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Original Issue

Lazy Living on a Lagoon Full of Gamefish

No matter how much a man likes to fish, it is hard to get stirring when the sun is high and the rum is good. But this is the way it usually is at El Tarpon Tropical, a lazy fishing camp on the Yucatan Peninsula. So the guests are often satisfied just to pick up a few grouper and then relax "with their drinks. But more often they will succumb to the excitement of what may be the best tarpon water in America. When this happens, as the paintings on the following pages show, they climb into native boats to drift the tidal creeks or troll the big lagoon hoping for a record breaker. For more fishing and travel facts on Mexico's unique sportsman's vacation spot, turn to page 42

At noon, Mayan guides unload two fish from the morning's catch before settling down for a two-hour siesta. Later, when the day's fishing is over, guests at the tarpon camp relax under a palm-thatch umbrella, sip sundown drinks and swap insults with the camp's gaudy and bilingual parrot, Lorenzo

Floating before a curtain of deep jungle green, two light-tackle fishermen quietly cast their lures into a shallow tidal creek

While the triumphant angler looks on, a guide gaffs a 60-pound tarpon hooked in the Laguna de Términos only two minutes from camp. Later the guide drags the fish up the beach to camp while, in the background, one of the guests joins a group of natives casting for snook in a tide rip