shocks at the border and anything more than 10 mph would set off a vibrato in the front end that would take ten minutes to subside. Everything that far down is "make do".
At the house, after shedding shirts and dipping into the tepid water we faced the next mexican reality. The two aluminum boats and their motors needed to be de-mothballed since their last use one year previously. Predictably, everything was jammed, corroded, flat, and/or dead. The five of us unjammed the steering, hosed out the boats, replaced or pumped up the flats, and recharged or replaced the batteries. Then we had to fix the cars or trucks that would be needed to tow the boats the four blocks to the beach access for launching. The litany of problems seemed endless, but there was always just enough spit and bailing wire around to "make do" for the short run. Everyone agreed that Carlson was truly in his element. After four hours everything was more or less ready to go for the next morning's fishing.
Back in the house, we rigged for dorado. Everyone else knew exactly what they were going to use. I, being the neophyte, rigged three reel/rod combinations from 9-11. Basically it was a simple concept. Floating line, streamers or poppers, lots of backing, good drag. The dorado is a simple fish.
Actually, as I came to learn, dorado are an almost perfect fish from a fly-rodders perspective. First off they are common, found world wide in tropical waters. Their basic habitat, the deep tropical seas of the world is the single most abundant and stable habitat on earth. Secondly they are prolific, year 'round broadcast spawners, and grow rapidly. A two year old dorado may weigh more than 50 pounds. The five to 20 pounders we would be catching were less than a year old. Thirdly they are an aggressive top water feeder, often betraying their presence, and a floating to intermediate line is all that is needed. Fourthly, they have a predictable pattern, their fascination with anything floating on the surface, that concentrates them around anything breaking the monotony of the blue ocean, in our case deep water anchored shark fishermen's buoys. Fifth, they are a great fighter than will sear a drag for the first long run or two, jump six or eight times, and predictably sound again in one long run straight down when you
finally get them close in to the boat. And sixth, they are delicious eating, really a delicacy anywhere except Baja where prices were so low that there was no interest in commercially fishing for them. Throw in for good measure that they are the most beautiful, luminescent fish that swims, and this is all sight fishing. You see your fly clearly, even at a hundred feet, the fish, the chase, the take, everything.
The only drawback that I could see is that they have no brain, not that I could find with a club anyway. We all know how a salmon or steelhead just quivers still with one tap from a priest on its head. Tap a
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