Catalina report 6/11 to 6/13 – From Barny to Bad Ass and Back Again

mhanson59hb

Fear No Fish
Apr 22, 2013
1,644
2,441
113
Huntington Beach
Name
Mike
Boat
2008 Trophy 1802 "Mako My Day"
I took my son Sean fishing to Catalina for a few days.

Short version: Yellowtail from 1 to 29 pounds, lost a bigger one, fin bait was best, water temps to 69+ degrees, back side washed out from the swell, but the weather was nice.

Novel: We got a late start Monday morning (my fault) and things went bad for me right away. I almost tripped while hooking up the boat to the truck, and then I did eat it while rinsing the truck and trailer after launching. My shin still hurts! At this point I am already in “Barny” mode. Great.

We picked up a half scoop of big sardines and a quarter scoop of small squid from Nacho. There were some decent size ones mixed in! A big west swell crossed with what seemed like wind swells from several directions escorted us across the channel. We headed straight for the back side east, where the Pursuit, Fury and about 10 private boats are working the Vs. What ever bite there was seemed over and most of the boats were off to greener pastures.

I was metering some good marks, so we stuck it out slow trolling the big ‘dines. Right at noon, I get absolutely smoked on my 30# outfit. After 10 minutes of getting my ass handed to me, I see some color and it’s a HUGE yellowtail. As Sean is grabbing the gaff, the hook pulls with the fish just out of range. Mission Barny complete. Man, that one hurt. Bad.

Three hours go slowly by and then I get ripped again in almost exactly the same spot at the Palisades. I was pumped up, so I had this one to color in 7 minutes. Again, it was a big yellow, but not nearly the size of the first one. Sean gets a perfect gaff shot and 29 pounds/41 inch fork length worth of redemption goes in the kill bag! I am super stoked, but still thinking about the first fish that was probably pushing 40 pounds.

By 5 pm the whole back side was washed out from the big swell, so we got a mooring in Avalon for the night. We had a blast whacking calicos on the small squid until dark.

Tuesday morning there were only about 10 sardines left in the tank and we only made a few small Spanish mackerel. This time we stayed on the front side and started between the MLPAs, where cleaner water was found. As we’re slow trolling at Red Rock, some guy running rapalas comes charging by about 25 feet from us. Sean hooks up, so I turn out to deeper water and stop the boat. Mr Rapala is still getting closer, and then proceeds to tell me he thinks we hooked a sea lion. I wave him off and Sean boats an 8-pound yellow. Then this guy has the nerve to ask me what we are using while sitting 10 feet from us.

Anchoring up at Rippers for lunch and a quick nap recharged our batteries, so the mission was now to find some bait. The kelp is really coming back in at Parsons, where I located a big school of mixed smelt and Spanish and quickly put about 40 pieces in the tank.

At Empire, Sean released a yellow that was about 1 pound, and I did the same for a 2-pound bonito. Sean also nailed a nice cuda on an SP Minnow and hooked a larger yellow that did a big run before coming unbuttoned. Those lures have some great action. Just after that, Sean’s troller goes off and he lands a 13-pound yellow. The kid is on a roll! That night we moored up at the Isthmus.

Wednesday morning found us back at Empire, and it was my turn to get zinged again on a trolled smelt. I set the hook hard, and feel the fish pop off. The curly end of the line told the sad story – my knot was not good. Hello Barny my old friend, you’re back.

The way back to the barn (how appropriate) was smooth as glass, so that was something. Water temps at the island were from 64 – 69.4. The weather was beautiful.

What worked: Fin bait and SP Minnows

What did not work: Squid (except for calicos), Rapalas and untested knots.

Hope this report will help others this weekend!

Dad with 29 pound yellowtail:
DSCN1640.JPG

Another shot:
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Sean with his 8 pound sea lion - I mean yellowtail
DSCN1642.JPG


And his 13 pound yellow
DSCN1647.JPG


3 Amigos
DSCN1648.JPG


DSCN1639.JPG
 

El Chiva

Well-Known "Member"
May 23, 2010
214
261
63
Hb, ca
Name
Nomad
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Parker 2120 Nomad
Nice work.

Was the Mountain Dew can trailing one of the yellows? I ask because in “yellowtail culture” a trailing Mountain Dew can means “just married.” As you my already know...a decafeineted Pepsi means.....recently divorced.
 
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tuner

pysgotwyr
May 24, 2006
1,264
783
113
Huntington Beach
Name
Steve
Boat
260 Mackinaw
Great report Mike! Barney is kinda harsh, but I do think Murphy was hanging out a bit with you :D
 
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RyanErb

Love to fish!
Aug 7, 2012
1,601
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113
All over the 805
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Ryan
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OnTheWater
Mike, great report as always!

I was laughing through all the Barney moments, good to see you see all the humor in it all! That is what is important! Sometimes I take fishing too seriously!

Glad you guys got on some nice fish!
 
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Ryan_J

Member
Apr 5, 2013
286
134
43
Long Beach, CA
Name
Ryan
Boat
Jupiter 31 - twin Yamaha F300's
Mike - another great report! Always love seeing when you post em, they are a great read!!

