Nov 15th: Yes, it’s finally happened. And it took an expert to do it. We have at last caught our first big permit – an estimated 18-pounder, boated by Ian Davis from Montana, guided by Ishi and with Sandy Walker in attendance.
All the signs were positive this week. Several guests had seen permit, up to 40lbs, while out on the Marls. Some guests had good casting opportunities – and with the right rig to hand (a heavier rod, cast and crab fly). Then on Tuesday, Mark Richens, the affable English owner of rodmakers Thomas & Thomas, came to dinner at the Club, having caught no less than two 25-pound permit that very day while fishing “our” section of the Marls.
It seems that, with very high tides and the waters warming up again after a cool period, the permit are venturing in onto the flats. And this time they’re feeding, not just cruising by.
The successful angler, Ian Davis, was out on a photo-shoot with Sandy to get pictures for Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures, an American agency that he co-owns. Having caught a few bonefish and taken all the pictures they needed, they decided to carry on fishing for fun. Ian has caught many permit in the past, so when the fish approached he knew exactly what to do. Through a series of excellent long casts, into the wind, he got the fish to move at three different flies before it finally swallowed the fourth pattern he presented (If you must know, a size 2 Enrico Puglisi white crab with orange legs). Respect!
And let’s not forget Ishi. Ishi was also the guide when the Club’s two earlier and smaller permit were taken in 2010 (by Joe & Mitch Codd). He is in danger of getting a reputation.
Following on from last week’s first ever tarpon and the generally good bonefish catches this week, we are on a bit of a roll. The next boxes to tick are a 10lb bone and a 30lb permit. It’s only a matter of time. Who’s up for it?