Campeche

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by rotato, Nov 1, 2017.

  1. rotato

    rotato Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    890
    Location:
    home,wa
    Anybody have any experience in the state of Campeche? We are headed there soon. We have a small house rented within the walled city. Baby tarpon are the main attraction, but I'm also interested in some jungle adventure as well. The Champoton river runs for about 70 km through jungle and farm land. It would be awesome to get on a dugout canoe and explore. I have never fished fresh water in Mexico. Any tips or ideas are appreciated.

    Edit: local cuisine is actually the main attraction.
    Thanks,
    Nate
     
    mtskibum16 likes this.
  2. mtskibum16

    mtskibum16 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2008
    Messages:
    2,952
    Likes Received:
    2,938
    Location:
    Puget Sound Beaches
    I can't help, but it sounds awesome! Look forward to a report upon your return.
     
    rotato likes this.
  3. quilbilly

    quilbilly Big Time Hater

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2015
    Messages:
    648
    Likes Received:
    958
    Location:
    Hood Canal
    Be sure and have some Pan de Cazon....best dogfish recipe ever....you wind up finding a use for the lowly dogfish.
     
    rotato likes this.
  4. Chucker

    Chucker Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Messages:
    440
    Likes Received:
    299
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    I don't have any good information, but I have heard that the coast just north of Campeche has some good baby tarpon and snook fishing. Lots of river mouths and small lagoons in that area, which is definitely the right type of habitat.

    Have you done any fishing for baby tarpon? It's a blast. Not cutthroat fishing, that's for sure!

    As for jungle rivers, I kayaked and snorkeled some of the rivers running into the Ascension Bay area. It was a blast. Saw lots of small fish, nothing big. However, it was a river running from a lake, and so the water was clear. I am not sure the rivers in Campeche are like that.

    Nick.
     
    rotato likes this.
  5. rotato

    rotato Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    890
    Location:
    home,wa
    Right on guys
    Thanks for the stoke
    I've never fished for small tarpon and it's been on the list since I bought a tarpon t shirt when I was like eight
    Definately trying some pan de cazón
    I believe the guides from campeche roam the bio preserve above town so that will be cool.
    Still curious on what swims in the upper rivers
    It did look silty in the photos I saw so that could be a factor.
    Just got back from PS fly co with my reels dialed in, a sweet new used shooting head line and some feathers
    Tying toads tonight
    Cheers
     
    Kfish and mtskibum16 like this.
  6. ptychocheilus

    ptychocheilus Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2010
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    45
    Location:
    Tennessee
    Might want to search for Miller, R.R. et al. 1985. Freshwater Fishes of Mexico. Bought mine for $$$ when it first came out, now you can get a new hardcopy for <$30. Decent range maps, and while some of the nomenclature is outdated, the local common names and the range maps would come in mighty handy...
     
    rotato likes this.
  7. rotato

    rotato Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    890
    Location:
    home,wa
    Thank you
    Sounds like a great resource
     
  8. Go Fish

    Go Fish Language, its a virus

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2006
    Messages:
    1,506
    Likes Received:
    428
    Location:
    Rheomode, Wa.
    Looking forward to your report.
    Dave
     
    rotato likes this.
  9. Chucker

    Chucker Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Messages:
    440
    Likes Received:
    299
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Make sure some of them are black and purple!
     
    rotato likes this.
  10. Kfish

    Kfish Active Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2015
    Messages:
    1,175
    Likes Received:
    2,994
    Location:
    Newcastle WA
    Baby tarpon are a lot of fun Rotato, they're strong! Tarpon toads tan and yellow are good, black and purple too.
    Good luck! Post a report when you get back!

    Lou
     
    rotato likes this.
  11. Richard E

    Richard E Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2001
    Messages:
    5,411
    Likes Received:
    510
    Location:
    Seattle, WA, USA.
    When you going (you said 'soon', but how soon is 'soon')?

    I fished San Felipe (Tarpon Caye Lodge) a couple of years ago. I realize that it isn't at Campeche, and they are a little different, but they are also very similar as far as gear and approach.

