Fly Fishing Playa Del Carmen, MX - Fly Fishing Forum
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Old 11-16-2006, 03:15 PM
KokanEE KokanEE is offline
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Question Fly Fishing Playa Del Carmen, MX

My wife and I bought a timeshare in Playa that we just visited last week. I did some exploring around the beaches and there seems to be quite a few fish along the beaches. I starting thinking about next year already and am planning to bring my fly rod. Does anyone know if you can legally wade out and fish off the beach there? Do you need any special license or permit? if anyone has done this, any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 11-16-2006, 04:14 PM
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n1gdo n1gdo is offline
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This info is years old but in my spinning days I walked North along the beach from PDC throwing lures and would hit big snapper etc... had some kind of fish hit that almost spooled me!!

A fellow told me to keep walking to Punta Bete near the old Posada Capitan Lafitte...maybe about 5km-10km and there were Bonefish and Permit in the that area.... I never saw them though..

I dont know about the license....

It would be great to get a report from you on your experiences..
frank in Nahant, MA
USASAFS-4 1961-1963
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Old 11-17-2006, 08:01 AM
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Adrian Adrian is offline
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A licence is required to fish saltwater in MX and can be obtained before you travel.

CA based tackle shops in the San Diego area should be able to help.

This info was good 18 months or so back:

Applications for Mexican Sport Fishing Licenses can be obtained at the Mexico Department of Fisheries office in San Diego, however, most people purchase them through their local fishing and tackle store or Mexican Insurance dealer. If you receive your application from the Department of Fisheries office, upon completion, applications should be submitted to:

Mexico Department of Fisheries
2550 5th Avenue, Suite 101
San Diego, CA 92103

The office is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 2:00 pm to answer any questions. The phone number is (619) 233-6956.

Applications sent to this address must be accompanied by a cashier's check or money order for the exact amount due, and made payable to Oficina Recaudadora de Pesca; personal checks are not accepted. For mail orders, be sure to include a stamped self-addressed return envelope.

The Mexico Department of Fisheries also has offices in Mexico (Oficina de Pesca), but it is advisable to obtain fishing licenses before crossing the border.

US Customs Regulations: Sportfishermen may bring into the United States only fish for personal consumption. US Customs requires that the fish catch must be accompanied by a California Declaration of Entry form, obtainable at California Fish and Game offices and at the US Border ports of entry. (Note that different regulations may apply if you live in a state other than California; for information regarding your state's regulations, contact your local Department of Fish and Game or your local US Customs office) The number of fish must not exceed the Mexican bag limit. Fish transported across the boarder can be eviscerated but must be identifiable; usually the head, tail, or patch of skin left intact will suffice.

Anyone bringing fish into the United States will be asked by Customs officials to present a valid Mexican fishing license or a Mexico Department of Fisheries form covering the purchase of the fish.

For more information:

California Department of Fish and Game
1350 Front Street San Diego, 92101
Tel: (619) 237-7311
When sight fishing, look over your shoulder from time to time, you never know who's behind you
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Old 11-18-2006, 11:25 PM
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Henry Henry is offline
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Hi Kokanee

I researched this topic to death a number of years ago and as far as I'm aware...things haven't changed (fished the area for the last 5 years).

A person is permitted to fish Saltwater by foot without a license except in specified protected areas such as the Sian Ki'an Biosphere Reserve. Any Saltwater fishing taking place from a boat...the angler(s) have to be licensed.

I've fished the beaches from PDC down to, and through Boca Paila in the SKBR with never a problem other than Mexican Military (drug interdiction) spotchecks/searches. Those were sort of intimidating...having these guys go through your rental vehicle/tackle/gear while in full cammo make-up holding AK-47's.

Dependant on time of year. you can usually count on plenty of Jacks and Snappers from the PDC area beaches as well a isolated pockets of schooling bonefish. In the winter/spring time, there are also decent populations of Snook cruising the beaches. Typically, they hang/feed along the first trough/dropoff off the beach...just where the trubid water from wave action enters the clearer water beyond. I found that decent numbers of Ladyfish also hang with the snook so there's usually something willing to grab your fly. These "poor mans tarpon" are a blast Jump! Jump! Jump! Awesome!!!

Watch for pelican/diving bird activity along the beaches to point your way to schools of sardina's...preditory fish are usually right there aswell. Schools of marauding jacks come in fast...create a commotion...and leave down the shoreline just as fast. You have to be quick and make the best of your shots to get on them.

