Umarex Axeon


Southern CA Saltwater

Long Range Report: Mid-grade tuna with cows sprinkled in

BY GUNDY GUNDERSON/Special to Western Outdoor NewsPublished: Feb 13, 2018

Tuna fishing steadies as wahoo begin to show better on the bank

SAN DIEGO — As the weather came down on the Hurricane Bank, fishing began to pick back up. Not at the torrid pace previous to the blow, but at a steady plunk that saw good fishing on mid-grade fish with the shot at a handful of cows each day. The formula for success has been spending time at the rail and having the right gear when the big boys come through. The flawed tendency is to drop down in tackle when the tuna is of a smaller grade. Additionally, the wahoo fishing showed signs of improvement, with more spots of skinnies frequenting the bank. The Wi-Fi problems continue to persist making real-time photos tough to come by, however.

Big X

The big bold Excel was down on the Hurricane Bank with Capt. Justin Fleck at the wheel. The boat and the fleet was still without Wi-Fi at the tropical latitudes. The skipper phoned in this report via satellite: “Fishing continued to pick up yesterday afternoon, with over 20 tuna landed and three cows in the mix. The good fishing carried over to today with another 20-plus tuna for the day and another three cows landed. The biggest of the six cows so far was a 263-pound personal best boated by Paul Levendoski. All of the fish down here are of great quality in the 100- to 200-pound range with the cows as standouts. Everyone is getting lots of opportunities and the passengers are all in very high spirits. The weather continues to be very good and we look forward to doing it all over again tomorrow.”

A few days later, Fleck phoned in another report, saying, “The fishing continues to be very good here today with another 17 nice-grade tuna coming over the rail. Paul Levendoski continued his hot streak as he boated his second cow last night and his third cow earlier today. This brings our total cow count for the trip up to 11. The weather continues to be excellent allowing everyone to enjoy plenty of time at the rail.”


AL MURRAY LANDED this 271 on the kite using a Seeker 3 X 5 and an Avet 80 3-speed aboard the Intrepid.

A NICE WHACK on the wahoo from the gang aboard the Intrepid.

THE SOFT STEEL / Intrepid group back at the dock.

undertheboatintUNDER THE BOAT, a yellowfin dashes for freedom on the Intrepid.

The Intrepid, was on the annual Soft Steel 15-Day Trip hosted by Tony Garza. The boat has been on a good run of fishing. Capt. Bill Cavanaugh was driving the boat and sent these updates: “A great day today. We ended up with 26 tuna for the day from 80 to over 200 pounds, with the majority of the fish in the 100- to 170-pound range. Al Murray got a 271 and Paul Lepore got a 247.The weather is great and everyone is stoked and looking forward to another good day.”

Upon returning to Wi-Fi coverage, Cavanaugh summed up the trip as such: “Our trip was an overall success with mid-grade fish around the 100-pound mark on tap most of the trip and it seemed as though we would get an opportunity on at least one or two cows every day. The anglers that had the most bites were the ones that put in their time at the rail, good at finesse fishing a sardine, fished fluorocarbon during the day and changing techniques according to conditions. Most of our fish this trip were landed using either Soft Steel Ultra or Soft Steel fluorocarbon. We didn't see lots of wahoo this trip but we did have one afternoon with over 25 fish after finding a little school. Our last two days of fishing were our most interesting as we found a new area of fish that responded well and gave us shots at big ones both days.”

Cavanaugh then delivered the final numbers: “We arrived back to port this morning at 0530 under clear skies. After weighing the big ones at the scale, we ended up catching 7 cows up to 271.7 pounds. Our jackpot winners go as follows: third place went to Tony Garza with a 226-pound yellowfin tuna; 2nd place went to Paul Lepore with a 247-pound yellowfin tuna; and 1st place goes to Al Murray with a 271.7-pound yellowfin. Thank you to Tony Garza and Soft Steel for hosting this trip and making it such a great trip.”




The American Angler returned from an Avet 14-Day with a solid catch of mid-grade tuna. The cows were hard to come by. The boat sent this wrap, saying, “The guys returned from the Avet 14-Day Trip this morning and reported epic weather all the way up the line. A huge thanks to Ben Frazier for his fishing sponsorship and cribbage sponsorship. The JP winners were 1st place, Doc Metcalf with a 219; 2nd place, Jeff Milton with a 129; and 3rd place, Gordo Brofft with a 117.”

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