Archive for October, 2010

Jason Holtz on the wire

My good mate Jason Holtz will be fishing Ascension Islands over the next 2 months. He’s running the “Harmatan” with his regular Kona crew Brian Toney on the deck. Jas and BT have been on a roll this year. From weighing an 1104# blue back in April to placing in the prestigious HIBT tournament, I’m sure their good run will continue in Ascension. Olaf Grimkoski will be joining BT in the cockpit.  Jas sent me the first report of the season a few days ago. The boys went out for a sea trial and got climbed on by a big girl after just a few hours of trolling. BT jumped in the chair and fought the big blue for around 35 mins. The fish was a real tough one and Bt put a lot of drag on trying to lift her. They eventually pulled the hook and Jas told me it was hard to get a good look at her through all the white water but from what he could see she was well over 800#. Not bad for their first day out!

Ascension Island is still a young fishery but it has already produced a lot of big fish.  The first season “Gods Favour” fished there back in 2002 they weighed a 1337# beast, the third largest blue ever weighed in the Atlantic. Since then there have been numerous grander’s weighed there. I  just know the boys will get a few shots at four figure fish this season.  Jas will be sending me regular reports which I will post on here so keep checking for regular updates.

*Late Report

Just received a report from Jason. He said they are seeing fish everyday,getting enough bites but having a hard time staying connected. Today they went 1 from 3 catching a small fish around 250# from a doubleheader. He also told me the Obadu Wiring Gloves are working well for BT.

 

 

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Just fished the annual Los Cabos Billfish Tournament. The 37 boat fleet was treated to 3 days of beautiful flat calm weather and good fishing. Cabo’s having one of their best blue marlin season’s in a long time. This year I’m fishing on the “Sneak Attack” with Capt. Sam Talbert.  By lunchtime on the first day we already had 3 bites releasing a small stripie. There were alot of hookup’s being reported on the radio, mainly little stripe’s with a few small blue’s mixed in. “Fisherman” reported boating a black marlin they said might be a qualifier.

At around 3 o’clock we raised the fish we were looking for. She came up on the big bart teaser and we pitched the mackerel to her. After a few very lazy attempts trying to eat the bait she finally got angry and piled on the blue breakfast. The first time I had the leader I could see she was foul hooked in the gill plate. This made it hard to turn her head and she pulled us around for over an hour with around 40# of drag. I got a good pull on the leader and once again the Obadu Wiring Gloves performed flawlessly.

Nicely Proportioned Fish

Once we had her in the boat you could see she was a short but really fat fish. We ran the tape over her and she came out to around 610# on the formula. While we were waiting to weigh our fish we got word that the “Fisherman’s” black went 713#. Knowing our fish wasn’t close to that we were a little disappointed but still stoked to be going to the weigh station. There was quite a large crowd gathering around as we hoisted our fish up. She pulled the scale down to 629# putting us in 2nd place. We later found out the team on board the “Fisherman” weren’t across the board giving us the chance to take the biggest fish winner take all jackpot. All we had to do now was nervously wait and hope that our fish holds over the next 2 days.

We released a nice stripie on the 2nd day around 150# and missed a small blue. The blue marlin slowed down a little today and the stripes bit really well on the pacific side. We also watched an 800# blue marlin trying to eat a 20#  dolphin fish on the surface almost alongside the boat, unbelievable sight! Sam worked the area for a while but unfortunately we couldn’t raise her. There were no billfish weighed on day 2 so the money rolls over to day 3.

Just after start fishing on the 3rd day we watched “Bandit” put a nice blue marlin in the boat. As they didn’t give an approximate weight over the radio and kept fishing we would have to wait all day to find out the weight. We switched a small blue,around 200#, of the teaser. This gave us some valuable  release points but we were still nervous about the size of “Bandit’s” fish.

Big Fish Jackpot Winner

As we were running in we heard three different weights over the radio,466#,465# and 463#. 2 blues and a black. Very close results but we still didn’t know if any of them were the “Bandits” fish. After we tied up it didn’t take long to confirm that all the fish had been weighed and luckily for us our fish held up and won the biggest fish winner take all jackpot. We also placed second in the team division, won the biggest blue trophy and split the biggest stripe marlin jackpot with the 1st place boat.

The day 3 jackpot was won by the team aboard the “Fisherman”. Their 466# black along with the 713# black they weighed on day 1 gave the team 1st place overall and all 3 daily jackpots. Big congrats to all on board. Everyone that fished had a great time and thank you to Dan Jacobs and his team for doing such a great job running the tournament. Looking forward to the Bisbees now which starts this Wednesday. It could be an interesting tournament this year with the nice size fish that are here at the moment.

