Its only been a few days since landing back in the U.S. from my favorite fishing lodge, Turneffe Flats in Belize. This was my third hosted trip to the lodge. I hosted 6 anglers and one diver this past trip. It was a incredible trip for me and all my guest. Some anglers caught their first ever bonefish and others caught their biggest, along with other species like barracuda, permit, snook, tarpon, and jacks. Couple anglers caught the permit bug, which is a nagging bug you can’t kill or swat away. This trip was especially great for me. I caught the permit bug my first trip there and ever since that trip I have been on a mission to land a permit. I have hooked three permit before this trip, but never landed any. Since I have fished and guided for musky many years, I understood the commitment, stress, and dedication it would take to reach my goal of becoming a permit fisherman. On my second day of the trip my guide Danielle was poling the flats looking for permit, when he saw a tail from a distance. Once we poled the boat closer I saw the fish tailing and made a cast about 2 feet from his nose. Stripped the crab fly slowly so the permit would see it and before I knew it the permit sucked crab off the bottom. I now was hooked up to a permit over 20 pounds. I was so focused on landing the fish I had know idea how big it was till later in the day looking at the photos. The fight lasted 20 minutes according to my video on my GoPro. I was pumped and so relieved I finally landed a permit. In my opinion their is know other saltwater species harder to catch on the fly.
After celebrating with a Belikin beer I looked at Danielle and said whats the chance of a grand slam today. He nodded and said it can be done. There was a school of bones close to us so I hooked and landed a bonefish, snapped a photo and now tarpon was on the brain. We hit a few tarpon spots with no sightings, then Danielle decided to make a long run north to a spot he usually sees them. In a short time of being at the new spot we saw a tarpon roll. I started to blind cast in that direction since the glare was bad and we couldn’t see it. I felt a grab and started strip setting hard as I could to penetrate their boney mouth. What happened next will forever be ingrained in my mind. The tarpon came out of the water 6 feet shaking its body like nothing I have ever seen. The chaos happened in seconds, after the first jump I stripped more, then the second jump came just as high, but this time I watched my fly come out of the tarpons mouth. So no grand slam that day, but one of coolest things I have ever seen. Now I’m on a tarpon mission!
I fished hard the remainder of the week catching bonefish, jacks and screwing up permit shots. I was starting to wonder if I could catch a second permit. On the final day we hit the flats first because tides were perfect for permit. Wading along side by side and scanning the water for a push or tail Danielle spots a small school of permit tailing a 100 yards ahead of us. We moved quickly but quietly to catch up to them. I made several cast to them and actually missed a couple eats. We chased them for easily a 100 yards trying to get back in position for a good cast. Finally they turned toward me tailing and I was able to hook my second permit. This permit wasn’t big but just as special as my first. I caught this one wading and I didn’t feel like the first permit was a fluke anymore. I love the permit fishing game and look forward to more opportunities at those black tailed devils!
I will be returning to Turneffe Flats Lodge June 22-29, 2019. The migratory tarpon will be there during this time. So now you will have bonefish, permit and all the other species to catch along with 100 plus pound tarpon. After the tarpon I hooked this past trip June’s trip can’t get here quick enough.
I will be emailing info out about the June 22-29, 2019 trip soon. Special Fishing Package rate for this trip is $3,575 + $276.93 tax = $3851.93. This is a 7 night, 6 day guided fishing, double occupancy price. More packages and prices are available. You can call or email me anytime with questions about this trip.