Fishing Lately

Fishing Lately

In the last month, I’ve been able to get back into the habit of permit fishing. It’s been nice, and frustrating, and all of the things between that make it the kind of thing I miss when I don’t do it enough or as much as I once did. Our goal has been the 4# tippet world record, and as a bonus we are turning at least some of the journey into a film project with the help of some (very) generous sponsors. We’ve been able to connect with only 3 permit so far, and each has ended before we ever got a good look at the fish. The first was a large fish that somehow disconnected from the leader as the elastic material gave way, the result of either a knot coming apart or being bitten by a smaller fish as the permit took off. The second we were foiled by the fish coming at us, eating it twice and not staying connected.
Two weeks later we were able to get five straight days of fishing in on the project, giving us a chance to lean into the struggle and hopefully show what we’re hoping to: just how beautifully difficult this can be. We found few fish on the first two days before making a zipcode change in search of more, and when we found a large number of targets we decided to stay in them for as long as we could. The fish were in nervous masses, not feeding and apparently awaiting for something to change. We stuck by them as much as we could, trying a few fly changes and mostly just running the same plays over and over.
We finally hooked one on the fourth day, a smaller fish that wouldn’t make the cut for a potential world record but at least gave us some hope of getting a capture on film. Everything was under control and unfolding finely until it suddenly wasn’t: the small permit found a root ball that Irma had deposited on the flat years ago and unceremoniously broke us off on its second pass through it. We re-rigged and kept at it, hoping that we could find another fish to connect to, but it wasn’t to be.
The final day brought with it a weather change and a hard shuffle of the fish we were after, and we finished the five day outing with only the hard lesson to show for it.

We’ve 8 days down and 7 to go on this challenge, and I’m feeling more and more focused by the minute on doing all that we can. Whatever happens, my belief is that the final project will be worth the time.

More to come,


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Nathaniel Linville

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