WON Big Fish Challenge


CALIFORNIA'S ONLY SPORTSMAN'S NEWS SINCE 1953

Long Range

Long Range Report: Scratch bite turns steady

BY GUNDY GUNDERSON/Special to Western Outdoor NewsPublished: Feb 12, 2019

Yellowfin bite shows some level of consistency with cows in the mix


SAN DIEGO — The bite this week improved to a level most long range skippers would find acceptable, a steady plunk on yellowfin tuna ranging from 80 to 140 pounds, a shot at a handful of cows each day and a healthy smattering of quality wahoo filling out the slow times. If you could put this catch together each day, by the end of the trip, you have a winner.


RP and JB


battlingontherpBATTLING ON THE RP. PHOTO COURTESY OF ROYAL POLARIS SPORTFISHING


asleeatrpASLEEP AT THE rail on the RP. Putting in maximum time is crucial in a plunk bite. PHOTO COURTESY OF ROYAL POLARIS SPORTFISHING


The Royal Polaris finished up the annual JB Line One 16-day Trip with a fine catch of yellowfin tuna and a good whack on the wahoo. The catch was hard earned as the group led by Capt. Roy Rose had to deal with ever-changing fishing conditions. The weather, for the most part, was nice. The boat sent this report with the trip winding down: “The beat goes on with a steady pick of yellowfin today, with most of the fish in the 100- to 140-pound range, with one exception. Bruce Posthumus fought a giant for over two hours before getting the fish to color. The one thing about Bruce is, he doesn’t keep any fish, so we released the giant of a fish. The fish was estimated around 270 pounds by our Captain Roy Rose. We didn’t do any wahoo fishing today, but we did tag a few. With 3 days left, we are having a great time. Weather continues to be excellent, with a slight breeze, sunny skies, and flat seas.”


The next morning, a pair of cows. “The weather continues to be very good, with 8 to 10 knots of breeze, sunny, and warm. The yellowfin didn’t show in numbers today, but we did get two over the 200-pound mark. Lucky anglers today were Jim Tallerico with a 218-pound giant yellowfin tuna, and once again BrucePosthumus with a twin (estimated weight) to Jim’s fish at 218 pounds. All the other yellowfin caught today were over the 100-pound mark. Although the tuna fishing was slow, the wahoo picked up the slack, with good numbers coming again today. Most of the wahoo were in the 40- to 50-pound range.


That last day produced a third catch-and-release cow yellowfin for hot angler Bruce Posthumus. “Bruce had another fish over the 200-pound mark. This fish was estimated at 230 pounds. It didn’t take Bruce 3 hours on this fish, but a little bit over 2 hours. That’s 3 over 200 pounds for Bruce.”


kenhauserwithint395
KEN HAUSER WITH a well-sickled cow on the Intrepid. PHOTO COURTESY OF INTREPID SPORTFISHING


porkyrocksex
A PORKY WAHOO caught at the Rocks on the Big-X. PHOTO COURTESY OF INTREPID SPORTFISHING


Intrepid on cow grounds


themayor375
“THE MAYOR” Al Murray with a monster yellowfin landed on the Intrepid. PHOTO COURTESY OF INTREPID SPORTFISHING


The Intrepid was also on the cow grounds with Capt. Bill Cavanaugh at the wheel. The boat was experiencing the same kind of bite, a nice pick at 100-pound models, a shot at a few cows each day and a sprinkling of chunky wahoo in between. The skipper sent this report, “We had another good day yesterday on mostly 80- to 150-pound yellowfin tuna. It was the typical pattern with a morning shot and late afternoon shot. We had a couple of chances at bigger fish in the morning as we took advantage of one and had a heartbreak loss on the other. Ken Houser connected on one that went well over 200 pounds. It is very encouraging to see a little window of opportunity on big fish. We hope to have a similar opportunity today. We're ready. We scratched at wahoo throughout our day as well. All in all, a pretty good day.”


Another day, another shot, “We awoke yesterday morning to a noticeably changed ocean. Almost no wind and calm seas to start our day. We had a similar set up as the previous few days with a shot at tuna in the morning and then late in the afternoon. The grade of this tuna has been good with most of our fish averaging between 80 and 120 pounds. We also scratched at wahoo throughout the day. The highlight of the day was Al Murray's fish that taped out well over the 200-pound mark.”


Big X whacks wahoo


The Excel was rolling down the line on an ultra-limited load trip with just 19 anglers. The boat slid into Alijos Rocks to break up the southbound ride with a morning of wahoo fishing. Capt. Mike Ramirez was at the helm and filed this report, “Today we fished Alijos Rocks. We arrived around 0630 in the morning, and we put the trolling jigs in the water immediately. It took a little while to find the skinnies but once we did it was game on. The wahoo were very aggressive for several hours. It seemed like the bombs were working the best but we did get a handful on bait as well. Around lunchtime, the hot and heavy action started to slow down and we decided to leave and continue sliding south. I am happy to say all of our 19 anglers have at least two or more wahoo tagged in the hold.”


* * *

We hope you enjoyed this article on our no-charge website wonews.com. Of course, this site contains only a small fraction of the stories that Western Outdoor Publications produces each week in its two northern and southern editions and its special supplements. You can subscribe to the print issue that is mailed weekly and includes the easy flip-page full-color digital issues, or you can purchase a digital only subscription. Click here to see the choice.




IZORLINE