Wrapping up our 40th year of bass fishing Mexico

Ron Speed Jr. and John Speed fish for large bass on El Salto[Editor: this article first appeared on www.ronsfishingblog and may only be used by permission of Ron Speed]

In July we will finish our 40th year of fishing Mexico when we close Lake El Salto for the season. It has been one of our best years ever as we doubled the number of clients from the year before.

Our percentage of satisfied clients broke all previous records over the previous 40 years. Our satisfaction rate this year was 99% as reported by clients. It would have been 100% except for 2 clients from Kansas in April. The staff didn’t have nachos & margaritas ready upon their arrival in camp from the airport. Our fault!!!

Ron Speed Jr. introduced a great new menu at El SaltoOur new programs were a big hit with everyone. The new menu that Ron Jr. got started was an unbelieviable success. I had tried for years to teach our different cooks different dishes but as soon as I would leave they would go back to the old meals. The hibachi supper was the favorite of all the clients. It’s a very wide variety of fresh seafood centered in the middle of the table and everyone eats off of the variety of seafood. OH MAN IS IT GOOD!!!!!!!!!!!

The fishing — as always — was good with Roger Sessions of Henderson, Texas taking the big fish prize of the season. Roger caught a female bass all spawned out that measured 36 in. long with a 22.5 girth. According to our formula she should have weighed about 23 pounds. Ron Jr. called Phil Durocher who is the former head of Texas fish & wildlife and told him about the fish and its measurements. Phil told Ron Jr. that it definitely would have been a new world record.

Both Phil Durocher and Ray Sasser of the Dallas Morning news said that Roger should have kept the fish and not released it back to the lake. The reason for keeping a bass that big is it’s an old fish that will probably not live after all the stress in the battle. Releasing a bass that old would not be of any benefit to the lake.

How safe is travel to El Salto????

John Speed regularly nets 10lb-plus bass at Lake El Salto[This question still comes up almost every day. To me it is such a shame that many, many fishermen are still afraid to travel to this great lake. Our newspapers & TV have led Americans to believe the whole country of Mexico is dangerous for Americans.

I don’t know another person that has the experience in Mexico that I have over the past 50 years. If I thought for one minute that it was not safe, we wouldn’t be running trips to Salto. Both my sons travel to Salto with my blessing. Ron Jr is a regular this season and — as usual — both sons boated 10lb bass.

Here is the real story about safety in Mexico. If you are in some way involved in the drug business, then it is not safe for you to be in Mexico. Almost 100% of all those killed in Mexico are people involved in the drug trade. It is exactly like the days of prohibition in Chicago when Dutch Schultz and Al Capone were fighting over territory. It’s the same thing except the cartels in Mexico are fighting over drug territory.

Americans are not targets in Mexico. It’s not like countries in the Middle East where you might as well have a bull’s eye on your back. There are probably more Americans killed here in the good ‘ole USA in one week than are killed in Mexico over a 10 year period.

One client asked me the other day, “What if I happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time?” My answer was that you will be at the lake 99% of your trip and I can tell you for sure the drug guys don’t like to bass fish.

Truth is, almost all the trouble has happened along the border with some isolated violence scattered in the interior. The people of Mexico are going about their business as usual. They are always happy to see Americans come visit their country.

If you are still concerned, we will be happy to give you clients to call that have recently returned from El Salto.

GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR FISHING AND REMEMBER TO WEAR THE LIFEJACKET!!!!!!!!!!