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August 28, 2000

Dr. Anthony Cuomo had an unforgettable week of tarpon fishing at El PescadorLodge in Belize last week. Dr. Tarpon Tony has been a guest and friend ofEl Pescador for over 11 years, always fishing with his favorite guide, Nesto. Tony landed the lodge record for the 1999 season last May with a 157pounder. He now holds the 2000 record as well with a 165 pounder caught onAugust 26th. He is only 4 pounds shy of the lodge record for our 30 year history.

All of us here at El Pescador would like to Congratulate and Thank Tony!! You are an inspiration to all of us.

We would also like to share his amazing story of his week with all of EP’s friends.

Tarpon In Belize

Written by Dr. Anthony Cuomo on August 28, 2000

A.K.A. Tarpon Tony: Blue skies, popcorn clouds, and gentle winds set the stage for unbelievable Tarpon action on the saltwater flats of Belize. At the El Pescador Lodge, north of San Pedro on Ambergris Cay, Ali and Logan Gentry are gracious hosts and manage a turnkey Fly fishing operation, which accommodates expert as well as the novice fisherman. The accommodations are excellent, the services complete, and the cuisine is unique. The lodge dining room provides a full service bar, which is the gathering place for raucous afternoon fish tales and rowdy card games. With El Pescador as base station, Nestor Gomez, a king among tarpon guides, engineered a game plan, which proved fantastic. Early morning starts were the cornerstone of success. Rising at 3:30 A.M. to travel under cover of darkness allowed access to fishable flats at first light. Within minutes of the first drift, the sounds of rolling tarpon electrified attention and forced sightings of telltale silver backs and rippling fins.

Fly-casting any target was simple in the absence of defeating wind. The roll call was incredible. ” Tarpon rolling 200 feet 9 o’clock, 60 feet at 2 O’clock, two of them at 50 feet 1 O’clock”. Choosing a target proved to be the most difficult decision. Once chosen, inducing a take was not a problem. The fish were aggressive and slammed flies, at times with aerial assaults. In all we fished six days, covering five flats in three different areas from mangrove margins to deepwater. Hundreds of fish were sighted. Of presentations made there were thirty takes, twenty-seven fish jumped, and nine landed. The largest weighed 165 lbs. [68 inches long, 43 inches girth], and was subdued after a two-hour battle, which included 27 runs, 7 jumps, and 5 lurches under the boat, the last of which destroyed my #12 Loomis GLX rod. Two other fish went over 100 lbs., the remaining ranged from 15 to 85 lbs. Many of the fish jumped were on for multiple jumps and were lost for a variety of faults: snapped leaders, poor hook sets, and unexplained. The experience was the realization of the quintessential tarpon fantasy. I am planning to reproduce it as soon as I rest my weary back and trunk. Nestor, Ali, Logan, El Pescador , thank you for the experience.

Written by Dr. Anthony Cuomo on August 28, 2000 A.K.A. Tarpon Tony

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