12/01/2010 - 01/01/2011 | Fishing the Americas...a sportfishing journal

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Mike Leech Reports "Great Trip" on the Amazon Santana


Any true angler that has never fished for “Giant Peacock Bass” in the Amazon must absolutely put it on their bucket list! Those that have had the experience are, no doubt, looking forward to their next opportunity to return. My trip on the Amazon Santana was not my first time fishing in the Amazon, and I was pleasantly surprised at the comfortable accommodations on the yacht. It “far” exceeded my expectations and was considerably better than previous houseboats from which I had fished on the Rio Negro.

Our group met the Amazon Santana at Barcelos on the Rio Negro, and the crew handled our luggage and rod cases from the time we got off the plane until it was delivered to our cabins. Those that chose not to bring their own rods and reels were provided with good tackle, unlike some of the other trips I had been on. After a hot buffet lunch, pairs of anglers joined their guides and were able to get in several hours of fishing on arrival day.

The experienced guides, most of whom spoke English, constantly amazed me. Although the Amazon Santana moved each day in order to fish new water,they seemed to know each area like the back of their hands. With no charts, no GPS and no channel markers on the river they navigated the thousands of islands, rivers, lagoons, creeks and hidden lakes in order to seek out the best hot spots. In addition to catching Speckled, Orinoco and Butterfly Peacocks, we caught numerous other species unique to the Amazon basin which was always fun. Our guide led us to several big Peacocks including a 23, 21, 20 and 19 lb bass. The 20 lb Peacock was caught on fly tackle.

Our week long experience included, on different days, a shore lunch, barbecue dinner on a sand bar, dining under the stars on the top deck, and even an optional visit to a local native village. Except for an occasional fly, mosquitoes and other pesky critters were almost non existent. Returning to the yacht each day after 10 or 11 hours of fishing, we were met with a cold drink and a welcome cold damp towel. The food was plentiful and the bar was open all week.

All in all, it was a great experience which I am looking forward to experiencing again some day.

Mike Leech, Former president of IGFA



Location: Rio Negro/Amazon River/Manaus Brazil

Trip Date: December 10 - December 18, 2010

Group Size: 17 Anglers

# of Days: 6 – (4 late-arrival anglers fished 5 days only)

Numbers: 779

Size: 10 lb.’ers – 6, 11 lb.’ers – 1, 12 lb.’ers – 2, 13 lb.’ers – 2,

14 lb.’ers – 1, 15 lb.’ers – 4, 16 lb.’ers – 2, 17 lb.’ers – 1,

18 lb.’ers – 2, 19 lb.’ers – 2, 20 lb.’ers – 1, 21 lb.’ers – 2,

22 lb.’ers – 2, 23 lb.’ers – 1, and 24 lb.’ers – 1

(non-published were under 10#)

Water Level: Although the water levels were by no means “too” high, the jungle was unusually quiet during our trip. This might have been one of the reasons that the fishing was a bit slow for this week.

Baits Used: Lures of choice for this trip were Jumping Minnows, Zara Spooks, and Jigs.

Notes: All in all, everyone had a good trip and appreciated the efforts of the Guides and Staff. There were quite a few compliments on the accomodations being great as well as the food, and service, being exceptional.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

News Release...Press Release...El Grande Lures!

El Grande Lures’ Triple-Laminate Hatch-Match Sticks

Revolutionize Soft-Bait Manufacturing...

Bout time Jay! I've kept this under wraps about as long as I could stand it. In this case, Press Release really translates to "We Have Ignition Houston (fin'atics)". Jay Schurtz has just upending the world of "Plastics" as we have known it since Nick Cream poured his first "rubber worm". Introducing today the Tri Lam! Whew...I've had a few to play with this fall and they are sweeeeeet so says the finned friends out back in my private playground!

The perfect lure just got an upgrade!

Forage fish eaten by black bass have three primary colors, a fact reflected in the lifelike patterns of today’s crankbaits, jigs, spinnerbaits and swimbaits. Until recently, however, soft-plastic lures such as stickbaits and jerkbaits could not be mass-produced to duplicate these three-color patterns. That’s all changed with a revolutionary triple-lamination process developed by El Grande Lures of Linton, Indiana that’s now used in manufacturing the company’s 5-1/4-inch, soft-plastic Hatch-Match Sticks.

“The triple-laminate colors produced by El Grande Lures in their Hatch-Match Sticks are unparalleled in the injected-plastic market,” says Texas bass pro Kurt Dove. “As a professional angler/guide at Lake Amistad, I’m always looking for an edge on my competition or a way to help my clients catch lots of fish. The triple-laminate colors of the Hatch-Match Stick have made a huge difference in my catch rates. The fish have just not seen colors in plastic baits this realistic and they can’t resist them! El Grande’s triple-laminate colors are the most lifelike match to baitfish ever produced in soft-plastic baits.”