Do you mix your squid and macks in the same tank? I'm heading out tomorrow morning and thinking of doing that. Not sure if the macks are big enough that the squid will not kill em?
 
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mhanson59hb

Fear No Fish
Apr 22, 2013
1,644
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113
Huntington Beach
Name
Mike
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2008 Trophy 1802 "Mako My Day"
Mike - another great report! Always love seeing when you post em, they are a great read!!

Do you mix your squid and macks in the same tank? I'm heading out tomorrow morning and thinking of doing that. Not sure if the macks are big enough that the squid will not kill em?
Thanks! Yeah, I mix squid and macks. It's not ideal, but I only have one tank. And the squid don't ever eat ALL the fin bait. :D
 
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mhanson59hb

Fear No Fish
Apr 22, 2013
1,644
2,441
113
Huntington Beach
Name
Mike
Boat
2008 Trophy 1802 "Mako My Day"
Sorry about that. It ended up being a big Leopard shark. You never told me what you were using? :D

Great report, and always a good read.
LOL.There is no way in hell that guy was you! If so, I take back every like I have ever given you, especially since I have seen several posts from you ripping guys who do this. :D

And yes I did tell the guy what we were using because I am a nice guy and I want others to catch fish, but not how we were rigging the dines for trolling. It makes all the difference. :p:
 
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the SLIDER

https://multimediabylj.com
Jun 11, 2015
1,527
2,993
113
Dana Point
Name
L J
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arima - the SLIDER
After 10 minutes of getting my ass handed to me, I see some color and it’s a HUGE yellowtail. As Sean is grabbing the gaff, the hook pulls with the fish just out of range. Mission Barny complete. Man, that one hurt. Bad. . . . but still thinking about the first fish that was probably pushing 40 pounds.
Dam Kinison. Sorry.

Hey I had been hearing about this upcoming trip for a short while. I thought I was going to live vicariously through you . . . you let me down.

Now I have to get out there this weekend and let myself down.

Congratulations on an excellent trip!
 
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mhanson59hb

Fear No Fish
Apr 22, 2013
1,644
2,441
113
Huntington Beach
Name
Mike
Boat
2008 Trophy 1802 "Mako My Day"
Dam Kinison. Sorry.

Hey I had been hearing about this upcoming trip for a short while. I thought I was going to live vicariously through you . . . you let me down.

Now I have to get out there this weekend and let myself down.

Congratulations on an excellent trip!
Thanks LJ, it's brutal to lose a fish like that so close, but it happens to everyone who targets big fish. However, I consider myself very lucky:

1) Most people will never even get a look at a beautiful trophy class fish and feel the kind of power these gamesters possess.

2) I have a son who still wants to spend time with me, and is learning everything I can teach him. He is going to out-fish us all one day. He already has on many occasions.

3) We live, work and fish in my opinion the best state in the best country in the world. To me, Catalina is paradise on Earth.

4) It makes it easier to be magnanimous when a 29-pounder comes on board as the consolation prize. :D

Good luck on your next outing, my friend! I look forward to your report.

PS: the bigger models were definitely on the back side!
 

Hardcor

Hardcore
Jun 8, 2014
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Hardcore
LOL.There is no way in hell that guy was you! If so, I take back every like I have ever given you, especially since I have seen several posts from you ripping guys who do this. :D

And yes I did tell the guy what we were using because I am a nice guy and I want others to catch fish, but not how we were rigging the dines for trolling. It makes all the difference. :p:
It was him. Was he picking his ass at the same time ? It was him. He PM's me for numbers then shits on me on this board. Did he give a report ?

Great report Mike. I really like your reports when you fish with your son.That yellow you're holding is a toad. I can tell you know that Island and you always make a good time out of it. I hope you didn't lose Mr Scratchy

1409124_0fb1bfc90c845f30a472762fc34c014f.jpg
 

mhanson59hb

Fear No Fish
Apr 22, 2013
1,644
2,441
113
Huntington Beach
Name
Mike
Boat
2008 Trophy 1802 "Mako My Day"
Great report Mike. I really like your reports when you fish with your son.That yellow you're holding is a toad. I can tell you know that Island and you always make a good time out of it. I hope you didn't lose Mr Scratchy
Thanks Corey, I appreciate the kind words.

My dad and uncle had a boat and mooring in Avalon for many years, and I was lucky enough to spend a few entire summers there. I had jobs at Chets Hardware, Erics on the pier and the Mardi Gras Arcade. When I was 19 I was there for 5 months straight! It's a special, special place.

And don't worry, Mr Scratchy is still residing in an honored place in my tackle box! :D
 
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flyliner

@thereelflyliner
Aug 19, 2007
1,892
2,601
113
Santa Monica
Name
Jonathan
Boat
31' Cabo Express
That's so awesome!!! Great stuff as always.

However - keep the slow trolling big live smelt trick on the DL (this is a local Catalina secret!)......just kidding.....lol.