Last week my wife Lisa & I travelled to Nova Scotia to fish the 2 harvest days of the giant bluefin season. We were fishing with our good friends Jay & Candace Meyer, Keith Lebrun and Clay Hensley. Our guide for the trip was world-renowned captain James Roberts. The main goal was to try to catch Candace the women’s 130# world record (1170#), and with Nova Scotia experiencing their best tuna season in 10 years,  everyone onboard was confident that we had a good chance. To make sure we were on the fishing grounds for the 6am start, we left Ballantynes cove around 4am in very cold conditions but our foul weather gear provided by Pelagic kept us warm. By the time we arrived the majority of the fleet was already there ready to go.

 

"Got Her On"

"Got him on"

 

It wasn’t long after the first bait hit the water and we were on. Candace fought the fish to the boat in under 5 mins. It turned out to be a porbeagle shark, not the target species but a good warm-up anyway. By now the radio was abuzz with boats hooking up and fighting fish all around us. The sun was just starting to makes its way over the horizon when we got our second bite for the day. This time it was the right species, the fish pulled us around for ten minutes before we broke the leader. A little disappointed we set up our drift, put the baits out and patiently waited for another bite.

By now the sun was up and we were watching boats fight fish all around us. Because your only fishing in around 100ft of water the fish can’t go deep. Instead they make big long runs across the surface and seem to fight more like a big marlin than a big tuna. Your also sharing the fishing grounds with the herring net boats.O ne of the herring boats pulled up alongside us and started to haul in their net. James told us all to watch the net” Their starting to ring the dinner bell”. We all watched in amazement as 800# – 1000# giants starting busting on the surface, eating the herring that were falling out of the net. My knees were trembling, as this was one of the most incredible sites I have ever seen in all my years on the water.

 

Towing home the 803#

 

There was such a good morning bite going on that more than half the boats were already on their way back to port with their fish. Canadian fisheries rules state that once you catch a fish you must cease fishing and return to port. Back on our boat we decided to put the kite up and it wasn’t long before we had a couple of big fish boil on the bait but they wouldn’t eat it. A short while later the deep bait got bit and we were on again. Candace jumped in the chair and this time she brought the fish to the boat in under 10 mins. I only got a quick pull on the leader before the fish bolted and made a short run before pulling the hook. Once again we were a little disappointed but it wasn’t the fish we were looking for.

By now there was only a few of us left on the grounds but we still had plenty of time left to catch one. Luckily it didn’t take long for us to get another bite. This time the fish was well hooked and in a little over an hour Candace had the fish alongside the boat and we started heading back to port to weigh our fish.  We knew it wasn’t big enough for the record but it was a nice one all the same. Back in Ballantyne’s Cove there were some big fish being weighed. The fleet caught over 30 fish for the day with an average weight of 800#. You have to weigh your fish in the order in which you caught it, and seeing we were one of the last boats we had to wait until 1am to weigh our fish. The big tuna pulled the scale down to 803# and we were all very happy with our catch. Big congrats to Candace on her personal best giant bluefin tuna.

 

803# Giant Bluefin Tuna

803# Giant Bluefin Tuna

 

After everyone quickly grabbed a few hours sleep we were on our way back to the fishing grounds. Well day 2 started out a little slower but what the fleet lacked in quantity they made up for in quality. We only had one bite for the day but it was the one we wanted. Keith was up in the chair and considering it was his first time he did a great job. By the way the fish was fighting against the heavy drag we knew it was bigger than the previous days fish. With some skillful boat driving from Heyman we had the fish alongside in just over an hour, tied her of and started making our way back to Ballantynes Cove. The fish had more girth than the 803# but it’s still hard to judge the weight when their in the water.

 

1018# Giant Bluefin Tuna

 

As we tied up we saw a 1217# Giant being weighed! It was the biggest fish weighed over the 2 days and it looked like a Volkswagen with wings. The next boat in line had another big fish over the 1000# mark. Our fish looked pretty big when we started hoisting her up, the scale eventually settling on 1018#! Everyone was stoked, especially Keith. Not bad for his first time in the chair, well done mate! I found out later there were 15 giants weighed over a 1000# on the second day.

This trip also gave me the chance to try out my new line of Obadu wiring gloves that will be available this winter. They performed better than I expected. I trialed the medium weight’s and they seemed to work well with the 250#-350# leader.

It was an amazing fishing trip and I hope I get the chance to do it again some day. Thanks to James Roberts and Darrell ‘Heyman’ Neary for putting us on the fish.