Offshore 6/12/20 BFT from the 805 double post!

PENN

Charles Fike

Almost A Member
Apr 13, 2019
131
191
40
Newbury Park
Name
Charles Fike
Boat
24’ Skipjack Flybridge (Bella B)
So the title is a little misleading, but we started the trip in the 805.
My buddy SeaMurph already put up a post about our trip but I wanted to elaborate a little and share some numbers.
we left Thousand Oaks Thursday at 6pm and thanks to COVID there was no traffic. We got to Dana launch and started rigging all our lines. Set up the kite rod and reel, tied up the popper rig just in case. Tied on leaders, etc. Laid down in the boat and van to try and get some sleep.

A little back story is that like a lot of you guys on here I’ve been trying to catch a bluefin for some time now. Realistically, dreaming about it for 5 years but really trying for the last two. 4 years ago I decided to make the challenge a little harder and paralyzed my right arm. I haven’t let that stop me one bit.
Back to the report. We got down to the lower hidden bank and set up. The trip down was uneventful with 20 miles of skipping that damn rubber fish and figuring out the Boston kite to where it actually looked like we knew what we were doing.

Once in the zone we got out the Amazon helium tank and the Balloons from Billy K in the air. The flyer rig I got was a twisted shank J hook to the treble hook on 400lb mono. As we were deploying it for the first time ever it’s “walking” across the surface away from thE boat perfectly and I pause it just for a second to check it and it gets exploded on 30 feet from the boat. The rods in the holder and I just started cranking as fast as I could. I clipped in my harness and fought it for 15-20 minutes till it came unbuttoned. Recalled in an empty rig. No breaks, nothing failed, just a pulled hook and a broken heart.

It’s 230 now and we decided to send another out. Well after 3 hours of eye piercing starring at a frikin dead flying fish and letting line out, and reeeling line in to keep the presentation looking good I see the most amazing site ever of 3 blow ups in a row and everything starts diving for the surface and I don’t think I’ve ever turned a damn handle so fast. The fish is swimming straight at the boat.

To keep this as short as possible I had to hand off the fish for a few minutes to my buddy to adjust my harness and make some changes because I’ve never fought a fish of this caliber in a harness with one arm.
The fight lasted 45 minutes overall and we stuck 3 gaffs in her and brought her on board.
By far the most rewarding feeling I’ve ever had fishing.
A huge thanks to everyone on this site who puts out helpful info. The key is to gather it all and put a plan together to make it happen for ourselves.
Here’s a couple pics. She’s not the biggest out there by far. But my goal was one over 100. A few adjustments to my harness set up and the cow is next.

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woodfish330

I Should Upgrade My Account
  • Aug 14, 2012
    1,334
    2,662
    San Fransisco,CA USA
    Name
    John
    Boat
    Fishead
    Brother that report was great! Might I suggest getting rid of the ...."Over the shoulder boulder holder"..... and buying a bucket harness. So much easier on the angler and the upper back. Puts way more pressure on the fish.... and not the angler.... If used properly.

    The shoulder harness is fine for #50 fish..... but a back killer on big fish. Just a suggestion for future BIG FISH catching. Great post.... congrats. New harness for sure.
     
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    Charles Fike

    Almost A Member
    Apr 13, 2019
    131
    191
    40
    Newbury Park
    Name
    Charles Fike
    Boat
    24’ Skipjack Flybridge (Bella B)
    Brother that report was great! Might I suggest getting rid of the ...."Over the shoulder boulder holder"..... and buying a bucket harness. So much easier on the angler and the upper back. Puts way more pressure on the fish.... and not the angler.... If used properly.

    The shoulder harness is fine for #50 fish..... but a back killer on big fish. Just a suggestion for future BIG FISH catching. Great post.... congrats. New harness for sure.

    Thank you for the kind words.

    I was thinking of trying a different kind of harness. This is all new and I started using the shoulder harness because I can get it on quickly and run up and down to the fly bridge with it on. You are correct with the “back killer” statement. It was brutal.
     
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    Charles Fike

    Almost A Member
    Apr 13, 2019
    131
    191
    40
    Newbury Park
    Name
    Charles Fike
    Boat
    24’ Skipjack Flybridge (Bella B)
    Beautiful fish. And with one arm! Plus, if you were not a natural lefty and adapted to accommodate your injury, you get bragging rights for the year.

    Thanks man. I Was not a natural lefty, but now everyone who fishes my boat and uses my gear has to use lefty gear. Lol.
     
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    yakmandan

    Member
    May 30, 2007
    758
    917
    AZ.
    Name
    DAN
    Boat
    19ft Bayrunner Baja
    Nice job I admire your never give up attitude How did you paralyze your arm if you don't mind me asking
     
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    Charles Fike

    Almost A Member
    Apr 13, 2019
    131
    191
    40
    Newbury Park
    Name
    Charles Fike
    Boat
    24’ Skipjack Flybridge (Bella B)
    Nice job I admire your never give up attitude How did you paralyze your arm if you don't mind me asking

    It was a really bad motorcycle accident. I’m pretty fortunate to even be here. I fractured 4 vertebrae, cracked 4 ribs, shattered both clavicles, collapsed the arterial artery, and injured a bunch of nerves in the brachial plexus.
     
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