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Thread: Rancho Leonero Report 11/17-19
Nov-23-2006, 01:17 AM #1Registered User
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- san diego
Rancho Leonero Report 11/17-19
Just back from a great trip to the East Cape with better than expected fishing. Day one our group of 4 on two cruisers went north to the point north of Los Barriles and landed a total of 6 sails and a 50# dorado. Best colors were MJG and bleeding mackeral. Drug a PB EAL that was never touched. Weather and seas were very good for this time of year with a slight breeze. No water temps available but color was slightly off color blue.
Day two cruiser one went south to fish the tuna grounds outside the Imon Bank and pulled 4 off the porpoise on sardinias. Nothing on the cut up squid or trolled jigs. Made squid at the light house, but very slow process. Fishing would be described as decent, but porpoise and tuna were moving very fast and it was difficult to hold the school. 3 fish 20#s and one 50# all on sardinias one at a time after chasing down the fast moving porpoise.
Cruiser two on its way to the Imon Bank pulled up short at Los Frailes just at the 100 fathom curve to bait a striper. Three shots, no go and we moved on south. Within 1/2 mile we see another striper and he sunk out before we could get a bait on him. Continued motoring south to the Imon. Within 5 mins, see an est. 250# blue jumper 200 yards off the port stern Circled back to try to bait him and he had sunk out.
Put out the marlin jigs immediately at 10:30 and abandoned the tuna fishing plan. Boxed the area where all fish were seen. Nothing else seen or raised until a large blue was spotted just north of the Los Frailes on about the 100 fathom curve (no GPS). Fish spotted swimming fast alongside off the port bow. We turned to box the area and it popped up again crossing our stern. Deckie threw a bridled mackie on 40# gear and no go. Fish looked large, so we dropped back another mackie on the 7465M with an Avet SDS, spectra with 60# top shot and 200# leader sitting in the rack just in case we saw a blue. Fish ate the nose hooked fresh bait immediately and it was game on at 11:55 am.
Fought the fish stand up until 6:30 in the pitch black. Fish surfaced 10 times and the captain estimated him at 800#s plus. We had the fish to within 20 meters of the boat for seconds, but did not seem to have any effect on him with this gear. For the last hour we buttoned the drag down to 50#s and still could not move the fish out of its pattern of swimming south at 3 kts, jumping once or twice every thirty minutes. Seemed like if we let it run out 200 yards and then ran up on top of it, pulling at maximum limits, every two or three times we did it would get pissed off, head shake and then run out and jump once or twice. Most of the time we did this, the fish would just change direction slightly and continue swimming slowly unfazed.
The boat had no electronics (did have a radio) and no lights whatsoever. There was a new moon and in the pitch black there was no way to keep the line clear or to use the boat to fight the fish. We were 10 miles from our original position and over 40 miles from home. The wind was up with a 4' swell and building. Looking around at the cruiser, it was apparent it wouldn't take much for it to break down out of limited radio range. At this pace the fish was going to take another 6 - 12 hours, if not more and the chances of finishing before the line gave out were not good.
All things considered, we made the decision to button down and either get the fight going or break the fish off, which I still regret, but with these conditions and the light gear, there was really little chance of getting the fish without taking chances. As could have been predicted, the fish broke off at 6:30 with the line moderately frayed despite new gear (first fish hooked on this outfit) and fresh P-Line. We didn't get back until 9:30 in rough conditions with no running lights and waves spraying over the bridge.
Epic battle. Next time we'll be ready on 80# or better with roller guides and a boat that can go the distance.
Day three we went north again in very rough conditions. Beach boarding was hectic and took an hour to load 4 boats with the panga swamping in the shore break. Went north to the point again. From 9 - 10 am we spotted 4 stripers. One ate a drop back was was landed in 30 mins on the TN40 with 40# top shot. Second ate the MJG on the rigger and was landed in 10 mins on the trolling gear. Baited a third and came unbuttoned. The fourth sank out before we could bait him. At 10:30 the bite shut off entirely, the wind and seas were building to 20kts plus and 4' chop. We trolled for 4 more hours without spotting another fish.
Bait was easy the first day with all you wanted mackeral and sardinia. Squid was difficult to make, but available for the effort. Unfortunately with the wind came a gradually deteriorating bait situation. On the last day many boats had no baits and those that did were limited to 5. Sardinia was not available the last day after a windy night but were plentiful when the conditions were better.
Most boats were not targeting marlin but those that did had at least one. Many sails were caught the first day, but they dropped off with the windy conditions. We heard of good fishing in shore for small roosters and pargo. Tuna fishing was fair for those making the run south on either the porpoise or the Imon bank. Best story we heard was a boat fishing the north point that baited one 250# blue, landing it and then baiting a second that swam across the bow before getting the jigs out. Plenty of blues were seen and at least one was landed daily by the small fleet still working this late in the season.
Hope this helps anyone else heading down. It was a great trip and well worth the effort if the weather cooperates. The only camera we had was a disposable and the pics are ridiculous.
Nov-23-2006, 02:44 AM #2
Re: Rancho Leonero Report 11/17-19
Sounds like a great trip. I was at RL this same time last year and the fishing was slowwwww. Wind every day, rough seas.
The beach loading with the waves up is fooking hairball._________________________________________
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Nov-24-2006, 01:21 AM #3Captain
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- Escondido, CA
Re: Rancho Leonero Report 11/17-19
Thanks for the great report, you're going to have nightmares about that blue for awhile!
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