Waxing Away on the Tropical Highway–Mister Blue Sky

Posts tagged ‘Gone Fishing Panama’

Mister Blue Sky took the Pacific scuba plunge with Boca Brava Divers on La Bruja (The Witch) which is an ancient lava monolith located within Islas Secas Panama. Click on the GoPro Hero 3 video taken by Mister Blue Sky

Islas Secas is a group of 16 small volcanic islands about 15 miles from Boca Chica Panama. These islands are privately owned and uninhabited except for a high end fishing lodge, Islas Secas Resort. “Secas” means dry. The islands looked pretty parched and stressed for lack of rain because it has been the dry season. It is a pretty area and the waters are relatively clear but not Bahamas or Caribbean water clear.

Islands in Islas Secas

Islands in Islas Secas

I want to give a shout out to my 2 dive buddies Tim and Don who were on vacation from the States with their wives. They stopped in for a couple of beers at Gone Fishing Panama while I was playing bartender. They were looking for additional divers to offset the cost of a day’s diving with Boca Brava Divers. Good guys for sure, I enjoyed meeting and diving with them.

We dove with Boca Brava Divers which is located in Boca Chica Panama. It is owned by Carlos Spragge which he operates out of his boat yard and boat storage facility. I like Carlos. He has a very good sense of humor but more importantly he is definitely conscience about his dive operation. He is also a dive master. He radio’d the boat a couple of times during the day to make sure everything was going well. He has the good fortune of having Julio as an alternate Dive Master for 6 months of the year. Julio was trained on Utila about 15 years ago…Go Utila! Julio spends the other 6 months in Europe……ah the life of a dive master and physical therapist…..so yes Julio was our dive master along with Chino our panga dive boat captain. Chino is a good conscience dive boat captain. A big shout out to both Julio and Chino, thanks guys. Boca Brava Divers also has a bigger dive boat for larger groups and multi day trips that will go as far as Coiba Island. See the website for additional info.

Mooring Area Off Carlos's Boat Yard and Storage Facilty

Mooring Area Off Carlos’s Boat Yard and Storage Facilty

Splashing a Boat Stored at Carlos's

Splashing a Boat Stored at Carlos’s

Carlos's Ramp

Carlos’s Ramp

Scuba diving on the Pacific side of Panama is not cheap. Its an all day affair because the diving action is a considerable ways from the main land. We collectively paid $600, $200 each for 2 tank dives plus lunch and drinks. The run from Boca Chica to La Bruja in Islas Secas was about an hour each way. Tim, Don and I definitely had a good time that day thanks to Julio and Chino. This excursion also gave me the opportunity to see the Islas Secas islands. They are very pretty for sure from the on the water perspective. I am sure that the fishing in and around these islands is very good.

Lunch with Chino, Julio, Don and Tim On Boca Brava Divers Dive Panga

Lunch with Chino, Julio, Don and Tim On Boca Brava Divers Dive Panga

Lets talk about the dives. Th first dive was on La Bruja which basically is a volcanic rock-lava mount that rises from about 65ft off the bottom and breaks the surface by at most 6-8 feet. The dive is basically once around the rock. La Bruja has substantial wildlife from sharks, skates, Guitar Fish, lobster, rays, turtles with all kinds of tropical fish, schools of bait-jacks-spadefish as well as many other fish. This was a very entertaining dive. The visibility was ok, not great and varied as we circumnavigated La Bruja as did the temperature. La Bruja is like an underwater monolith…..tall, steep and dark. A significant contrast to diving on coral walls or sea mounts. Ok you divers….what is the hand signal for a Guitar Fish?……yep air guitar! Pretty funny seeing your dive master all of a sudden go into air guitar mode…..made me forget to video the 3 that we saw. Tropical fish were cleaning a turtle’s shell. Eagle Rays were spotted in the distance. There were many schools of fish big and small that were seen in the distance but did not get captured in the video. Most of the fish were in depths between 10-40 feet. There were much fewer fish in the base area of the volcanic monolith.

Lunch Break Anchorage

Lunch Break Anchorage

We did the second dive after our lunch break. Carlos provided a variety of fresh fruits already cut into slices as well as excellent fixings for creating one’s own deli sandwiches. We anchored right off of a white sand beach…you do not find many bright beaches on the Pacific side of Panama, they are usually dark brown like the one below;

Dark Lava Sand Beach-Boca Brava Island

Dark Lava Sand Beach-Boca Brava Island

We had the option to picnic on the beach but all elected to hang on the panga. Afterwards we headed over to a small island about a half mile away for our second and final dive. The visibility was poor compared to La Bruja and there was not near the same quality and volume of wild life.

