To be honest I still don`t feel like reporting happily here and on the islands in general most people are somewhat depressed. Out of empathy of course but also out of economic considerations as this unacceptable war cost Seychelles it`s recently biggest and fourth biggest tourism markets. Of course the losses are a marginal problem compared to the suffering of the people affected directly. But it is another hard hit for this totally tourist depending economy here that was just recovering from disastrous effects of the pandemic. And as many visitors from both the countries are fishing affine also on the charter boats that have to digest lots of cancellations. But of course a good lot of fishing still took place so let`s now turn to the hopefully entertaining part. On the 3rd my good buddy Marco came for a week to stay with me after he had spent the prior week fly fishing on Cosmoledo with Stephan from Bluewater Fishing. The later caught the so far second largest GT of the the season there. An absolute dream of 126cm.
Even as fishing there along that week hadn`t been the best according to Stephan they still caught several more nice ones and his report is surely worth a glance. He also spent that following week on Praslin so we had planned to head out every day with Sandro on Frenzy. But the chaps still had bad fly-fever and as suddenly we found lots of reasonable Permits around Praslin with some really good ones in between we went after those. Next to Marco`s two Brassy Trevallies we tallied a stunning 19 Permits of up to 40cm along those intense five days. Nearly all of these beautiful fish were properly spotted and caught at sight so it was really cool.
The icing on that allready decent cake was Stephan`s once more on his last day. Snorkeling he had found quality fish next to his hotel and in a crazy attempt indeed managed to get this fat Yellowspotted Trevally on a popper fly.
Subsequently we did only a single trip with Sandro. It was for jigging at the Drop Off and the bite which was okay early morning slowed ever more. Just the Sharks remained a nuisance throughout.
Of course other boats also fished along that mostly calm spell of weather if they had guests. The usual trolling was better on some days but also a bit slow on others. See a few catches from German angler Gunnar and his friends fishing with Brandon on Island Rhythm.
When it was really dull which occurred on a few extremely calm and hot days bottom fishing was the resort. Nothing wrong with that if it produces fish like this formidable Bohar Snapper also caught with Brandon along another charter day.
Thus and despite the seasonally rather few Sailfish around it all was mostly entertaining. Adding to that were the Marlin we had seen only sporadically so far this season but suddenly they popped up in good
numbers. Sandro reported two caught and a boat from Mahe had three in a day. But as so often the real whopper came from the 9G Sportfishing Team with a reported 7 Marlin in a day but on the pic I actually count 8 flags for these with a few more for also released Sailfish. Billfishing can not be better I guess. For a day also buddy Julian visited me on Praslin again and as usually we spent it with the fly rods. Was cloudy nearly all along though and with such low visibility we managed just one more and rather small Permit. You`ve seen enough of those already so I rather show you two of Julian`s fish he managed also on Cosmoledo the preceeding week.
Would love to present you such from here but even for Cosmo these are exceptional catches. Permits of such size though we see even here occasionally so I will keep trying as soon as the hole in my foot caused by a pointed bit of coral in my wading shoe has healed. Foot needs to be kept dry for now so it is not terribly frustrating that this year for a very first time the Mackerel have not invaded the home bay. Without that buffet the predators are of course also missing and I wonder if it will all just be late this year when that foot is good again. Still enjoyed a few days at sea thanks to US angler Patrick and his German girlfriend Julia who fished half a dozen times with Sandro. Their very first try at speed jigging went nearly ideal as the Amberjacks were feeding like crazy and nearly every drop produced a hookup. About a dozen in reasonable sizes were caught and if it had not been for the also hyperactive Sharks it had been a lot more.
Around noon when the two anglers were aching an Amberjack was grabbed by a Marlin some meters under the boat and moments later that fish leaped breaking the line. So quickly we switched to trolling but raised only two lackluster Sailfish instead. Next day they went GT popping recording two misses of those while one hooked came away in the rocks. On the 23rd it was Drop Off again for some mixed fishing. The right idea as the morning jigging was really slow with pretty much just a single Doggie contributed by Sandro. But a few long missed while admittedly rather small Tuna showed and were caught casting poppers. Moving into shallower water the jigging was suddenly lively with mainly good size Trevallies providing fun. Some point again a Marlin leaped and tempted to troll. None of these showed but a few Wahoos and a Dorado still provided for a good time.
On the 24th they went to the Drop again just to find the jigging pretty much plain dead. Trolling also was slow that day apart from that one Marlin striking but it did not hook up. On the 27th my buddy Simon from Switzerland arrived and on the same plane regular guest Jürgen with his fishing partner Bernd to enjoy a week with Mervin. Right the next morning we surfed out to the drop on Lady C only to find ourselves in 18 knots of NW wind, +2m waves and a drift of 2.5 knots. Despite all this dropping a bit around noon it was impossible to jig deeper than 50m and the about 40 fish caught were hard fought for. Only presentable one would have been this clearly double digit Amberjack. Poor thing was shreddered by not Sharks this time but obviously Doggies instead.
The 2.5hrs return straight into wind and waves was also not exactly fun. The following day I went with Patrick, Julia and Sandro for their last day fishing. A GT was on the agenda and strictly speaking the mission was completed after just half hour while size was nowhere near our usual standards. During most of that long half day I cast for Julia and then handed the rod to her to retrieve but fished about 30 of those casts myself. That led to two hookups of the usual size Geets but both came away in the rocks before I could hand over the rod. Was utterly frustrated also with a view to relentlessly casting Patrick who really deserved a proper one. His hookup came close to the end of the trip in a massive explosion of water but that fish also found a rock to cut him off. Really sad for the incredibly nice couple who still took it all happily and maybe this open issue of a proper GT is another reason for them to return in a hopefully not too far away future.
Mervin was fishing the same area with Jürgen and Bernd for the same goal but had started out some hours earlier. Along these they raised half a dozen good size GTs but got no strike so also had to make do eventually with a baby GT and a Bluefin Trevally. Yesterday then Simon and I joined them for another Drop Off jigging trip. This time in perfect weather and drift and on top all spots were piled with fish. Only problem was the bite being really slow in the early hours. Improved a bit towards low tide so we were hoping that it might become really great with the water rising again but instead the bite turned to nearly plain dead. Along the rest of that day it was tough to convince the odd fish here and there bringing the total tally to around 50 or so but without anything really noteworthy.
Still we had so much fun making jokes all the time and if one is able to laugh all day despite rather mediocre fishing everything was good.
For the preceeding reports check the archive.