtail.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2cf266c40f1149c555ceaf4d4&id=310836a035&e=bcf0376f47. The site is entirely in Spanish.

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FOR SALE
Still trying to find a good home for my old EZ Loader Trailer- http://spottedtail.us4.list-manage1.com/track/click?u=2cf266c40f1149c555ceaf4d4&id=1bcedf8682&e=bcf0376f47

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And that is this week’s Bahia Solano Fishing Report!

Life is great and I love my work!

Life is short- Go Fishing!

John Kumiski

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