Navigating Through The Various Volcanic Outcrops In Boca Chica

Navigating Through The Various Volcanic Outcrops In Boca Chica

Mister Blue Sky enjoyed the dive trip. Being able to dive on the Pacific side of the Tropical Highway off of Panama was a new liquadic adventure. This Pacific submersion upon lava rocks was a real contrast to the corals of the clear Caribbean waters. Hopefully there will be future volcanic underworld adventures in the tropical Pacific waters.

Till Next Tide Blog Flockers,

Mister Bue Sky,
The Hammock Philosopher

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Mister Blue Sky Blogged a few days ago that on the Pacific Tropical Highway “tings” are bigger like giant Yellowfin Tuna or twice the size Sailfish …. well the next day he captured King Cong just off the coast of Boca Brava island …. use your imagination and enjoy this natural wonder which is a lava rock sculptured over time by the natural elements … see the carved out shoulders and head figure staring out to sea.

King Cong Rock-Boca Brava Island Panama

King Cong Rock-Boca Brava Island Panama

King Cong Rock-Boca Brava Island Panama

King Cong Rock-Boca Brava Island Panama

King Cong Rock In The Distance

King Cong Rock In The Distance

[caption id="attachment_1122" align="aligncenter" width="860"]Dark Lava Sand Beach-Boca Brava Island Dark Lava Sand Beach-Boca Brava Island

One of Several Cove Beaches On Ocean Side of Boca Brava Island

Hangman's Point - The Hanging Tree - Boca Brava Island

Hangman’s Point – The Hanging Tree – Boca Brava Island

Till Next Tide Blog Flockers

Mister Blue Sky
Waxing Philosophic In a Panamanian Hammock

Ps Carrie You Are The Best

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Hola Mi Blogflockers…….Mister Blue Sky is still on the Central American Tropical Highway but …… been so busy between chasing islands and beaches and surf breaks and small resorts and eco lodges in the Bocas del Toro area that there has been little hammock time and energy to blog on blog off ….. here’s waddup:

The Porch off of the Monkey Room-Gone Fishing Panama

The Porch off of the Monkey Room-Gone Fishing Panama

Easter Iguana Hunt First Place Live Trophy

Easter Iguana Hunt First Place Live Trophy

Mister Blue Sky rolled his hammock up over the mountains of Panama last Friday. He left the Bocas del Toro archipelago and the Caribbean Tropical Highway for the Pacific Tropicville Road. Presently staying at “Gone Fishing Panama’, a boutique resort in the Boca Chica area which is the staging grounds for some of the best fishing in the world. The three and a half hour bus ride (or should I say $9 roller coaster) to David (Daaveed) across the mountains takes you from the rainforest jungle with mountain water falls on every curve to the dry season on the Pacific side with cleared hillsides for agriculture and cattle. Size matters on the Tropical Highway of the Panamanian Pacific coast compared to the Bahamas and Caribbean. The fish are more diverse and overall bigger. In fact fish like Yellowfin Tuna get as big as a lot of the Blue Marlin that are caught in the Bahamas and Caribbean. Even the tides are bigger. Over in Bocas del Toro they have 18 inch tides. The Pacific coast in the Boca Chica area has 9-12 foot tides. Its comparing small Caymans to saltwater Crocodiles. But …… the Wahoo Are bigger in the Bahamas….Go Cat Island!

The Pool With Swim Up Bar With Big Screen TV At Panama Big Game Fishing Club

The Pool With Swim Up Bar With Big Screen TV At Panama Big Game Fishing Club

As I posted on the Facebook page Mister Blue Sky was invited by Mr “C” (Mark Charman) to visit his world class world famous fishing resort yesterday; The Panama Big Game Fishing Club, with resident monkeys swinging through the trees. He acquired it about two years ago and has completed significant renovations with new additions to be built in the near future . We’ve shared a few drinks the last few evenings. This is a first class fishing lodge-resort. His clientele fly in from all parts of the world. People with plenty of money but little time. So Mr “C’ has catered this fishing resort to the highest of standards. Check out their website or Facebook page or the pictures posted on my Facebook page. When Mr “C’ is done the Panama Big Game Fishing Club will be second to none (in the world).

Speaking of fishing lodges; I am staying at Bruce Edwards’ “Gone Fishing Panama” boutique resort. One of the first big game fishing lodges in the Boca Chica area after the formation of the original Panama Big Game Fishing Club. Now there are several in the area. I have already extended my stay here by another week because ….

