Playa Blanca Fly Fishing Lodge Trip Report September 2017:
“When a group of WordCast Anglers regulars reached out to us about fishing Playa Blanca in early September, the height of Hurricane season in the Caribbean, there was some immediate apprehension and concern. Playa Blanca is typically closed between mid June and mid September for multiple reasons, but primarily due to the potential weather concerns. They will open the lodge occasionally for larger groups who insist that they want go and understand the risks. When I looked at the weather report a week out from our September 2nd arrival date, I crossed my fingers because it looked like this could a very special trip.
When I say we had the perfect week of fishing weather you can possibly imagine, I really mean THE PERFECT WEEK. Other than some cloudy, windy weather on our first day, the weather in Esipirtu Santo Bay the next five days was something out of a dream: 5% cloud cover and wind between 5mph and 9mph daily. As the week progressed, it felt like we we’re living in some sort of utopia, where each day was more perfect than the previous and everyone was having tremendous Permit fishing opportunities. Even though Espiritu Santo was over flowing with fresh water from a very wet August, it only seemed to concentrate the Permitinto large schools in the more obvious flats. The guides at Playa, all of whom have at least 15 years of experience, read the conditions like a book and knew exactly where to find the fish on a daily basis. It was a pleasure to witness their knowledge and experience first hand.
When it was all said and done, our group of eight anglers landed 19 Permit on the week. This included five anglers catching their very first Permit, an experience they will not soon forget. Although Espiritu Santo offers so much more than just Permit fishing, the guides and anglers alike recognized that the conditions were simply too good to pass up on such quality opportunities to chase this illusive fish. This is not to say that it was easy by any means. Over the course of the week, some members of the group defiantly declared they were never Permit fishing every again. One gentlemen even went as far to say that he would rather go to work the following day than watch another Permit follow his fly and not eat it. In the end, everyone’s perseverance paid off and in those immediate seconds while holding a fly caught permit for the first time, they forgot about any and all previous failures.
One of my favorite aspects of Permit fishing is taking part in the experience of someone landing their first one. Even hours after the event, while having cocktails on the beach, you will watch them stare off into the distance blankly with a little smile on their face. All is right in the world for less than 24 hours and there is no other fishing experience that can elicit such a feeling.