2020 Royal Polaris HI's Tackle 10 Day Trip (Cliff's Notes...Full report to follow)

NaplesJohn

Never Forget 343
Jun 9, 2010
701
765
Port Aransas, TX, USA
Name
John
Boat
Wilderness Systems T-160...and just sold the boat!!!
For those that have read my reports from the previous 9 trips, you know they tend to go long. Biggest struggle is organizing photos, as I write the report "live" as it occurs. I've been busy since I got home, so thought I'd get the Cliff's note's version out, and will try to get "the rest of the story" out this week...

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Cliff Notes Version – Made it back on the Royal Polaris after a two year absence, our first trip on the RP was a June Hi's Tackle trip in 2017, as a change of venue following several trips on the Intrepid and the Excel, and a scheduling issue that necessitated a shorter and earlier trip. We had a good time, and knew we'd be back. In 2018 we rode our “normal" Phenix Rods 10 dayer, and for various reasons decided to try a new ride in 2019, choosing the Independence, had a fun trip, great food, and fully engaged crew, and played with the taxman at Guadalupe. Only downside was three person staterooms, and opted out of a return trip in 2020. One “rule" is bigger is better, leaving out the American Angler, Royal Star, Vagabond, Searcher, Polaris Supreme and so far the Rooster in the selection process. In sloppy weather at the Rocks we watched the size matters factor with the Excel and the Supreme in a side by side comparison…enough said. So decided a later trip might improve our prospects at the Lupe both on eager tuna and less eager GWS's, and locked in the RP for the 2020 adventure; though with Ensenada closed, no trip to the promised land. Definitely some strangeness associated with COVID from flying out from Texas, and the various protocols that had been implemented…biggest “social" impact was mealtime seating, that eliminated much of the fun social interaction around the table. The good news is we made it through the trip without an outbreak of the plague!

Seems like we fished everyday except departure day, as Roy opted to save the Bluefin for the backend of the trip. Day one and two we fished the beach, with pretty good yellows, and bass especially on day one, slower on day two. We busted a move to San Pablo, scratched a handful of yellowtail, but were run out of town by voracious schools of big bonita and barracuda…not what we were looking for! We initially left for the Rocks, though ended up heading down to the Ridge where we spent a couple days on the stock Ridge grade yellowfin, mostly 10-15#, with some standouts in the mid-twenties, along with one boomer stop on a kelp for “all you want" mahi as we worked our way down. Also made a few drifts for grouper, putting a few on the boat. Then it was time for a trip to Alijos, arrived around 2130, make bait real quick, and switch from bait rigs to heavy dropper loop gear…when the smoke cleared around 0230 there were 172 homeguard yellowtail from 30 to 45 pounds cooling in the RSW! I was very happy with a new Mak 16 paired with a Calstar 770XH and 100# braid and 100# topshot fishing these bruiser yellows! Spent the morning hunting for wahoo, putting a few aboard, and finished up in the shallows playing with Cabrilla, before starting towards the beach above Cedros where we worked our way up to Colonet before calling it a trip and our speedy offload at 0530 on the 11th.

Stay tuned for the "rest of the story"...see ya then!
 

hucklongfin

Deep release specialist
Jul 3, 2003
9,508
7,918
Mission Viejo
Name
MarkT
Boat
Blazer Bay 1860
Yeah, to say the least, the 2018 Excel crew for the Phenix 10 day wasn’t stellar 😫. But they’re back to their old standards! Chowder, Travis, Jake & Colin are gone 😢but Tim 😀is back and the new guys are good, you’d have no issues with any of them. Jake has retired from the galley (got a land job doing HVAC to be with the family) but I gained 7# with the new guys!

I got my YT at the rocks on a Mak 16/UC Centaur combo with 80# Over 100#.

Ya know, I know this is an abbreviated version but it has no food porn... is this really you?
 
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