A Different Kind of Fishing

025When we first moved to San Clemente, we were quite excited about the concept of fishing everyday. All four of us fell in love with the sport two summers ago on the pond of our previous acreage. Some of the hardest things to sell when we left, were our paddle boat and fishing poles.

Well, needless to say, we were quickly put in place, when were learned that fishermen don’t fish from shore OR with fishing poles here. So for us we had to adapt yet again. Now, fishing for us is a spectacular spectator sport. On this morning, the seamen were up before we were and possibly up before the sun. They fish with small motored canoes called Lanchas, and their only chance to bring in the catch is with the ocean tides. For these teams of men rely on each other and the descending tide. 012
Every time we watch them, our awe never ceases as we admire their strength, bravery, and ingenuity.  It is an intriguing sight to watch them hopping over waves in their tiny boats, and pulling in the weight of hundreds to thousands of pounds of fish sometimes twice a day. The rhythm of their work, and precision in their movements mimic the grace and discipline of a professional dancer. You might laugh at these elegant words at first vision, but it doesn’t take long to notice that there is nothing closer to the truth.
The men pace the beach, small teams of 6 to 10 men; for upwards of an hour and sometimes two. The duration largely depends on the weight of the catch and the temperament of the surf. 011
We watch them carefully, the men and boys of the village working together as young as six and as old as only time can tell. Never do we see just one team, but often 3 or 4 and sometimes as many as 7 or 8 teams stretched out down the beach in the ultimate display camaraderie and community.

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17 Replies to “A Different Kind of Fishing”

    1. Actually, the other day we also someone fishing the other day with a fishing line, it was a very primitive way of casting. The man just had the wire wrapped around his finger and a small stick.It was pretty incredible! As far as the boat fishing, I understand that the fisherman will take you out with them if you ask. I however, am not brave enough to go with them over the waves. And the kids are bit to young yet as well. But, maybe someday we’ll give it a try!

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  1. That’s kinda how they fished in the Philippines in my youth. Well, some of them cheated and used dynamites but that’s been largely illegalized for destroying the coral reefs. I’ll be making my way to Ecuador in a few months to see this for myself 🙂

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    1. Dynamite?! That is pretty intense! I’ve never seen anything like that. The worst you see is the motors on the boats, and of course remnants of ropes and fishing nets on the beaches and in the sea. Otherwise, the local fishing industry appears to be pretty wholesome. Although, I couldn’t say if that is the case everywhere.
      If your planning to being in the coastal areas during the late Spring months (April, May, June) do a little research to see where you might find the Sea Turtles hatching. I hear that is the right time.
      Enjoy your travels to Ecuador, and reach out if you need other any recommendations!

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    1. We don’t have any plans to try this method anytime soon! My husband has suggested we hitch a ride one day, but I don’t see it in the near future with a 2.5 and 4 year old that aren’t good ocean swimmers yet. But, maybe someday!

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  2. This is incredible and certainly a different experience than fishing with a pole! I’ve seen a similar style of fishing on the BBC’s human planet. It requires so much strength and stamina! Your pictures are phenomenal, btw!

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