Occassionally, some really big permit will cruise the more "marly/rocky" sections of the shoreline, so a person does have a realistic chance at one of these. Don't confuse "Pallometta" as young or baby permit...a different fish altogether! other than their genus relationship (Permit/Pompano/Pallometta).

Another overlooked species of fish found in the marly/rocky areas are Grey Triggerfish. They are aggressive for a fly and pull like stink. Only problem is...getting the hook to stick. Your fly will also get alot of attention from small grunts and bothersome needlefish.

Early morning and sunset are great times to get into Jacks and Snook.

Good luck down there and enjoy your timeshare!

Best regards,
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Old 11-20-2006, 03:08 PM
KokanEE KokanEE is offline
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Thumbs up Great Info!

Wonderful info everyone! It is really appreciated! I had no idea where to start and you get so much conflicting info.

Were you at all nervous when you fished from shore for the first time without a license? How did you find out that you don't need one? Also, are thier any species that you mentioned above, or that you know of that are protected or anything like that I should be careful of? Did you ever keep any for dinner?

A few additional questions I have:
Is a 7 wt rod going to be OK? Should I invest in a heavier rod?
are thier any additional gear essentials I need to bring? I plan to pack light. just the rod, a box of flies and some extra line. I suppose I'll need a hook-out.

I figure some sort of shrimp flies, and maybe some crab flies are what I would want.

When I go, I will definitly put up a big post detailing everything with photos.
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Old 11-21-2006, 01:38 AM
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Henry Henry is offline
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Hi KokanEE

Not nervous at all about the no license thing. Also, at the enterance to the Sian Ka'an biosphere where you're checked-into the reserve, we paid our 10bucks to get in and didn't even get a receipt or proof of admittance. Other times there wasn't even an attendant. I got my info. directly in a reply to an email I sent to the Canadian/Mexican consulate here in Canada. I'd send you a copy, but it got lost when my old PC's hard drive bit the dust. The only thing that did make me nervous was the occassional PETA sympathetics that would frown at you while fishing populated beaches.

Strictly catch and release in the reserve. Also no fishing in designated eco-parks like Xpu Ha, Xcarret and also Solomon bay I believe.

Typically, it's very windy (onshore) down there and you might find yourself getting blown around alot with the 7wt. Plus, there are some awfully big Crevelle Jacks around and you'd likely get smoked if you hooked up.

A size 4 chart/white or brown/white clouser works great for just about anything in the swim there. For low-light early and late fishing, you should seriously consider a few surface poppers in about a size 1 or 2.

Good luck,

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Old 11-25-2006, 11:20 AM
KokanEE KokanEE is offline
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Thumbs up Appreciated!

That is great advice. I believe you about the license it just makes me nervous in a foriegn country cause you get so much conflicting info all the time. I really appreciate your info and taking the time give a little background on your sources.

I may invest in a heavier weight rod then. You have a good point on the wind there, plus there is always a chance I'll hook into a decent fish.

So, are the reserve parts marked well then? You mentioned there was no attendant one day. I assume they have some sort of an entrance then? How about the non populated areas north of Playa. Can you keep any fish at all there? I wouldn't mind having one fish dinner We kept a Spanish Mackerel once in Costa Rica an my father in law who is a professional chef made one of the best fish dinners I ever had there.

I make sure to keep an eye on PETA!
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Old 01-01-2007, 02:18 PM
rickfly9 rickfly9 is offline
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pdc fishing

have been three times to pdc and south 15 miles, first time did the sandiego license drill, then found out if you are on shore no license needed, apparently this is soon changing and a license will be needed. the Mexican shoreline belongs to the govt. and as such you may have access to it
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Old 04-25-2007, 12:59 PM
Lone Palm Rods Lone Palm Rods is offline
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is the above info still accurate about licenses?

going in 20 days to Playa. any info would be great.
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Old 04-26-2007, 09:21 AM
SteelBoneguy SteelBoneguy is offline
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a 7wt on the PDC carmen bones would be perfect. Just make sure the reel has plenty of backing. Make sure you have some light weighted shirmp pattens a long w/ some med weight as well. Size 4 and 6.

Bro was there last year and fishing the surf in w/ a size 2 chrt and wht clouser with a wire leader catching bonefish!

I fished around the beaches had no issues last summer. Did a one guide trip w/ Pesca Maya TOTALLY worth it. I'd do it again in heart beat. Worth the long ride down.
megalops atlanticus lover
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Old 04-26-2007, 01:57 PM
KokanEE KokanEE is offline
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Getting ready!!!

