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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Got this fishing report on another forum :

We headed from Isla Montuosa towards Isla Ladrones looking for the birds and dolphins that had been productive three of the last four days about 50 miles offshore in the middle of the Gulf of Chiriqui. John Delacruz of Panama Sportfishing Lodge had identified 2 currents of different temperature running in opposite directions via satellite imaging in the area and it had been concentrating bait along the break. After running for about 45 minutes from Montuosa we found them big time and it was game on:




At first we found them a bit scattered as small pods of dolphins chased bait with Yellowfin underneath in quick moving run and gun fishing. Capitan Macho did a great job getting us to the head of a pod where we dropped back live Bonito or tossed poppers. We got a quick coupla fun fish in the 40-60 lb class:




But off to the southeast at the edge of the Dolphins we came across this and it was holding BIG TIME. Its hard to appreciate strictly from the pictures but the Log was holding a small cloud of scared looking Triggers, Dorado in the 15-50+ pound class randomly milling around looking to kill shit and underneath it all, if you peered down deep just barely at color, a huge school of Yellow Fin of mixed sizes from 50-175+ lbs would cruise by to let everyone know the big boys were watching for anything little to step out of line:







We threw poppers and swim baits like these from River to Sea and this Smith Baby Runboh that is so easy to fish in a surface bite it's ridiculous. The big poppers take a fair amount of work to move well and produce enough commotion to get attention but the Baby Runboh you just reel and give an occasional twitch and it just gets destroyed. Rods were 8' 6" OTI Tuna Snipers with Stella 1800SW that were provided by PanamaSportsfishing Lodge and were in fine condition.


It was so WFO and we were so well equipped that we were trying to only target the big Bull Dorado of 5' plus that were mixed in, as even though the jig bite for small 5-20 lb. Dorado and Wahoo had been steady all week while trolling the shelves for Black Marlin from Hannibal to Montuosa or from Montuosa to Ladronas (Thieves), we were ready for some larger and more photo worthy models. We'd get a smaller grade Dorado or a 50 lb YFT and let it jump around on a slack line and hope it would throw the hook. Note the untended fish hanging in the starboard rod holder.


John tossed the last of the live bait at them and got into a nice grade of Dorado with the biggest sadly lost at the boat :(. We also threw cut bait at them and hung a big chunk on a rod that would occasionally go off with a hooked Dorado that we just let swim around to keep his buddies fired up until he threw the hook. Rinse and repeat. Basically anything in the tackle box was working, goofy broken back plugs, butterfly style jigs, live/cut bait, poppers or stick baits.





http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-42.jpg

Then I tossed the Baby Runboh about 10 feet short of the log and was greeted with a nice big boil after one twitch. This thing was mean and it turned out one of the bigger model YFT had risen from deep beating out all the Dorado and smaller models to inhale the lure. The Pain was about to begin.
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-48.jpg
I was into the fish for about 30+ minutes and it was seriously putting the hurt on me. In general the 8'6" Tuna Snipers were a joy but the extra length was now working against me. John thought I was just a Choucha but this was the sort of fish that required two people just to get the rod properly seated in the rod belt when under load. Try hanging 25 lbs off the end of your favorite 8'6" rod and holding it for 30 minutes without a harness and you'll get an idea of what it's like.
The Fish settled straight below the boat and to be honest, I just couldn't raise it. When I needed rest, the fish got rest too and we were dead locked. Reluctantly we decided to tag team the fish and John took a turn.
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-51.jpg
He went from thinking I was a pussy to "HOLY SHIT THIS FISH IS STRONG" over the next 15 minutes basically making no progress whatsoever raising the fish from straight below the boat with a rod that was too long for us versus this fish. Finally, we actually hand lined it in from just below color to see just what the hell we had gotten into. It was that or cut it off as otherwise we couldn't land it. Some fish are just like that.

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-52.jpg

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It went 120lbs at the dock so I guess we are pussies :rofl:. Try the same set up against the same grade of fish and get back to me. And when judging the size of things by these photos bear in mind I am 6'3" and about 240 lbs when laying on your momma :finger:.

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-58.jpg

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-59.jpg
A nice selection of the catch from this one bite with my and everyone else's favorite photo model Capitan Macho. We released and/or farmed twice again as many fish during this one bite. Largest Dorado at the log we saw was at least a foot longer than the one Macho is holding. The kind when you see swim by you say "Holy Shit that's a huge Dorado!".

