Gerardo is an artisanal fisherman. With over 45 years of experience, he spends his days in the Bahia Salinas in the top northwestern corner of Costa Rica. Artisanal fishing is defined as small-scale, low-technology fishing practices that are generally undertaken by costal or island families. Gerardo starts his morning at 5am by pulling in the nets from the previous night. He then goes back to shore, cleans his catch, and then heads back out for his line fishing. Generally a single line wrapped around a small board, his style of fishing is very simple. He starts by baiting a weighted hook and simply drops the line from the edge of his boat. If his location and time are just right, it can be a very exciting process of pulling in one fish after another!
Gerardo will take you into Bahia Salinas in his small motor boat. From Puerto Soley, you can see Isla Bolaños, a beautiful bird sanctuary and excellent fishing spot. From there you will circle the island learning his fishing techniques and can spot the frigate birds (or fregatas) and pelicans above. Depending on the time of year, Bahia Salinas is a great place to see whales, dolphins, or the occasional kite surfer. The minimum number of people is set at 3 to cover fuel, bait, and labor costs. If you're group is smaller you can still book but need to reserve 3 spaces to cover operations.
Gerardo will provide all the materials needed for an adventurous fishing trip, including bate, fishing supplies, weights and buoys, and oil and gasoline for his small motor boat. He also has lifejackets, and can provide a light snack and refreshment.
If you have your own snorkeling gear, this is a great zone for it so feel free to bring it along. This activity is also great for any nature photographer! Bringing a camera is highly encouraged. It also recommended to bring a hat and sunscreen, bathing suit, and lunch or snacks if you desire. It is recommended that your items be brought in a dry bag or zip lock as the boat could get damp while your out and about.
Gerardo has six sons, five fishermen and one is a successful businessman. He says that fishing is a family tradition. He notes that he thinks his sons are truly happy to carry on the family tradition because they are all fat and happy, a local sign of a good life.