Most of the LA overnight boats are not too bad. Its the 1/2 day and 3/4 day cattle car crews that are the big problem.Just read your report after I booked my overnight trip out of LA. On the Freedom will see how it goes. Will post when I get back this coming Friday. Usually fish out of San Diego.
Went out on the Pursuit out of 22nd street on 9/5 for a full day trip. Good fishing, but overall a pretty shitty experience, wanted to share so others dont get sucked into the same BS. Trip started and went great the whole day up until the end. Captain was a super fishy young guy, we had what must have been a 15 year old deck hand, and one other more seasoned deckhand, decent cook and clean boat. Bait was already on board so we headed straight to the back side of catalina. My buddy signed up for jackpot and I skipped. We get to the back side of the island and we start fishing live bait and caught 2 really nice yellows, 20 and 25 lb. The larger one my buddy landed, during his fight the captain told my buddy to let him have his rod so my friend passes it over and the captain proceeds to fight it for a minute or 2 trying to get it out of the kelp and passed it back, took another lap and crossed another guys line, deckhand asked for pass back and they got it untangled and my buddy landed it shortly thereafter. Shortly after, my dad hooks a sealion, I grab his rod and kill the 30 yards of braid its taken ASAP with my dykes and I get a smart remark from the deckhand asking why I did that, and I should have buttoned down my drag to get all my line back. the tone was hilarious, homeboy was pretty miffed for some reason? I look at him and he apologizes with "great reaction though". Didnt see a reason to put the wear on the drag to try to break the mono so oh well, lesson learned? On top of the keeper fish, everyone went wide open on bonito early in the day, we dont care for them but kept a handful to feed to our dogs, Right before we pull anchor on stop one I pull in a nice keeper calico. Sweet!
Next stop, farther down backside of cat.... I pulled a smaller 10-12# yellow and from there they just turned into rats but i think end of day we ended with 10 Yellow Tail total. I pull another legal Calico. Captain is working his ass off to put kids on fish for a family and it was pretty cool to see. Got one of them on a yellow, hats off sir! This sport turns into a bonito hell fest again quick and I start tossing them back....Deckhands see's me doing this and i get lit up with another smart comment of "Hey what are you doing dont do that!!??" I reply, "Im not going to eat these so im not keeping them". Deckhand Replies, "Its ok, someone else will take them".... ok cool I guess ill keep catching them and keeping them for others although we are wide open on them every stop. Odd but whatever.
We make our way back around to the front and make a few more stops running at a snails place, current was pretty crazy in the spots we fished. Ended up limiting on Bonito so we started throwing them all back and called it a day. Crew starts their boat cleaning process and the more seasoned deckhand starts making his round for fish cleaning, he gets to us and we tell him we want to filet just the yellowtail and Bass and to leave the Bonito whole, and thats where it all went downhill.... Deckhand proceeds to tell us that we can have them gut it or filet it but wont leave it whole. We reply with, we dont need all those Bonito and were trying to throw them back, we are just going to toss them in an industrial grinder for our dogs. Deckhand replys with, well we bled each one of those fish and threw them in the cooler vs leaving them in the sacks which keeps the meat better and thats how they make their money, so he replys again, do we want it gut or filet'd..... . This guy is laying it on thick and has no shame in his game. I step in and say look, we arent going to have those touched so leave them whole or you can keep all of them and he storms off in a fury. ok all good.
We get to jackpot weigh in, My buddies fish is the clear winner next to the other non crews caught fish, my buddy celebrates and 2 mins later they call him over and essentially told him hey we cant actually give you jackpot because we helped you fight the fish. My buddy has been on a boat 3 times max and doesnt really know the ins and outs of Jackpot rules nor did we cover them so at this point he is pretty pissed and they keep arguing back and forth. The boat is pretty silent as they go back and forth and deckhand starts to throw some more personal jabs at my buddy and then storms off with the filet knife to go back to work in the customer service industry. I try to cool down my friend and tell him its all good not the end of the world, Deckhand comes back up to try and reason again and my buddy is heated and is not understanding why he was asked to hand over his rod twice and for that he loses jackpot. Deckhand gets frustrated and replies with "bro why are you being such a chick" and all verbal hell breaks lose again.... again deckhand storms off back to the board. my buddy exchanging words the whole time............ Chill dude, its a jackpot....
