Has a marlin ever kicked your butt?

Discussion in 'Fishing Chit Chat' started by Jon Schwartz, May 22, 2010.

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  1. Jon Schwartz

    Attention all billfishing enthusiasts: I need stories about people getting owned by marlin! I have a lot of information from successful captains about how they use technique and strategy to beat big fish- often with modestly built anglers- but what I need are stories that illustrate the opposite: that beefy buffed out anglers can get their butt kicked by marlin, either because the captain and angler didn't take the initiative to dictate the terms of the fight, or the marlin was simply a stubborn fish.
    I don't need pictures, although it'd be fun to see them posted; what I would love to hear are blow by blow accounts of the fight. [​IMG]
  2. af dreamer

    couple 2 hour plus fish.A 517 black that got tail wraped and died.A 400 plus blue same story,2 poled it and lost the main outfit.A couple local stripers that became boat shy and were REAL MFer.Tom
  3. Jon Schwartz

    Tom, That's funny you say that because I have seen stripey's in the 130 range being very stubborn, and kicking people's butts. Of course they were being fought with small gymbal belts, no fighting chairs, on 30lb test, but I've seen men really worked over by them (including myself!). Do you have any details about the fights that were interesting? Faces turning purple, shouts of agony and despair? Things that the anglers and captains tried to turn the tide in their favor?
    Tx man,
  4. Jiraiya

    I'll share the story about the striper I caught 6 years ago. We were stopped on a wide open kelp patty bite about 140 miles south of MB. 30+lb dodos and yellows were everywhere. I tossed a big dine on 30lb test and a 2/0 hook 10 yards off the patty. Dine decided to go deep before it got nailed. I let it run for a full 3 count before I swung. Damn line went slack and I thought I missed. Few seconds later line started pulling off the reel again. Gave it a 6 count before I swung 3 more times. My line was going straight down so I thought I hooked a big yellowtail. The fish started going toward the port side and a few seconds later, a large marlin exploded out of the water. The deckhand behind me was yelling at me to follow it toward the bow. As I'm running toward the bow chasing the marlin like a twinkie at a jenny craig convention, my line is ripping off the spool. Within 7 seconds, I could see the black part of my spool and I was about to shit myself thinking I'm about to get spooled completely. The marlin stopped its run and started its acrobatic jumps. The captain said once the last fish on the stern was landed we were going to chase this fucker. We had to cool down the drags on the penn 500 so we could tighten it more. Steam was rising off as water was poured on it. About 20 min into the fight, my left forearm locks up and I can't pump the rod. The deckhand started massaging it to loosen the muscle. I had cold water dumped on my head to keep me cool while the blazing sun was beating down. After battling the beast for an hour, I had more then half of the line back on the spool. After another half hour, I finally had the fish close enough for the guys to get ready to gaff it. Every time I got the fish close, it would try to maneuver under the boat. Once the captain backed off a couple yards, it would try to sound. At this point I'm pretty exhausted. I kept telling myself that this fucker is almost in the boat and if I don't finish this soon it's going to die on me. I've been fighting the marlin for 2 hours and Paul decided he needed to take a chance and stick it before either me or the fish die. He had someone hold onto his belt while he stretched as far as he could to stick the fish in the gut. Three other gaffs went in and 5 guys lifted it over the rail. It went over 180 lbs, this thing was huge. It wasn't until after it was on the deck that we realized that I had it bill wrapped and tail wrapped. The line was shredded at the bill. It must have gotten tail wrapped during the last half hour of the fight and I'm convinced that's the reason why I was able to land it with 30lb test on a size 2/0 using a penn 500 on a pacific stick. That marlin kicked my ass. I'm thankful for the opportunity to battle such a beast and have a lot of respect for them. That will go down as one of the most memorable fishing experiences I have ever had.

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  5. DeVo

    Had a 108 stripey on 30lb. First time I felt like it was a fight to the death, ether me or the fish. I couldn't feel my hands, felt like I was never going to win. Jason kept giving me water and poring it over my head and hands. It was my best fight for sure.

