|Talked to Mikey Schmidt from the Malihini last night after he fished the Rockpile for 4 yellows and a pretty impressive show on the yellows that are the same grade as the fish off La Jolla.
He said there were some good spots of the 18- to 25-pound yellowtail up puddling around on small bait. Here's the kicker: the Malihini was the only boat there. Chalk it up to the FMM debacle and the yellows up in La Jolla putting on a show. But for the first time Schmidt can remember in April he had the islands and the 'Pile all to himself. Another interesting note is that the bluefin tuna pen operation is gone from the lee of South Island. When I think about "yellowtail nostalgia" I also have visions of clouds of calico bass and yellows darting through while anchored up on The Smooch, which is one of those classic South Island spots. It's also going to be possible to anchor up on The Smooch now that the pens are not covering it up.
I get the feeling that the end of April and May are going to have the islands really come together. In my column this week I even laid out some predictions based on conditions for the season. This week's blogs will dive a little deeper into what the signs are pointing to.
In the meantime, here's the first yellowtail of the year from San Clemente Island. Ken Blaustein (see page 17 if you own Getting Bit) scored it while fishing on the Options yesterday. The boat is re-powered, ready to go and is going to make a seabass score on one of these trips. Captain Wes Flesch has been trying hard.