08/19 - Imperial Beach - Firecracker YT

SaltH20Angler

I'm not superstitious... cuz it's bad luck.
Aug 6, 2016
1,125
1,477
SoCal - Corona
Name
Christopher
Boat
I know a couple guys...
After posting on the Boat Ho/Ride Swap forum a few months ago, I was invited to fish with Big-T and his son on his 21' Tribute center console on Father's Day. Although we didn't come home with anything special that day (other than a great day on the water), we had fun catching short calicos and cudas. Fast forward a couple of months and Big-T and I decided to give it another try this past Saturday. I made the drive from Corona to El Cajon and met his friendly pit bull at his house at 6am. Spent a minute caching up before hooking up the boat and making our way down to Dana Landing in Mission Bay. We launched with no issues, and headed to the bait dock. Line was pretty short seeing how it was a Saturday and picked up a half scoop of the best bait I have had all summer. Perfect 5" very lively dines with a nice coat of slime and almost no scales missing. I had a pretty good feeling about the day ahead after pulling away from the bait dock.

Big-T just picked up a new (to him) color fish finder and we both were petty excited to give it a go. The fish finder was tested at home the prior week and everything was looking good. Unfortunately, before we got out of the harbor, the fish finder started to flicker and eventually we lost power to it probably due to a loose wire or the battery being too weak to power it. Once we lost the fish finder, I think we both accepted that we were going to go for a boat ride and it would be unlikely that we would have the results we hoped for. Big-T was watching the fleet reports the prior week and decided our best bet would be to go fish for the firecracker Yellowtail holding outside of Imperial Beach. We headed south from Mission Bay and trolled a deep diver mackerel colored rapala for nothing. As we neared IB, we saw about 3 sporties anchored up with a nice chum line and a decent amount of terns working he area. We both figured the terns were picking off the dines the sporties were chumming with and didn't think much of it as we kept our distance out of respect for the anchored boats.

At 11am or so, we were set up about 400 yards downwind of the chum line and began chumming some of the lively dines ourselves. In goes my line with a #1 hook to 30# mono to 40# braid with a fly-lined dine. Big-T did the same and in the short period of downtime he started throwing a blue and white surface iron. I wasn't in the water more than 5 minutes when I had my first hookup and then Big-T was bit too, we high fived as we had a double hookup within 5 minutes. Somehow Big-T's fish came unbuttoned from the treble hook within a minute or two, but I was able to bring mine to gaff. Woo Hoo!! The skunk was off... We snapped a quick photo, bled the fish and put it on ice in the fish hold. A few minutes later we realized we drifted pretty far and Big-T said let's reset and before he finished that sentence he was bit again. The same process followed... brought the fish to gaff, bled it, and put it in the fish hold on ice. A few minutes later, we decide that we should reset because we drifted even further away. We left the fly lines in and decided to slow troll back to the initial spot. Not more than a minute later, he was bit again, then I was and we had another double going. I farmed mine and Big-T brought his to gaff.

Once again, we wanted to reset back to our initial spot, we started the slow troll, then were bit again. Big-T and I both identified the pattern of getting bent every time we decided to reset, so we started saying we were going to reset even when we had no intention of doing so. That was working because we continued to hook up doubles and the pattern of one of us farming a fish continued on. Funny how its no big deal to lose one when you have a couple of nice fish on ice in the hold. During this time, I was able to catch a bonito on the iron and a close to legal barracuda on the fly-line (Trifecta Baby!!). I released them both because YT Hamichi was already on the menu. By 1pm, we had 9 smaller YT on ice. We knew they weren't big and didn't want to split hairs to find out how many were bigger than 24", so we decided our limit was 5 each of this firecracker size. At about 1pm, I get bit really good and fight it for about 5 minutes before getting bit off. I could tell that this was the type of fish I would have thought about for a month, but like I said earlier, I handled the loss pretty well because we had a bunch of nice fish on ice. Not too long afterwards it slowed down and we fished a couple of huge kelp patties with no-one home before we called it a day.