  6. Mfish618

    Honestly, the best fight I ever had from a marlin was a schoolie sized striper[120 something] that had it's beak wrapped shut by the leader. It jumped non stop, for the under 10 minute battle. When it got along side the boat it was literally dead. When the line went slack the leader unwrapped from the base of it's bill and the hook fell free as we gaffed it. The leader had a wrap and a half on it and the hook was just taught against the beak. The poor fish suffocated. It had just slashed the jig with it's bill and got fouled. A very intense, if short battle. I reeled for all I was worth as it charged the boat.It was on a low speed 6/0 Penn Senator spooled with 50 lb dacron, stand up fishing and I never seemed to have a butt plate, much less a harness.
    It was the early 70s when we slayed what we caught. I'd never kill one again.
    Last edited: May 22, 2010
  7. DawnPatrol

    I was fishing with some Kiwi's that had their own yacht off of Mayor Island, North Island , NZ a few years back. I hooked on the troll on fairly heavy tackle a real nice Striper. The damn thing fought real well for about an hour. I knew it was pretty big , and it had pulled 80% of the line off the reel. The ole boys never really even tried to chase it down much early on, and that would have probably helped.

    Anyways, after an hour with not much more gain on the line, the fish apparently died way down deep. It took me another hour 1/2 of basic grunt work planing it up from the depths. That was worse than fighting it when it was alive.

    When it came up we quickly found out why it acted so strong early on and then later gave up the ghost-- one of the tandem hooks was stuck right in one of her eyes!

    We intended to tag/release if captured alive, but of course that was out. Weighed in at 296 at the scales of the Tauranga Big Game Club.
  8. Rubberhook2

    453lb Blue Marlin on 50lb while trolling a live yellowfin tuna as bait on the Gordo Bank outside of San Jose Del Cabo. 3 hours in 100 degree heat stand up, no fighting chair, in a V bottom 22' panga. Shut the outboard off and kicked it up and the fish towed the panga, backwards, for an hour and a half, with a wake coming off the bow. Fish came up dead or else I would have released it. Ended up feeding many of the local townfolk who lined up for 20lb chunks of blue marlin fillet.

    45 minutes into the fight the dogspring goes out on the Shimano TLD 30 2 speed I was trolling with and I had to lock my right arm to keep the handle from spinning backwards. Could not get a wind and thought I would lose it for sure. The captain of the panga, Hugo, began stripping by hand the 400 yards of 50lb line off of the Penn International 50 that was my second trolling rod as the fish was pulling me down swell. With the spool on the Penn empty he looked at me and in broken english said "Freespool" as he accelerated the panga downswell, out ahead of the marlin, as I was dumping line full speed off of the Shimano. When he got a few hundred yards out ahead of the marlin he turned the panga back toward it, putting a belly in the line, stopped the panga, grabbed the 50lb line with his hand, cut it with his teeth, and handed it to me with a 450 on the other end. I will never forget his hands shaking as he threaded the line down through the guides of rod number two and tied it to the empty spool of the Penn. He then looked at me and said "Wind".

    With the marlin swimming towards us the whole time I wound frantically to pick up all the slack line and when I got to about a half a spool I felt the weight of the fish. Just then it jumped, completely clearing the water, no more than 20 yards off the side of the panga. Two hours later I had it boatside...

    I have caught a lot of fish since then, but I will never, ever forget the fight with this particular fish. From experiencing reel failure and almost losing it to Hugo having the presence of mind to switch outfits midfight the way he did, to me holding the 50lb line in my bare hands with a 13 foot, 450lb marlin on the other end, those are the things that get seared into ones memory banks for a lifetime.

    I owe it all to Hugo...thanks compadre.

    Here are the pics...

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  9. Jon Schwartz

    Guys, these are CRAZY good stories! Hugo rules! I have seen some captains of pangas do some incredible things too, all in a day's work. Some of these stories are 10x better than the ones featured on TV in those "Monster Fish" series.
  10. mahi

    Yeah on a 724 Blue out of Kona. I saw the bite on the shotgun lure. I saw pointy stuff. Jumped to the chair and the crew was a little slow getting the other 4 rods aboard. I told the crew to get after it. They replied, its a Tuna. I said I saw the bite, its a Marlin. We are into the backing on a 130 and it jumped. The Captain called out, there it is 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, maybe 800 on each jump. I'm thinking, "stop saying that". It jumped 300 yards out in front of the fleet and turned back and jumped next to the boat going the same direction we were. Dropped the drag and hauled fanny to get in front. It sank out and died on the line. Took a long time to plane it up. Would rather release it, but it went to the market. It kicked my rear.
  11. I'a

