Trip Report: Oman with Arabian Fly Sport Fishing

After our recent trip with Arabian Fly Sport Fishing we had an excellent first 4 days of fishing before Cyclone Tej cut the trip short.  I had been to Oman previously and while we had an amazing trip our fishing was very limited due to the size of the swell passing through the area.  The first 4 days of this trip we got to see the Africanas Permit do their thing and anyone who enjoys permit fishing should put the Africanas on their list, mainly because it the complete opposite to fishing for the other 3 species of permit–Atlantic, Indo, & Anak–targeted with a fly.

The contrast in the fishing style for the Africanas Permit was very mind blowing and here are some of my takeaways in fishing for the Africanas vs. the other 3.

  1. The amount of casting to fishing was not something that is usually associated with permit fishing.  When the tides are right and you are on the fish you are continually casting to fish all throughout the tide cycle, hundreds of casts at permit!
  2. The Africanas Permit is a grazer, it is not hunting specific food, it is waiting on the water levels and swell to allow them to get up on the rocks to tail as they graze on mussels and more.  So you need to leave your fly in their zone and while you obviously need to stay tight to the fly you are also doing your best to keep the fly motionless.  There is an element of tightline nymphing involved in fishing for the Africanas.
  3. Tailing fish, I think it is safe to say that in our four days with good weather I saw more tailing permit than I have in 25 years of chasing these fish.  The visual is absolutely sensational! 
  4. Because you are dodging surf and trying to get close to the fish on the cliffs, the motors stay on!  There is enough noise in the wash that the fish are not spooked by the engines.
  5. The Africanas is a mean permit, maybe that comes from their environment. Having to ride surge to tail on jagged rocks all their lives and eating extremely sharp food, who knows but when you hook one you immediately feel the difference.  Even the small Africanas have red lips from the rocks and food, something you usually only see in a permit who has some years under its belt. They know their environment and will do everything in their power to break you off and even once they have been cleared from the rocks they sound and pull hard.

I will be returning to fish for the Africanas Permit again one day, most likely sooner than later, the visuals are just too good!