Overall, this was the best day I had fishing over the whole summer and to think we did it without a fish finder. Thanks to Big-T for taking a chance on me and inviting me to fish with him. We trailered the boat with no issues and once back at his house, we put everything away and washed the boat. I stopped by the store for more ice before heading back to Corona. My wife was super happy when she saw the Yellowtail and knew sushi was on the menu. Spent a couple of hours filleting and trimming the fish, and put them in the deep freezer for the night. I heard that it was good to freeze the fish before eating it raw to kill parasites, but don't know how true that is. Just a FYI... it doesn't seem to have any negative effect on the flavor. Had all we could eat sushi Sunday afternoon with a good buddy of mine (Jose), my daughter, and my wife. While I know the grade of YT could have been bigger, I am so thankful to Big-T and to Mother Nature for this wonderful day of fishing.
Get out there boys (and girls)!!

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tmitch760

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 6, 2008
238
177
Santee
Name
T.J.
Boat
Triumph 21 cc
Nice report Chris.. Too bad I had to work. Heard you guys were bit almost all day. That food makes me hungry and I just ate!. lol
 
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the SLIDER

https://multimediabylj.com
Jun 11, 2015
1,862
4,051
Dana Point
Name
L J
Boat
arima - the SLIDER
1374049_fdf0960c7ab8b8c5410a8a9680ec1c17.jpg


Now where talking. Looks soooo tasty!

Saw some pictures the other day of some chunks of fish in a dirty soup bowl, nasty! Not this boy.
 
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P

Paddyman1

:appl:

I'd say a tad better than "firecracker". I've seen smaller carckers kept.

Those friggin rolls look awesome! Mine never turn out that nice, partially because I'm Danish and we prefer our fish rotting in a can.
 

SaltH20Angler

I'm not superstitious... cuz it's bad luck.
Aug 6, 2016
1,125
1,477
SoCal - Corona
Name
Christopher
Boat
I know a couple guys...
:appl:

I'd say a tad better than "firecracker". I've seen smaller crackers kept.

Those friggin rolls look awesome! Mine never turn out that nice, partially because I'm Danish and we prefer our fish rotting in a can.
Thanks man! They were a lot of fun to catch!
 

Mojo1

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Apr 24, 2015
356
367
Ca
Name
None
Boat
None
After posting on the Boat Ho/Ride Swap forum a few months ago, I was invited to fish with Big-T and his son on his 21' Tribute center console on Father's Day. Although we didn't come home with anything special that day (other than a great day on the water), we had fun catching short calicos and cudas. Fast forward a couple of months and Big-T and I decided to give it another try this past Saturday. I made the drive from Corona to El Cajon and met his friendly pit bull at his house at 6am. Spent a minute caching up before hooking up the boat and making our way down to Dana Landing in Mission Bay. We launched with no issues, and headed to the bait dock. Line was pretty short seeing how it was a Saturday and picked up a half scoop of the best bait I have had all summer. Perfect 5" very lively dines with a nice coat of slime and almost no scales missing. I had a pretty good feeling about the day ahead after pulling away from the bait dock.

Big-T just picked up a new (to him) color fish finder and we both were petty excited to give it a go. The fish finder was tested at home the prior week and everything was looking good. Unfortunately, before we got out of the harbor, the fish finder started to flicker and eventually we lost power to it probably due to a loose wire or the battery being too weak to power it. Once we lost the fish finder, I think we both accepted that we were going to go for a boat ride and it would be unlikely that we would have the results we hoped for. Big-T was watching the fleet reports the prior week and decided our best bet would be to go fish for the firecracker Yellowtail holding outside of Imperial Beach. We headed south from Mission Bay and trolled a deep diver mackerel colored rapala for nothing. As we neared IB, we saw about 3 sporties anchored up with a nice chum line and a decent amount of terns working he area. We both figured the terns were picking off the dines the sporties were chumming with and didn't think much of it as we kept our distance out of respect for the anchored boats.

