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Biggest Sport-Caught Bluefin Tuna in California Waters on the American Angler

The 363-pound tuna on the American Angler’s recent 10-day trip is among the biggest bluefin tuna ever caught by sport fishing in California waters

biggest bluefin tuna in California waters 363 pounder aboard the American Angler
American Angler Crew

What could top a 10-day trip with a great group of anglers, great weather, and great wahoo and yellowfin fishing on the Ridge? How about some giant bluefin on the last day of the trip? That’s exactly what Capt. Brian Kiyohara and the American Angler found on their most recent long-range trip that returned to San Diego Monday morning, topped by a massive 363-pound Pacific bluefin tuna caught by angler Joe Hajduk. The fish is the biggest bluefin tuna weighed by the sport fleet this year and is one of the largest ever caught on rod and reel in California.

“good fortune, good people, and good weather.” – Capt. Kiyohara

Capt. Kiyohara reported that the trip, sponsored by Ken’s Custom Reel in Oceanside, went about as well as could be hoped for, from start to finish. He summed it up as a trip of “good fortune, good people, and good weather.” They began the trip down on the Ridge and had several days of fantastic wahoo fishing, along with some very nice scores of 25-40-pound yellowfin tuna.

Photo: Steve K On the scale at Point Loma Landing

Towards the end of the trip they made the decision to run back up the line and spend the last two days on the bluefin tuna grounds out around the Cortez Bank. The decision paid off, as they found several schools of bluefin of all sizes all around the area. They caught about 25 bluefin each day, ranging from around 15-20-pound up to about 120-pound, with most in the 50-60-pound range.

Although the bluefin action was excellent during the day, the real excitement would come at night. Shortly after dinner, they found a spot of jumbos on the meter and hung two big tuna on the same drift. Charles Shaffer landed a 250-pound cow bluefin to go with Hajduk’s 363-pound super cow.

The big bluefin tops a 345-pounder caught by Joe Roder aboard the Ranger 85 last year and matches a 363-pound bluefin taken by Jim Salter in 1983.

If you’re interested in booking a trip with the American Angler, Check out their trip schedule HERE.

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