Q105 came in today

Discussion in 'San Diego Long Range Fishing' started by Neill, Dec 5, 2005.

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  1. Neill

    Went down early and caught the Independence and the Royal Polaris unloading many cows....

    The Q came in and there were many happy campers...

    Pic 1 Cows....

    Pic 2 Mr.HD with one of his two cows

    Pic 3 Dan and Evan sitting in the back of my truck with 4 of the 7 cows they so kindly donated to me....:)

    DSC03332.JPG DSC03335.JPG DSC03337.JPG
  2. FISHY

    fuck yeah! nice carnage
  3. Ali Admin

  4. dewercs

    It was a sick trip, 202 and 220 kicked my ass. For the record Brad is correct, leave your harness behind and meet your friend mr. rail.
  5. TheShark


  6. Surfdoc


    Ok I want to hear the story on that cow HD is fondling!!! :D
  7. Bearfish

    That's great:drool:
    I can't wait to be healthy enough to go on 1 of these trips even a 4 or 5 day trip:) .
    Hell even an over nighter:rofl: :rofl: .
    Good job guy's.
  8. SALTYDAWG Advertiser

  9. Mr. HD

    Let me start by thanking Neill for driving me to the landing…his six wheeler pick-up held my gear so I didn’t need to call Allied Van Lines. ;-) I had a ton of stuff! Even took my laptop so this report is derived from the notes I took daily.

    This report begins Saturday Evening…mostly because I have slept most of the time since we left port. A Patron bottle made the rounds early during our departure which may have contributed to my nappytime disposition. Mostly I am just worn out from work and unlimited sleep is a rare and delightful change of pace. 9 to 5ers cannot grasp the demands of small business owners. Got some nice schwag from Guyster and Nanette (Warrior Princess). The fleece vest from Maxima was perfect! Thanks Princess!!

    Saturday seminar focused on sano gear, the need for flawless equipment, terminal gear and connections to handle the big tuna waiting for our arrival. 200+ leaders were advised…bait selection was less important. Dead sardines on 300lb were getting bit. The wahoo season has basically sucked and would not be a serious focus this trip however; the wind driven sea is pushing us along at a good clip so we will be stopping at the Ridge Sunday morning to poke around for some skinnies, YT and grouper. It beat arriving at Cow Town at night. I have retired half my sticks to the upper deck, their accompanying reels in the bag. I didn’t want my “serious reels” getting banged up in the rack. The extra spaces between the big reels helps prevent this.

    I have not tied or crimped a single hook on…mostly I removed FC leaders and replaced em with heavier mono topshots. My light rig in 100lb.

    Tritip and wine at table #1 was a special treat and the company ideal. I am greatly enjoying myself. The start is slow and I find myself apprehensive about the forthcoming war. The crew is badly crippled and sharing multiple stories of tuna battles that broke better men than I. The crew passed one 225lb fish off six times…it hurt them all. These are young, strong and experienced anglers…what will these fish do to me and my crippled shoulder? I can only wonder.

    Sunday was kind of like waiting paint dry with lots of travel and no fish. Instead, we cruised around with the trollers out, presumably to make the trolling teams feel like they were fishing. We didn’t stop at the Ridge after all…reports said it was dead. I decided on my game plan today and determined that 50-55lbslbs of drag would be my fighting setting. Strike is at 37-43lbs. My strategy is to go halfway to strike upon pick-up, and then bump it up steadily as the fish sulks & circles. Hopefully this method will enable me to boat my fish sooner, thus saving my shoulder. I’ve rigged up 300, 200, 150 & 100lb (iron) outfits. I may get fewer bites but if I do get bit, I believe I have a much better shot of landing my moo-moo on this gear.

    We’re being advised to fish 9/0 hooks on sardines. As I look at these heavy hooks with rings and swivels, chafing springs and crimps…I feel a rush of excitement. This is serious FN gear! ADT50WIIs, 63XXXH & XXXXH rail rods, 25' topshots of mono and no harness. The wind is still blowing hard from astern and even though we are making decent headway…the wind is never in your face looking towards the bow like it usually would. This is weird. In the morning we’ll be smack in the center of Cow Town and I’m passin’ the Patron around to others but secretly living a Puritan lifestyle myself. I’m gonna need every advantage I can get. The crew has been exceptional and I am more relaxed today than I’ve been in months. I can’t describe the complete sense of freedom I feel. This must be what it’s like to be unemployed without a cable TV package. ;-) Nothing to do all day but kill time, eat and chat with the others on board. Yeahhh…rough day. LOL

