After many weeks of preparation, planning and excitement the 2016/17 season is upon us. Our first client, Garreth Coombes, had arrived and every piece of kit imaginable from spinning to fly rods was lined up ready for the first day on the water.
The first few days on the water were tough as the monsoon had not ended on schedule. The sea was a thick pea green colour and unusually cold. The swell had not yet subsided making any sight casting from the boat for the 2nd species of Permit we find in Oman out of the question. Although on a positive note the waters were alive with bait, huge shoals of sardines and mackerel which means great fishing conditions will follow shortly. A few days on the boat produced some Barracuda, mackerel and small trevally.
Garreth had his mind set on landing his first Africanus so a game change came into play. The boys ditched the boat and set out by car early doors, heading for one of our favourite beaches. Geared up and ready for action they set off along the beach. It wasn’t long before Brandon spotted what they were looking for, a dozen or so forked tails frantically tailing from behind the rocks. Trichinotus Africanus are like the street fighters of the permit species, aggressively feeding in packs, not a care in the world as the pounding surf washes them over jagged rocks.
Fly fishing was out of the question as the wind was blowing far too hard and the swell would just wash your fly line all over the rocks.Locked and loaded with an extremely realistic crab lure on a light spinning rod Garreth set to work, dropping precise casts right into the melee of feeding fish. The line went tight and he set the hook…fish on! As Im sure I mentioned before when these fish get spooked they jump a clear 3-4 feet out of the water. So as attempted an escape to deep water his friends flew out of the water in all directions….a real sight to be seen!
After some rock hopping a few minutes later and Garreth had his first, slightly stunned, Africanus laying in his hands. An absolute beauty these fish have been known to grow up to 20+ kilos and they like to fight dirty. Releasing him on his way back to his shocked comrades.
No rest for the wicked and the boys were off again. A little further down the beach and Garreth had his second shot. A bunch of fish were tailing inside a gully making it easier to present to them. This time he was not to be so lucky, after a nail biting fight trying to keep the fish from running out past the rocks, the fish fish managed one last run and broke off just as he got it close enough to land. As they commiserated their loss and tied another crab lure on, another single tail appeared. It took a few casts for this fish to see the crab. Landing a final cast right on top of the fish Garreth hooked it. A smaller fish than the rest that we had been seeing tailing. The fight was quite quick. Brandon managed to tail him and to both their surprise it turned out to be an Indo- pacific permit (Trachinotus Blochii).
What a day, I’m not sure I know anyone who has caught both species of Omani permit in one day! An awesome end to what had started out as quite a challenging trip.
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