My trip to PDC isn't till Nov. but I am already preparing. I am planning to take my 7 pc. 7 wt. rod I use when I kayak. I am just palnning to fish from the beach and it sounds a 7wt would do the trick for that. There are definitly Bones there, you can see them in the surf. I'll have to spend a little time snorkeling to see what they are feeding on. I was looking at the Cabelas 54 piece bahamas Bonefish fly kit. Has anyone looked at this. It seems like a good start to what I might need for flies. I am also picking up a few odds and ends at local shops. Some shrimp and crab imitations.

I am wondering if anyone has any recommendations or suggestions on Fly line. Should I get floating or sinking? what kind of tapers work well...etc... Any info is appreciated. I am thinking 8wt floating WF. then with the sinking flies it would be good for casting into the surf and have it sink below the surface into the school. Let me know your thoughts....

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Old 04-26-2007, 02:01 PM
KokanEE KokanEE is offline
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Post Liscence...


I did call the CA office of the MX fisheries a couple weeks ago and spoke to someone there. I was told that when you are fishing from shore, you do not need a liscence. You do if you are on a raft, boat, etc.... I will be calling again to make sure the answer is the same closer to NOV!
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Old 04-26-2007, 05:01 PM
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Trevor B Trevor B is offline
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My Mexico Experience

I stayed in a Resort just down from Playa a couple of weeks ago and fished the beach by the resort. I had great fun with pompano, Small jacks, Snapper and even managed a couple of bones, I was even broke off by a rather large Cuda that stole a small bone I was into (scared the crap out of me as it hit so fast and hard).
I did this a couple of evenings before I was told by one of the security guards that I could not fish there. I was doing this just before dark when no one was around so I did not see the problem. I therefore asked at the hotel reception why this was a problem with them and was told that it was illegal to fish off the beach and that there were only certain set areas for fishing also that the Mexican military patrolled it and I would be arrested and carted off to jail! To the very best of my knowledge I was not in any sanctuary area or anything else and there were boats constantly fishing just off of the shore so I doubted what he was telling me as being correct, but it scared my wife so much I agreed (reluctantly) not to fish any more. Thankfully my trip to Acklins a few weeks before made the lack of fishing not a real problem this trip.
Now I donít know if this was some ploy to get me to go on one of their ultra expensive fishing trips or what. so really I donít know whatís right or wrong here. I only know that when ever and where ever I travel too I like to fish a few hours and normally my wife, luv that she is has no problem with me disappearing for a few hours.
I doubt for this reason I will pick Mexico for our vacation again if I canít throw a fly for a few hours.
This was my experience with fly fishing in Mexico !
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Old 04-30-2007, 02:57 PM
SteelBoneguy SteelBoneguy is offline
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I'd suggest a floating line.

Bone flies- For surf- med bead chain eyes, med and small lead dumb-bell. Tan Gotchas 4 and 6, and tan/wht clousers.

Bones flats- Small bead chain eye tan gotchas.

Mexico bones are not too picky more particular about sink rate and presentation.

When I visited PDC Stayed at Los Palapas (sp?) fly fished all around the beach no problemos. The locals were nice and when T-storms came one day I sat w/ all my fishing gear under a bar tent w/ a bunch of locals some came over to check out my flies and stuff. All were friendly I even gave a some of the fisherman a couple of flies.

I still rec. that if one goes to PDC to do a one day guided trip to Pesca Maya or a one of the bonefish guide services totally worth it. The'll pick you up and drop you back off for a 100 bucks. Shoot a 100 bucks is 2 trips to the gas station these days...
megalops atlanticus lover
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Old 04-30-2007, 10:24 PM
KokanEE KokanEE is offline
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I have heard that before....

There was an earlier post of a guy mentioning that he would be stared down but never really bothered (except by the machine guns) by the military personell patrolling the beaches. Apparently the MX government is the "owner" of the shoreline and as such they patrol it and govern it. I am thinking one of two things occured with the advice you were given... Either they wanted you to use thier fishing service, or if you were fishing in front of the resort, they probably didn't like that as much. I am not sure if you have been to MX before, but I have been there many times all over. I can tell you, that they will flat out lie to your face, or tell you "not the whole truth" when given the opportunity. I totally understand that you felt uncomfortable, but even your resort can sometimes be untrustworthy. That is just the way it is down there. You can get a little more reliable info if you speak fluent Spanish. Thanks for the heads up. I think I am still going to try it. Sounds like you had a blast while you were able to do it!

Thanks for the fly tips!!!!
I am putting together the box over the next couple months. Can't wait!!!
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