    The time of year you are going, no need to worry about adult tarpon, so a fast action 8 weight works great. I had a few different rods with me, and used a TFO TiCr-X 8 weight and a Classic GLX 8 weight the most. Two different rods (tools), and I used them in different situations. When I was in wide open situations, I would generally use the TiCr-X. Sometimes I would be in tight conditions shorter casts and/or roll casts where necessary, and the GLX would be my choice then. Pretty much any good saltwater line will work - I used SA Saltwater and Rio Clouser lines. I cast another anglers outfit that had a Wulff Bermuda Short line on it, and that line in open conditions will cast to the next zip code. However, casting for distance isn't the norm, so I prefer a standard saltwater line as an all-around line. This type of line was also recommended by some folks over at Fly Water Travel, and it was great advice.

    Once you get a baby tarpon on, depending on what size tippet your are using, most of the time you can strip the tarpon in without the need of getting them on the reel. Of course a good saltwater resistant reel with a solid drag is handy, but generally the tarpon aren't going to rip off big runs. They will jump and bulldog you, more than tear off into the sunset like maybe a permit or bonefish.

    The guides and anglers primarily preferred flies in the #2 to #1/0 size, mostly toward the smaller. You can search Bing or Google for Campeche flies, and you'll find plenty of options. Don't make it complicated, though; basic streamers, like good ol' standbys like Seaducers and even a Deceiver, will work fine. Seaducers in red/white, orange/yellow, orange/tan, maybe a few dart patterns - all work. Enrico Puglisi style baitfish patterns rock. Also, topwater can be the game at times - Gurglers are easy and fast to tie and can be very effective. Sharp, quality hooks are mandatory. With larger tarpon bite tippet is important, but with the baby fish sturdy hard saltwater mono tippet is the ticket.

    Stripping the fly - it varies. Sometimes the fish are active, sometimes not - you need to vary the retrieve to match the tarpon's attitude. Sometimes they charge the fly, sometimes they spot it and lock on with almost an audible 'click', and then follow the fly before (maybe) striking. Sometimes the strike comes on like a rush, sometimes it's a pounce. Tarpon remind a lot of coho - sometimes coho like a more deliberate strip, sometimes a crazy speed strip. Same with baby tarpon.

    Strip set, strip set, strip set, strip set.

    The fish can be out in the lagoon areas, and sometimes are holed up in channels or against the mangroves. Seeing the fish, for me, is my biggest challenge, so a guide is pretty much necessary.

    Youtube is your friend. Go there and you'll find plenty of Campeche and San Felipe tarpon fishing videos. One called "7 Minutes of Mayhem" will really get your blood going. Crazy fun stuff.

    When you watch the video "7 minutes of Mayhem" keep in mind the angler, Marco, who is the manager/operator of several baby tarpon lodges/business in the Yucatan (Campeche, Tarpon Caye Lodge, Isla de Sabalo, etc.),, is fishing with a fly with no hook, which is why no hookups. It's a video definitely worth watching!




    Some solid tips and action in this one.




    You don't need to understand Spanish to get/follow the Campeche tips in the following video.




    Enjoy yourself!
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2017
    rotato likes this.
  12. rotato

    rotato Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    890
    Location:
    home,wa
    Thanks Richard!
    Great stuff
    This weather sure is encouraging us to go
     
  13. rotato

    rotato Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    890
    Location:
    home,wa
    8633E851-E3CB-42EB-BE70-1B09E2D42F13.jpeg
     
    Kfish and Chucker like this.
  14. Kfish

    Kfish Active Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2015
    Messages:
    1,175
    Likes Received:
    2,994
    Location:
    Newcastle WA
    Nice! At first I didn't recognize that that was. Have a good trip Nate!

    Lou
     
  15. rotato

    rotato Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    890
    Location:
    home,wa
    IMG_3304.JPG The day started slow as I missed a few casts. I slapped one on the head which exploded and left the scene. Then it went quiet and I thought oh no it's key west again and I'm going to be blanked.

    We moved to the next spot and saw a few fish rolling in range. I made a decent cast and had a follow and then a hit... and then nothing.
    I get all pouty and slump my shoulders. "Strip strip" says Franando and it was on.
    As it was jumping thrashing and running I tried to be aware of all of it.
    How much fun are these fish!
     
    c1eddy, Irafly, River Pig and 15 others like this.