At 11am or so, we were set up about 400 yards downwind of the chum line and began chumming some of the lively dines ourselves. In goes my line with a #1 hook to 30# mono to 40# braid with a fly-lined dine. Big-T did the same and in the short period of downtime he started throwing a blue and white surface iron. I wasn't in the water more than 5 minutes when I had my first hookup and then Big-T was bit too, we high fived as we had a double hookup within 5 minutes. Somehow Big-T's fish came unbuttoned from the treble hook within a minute or two, but I was able to bring mine to gaff. Woo Hoo!! The skunk was off... We snapped a quick photo, bled the fish and put it on ice in the fish hold. A few minutes later we realized we drifted pretty far and Big-T said let's reset and before he finished that sentence he was bit again. The same process followed... brought the fish to gaff, bled it, and put it in the fish hold on ice. A few minutes later, we decide that we should reset because we drifted even further away. We left the fly lines in and decided to slow troll back to the initial spot. Not more than a minute later, he was bit again, then I was and we had another double going. I farmed mine and Big-T brought his to gaff.

Once again, we wanted to reset back to our initial spot, we started the slow troll, then were bit again. Big-T and I both identified the pattern of getting bent every time we decided to reset, so we started saying we were going to reset even when we had no intention of doing so. That was working because we continued to hook up doubles and the pattern of one of us farming a fish continued on. Funny how its no big deal to lose one when you have a couple of nice fish on ice in the hold. During this time, I was able to catch a bonito on the iron and a close to legal barracuda on the fly-line (Trifecta Baby!!). I released them both because YT Hamichi was already on the menu. By 1pm, we had 9 smaller YT on ice. We knew they weren't big and didn't want to split hairs to find out how many were bigger than 24", so we decided our limit was 5 each of this firecracker size. At about 1pm, I get bit really good and fight it for about 5 minutes before getting bit off. I could tell that this was the type of fish I would have thought about for a month, but like I said earlier, I handled the loss pretty well because we had a bunch of nice fish on ice. Not too long afterwards it slowed down and we fished a couple of huge kelp patties with no-one home before we called it a day.

Overall, this was the best day I had fishing over the whole summer and to think we did it without a fish finder. Thanks to Big-T for taking a chance on me and inviting me to fish with him. We trailered the boat with no issues and once back at his house, we put everything away and washed the boat. I stopped by the store for more ice before heading back to Corona. My wife was super happy when she saw the Yellowtail and knew sushi was on the menu. Spent a couple of hours filleting and trimming the fish, and put them in the deep freezer for the night. I heard that it was good to freeze the fish before eating it raw to kill parasites, but don't know how true that is. Just a FYI... it doesn't seem to have any negative effect on the flavor. Had all we could eat sushi Sunday afternoon with a good buddy of mine (Jose), my daughter, and my wife. While I know the grade of YT could have been bigger, I am so thankful to Big-T and to Mother Nature for this wonderful day of fishing.
Get out there boys (and girls)!!

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Non that's some special preparation of fresh fish. You obviously know how to live!
 
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drewmeister_sd

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jul 29, 2006
177
109
53
point loma
Name
andrew
Boat
bendo
Good job catching, and yes, the sushi looks delicious.

Re freezing- A fish monger friend told me the same thing. He said that that freezing fish is standard in the restaurant industry, including sushi places.
 
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Reel hip

Meet my "Well known Member"
Feb 19, 2008
4,927
1,576
60
San Diego
Name
Doug
Boat
25ft Skipjack fly
Good catching. The food looks great! :appl:

That is how it's done right there!
 
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SaltH20Angler

I'm not superstitious... cuz it's bad luck.
Aug 6, 2016
1,125
1,477
SoCal - Corona
Name
Christopher
Boat
I know a couple guys...
Re freezing- A fish monger friend told me the same thing. He said that that freezing fish is standard in the restaurant industry, including sushi places.
Good to know man. I've eaten plenty of raw fish on the boat, but every time I do, I accept that I might have a rumblin-tumblin-bubblin in my gut 20 minutes later. Especially when you see the youtube videos of guys plucking worms from filleted fish meat. Lucky for me, it hasn't happened yet. Haha! Does anyone know how long until the frozen meat is no longer good tastin for sushi. I imagine after a week or two it might be a good idea to cook it.