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-44.jpg

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John got a nasty reminder that gloves are a good thing. Note to self: Do not palm a Stella without gloves on with a nasty YFT on the other end.

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-37.jpg

Some more scenic photos to follow. It was a fantastic week with a mixed bag of fish. Small wahoo and dorado to keep you awake while trolling the shelf, huge Cubera that would rock you and leave you shaking your head as what might have been to plenty of shots at YFT near 200 lbs that a better angler would have gotten in (or not farmed the hookset). No Black Marlin hooked during my stay (not considered optimal time for them but they ARE there this time of year). Definitely raised 2 during the 4 days of fishing and brought in a half dozen crushed and scratched baits but no love.

I cannot say enough about the operation that John Delacruz is operating there at Panama Sportfishing Lodge. Freshly washed clothes daily, all you can eat or drink, a super nice staff that is always at your service and top notch crews, boats and gear. And a big A+ for beds that have mattresses that seriously provide a good night's sleep.

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-01.jpg

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Photo below is Ladronas on the way in. Known for an epic offshore bite Marlin/Wahoo/YFT/Dorado and so many reefs filled with Cubera as to be uncountable. Probably the best deep jigging left north of the Equator.

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-71.jpg

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Photo below is hooked up on the best fish of the trip caught on a previous day plus a crappy photo of it. We came back in Victory at Sea conditions of 25-30 knots of wind and driving rain reducing visibility to 50 yards that day. The fish taped to 62" by 48" or ~175 lbs:

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-29.jpg

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-14.jpg

These are the most unspoiled coastal and offshore waters I have ever fished. When I say it reminds you of Jurassic Park it really has to be seen to be believed. From the Lodge there it is just about a half mile to the mouth of the estuary then it's islas and sea stacks that make you think of the South China Sea. The level of development around the Lodge is extremely sparse and you feel like you have 4 star accommodations on the edge of a wilderness.

http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-84.jpg

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http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/ii261/haugusnord/JohnTuttle-12.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
damn john i see its still kicking ass down there!

Bret,

Wait till next month LOL , BTW we had 2 Big Marlin came up on our bait in Hannibal Bank , but just slap the bait , we were using 5 lb. YFTs for bait ,one of the fish was so huge , it is no smaller than 800Lbs. , I will try to catch one over 700 this off season , this is the best time to take the big ones , bottom line , I think it is a great combination of Crew , Boat and gears(also Me) , the " Love " to fish , that makes us at Panama Sport Fishing Lodge , produce more consistent catches in this area more than others !!!! John
 

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Great Report and pictures, I live and fish daily from Puerto Armuelles. We are just 28 miles from the island. My sons are coming down in mid October to again do battle with the YFT's and scores of Dorado. It is the best fishing on the planet, year around. Thank god no one knows that! Someday it will be discovered.
 

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Great Report and pictures, I live and fish daily from Puerto Armuelles. We are just 28 miles from the island. My sons are coming down in mid October to again do battle with the YFT's and scores of Dorado. It is the best fishing on the planet, year around. Thank god no one knows that! Someday it will be discovered.

I can't wait to see you next month budman. I just hope my liver is up to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Very nice !!!! Glad to see you found the tunas, knew we where off by a week :eek: :eek: :eek: oh well always December.

No Dan you where not off by a week , you guys should have taken me fishing , instead of leaving me behind to do your dirty work with the photo shoot:mad:
 
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No Dan you where not off by a week , you guys should have taken me fishing , instead of leaving me behind to do your dirty work with the photo shoot:mad:

john
you should have called me i am very good at taking care of the dirty work!!!!...rick
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Ricky Bobby , the next time I have some dirty work to do ,you will be first on my list to call , in fact I have one coming soon , PM or call me for details
 

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No Dan you where not off by a week , you guys should have taken me fishing , instead of leaving me behind to do your dirty work with the photo shoot:mad:

Sure hang out with me, the BP, Raza or supervise pretty girls - that was a tough choice :D :D I know it was tight quarters on the center:eek:
 

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wich satellite imaging website you use for Panama? terrafin.com? offshorehilton.com? which one do you recommend?

PM John Delacruz at panamasportfishinglodge for the answer, not sure what service he uses.
 
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