    2 years ago, Kona Iki trollers invitational tournament. We hooked up at around 8 am on live aku. Jumping like crazy all over the place. From 300 yards away looked to be over 500lbs. For the next 8 hrs, swivel comes up, my uncle cannot hold em, swivel goes down. Super frustrating, at the 5 hour mark, my dads friend comes on board to help leader. 3 hrs of 2 guys leadering and the double line at swivel finally parts. Super bummed and sore, but it was one of the best feelings I ever had, and almost the best day of my life ever. haha Looking at how big my friends marlin was, ( I was the leader man on a 809lb. blue at the 2009 Wee guys tournament), I'm thinking my fish went over a grand. Oh well

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  12. marlinmike

    it was the 2000 or 01 zane grey tourny and a certain boat hooked one a very nice one on 30# then went like the next 6 hrs or so before boating the fish and all the rest of us were made to wait to hear the weight. the fish went 287# on 30# then the next morning as the rest of the fleet made way to start the day they(said boat in question) did not leave the mooring until 9 or 10 am. now hows that for "having your ass kicked".
    big mike @ meltons
  13. kelpbass_kid

    When I was younger, I fought one for about an hour. Longest I've ever been on one, as the striper was really hot. I've had a couple others on for 15-30 minutes. When hooked on the right gear, the average striper should never fight for over an hour. There are some exceptions to the rule though. I have found that CA marlin are usually tougher than their Baja counterparts.
  14. marlinmike

    what are you trying to say "when i was younger" what last year???
  15. kelpbass_kid

    4 years younger I guess. LOL
  16. Hooops

    2 quick ones:

    Virgin Islands / North Drop - 457lb Blue - 2hrs in 6-8ft thunderstorm rollers in my friends 30ft Pursuit center console - fighting chair in the bow - I think I had saltwater poisoning - could have used a mask and snorkel.

    Kona - 425lb Blue - 3hrs with my buddy Scott Pruner on his old "Retriever" pre-fishing the Kona Classic - 130s were not rigged - so we started dragging Ahi bullets around the ahi schools on 30W - 50lb - she was a very mean fish - I pulled the 357 trigger boat side out of hatred.

    back in 2004, i had one on for about 3 hours, but lost it. i ditched work and we fished a hot bite off la jolla. i fished with my buddy ed on his boat "ami anne". we had got nothing all day. later in the day we hooked a small mako and while we were dealing with it we got bit on a drop back. it was a really big striper. we chased him on 30lb for over 3 hours and 7 miles according to a friend that was watching us [harry o'kuda]. the fish super smart, strong and tough. it only surfaced a couple times, not really jumping, and it was big. he swam about 10 - 12 feet below the water's surface and headed right into the sun as he spooled us over and over again. we conitually regained and lost spool after spool of line. we tried to manuver him and control him, but he'd run out all of all of my line and we'd have to chase him down. we would get right over the fish, but i couldn't lift him on 30lb. he finally tired after nearly 3 hours of fighting. we got the fish to the stern and he ran under the boat and broke off. the line was so worn from the fight i knew i'd be lucky to land him. i'd say the fish was over 250, maybe 300lbs. that fish ran us ragged. i was all sunburned and dehydrated from riding the bow of the boat into the sun... brutal.
  18. Rubberhook2

    Marlin can be tough but the toughest of them all...is swordfish. Without question. Talk about a brawler. I have pulled on many but was only able to land one...a 174lb fish off the local banks near Dana Point. I got that fish in 30 minutes on 50lb gear only because it never knew it was hooked and came back up finning after I hooked it. We got a shot at it early and basically freegaffed it and all hell broke loose as it ripped out one of the flyers. There were several others that I pulled on for hours only to lose them.

    I wish I had the knowledge, technology and better gear that we have today. I may have stood a better chance.

    Definitely a fish worthy of respect...

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  19. HBfisherman

    These are great stories! Hopefully, one of these days I will catch my own and add my story. Keep them coming guys!
  20. Bottom Line

    Here is a shot of my brother Dave early on in the battle getting worked by a 400 lb class blue – Dave lasted about 30 minutes and handed off to Terry – Terry went for close to 30 minutes and handed it off to me and he immediately passed out! Freaked me out to see him hit the deck... This was just south of Acapulco and the temp was close to 110 degrees with 90% humidity.
    I fought the fish for just a couple minutes and figured out it was tail wrapped. I spent the next hour on the swim step hand lining the fish up in increasingly sloppy water.

    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com<img src=" /><o:p></o:p>
    A side note: notice the mixed up water in the pic &#8211; the boat owner called us on the sat phone to make sure we were clear of the hurricane that was forming right where we were at! Sure enough, the water/wind started coming from every direction and we were soon in 6&#8217; wind waves swirling around the boat. We headed south and were clear in a couple hours.

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    Last edited: May 25, 2010