Thursday, March 5, 2009

Checklists and Border Crossings

Anyone who knows me knows I’m a checklist guy. I make checklists for everything from life-experience goals to “honey-dos” for the weekend. In the magazine business, editorial checklists drive the timeliness of magazines going to print and to your mailboxes and newsstands. It’s the same approach we take to provide you with all the great information from our pros to help you reach your own fishing goals.

Having most of my checklist done early last December, an offer to go to Mexico came. For someone who lives in a climate where snow and ice was common that month, a trip to Mexico sounded like heaven on earth. And quite frankly, a trip to El Salto had been on my “bass fishing goals checklist” for a while.

I was offered an opportunity to participate in product demonstrations with my friends at Tru-Tungsten (Fish Harder Companies), Shimano, Wave Worms, Rat-L-Trap, Biosonix and Laser Lure. Many other outdoor journalists were in attendance as well. Writers I respect greatly, like Ed Harp, whose articles I’ve read with great interest and who probably influenced my own style, couldn’t pass up this unique opportunity.

The trip was booked through Ron Speed’s Adventures ( A short flight from Houston to Mazatlan, Mexico had us loading gear in the back of shuttles before 1 p.m. The scenery on the drive was awesome with coastal washes out one window and arid, rugged landscapes and jagged mountains out the other. We ate a fine meal our first evening at the lodge, got to meet and visit with some great folks and began preparations for the next morning’s battle.

I shared a boat with professional angler Marty Stone that first morning. He and I stumbled onto a deeper-than-usual pattern revolving around deep rock and Carolina rigs and Zoom Mag Finesse Worms, Zoom 8-inch lizards and Berkley Power Worms. We managed to communicate with broken Spanish to our guide that we wanted to fish some deep rocks. He took us to a spot that fit our weak translation, and to say it was the right choice was a horrendous understatement. We boated 50 bass between 4 and 7 pounds in very short order.

When we got back to the lodge for lunch, word had spread about our 50-fish morning, when most of the others struggled to boat a few fish. Our guide shared the location of the spot with the other guides, and the rest will be something of future fishing lore.

Over the course of three days, that one spot in 30 feet of water with scattered standing timber and big rocks yielded hundreds upon hundreds of bass. You could catch them on jigs, topwaters, swimbaits, plastics and crankbaits. It didn’t matter. The last morning of fishing there were seven boats with two anglers each fishing the small area. Michael Iaconelli and I whacked them on Picasso jigs, Yamamoto Senkos and Berkley Power Worms with the new Youvella hooks. But the other boats caught a lot of bass too.

There aren’t many places in this or any other country where you and six other boats can sit on a small spot for three days and crank out hundreds of bass averaging 4 pounds. All told, that spot gave up six bass weighing more than 8 pounds and countless quantities between 4 and 8 pounds.

That one spot literally produced a ton of bass.

And now I’m one line item closer to mastering my own bass fishing goals!

Good Fishing!
Jason Sealock
To see more photos from this trip, click here. Expect a full destinations story on the fine fishing on El Salto in an upcoming issue of FLW Outdoors Magazine.

No comments:

Post a Comment