EL Grande Lures, owned by Jay D. Schurtz, started as a handpour company creating plastics for giant bass in Mexico and southern U.S. states. Early on, Jay began perfecting a triple-lamination process in soft plastics to more closely match common bass forage such as tilapia, bluegills and langostinos. Demand for these triple laminates far outpaced the available time to create them, so El Grande expanded into the injected-plastics market and brought triple lamination of full round baits into the current marketplace.

“For the angler looking for the competitive edge, this is it,” says FLW Tour Pro Angler Chad Morgenthaler. ”No more settling for common or bland color schemes that leave anglers wondering, ‘What does this imitate?’ and ‘Why would a fish bite it?’ With its new triple-laminate color schemes, El Grande Lures has taken good baits and made them exceptional. They’ve changed forever the way anglers will view and use soft plastics.”

“El Grande already created the ultimate soft stickbait with the Hatch-Match Stick,” says Elite Pro Angler Fred Roumbanis. ”Now they’re the first to add real life appeal with three shades that match actual prey, as well as the true action of an injured baitfish.”

El Grande’s 5-1/4-inch Hatch-Match Sticks are available in seven triple-laminate colors: Bluegill, Baby Bass, Bonita Shad, Catalpa, Tilapia, Perch, Threadfin. The triple-laminate process will be used to produce additional lures in 2011. For more info, visit the brand new ElGrande Lures website www.elgrandelures.com.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Final Fishing Report for 2010 from Venice, LA

A final report for 2010 from Venice, LA from Gary:

After looking at this picture of a fish the last day that weighed 32 pounds, I think we should have reweighed it---HA! On my latest trip with Capt. Keith, I joined my great friends Dan Basore and his son Todd for an early December outing. We barely managed to squeeze three days in between strong cold fronts. With cold weather and wind, the trip started a little slow, but as usual Capt. Keith found the bull reds and the last two days in particular were memorable. We finished with 61 redfish anchored by a pair of 32 pounders, a few trout, and two huge blue catfish weighing more than 30 pounds each. Top lures were Tsunami split tail minnows, Bomber mud minnows, and live cocahoe minnows under a popping cork. We're headed home with many bags of beautiful fish fillets for the grill.

Bass wishes,

Gary Clark

Captain Keith Kennedy

Born to Fish Charters

Friday, December 10, 2010

Cold Weather...HOT Red Fish Action on the Delta!

Dr. Gary Clark is back at the Delta this week fishing out of Captain Keith Kennedy's camp. Along with Gary are his good friends Dan and Todd Basore, both veterans of Kennedy's legendary Monster Red Fish encounters. Yep, they've traded in lightweight fishing shirts for high collar coats but the Giant Reds don't seem to care about the cooler weather. The action, perhaps a bit slower...23 Reds today to 32#. Not bad!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Zaccherini Andrea’s Monster Peacock Attempting IGFA Certification

“This is a fish reportedly with 13.190g of weight or 29lb and 04 oz. As you can see…one monster of a fish. The fish was hooked last month by angler Zaccherini Andrea.” __turmadobigua forum

View More Photo's of
Zaccherini Andrea's Monster over at our sister Blog:

Amazon Fishing Expeditionsn Blog

Monday, December 6, 2010

Yet Another New Potential WORLD RECORD Peacock Bass!


Information is sketchy at this point but it appears that yet another new potential world record Peacock Bass has been landed. We are advised that the necessary papers are being filed with the IGFA. The fish was reported to have been caught in the middle Rio Negro region of Amazonas, Brazil and weighed in at 29.40 pounds! More to come as information becomes available.

Amazon Fishing Expeditions Fishing Report for the middle Rio Negro

Mother Ship: Belle Amazon

Location: Rio Negro/Amazon River/Manaus Brazil

Trip Date: November 5 - November 14, 2010

Group Size: 17 Anglers

# of Days: 6

Numbers: 1745

Size: 10 lb.’ers – 14, 11 lb.’ers – 5, 12 lb.’ers – 8, 13 lb.’ers –
3,14 lb.’ers – 4, 15 lb.’ers – 4, 16 lb.’ers – 5, 17 lb.’ers – 5
18 lb.’ers – 6, 19 lb.’ers – 0, 20 lb.’ers – 3, 21 lb.’ers – 1
22 lb.’ers – 3, 23 lb.’ers – 1, and 24 lb.’ers – 1!

(non-published were under 10#)

Productive Lures: HighRollers and Jigs

Water Level: Levels were extremely low in the middle Rio Negro region.
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