    Gotta sign off…Mike just put pizza out in the galley. :p

    Monday is off to a slow start…lots of looking, little biting. Well, galley excluded. Thank God for the galley guys! They’ve been working hard to keep us fat. ;-)

    The later afternoon bit produced nine fat YFT that I estimate ran from 150-240lbs. The fattest one took a couple hours to land, Berkeley seems happy with that. Casualties were about 50% due to a combination of hook pulls, bad connections and a couple saw-offs. I went biteless and visions of previous FF trips haunt me. I’m finding little comfort in the fact that I remain in the vast majority of anglers who are as yet unbitten. Hopefully this will not become a trend. I don’t think I can handle another snake bitten ride.

    Harvey is a crack-up! The ole salt greeted me with some interesting predawn information this morning. “I take half a Viagra every morning.” He said. I just sorta looked at him like a puppy who’s just heard his name called. “That way I don’t pee on my shoes,” he continued. It is waaay to early to be talking to Harv I thought. As the caffeine clicked in and my pulse rediscovered itself, I sat and chatted with this kindly and seasoned fisherman. Nice to know I’m not the only twisted mind on board. Harvey reminded me that I needed to spend more time fishing in the bait tank for a hot swimmer. That proved to be the missing ingredient later.

    Tuesday morning started off with a couple pre-breakfast dorado in the 20-25lb class.

    Well the boat stopped on a paddy and I accidentally hooked a baby striper on a Megabait iron and 50lb Izorline. Didn’t pull hardly at all at first and I thought I hooked a dink mahi, then it woke up and freight trained off, clearing the water twice-shaking its big nose at me before eventually busting off. At least I got bit. I’m happy. I can get bit. :-)

    Not sure what’s going on, we stop, toss bait, flyline for nada and reel in. Then repeat. Sure hope these fish cooperate today.

    Ran outside to fish, tossed a dine on 200lb and yahoo…I’m on! Got lucky, fish ran astern and to port, away from the cluster on the other side. Threw the reel to full and fought the fish for 36 minutes at 50+lbs of drag. The rail is my bestest friend ever!!! :7

    Looks to be about 205lbs or so. (Later weighed at 249.7lbs at the dock). I am so relieved now. I gotta probable cow and a new personal best. Best of all my HD style worked and I’m able to haul a biggun in without suffering or passing the rod off. Maybe this was just a weak fish or something. As I considered this prospect, I named my first cow tuna Brad. ;-) I’m very happy. Well that’s enough rest, I downed 7 cups of water, my arms and hands aren’t tingling anymore…time to close the laptop and do it again. Oh yeah…one other thing…the pain in my shoulder is NOTHING! ;-)

    As of 2PM we have nine fish weighing between 150-250lbs all on sardines. We have several nice squid in the handrails however, only a few have pinned em on and yours truly found the calamari resulted in an instant strike……………….from a dog. Arf! Arf!!

    I’m back to fishing dines. The sea is flatter than Twiggy, the breeze too little to keep your boots from getting hot in the sun. I’m concerned that jigsticks with iron on the sunny side of the boat are slowly melting the mono tied to em. Yeah, it’s hot. The crew is doing an amazing job, truly exemplary service. I don’t know how they manage it but have to give some credit to Harvey for this as he has been providing the invaluable service of late night watchman, giving the deckies some much extra needed sack time. I gotta take that 3 day CG course…it’s a help to the crew and an excuse to fish at night. I am typing this under AC so my boots can cool off. My dogs be barkin’! Arf! Arf!! The sea is a warm blue bathtub.

    Gotta go ice the Patron…tonight we be celebratin’!

    It is now 3am and we’re en route from Mag Bay back to the tuna grounds after making bait. I cannot sleep, even with a little “Captain” in me. :+

    That’s It! It’s dawn and I’m officially a billfisher as of this morning. Hooked another damn striper and carefully finessed it to the downwind side of the boat and away from the kite rig on the bow. Got it to leader so the deckie could cut it off but noooooooo…instead the fish sees the boat and greyhound’s outta the water tail-walking, leaping and freight-training away in a wash of whitewater. You guessed it…straight for the kite rig. AUGHHH!!! I was unable to slow or turn it and as it came within 30’ of the ribbon, was forced to cut it off at the reel. That was to be my only pick-up all day. Man it was hot. Hot weather, slow but steady fishing and cow after cow hooked, fought and more than half of em hitting the deck. Evan, the youngest amongst us fought three fish only to have the first two either bust off or chew through at color. He handled these setbacks like a man and kept at it. #3 was the charm and I am so relieved he’s finally got one under his belt. Wearing a perpetual smile, this young man will return to Minnesota a victorious warrior who has accomplished something nobody else in his school has. He won the battle the ole fashioned way, using the rail like a pro and leveraging the fish at full. He looked like he was born to it. Nice going Evan!!! :7 We’re all proud of him.

