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Meet the Captains

When fishing from a cruiser, we normally fish with (and in no particular order) Cali, Mecate, Margarito, and Martin.  I have fly fished for 12 years with all of them, and they understand the concept.

However, most of our fly fishing is done from a panga, because there are usually never more than 1 or 2 fly anglers anyway, and a cruiser is not very cost effective for a single fly fisherman. When there is a larger group of fly anglers, in order to maximize the number of shots per day per angler, we spread them out on pangas, with two fly anglers to a boat.

In my opinion, the best fly fishing captains here from pangas are Adolfo, Cheva, Temo, Chico, Arturo, and Leonardo.

My 2 favorites are Adolfo and Cheva on the Dos Hermanos pangas. This is not just because of the exceptional quality of gear, but mostly for the fact they are probably the No. 1 and 2 captains here for their all around abilities for fly fishing and conventional gear fishing in both the blue water and inshore.  

Unfortunately for most people who try to book them a few weeks in advance, it isn’t going to happen.  Their reputation is such they have fishermen from all over the world booking them months in advance. Some of their French clients will book them for 15 and 30 days straight…not even going to the hotel, but rather taking their luggage straight to the boat, fish the rest of the day, then check into the hotel that evening.

Another option I often utilize and take advantage of is to fly fish the relative virgin waters down at Puerto Vicente Guerrero. Jose Pino has a couple of pangas there he has converted to be “fly fishing friendly” for my use. When we make the 1.5 hour drive down there in my Suburban, I usually take either Cheva with me (if he is available), or Adolfo’s son, Adolfo Jr.

The following testimonial says it all about Adolfo, and it also shows how a 1st time fisherman to the area is a lot more uninformed than they think they are. I had included this fishing experience in my Fish Report of 7/28/11. And, even though it was for conventional gear, it does not change a thing. Here is what I said in my report, with the client’s report following:

Fishing with Adolfo, on the panga Dos Hermanos, Erick and Stephanie Lansdon of Eugene, Oregon caught 5 nice roosters (with Stefanie releasing an estimated 60 pounder), a jack crevalle, and a nice dorado for dinner. On their way back to the pier, Adolfo called me on his cell phone telling me “I have a huge area of very large and very hungry gallos located…now would be the perfect time for a fly fisherman…Get me a fly fishing client!”

I lucked out and complied. Chad Hansen of Boise Idaho next fished with Adolfo. He got 3 large roosters on the fly, with one huge fish (over 60 pounds) breaking the leader near the boat.

Ed Kunze

The following is a trip report Eric Lansdon emailed me about his two day fishing experience here in Zihuatanejo.

The Day began with more than a little apprehension by my bride of a little over a week. The first day of fishing in Zihuatanejo hadn’t quite gone exactly as planned. Although I will say that the weather did not cooperate much either. We booked a trip through an online website, and as dumb Americanos, we thought we had it all figured out. The bottom line is we shouldn’t have even gone out that day. The ocean was quite similar to what I am used to fishing out of Winchester Bay Oregon in July- a rolling 6 foot swell (at times 8) with about a foot or two of wind chop. The panga we fished on the first day was not exactly the most comfortable of a ride as we plowed into the oncoming swell for quite some time. Sparing many details, I will say the fishing equipment was poor, the boat was unkempt, yet the skipper was a genuinely nice guy. We ended up with a yellowfin tuna after a couple hours, and I pulled the plug - lest I get a divorce before my honeymoon was over.

 

This experience led me to call on Ed, who lives in Zihuatanejo, and was referred to me through a friend. Our trip was winding to an end, and I knew we had to give it another try. We had to. Ed set me up with Adolfo on the Dos Hermanos for a day of Rooster Fishing. Ed told me that Adolfo was the best. I believed him, and we were stoked. My wife, however, was a little guarded.

 

We met Adolfo at seven at the municipal pier, and the first thing I noticed was his gear. Everything was right. Nice rods, nice reels, clean boat, organized tackle….This was a good sign. Furthermore, Adolfo and his deckhand Jesus (pronounced Hey-soos), were immediately very friendly. My Spanish is limited, but I try. Their English was limited, but they gave it their best too, always with a smile. We liked them immediately.

 

As we made our way out of the Bay and into the open ocean, Adolfo put us into the trough, and gave us a most comfortable ride. After a breathtaking ride along some of the prettiest beaches surrounded by dolphins and sea turtles, we arrived at the spot. As I got up to the front of the boat, I could see porpoises feeding up ahead of us, and baitfish popping along the backs of the swells just before they crashed on the sand.

 

I was told to cast as far as I could toward the beach, keep my rod tip up, and reel as fast as I could. After a few shots, I was beginning to feel like I had it down, but I began to worry about my wife, as I knew she wouldn’t be able to stand in the front of the boat and do this. I didn’t know that Adolfo had her hooked up with live bait, and was coaching her up on the particulars. I had one really good strike where a fish followed, crashed, and missed. It was one of the most exciting things I have done as a fisherman. On the very next cast, I hooked a smaller one and landed it a short while later. A couple of moments later, just as I was feeling bad for my wife, I look toward the stern and see a needle fish fly out of the water, and I hear Stephanie laughing. I guess she was doing just fine without me.

 

The next rooster crushed my white and red surface lure about five minutes later. The lures we used were not poppers as I know them as they do not have a blunt end. Rather, they look like short fat cigars that walk across the surface. This fish followed my lure this time, and I could see his rooster like fins behind the bait as it gave chase. In my life, I have never seen a more aggressive bite than this. We were locked up for the next half hour, and when we brought him aboard, I was stunned and tired. After we released him, Stephanie hooked a Jack Crevalle, and I took this time to watch her fight it. I didn’t get to rest long, as I was to tie into yet another 35 lb rooster minutes later. Unfortunately, this fish inhaled the lure and was bleeding when we landed him.

 

Just as I got back into position at the front of the boat, Stephanie had hooked up again. This fish was different, however, as we didn’t see him immediately. Rather, it was a run, followed by a run, followed by a run. When we did see him, we knew he was special. After about an hour, Stephanie landed a 60lb rooster, and Adolfo said “Erik, welcome to my country!”

 

This was quite possibly the prettiest fish either of us had seen, and we both agreed to get a replica fiberglass mount made in his honor.

 

I will say that I have caught marlin, halibut, salmon, and an eight foot sturgeon. These guys have nothing on the rooster. Hands down, hardest fighting fish I have ever experienced. Our totals for the day were five roosters, four needle fish, the jack, and a beautiful Dorado that probably went about ten pounds.

Adolfo is the man. He is not only an amazing fisherman, but a true gentleman. Quite simply, he is the kind of guy you want in your camp. And, he is very, very fishy. There are very few professionals out there who have “it”. This guy is one of them. The harbor is loaded with pangas and many of them charge less. Fishing with Adolfo on the Dos Hermanos was one of those experiences that was truly priceless. You can’t put a number to it. And in about three months, we will have an awesome reminder of our honeymoon hanging on our wall.

 

 

 

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