by Barb Eller (Feb. 2012)
A cold spell has hit Mahahual—breezy and temps in the mid–high 70s; well, for us it is a cold spell. Patrick and I decided to walk the Malecón since there were two cruise ships in; it was a perfect day for people watching. We also heard there were some interesting businesses that we might wanted to check out.
Our first stop was Nohoch Kay (Big Fish in Mayan) and it is a great place to eat. The fish is always fresh thanks to Nick Denbow, who loves fishing. We ran into Nick a couple weeks ago and Patrick thought I should tell you about him. I am sure the fact that he is also from England had nothing to do with the suggestion. I enjoy hearing how people decided to make the move to Mahahual. As I have said before, they all have a different story but they all end with, "And when I got to Mahahual, I fell in love with it and stayed."
Nick came from Southeast England, near Winchester. He was a fishmonger until he was 13. For the next 11 years he worked for a fly fishing store, Sport Fish. During that time he studied and became a guide and instructor in fly fishing. Some of his guide trips took him to Cuba and Venezuela and that is when he decided he wanted to find a way to live in the Caribbean.
On February 2, 2002 Nick arrived in Cancún and headed for the Akumal Beach Resort He taught archery and other odd jobs while sending out e-mails looking for work as a guide for fly fishing. He finally heard from The Fly Shop, a company out of California, and was told of an opening in Placer just north of Mahahual. Nick worked there for 18 months before coming to Mahahual. Working for a beach club, he was welcoming tourists to the area, setting up tours, and other duties as assigned. (We all have heard that job description before, right?) Then in 2007, Hurricane Dean hit Mahahual and the town had to take time out to rebuild. During that time Nick traveled to Australia, England and other places.
When he returned to Mahahual, Nick decided it was time to evaluate just what he wanted to do with his life, time to fulfill his dream. He decided he wanted to be his own boss, so the birth of a dream: The Western Caribbean Fly Fishing School.
This has got to be the dream of every fly fisherman or anyone who wants to learn. A qualified instructor will show you how to make your own saltwater fishing flies and how to cast a fly fishing rod. Just imagine yourself standing in the warm, blue water of the Caribbean, feeling something hit your line, your rod begins to arc, and you know you will never forget the thrill of that fish pulling on the line. Then, if the fish gods are happy, you will bring in a bonefish, jack, or snapper.
Spend a few hours with Nick and you will be amazed at his knowledge of fly fishing and fish from all over the world. He has a great sense of humor, is always smiling, and he will share his secrets and tips to make you a better fisherman whatever your experience. If you are walking down the Malecón stop by Nohoch Kay to meet Nick. Just say the word "fish" and watch his eyes light up, the smile reach from ear to ear, and hear the stories begin.
Nick can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone 011 52 983 732 3144; be sure to look him up on Facebook and YouTube.
Until next time …