August 31, 2009
Our fishing expedition last Saturday did not achieve very much. Wherever we went we found weed growing in abundance. The weed is very compact with small spiny leaves. It can make water 4 feet deep un-navigable.
We started the day with the usual blue skies and high temperatures with pleasant light easterly breeze. We crossed the Lake and started exploring the bay formed by Flores island and Santa Elena/San Benito. The vast stretches of weed made netting difficult and we only caught a few T affinis and some V. melanurus The Lily Hoppers or Jesus Birds which were searching the Water Hyacinth had more luck than we did.
We then proceeded around the Island of Flores. The short cut under the bridge was impassable, shallow and blocked with water hyacinths.
The Petencito zoo was very popular today with tourist launches zooming past us. I mention to the boys that the crocodiles in the Zoo find that Tourists are the tastiest food because they don’t eat tortillas. We always travel at an economical speed to conserve fuel and time is of no importance.
We eventually worked our way into the Lagoon but even in the center it was choked with weed. Here we released the Tortuga Blanca the endangered species of Turtle which we had found on the Lake shore.
We let the wind drift us out of the Lagoon netting as we progressed. As we drifted through the narrow entrance we netted a pair of young adult Petentia splendida.
We eventually drifted into a large weed patch and I told the boys to paddle us back into clear water. The Lanchero said “No problem, no problem” and told the boys to paddle ahead. Very soon the Launch would not move. Once again I suggested reversing into clear water but the Lanchero insisted on going ahead. The launch was forced ahead levering the paddles against the bottom until this did not move us anymore.
Expendable cargo had to be thrown overboard, this was the boys, to lighten the load. Up to their chests in the water they had to put their shoulders against the launch to shift it slowly forward. A scene straight out of the African Queen but without the leeches.
Clear of the weeds we started the motor and fished on the Northern shore on the western side of the zoo. We collected a few more T.affinis. The clouds were slowly gathering and I suggested we started for home. Before we entered the main Lake we stopped by an area with many scattered reed clumps. This gave the boys the opportunity to go exploring with masks. About 20 minutes later I noticed heavy dark clouds moving in from the South. We recalled the boys with a lot of protests and eventually gathered them all in with their trophies. Large Apple Snails for making ceviche (yuk) and an old small tyre.(A bumper for the Launch)
At this moment the wind shifted and roared, the temperature dropped dramatically and torrential rain started. We started the motor and rammed the launch deep into the reed beds.
With the rain coming from all directions, the canopy on the launch provided little protection. We were quickly turned into shivering drowned rats.
We endured this for an hour, before we were able to make it across the Lake and home. Before we left the launch had to be bailed, we were above our ankles in water. The boys were in a wet huddled mass and had no intention of doing anything. So I had to put on my Captain Bligh hat and threaten the cat-o-nine-tails, (actually it was chocolate biscuits). They appreciated the exercise as it warmed them up.
Once we had tanked the fish and the boys had left I turned on the computer but it was dead. I found the TV had also died. So I had to assume that the house had been struck during the storm.
Other photos are in the pictures section.
I now hear from our weather experts that we can expect storms every afternoon for the next two weeks. (so far they are correct) We normally don’t have this weather until the Hurricane season starts in June. Makes me think that the climate is changing.
PS. Thanks to Walmart being open on Sunday, I now have a new computer running Vista. Hopefully my local computer wiz kid will recover the hard drive from my old computer.
May 13, 2008
June 20, 2008
wow! thank you for the report and the pictures John. Great picture of the Jesus Bird and the fish! We have Great Blue Herons here, that also present great photo opportunity /smile.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=":)" border="0" alt="smile.gif" /> That storm looked like a bad one. Glad you had a safe trip!
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