Guatemala is known as – refers to the temperate climate that the highlands enjoy and exploit for cultivation. Its two cash crops of coffee and flowers thrive in this consistent environment.
This familiarity persists today, although it can be misleading. While in Guatemala you can experience comfortable spring breezes, hot and humid tropical weather and very cold nights (below 0°C ), all in the same day, depending on where in Guatemala you are.
The average annual temperature in the highlands above 3,000 meters (9840 ft) is 15°C (59°F), while in the lowlands the average is 25°C (77°F). In the lowlands and towards the Pacific Coast that preoccupies most fishermen, the temperature can reach 38°C (89°F) or greater – with peak temperature and humidity mid-year.
The term itself “Land of Eternal Spring” was first used to give the image of a country and countryside that was in perpetual bloom. Away from the coast, the land rises towards the volcanoes and the climate becomes temperate and ideal for cultivation – hence blossoming month to month. Flower cultivation and export (primarily roses) continues to be a major industry in Guatemala today – in fact one of the largest rose farms in the world can be found just outside the ancient capital of Antigua.
The tag though is is a bit misleading – as there are effectively only two seasons: the dry season and the rainy season. The longer season is the rainy season, which lasts from May through October (often with a pleasant intermission in August) followed by the dry season which lasts from January through April.
Guatemala boasts some of the world’s most consistently flat seas – often as far out as 50 miles it can be calm and almost like a lake. Observing the geography of the coastline, you can see how the waters form a large protected bowl with Mexico at the top and Panama at the bottom.
This combined with the protection offered from the prevailing winds by the highlands and the ridge of volcanoes means that the coast and coastal waters are almost wind free on a year round basis, with late February through May almost guaranteeing flat seas.
During the dry season – and the height of the sailfishing season of November – May, it is highly unusual to see any problems with weather impacting the sportfishing fleet’s ability to leave the dock. Even during the wet season, the weather offshore can vary significantly to the coastal weather – but there is certainly a greater propensity for weather delays or to be “blown out” in the Summer months.
Remember however that just when the wind is providing some cooling effects while fishing – it remains mandatory however to prudently apply high factor sun protection……….this is a must when fishing offshore all year round in Guatemala, along with high quality sunglasses and a wide brimmed hat for screening your head.