View From Gone Fishing Panama's Bar and Dining Area

View From Gone Fishing Panama’s Bar and Dining Area

Mister Blue Sky's Office At The Gone Fishing Panama Resort

Mister Blue Sky’s Office At The Gone Fishing Panama Resort

BREAKING NEWS: Mister Blue Sky has been asked to mate for a few fishing trips …. I guess showing some pics of monster wahoo, lobster and Crab enabled me to pass the interviews … details to follow and hopefully some photos and videos …. here’s betting that if a Yellowfin Tuna is caught it will break Mister Blue Sky’s biggest ever …. hopefully there will also be Rooster-fish activity …

Mister Blue Sky actually rented a car at the David Airport after busing there from Bocas del Toro. Reserved through Expedia.com with Payless Car Rental. Arrived at Payless to find a note on the door saying out to lunch for an hour and half … waited the time and left without a car since the guy could not find my reservation and had no cars so …. walked 30 feet and rented one from Hertz; drove to Boca Chica and the Gone fishing Panama resort .. about an hour drive. I guess Payless means you pay less because they have no cars …

Gone Fishing Panama has a great set up with a beautiful view looking out from the open-air bar and restaurant. Mister Blue Sky was put in the “Monkey Room” not sure if there is any hidden meaning intended. It is a nice set up … in a separate building with two suites each with large private covered porches. There is a large infinity pool for Mister Blue Sky to perform his laps as well as a very large concrete pier running out to deeper water with a large ramp down to a floating dock … 8-12 foot tides here. Andrei is the chef and bartender when not cooking …. plus can be considered a security-body guard as well if such ever be necessary. He is originally from Moscow. I am told that there are about 3000 Russians now living in Panama. He speaks Spanish as well but very little English. I am getting better with hand signal communications … kind of like air guitar! oh ya … there is a hammock here near the infinity pool …. not sure if I have to wrestle the Iguanas to use it.

Mister Blue Sky has been on the tropical Pacific side of Panama for 5 days and has yet to be bitten by a bug .. no mosquitos … no no seeums … there are bugs here but not the biting type .. unless you count scorpions or tarantulas … the non biters is pretty amazing considering the last 5 evenings have been spent at Gone Fishing Panama’s open air bar area which means basically outdoors with a roof.

The No Bug Biting Bar-Gone Fishing Panama

The No Bug Biting Bar-Gone Fishing Panama

Mister Blue Sky really never blogged about the Bocas del Toro adventure and the essence of that area. Bocas Town on the island of Colon is the hub for all that is Bocas del Toro … Bocas Town is like a very seedy wild wild west Dodge City with a tropical flare. Its Key West without the heritage but then again not …. Some decent waterfront restaurants, decent waterfront party bars a la Utila style .. lots of tourists and lots of back packers hitting the hostels … Very good surfing with quality surf breaks scattered through out the various islands and a handful right on Colon. The scuba diving is …. well …. not worth going to Bocas just to dive .. its expensive and practically all the dives are not in the ocean but rather in about 45 feet of water on the inside of the ocean side islands … plus the dive boats are just pangas and not equipped to go out to the ocean. The fishing industry is about the same as the scuba diving …. hardly a quality boat to go into the ocean to fish and only a handful of guides to take one fishing. Someone is really missing the “boat” considering the large number of tourists flocking in by the hour. There are 10-12 boutique resorts or eco lodges scattered on the various islands making up Bocas del Toro. Plenty of hotels and hostels in Bocas Town. You can not operate without owning a boat unless you want to pay the fleet of panga tour guides to get you there and back … where ever there is …

Mister Blue Sky's View Out Of His Room at Hotel Olas-Bocas Town

Mister Blue Sky’s View Out Of His Room at Hotel Olas-Bocas Town

Well need to stop the presses for tonight to get ready for the first time ever fishing endeavor in one of the best game fishing areas in the world … no guarantees .. its called fishing, not catching, for a reason …. plus as the infamous Walt the Arab used to say on his radio show from back in the day … “its better to be lucky than good” .. although someone once said and many since that .. “luck is when preparation meets opportunity” … but quoting from Mister Blue Sky’s tropical fishing wisdom … “he who waits longer catches longer fish” or more importantly .. ” a successful fishing trip is when you get back to the dock, everything else is just gravy” ….. looks like its time to count fat tunas jumping over the transom in order to fall asleep …

Former World Record Yellowfin Tuna Caught Out Of The Panama Big Game Fishing Club

Former World Record Yellowfin Tuna Caught Out Of The Panama Big Game Fishing Club

Till the next 12 foot tide and hoping to have a bragosiuos fishing story …

Thanks for tuning in Blogflockers,

Mister Blue Sky

Ps Carrie you are the best!

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