    The cows toyed with those fishing the kite all day. Huge boils and airborne tuna kept all eyes on the ribbon section however, flights were long and the heat of the day took its toll on folks. I musta filled over 40 cups of water for those in kite jail or fighting stubborn fish today. Hopefully that karma will come back and benefit me manana. The kite with two sardines is working great.

    Later on, after dinner I convinced my Minnesota buddies to pin a blue bucket on Kilsong’s rod while I distracted him. The bucket took forever to sink out, moving less than 5 feet a minute on the drift. No doubt the boy from Jersey thinks I’m nuts for asking him so many stupid questions about jigging but I had to stall him for ten minutes. When he went back out on deck to check his squid rig, the look on his face was priceless. “What kind of fish is that?” he asked, completely confused as he reeled in. The blue pale looked like a mahi or blue shark at the edge of the lights. “You want your bucket harness?” I asked. It was funnier than hell and our victim seemed to enjoy our prank.

    Thursday morning we put two nice mid-200s on the boat. Now we’re driving around looking for signs of life. Just stopped on a large kelp and it was wide open on the golden leaf for those overshooting the mark. ;-) Nothing for those fishing around the golden nugget…back to hunting. (No, I am not one of those who hooked kelp)

    Since I’m looking for reason to stay outta the sun and under the A/C…I’ll share a few things with you. Joel our CM gave us a demonstration in Darkside entertainment. Fortunately what happens on the upper deck stays on the upper deck. :+

    I woke up at 2:30am last night with no feeling in my right arm. I musta slept wrong which, if you think about…is a stupid act. Millions of people manage to sleep right; I must be a complete idiot. Pins & needles followed my struggle to consciousness and today my shoulder is on fire. Got one of those Ultra Ben Gay patches on it and suddenly all the men on the boat are leering at me. I feel like the fresh fish entering prison. Does Ben Gay using pheromones? What are these guys looking at? Oh my. (I quietly hope it is the Ben Gay smell and not my uncontrollable charisma.)

    It’s 9:44am on Thursday now and if you walk outside the salon, you step into a blast furnace surrounded by greasy seas. The heat is absolutely relentless. The sun occasionally pierces through the small gaps in the blackout curtains in the salon and you are temporarily blinded. If you lost or forgot your sunglasses on this trip, you’d be called crows feet when you got home. There’s a guy on board who has been squinting so much, only the deep wrinkles around his eyes aren’t tan. :7

    Lunch has been served, mahi, scallops and fettuccini. More cows would be the only thing better. ;-)

    Hours passed, and then at sunset we hit the right batch of fish and put 8 YFT from 170-250lbs on the boat. We’re headed back to Mag Bay to make bait after dinner. It is apparent the fish are on the move and now we know which way they’re heading. We hope to find em again the early am. Half the boat has one fish; the other half has at least two. The boat is getting plugged…one more good pick and the holds will be full. There are no Tetris tricks that’ll enable the holds to stack a lot of cows; at least, I don't think so. We’ve lost count of the total catch now but nobody seems to care. Those who have fished the kite have all scored nicer fish and several of us are hopeful our numbers will come up before our time runs out. I’ve talked to five guys who have two fish each, one on bait and one on the kite. Joel and I are kinda doubtful we’ll get through the kite rotation tomorrow before we head home. (Never happened…neither of us made it to the kite) We’re fishing hard realizing that if we are to get more fish, we’ll hafta do it the old fashioned way…time at the rail waiting for the right conditions, the right time and bait to hooks another of these beautiful fish. Kilsong got the 170 pounder on the iron, no small feat! He’s worked hard at it for the entire trip and seeing him realize this dream put smiles on all our faces. I’ve rigged a 100lb iron rod (ADT12 on a CS765M) in hopes of getting a cow on the iron as well. Probably not the smart thing to do but I love fishing iron & I can learn from this guy. He was gracious enough to give me a jig like the one he caught his fish on tonight. Is he cool or what? I’m passin’ the Patron around regularly towards the end of the afternoons when it begins to cool off. More than half the boat partakes and we are all getting along. This is FN great!

