San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Pacific Expected to Pick Up; New Owner at Roy’s

Pam Evans, from Rhode Island, is back in the country on her annual fishing trip, accompanied by fiancé Alan Mitchel.

As usual, she is showing the locals a thing or two. This makes nine Costa Rican fishing trips for Evans, and a time or two she has made more than one trip the same year.

The couple started fishing in Quepos, on the central Pacific coast, on the Big Eye with skipper Ralph Roberts. On Wednesday and Thursday of last week, they caught and released two black marlin the same day, both estimated at more than 200 pounds, along with a half-dozen sails and some dorado.

They flew to the northern Caribbean coast’s Barra Colorado on Monday, basing as usual at the Río Colorado Lodge, where, as this was written on Monday, they already had a 150-pound tarpon to the boat.

North of Quepos on the Pacific coast, Kingfisher skipper Rick Ruhlow, my son, says they are seeing fish but action is slow, with boats averaging a shot a day on marlin.

“The water is nice and boats are fishing about 20 miles out, with some patches of bait, but we are coming into a new moon and look for action to improve,” he said.

Jim Butterworth e-mailed that he fished Jan. 5 to 9 at Roy’s Zancudo Lodge near Golfito, on the southern Pacific coast, with Bill and Krista Boteler, and “sailfish were tough.”

“Whether it was the moon phase, El Niño or just bad luck, we were able to land only three sails,” he said. “The good thing about Costa Rica is that when one species lets you down there is another ready to cooperate, and we had a good trip for blue marlin. Bill Boteler landed his first blue, which weighed about 250 pounds, and we lost two others. We raised a total of five marlin on the trip (and) also caught some nice dorado, two of which were 40 to 50 pounds.”

On the last day, Butterworth said they had a tremendous wahoo bite and “caught them on medium-action spinning rods until we were too tired to catch any more.”

“As you may know, Roy’s is under new management,” he added. “We were very happy with the service and equipment and are looking forward to next year.”

No, Jim, I was not aware of the lodge changing ownership. Roy’s Zancudo Lodge was one of the first I fished when I moved to Costa Rica more than 20 years ago, and I’m surprised to learn that Roy Ventura, who founded the lodge and pioneered fishing in that region, has bailed out.


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