February 22, 2011 Lahaina Harbor, Maui


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Dec 9, 2008
Lahaina, Hawaii, USA
Start Me Up Sportfishing
Aloha from Lahaina Harbor, Maui. We’re still catching mahi on the leeward side of Maui, but a variety of other fish have joined the mix. Shibis, more commonly known as either yellowfin or bigeye tuna, have been popping up on the troll and billfish bites are not an uncommon occurrence. The striped marlin continue to provide a lot of the bites but shortbill spearfish are becoming pretty abundant as well. Some blue marlin have also made appearances but have not allowed themselves to be caught. With the fishing as good as it is right now, the coming days should be pretty exciting. If anyone wants to find out what the bite has been like on Maui before another report goes up, call Deli in Start Me Up’s booth at Lahaina Harbor at 808-667-7879 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. or email [email protected]. Anyways, pictures speak louder than words, so here are some photographs showing part of the catch from the past several days.

Redel Keleher and his wife Rose caught a nice mahi on an afternoon trip. Harlan and Lori Wasvack also caught a nice mahi on the same trip. Both fish were caught on lures near sweetheart rock.

Randal Beams, a returning Start Me Up angler, caught a mahi while trolling off the Lanai lighthouse.

These Nebraska cornhuskers were featured in our last post with three mahis and two shibis. They decided to go out again, this time in the afternoon, and landed two mahis, one of which was a nice bull. With that kind of success rate, these guys will be back to go fishing again.

John Meeker, Vern Nelson, and Richard Crowe did Start Me Up’s early trip. They went to JJ buoy behind Kahoolawe, where they were able to bait these mahis.

Jim Erickson, Joanna Rotecka, and Bill and Cathy Carpenter got some bites just south of the Lanai lighthouse. They ended up boating a mahi and successfully caught and released a striped marlin.

Dave Connolly, John Kingston, and Jeff and Ben Helesic caught a nice bull mahi as well as a cow mahi while trolling at the Lanai lighthouse. The lighthouse was definitely the hot area for the day.

James Keller and Eldon Lindstrom got in on the late afternoon bite. They each caught a mahi while trolling in the vicinity of Kamaiki point on Lanai. Why get up early for the sunrise bite when the sunset bite can be just as productive?

Austin Enns fished with his brother Abram and his dad James. They had some action and missed a bunch of fish, but thanks to this mahi they didn’t come home empty-handed.

Danny Messina spent some time on the water with her family and caught a mahi. She described her day as a fun one.

The Roaldson group found some fish on the backside of Kahoolawe. The fish were active and they ended up with four mahis, including two nice ones.

Jay Osborne saved the morning when he boated this mahi. All of the other bites on the boat were striped marlin that didn’t stick. That’s just how it goes on the days when the hooks seem to be made of rubber. The fact that marlin have hard, bony mouths doesn’t make things any easier.

Jordan Beard took advantage of his marlin bite and caught a striped marlin. In addition, Gina Albanese and Jacque Cherubina each caught a mahi. The action was fast and furious for this group but they were not immune to the theme of the day. All of the other fish that found their way into the spread and bit a lure somehow managed to miss the hooks.

Paul Novacek celebrated his new marriage with a fishing trip. Although the trip was a short one, Paul was out on the water long enough to come across a mahi and a small tuna.

Denise and Steve Skaglund trolled the 150 fathom ledge off Lanai. They went two for two and brought these mahis back to the harbor.

Elaine Elmore was put to work when this nice shortbill spearfish attacked the short rigger lure near the lighthouse on the backside of Lanai. The shortbill spearfish is the rarest marlin species in the world and is found mostly in Hawaii, making Hawaii a popular destination for anglers in pursuit of the billfish slam. Congratulations to Elaine on her extraordinary catch.

George Lollathin was one excited boy when he landed this mahi. George took home a mahi flag as a souvenir to remind him of his exciting experience. Way to go George!

John Hartley came up with a big aku while working a porpoise pile off the Lanai lighthouse. Hayden Playter also picked up a consolation mahi right after missing a striped marlin.

Dean Linn from down under in Victoria, Australia was pumped after boating his mahi just inside LA buoy. Good going mate!

Greg Tunks and his wife, also visiting from Australia, snagged a mahi just outside LA buoy. The inside buoys appear to be holding some fish at the moment.

This shortbill spearfish was part of double strike that occurred east of Lanai. Bruce Thiel did a great job and landed this fish, but the other one pulled hooks and got away. Unfortunately, that’s just how billfishing goes sometimes.

Masa Hatorri, the head sushi chef at a local restaurant, planned to make sushi for some friends out of this uku, or grey snapper. Other bottom fishing action included nabeta and papio, which are excellent in the frying pan.

The McGrath group went one for two on shortbill spearfish and picked up a mahi as well. The real excitement came, however, when they had a big bite in the channel between Lanai and Kahoolawe and were able to fight a blue marlin for a while. With that many billfish bites, the McGrath party had a very exhilarating trip.

Mark Laplante, Ken Crocker, and Mark and Ross Hanson got the job done with two mahis and a rainbow runner, sometimes referred to as the Hawaiian salmon. The guys said that they had a great trip.

Albert Kemper was able to pose for a picture with his mahi, but he was not the only angler that caught fish. Don Johnson caught and released an estimated 40 lb. shortbill spearfish and George Ochs caught and released a kaku, or barracuda. Releasing shortbill spearfish and kaku is always nice when there is already a mahi in the fish bag.

Arnom Reithers and Chuck and Jill Sadler had a successful four hour afternoon trip. They landed two shibis on a double bite and topped that off with a mahi.

Thanks for checking out another Start Me Up fishing report. As can be seen in the photos, the fishing has been relatively productive lately. With any luck, the fishing will continue to improve and the next report will contain even more great catches. For more information on the fishing, remember to call Deli at 808-667-7879 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. or email [email protected] so that he can fill you in. I actually just got word that 2010 Lahaina Harbor captain of the year, Start Me Up's Captain Steve Cravens, is hooked up to a 500 plus lb. blue marlin. Hopefully he'll hang on to it and get it to the boat. Until next time, tight lines.


Captain Jeff Illingworth

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Nov 9, 2005