Captain comes down and tries to put out the flame, they both have a civilized convo and the captain essentially word for word says "that fish was in the kelp and there is no way you were going to land it if we didnt help.... I step in at that bullshit remark and call him out. Sure they helped but that was a cocky ass assumption that we couldnt fish and luck isnt involved. They essentially stalemate out and the captain says you guys can just not ride on this boat again, my buddy and I are blown away at the professionalism and customer service. The jackpot no one cared about, the douchy remarks were the offenders here, but it got better.
We get back into the breakwall and we all start squaring up and low and behold we are being forced to pay this fish cleaning charge per person for Bonito that we didnt want or need. Hell i was trying to throw them back and got stopped all so they could rake in cash at the end of the stop. Hilarious system they have as even the captain comes over the loud speaker and will not park until everyone pays up on that filet money.
Long story short, we wont be going back and I hope this can educate others on how to avoid a shitty experience on the water. Back to SD we go. Oh and I never did get any of my calico meat. Thanks Pursuit!
Good to hear you had a positive experience out there, i went on it twice, the second time i was assuming maybe they were having a bad day the first time, but it was the same the next. Maybe they changed up some of the crew, good on em if they did.I was on the monte carlo 1/2 day about 5 months ago with my 10 yr old for his birthday. I went on a charter to give money to the boats because of the COVID closure. The deckhands were awesome and very helpful. We were catching tons of cudas but the tangles werent too bad because of COVID limited load. The deckhands were on it and we had a great time. We even released a ton and only kept some to give away to other unlucky fisherman.
He was in the jackpot even though I and the crew helped. Nobody gave him any shit. The way it should be on a boat IMO
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Yeah thx for the recommendation, i moved to diego like 2 yrs ago so im all about these boats down here!Oh I agree some of these guys are dickheads, and I rarely go on charter because of this. But we got lucky that day. Ive been on bad trips on other boats for sure. Its not good to have shit customer service anywhere, but with the boats loaded to the max they can get away with it unfortunately.
Try the New Del Mar in MDR. Those guys are always cool IMO
Just read your report after I booked my overnight trip out of LA. On the Freedom will see how it goes. Will post when I get back this coming Friday. Usually fish out of San Diego.
Interesting - I found Toronado to be very good and fair.Hi
Went on the Toronado end of last month........not a good experience, boat was, booked for 28 but had 31 guys fishing, low and behold friends of the crew, boat caught 30 YFT but fish report has 21 anglers not 31.......all to fishy, I usually fish SD, will not fish LA boats again :-( Boat, owner, skipper and cook were great the rest of the crew not so good. A few guys caught over the limit and the extra fish went to the crew and not the skunked anglers.
Anyway you live and learn.......
The Toronado is ok it used to the shit I been riding that boat for 30 plus years , I went out a month ago and there was 2 very young deck hands and one was was lazy as shit it took 5 minutes to get a chum line going and Captain had to ask 3 time in row each time for it . Best Sporty Boat around 22nd ST FREEDOM SPORT FISHING Hands down old school style , bad ass crew and Tino the Main Captain is Old School Pro from all ways not only does he catch the fish but he works hard on the deck , harder then must Deck hands I seen all year on my 8 trips! He is soild I love fishing with him and on the Freedom for 1-2 day trips. We just smashed 62 - 30 -40 pound yellowtail on 9/6/20 in about 3 hours had the fish boiling all around us the whole time left the fish biting and boiling is was hard but after 6 my arms didn't work anymore!!!Interesting - I found Toronado to be very good and fair.
When I won jackpot on toronado I was offered free pass which I took and it was honored.
Toronado is awesome boat with great captain and crew.
Triton has rsw and some of the bigger boats do tooI just wish they'd install RSW's on all the LA boats. Nothing like having a record hot weekend turn your catch from sashimi grade fish into sub-par fish you might throw on the grill due to sitting all day baking in a sack. I think the Freedom is the only LA boat that has a RSW. i could be wrong