I figured this would be fitting, as we wait for the first snow storm of the year
I really did not know what I expected to find at Crocodile Bay Resort in Costa Rica on a trip last December. I should also mention (and I cannot emphasize this enough) that I am not a fan of airplanes of any kind. So, when you put me in a private charter plane with about 15 seats and small props, I am about as lively as a limp vegetable. But this was a small price to pay to reach the Crocodile Bay Resort on Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica.
I’m far from a world-class traveler but I will tell you that the level of service was something that I’ve never experienced before. I have never seen a more friendly and attentive staff in any place I have ever visited. Ever. This was not limited to those behind the counter or serving food, but also everyone else; From makers of the facilities to gardeners to captains and the mates. Mr. Todd Stanley does a great job of coordinating all the trips and does a great job of trying to fulfill everyone’s desires and expectations. The whole place ran like clockwork from the moment we got up. From the hot breakfast buffet waiting for you, to making sure you are working with the captain who understands what you were trying to accomplish; Even the sandwiches and drinks are packed according to your wishes. Upon your return, you will find hors d’oeuvres served between four and six o’clock and then a full buffet dinner expertly prepared by local chefs, with always-fresh catch available on the grill.
In front of the resort you will find a 500 foot-long concrete pier and don’t be surprised if you see 50 pound roosters cruising under it. We saw not only the roosters, but a giant snook patrolling the shadows at night. Even big saltwater catfish can be had on jigs, lures or bait. Patrick Sebile and Scott from bloodydecks.com both wrestled large specimen from under the dock. I managed the get shot of Patrick’s fish on a video.
Fishing from the pier is not prohibited but if I knew what I know now I would have definitely brought my Boga or some other type of fish landing tool to assist in landing fish. I should also mention that at low tide most of the pier is very high off the water so if you hook into something you may have to walk all the way back to shore.
How do you get there? I think the standard procedure is flying to San Jose, then spend the night in the hotel there and then in early morning jump on a small regional plane. It’s probably very much different than anything that you have done before, at least it was for me. 45 minutes later while enjoying some stunning scenery you will be landing in Puerto Jimenez, and Crocodile Bay Resort is located only five minutes away.
I wish there was more opportunity to explore the shoreline but the purpose of this trip was to put the new PENN Clash, Spiderwire new Camo line and Sebile 2nd generation lures in front of some very angry fish and our itinerary has been set long before we arrived there. I’m not sure how many boats we had our crew on, but it had to be at least 10. These boats were no joke either, no small pangas but instead 24 to 33 foot fishing machines, each with a captain and a mate.
When we started fishing, the first thing I was reminded off was my trip to Mexico with my son. Regardless how much I try to get some information about usage of lures, all roads lead to live bait trolling. It was actually a very slow day for our boat in the morning but it did pick up in the afternoon. The guys in the back got a few roosters, while I managed to raise a few fish but I couldn’t really get them to commit.
About 20 minutes before we were scheduled to head back in, all hell broke loose with as many as five roosters following Seville Magic Swimmer back to the boat. Hooking one was a whole other story. I must admit I’ve never seen fish move that fast in my life. As fast as I cranked my reel, the rooster moved three times faster than my lure but generally turned away as soon as they would see the boat. My problem was that the longest rod we had was 7 feet so I really couldn’t cast a magic swimming that far. Yes, you get a rooster excited but then they would feel the boat and turn away. Very frustrating but once in a while you get one to commit suicide. I actually felt that fishing from the beach would be a lot easier because your cast and retrieve would be longer. Something I hope to explore on a return trip one day and consultation with Mr. Todd Stanley.
Here’s the video shot by Tim Smith from the Fisherman magazine on Thursday at Crocodile Bay
more stuff coming including my first Cubera Snapper and some african pompano
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