    Friday was a nice long search that ended with a Bang! We rolled into a batch of smaller fish and I enjoyed hooking a 36lb YFT on my 50lb jigstick…fought for a whole 2 minutes on a Boss 665HXM on a CS700H. We boated a handful of the small models under 100lbs and went back to hunting. Just before dark we scored and everyone was bit on cows or near-cows. I got bit and nearly spooled my ADT30II with a 150lb topshot. I fought the fish for an hour, which included a trip around the boat. I must have gone over and under lines over 80 times and had to lift the rod over guys on the bow several dozen times. It was on one of these highsticking maneuvers that I felt my right shoulder rip out. I was in agony and nearly lost my rod over the side. I handed the rod to a deckie and took a couple minutes to hyperventilate, drink water and assess the damage to my rotor cuff. I was dizzy from pain. This fish was brutal! You’ll never convince this angler that some fish have more attitude than others. I named this fish Keith Poe. I took the rod back and used the rail. When I finally got the fish to color on the bow, I joined a 6 way tangle and man oh man was it ugly! Realizing the depth of the problem, I eased the drag off so the fish could very slowly pull line out. I didn’t wanna zip anyone off and I was worried about the integrity of my spectra so keeping the line moving would hopefully prevent significant damage to the spectra. After what seemed like an eternity (15-20 minutes?) I was free of the tangle and back to fighting my fish. My spool was 80% empty again and I was right back where I originally started. I kicked the drag to full and began my second trip around the Qualifier. It was a tough, mean fish…not at all like the first one. It once again took me to the bow for more punishment.

    The tuna made me pay dues for every inch and several times I was unable to crank at all. My shoulder was on fire and I half expected this battle to end badly. Another hour passed and I managed to gain back all the line I’d lost in the tangle. With the fish at color I could not raise the rod. Rail cranking was all I could do and even that was torture. My shoulder was toast. Cal put the final cranks on the rod to bring the fish to gaff, much to my shame. I simply could not make anymore big pulls. I suspect I will be outta commission for weeks. I’m so glad this happened at the end of the fishing and not the beginning. I am hurtin’ for certain.

    Four gaffs dragged the cow through the gate and I went below for medication. Every damn bottle of prescription drugs my doctor had prescribed included warnings that said: DO NOT DRINK. "F that" I thought and took Motrin and PATRON. No way I was gonna forego the celebration tonight! Warrior Princess made me a makeshift sling with a rod belt and I am wearing an ice pack which is alleviating the pain considerably. I enjoyed a victory cigar with the boys the upper deck and watched the final fights with these cows. Kilsong got a huge cow (easy 250lber) to the boat on iron only to lose it a circle or two before it was within gaff reach. I physically hurt me to witness this. :-( I counted 26 cows on the deck and wondered where they would go. How could they cram these into the hold?

    Two days of travel then it’s back to the real world. Three tuna, two striped marlin (I call em carp) and the memories of an ideal trip with wonderful people. All I’ve done for 10 days is decide whether to eat, drink, smoke, sleep or fish…how am I ever gonna get back into the work groove after this?

    End count was 59 cows with a dozen going 250+lbs (I guess my 249.7lber didn&#8217;t rate. <g> Traded the fish for canned albacore (kinda strange eh?) and headed to the office. That&#8217;s right&#8230;straight back into the teeth of the animal that FF05 rescued me from.

    Back to my grindstone&#8230;no time to be creative or talk about the gang right now. :-( sigh

    Oh&#8230;the lens on my camera got something on it while sitting in the galley so most of my photos are pooched. Didn&#8217;t look at em on the trip&#8230;my mistake. Doh! Here&#8217;s what I got.

    This is an Ironman!


    This is victory at sea!


    This is a guy with the right stuff!



    This is fishing!




    If I had the time I'd write all about the great group of folks on this trip and how cooperative the WFO bite went but alas...I am long on words and short on time. Thanks everyone...I cannot imagine a more perfect trip!

    Here's the walking wounded celebrating with victory cigars.


  10. Alter Ego

    Man, I am so jealous of these cow after cow reports. Nice fuckin' job, guys. For me, maybe in 2006.

    BTW Mr. HD, I love your sig line vid. If I am remembering correctly, it is from a movie where these two guys end up on a gay cruise...hillarious movie!
  11. whitefish

    I can now feel the pain in my forearm and shoulder again reading your trip saga.....nice job and great report!!!