Fishing the Yamashomaru in Chiba, Japan

Discussion in 'Anywhere Fishing Reports' started by JoshInSD, Jun 15, 2017.

  1. JoshInSD

    JoshInSD Well-Known "Member"

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    Having been to Japan 15+ times over the years I have never fished before out here. So I decided this was the time! After doing some research and narrowing down the choices I was able to organize a half day (5am to 12pm) trip targeting Hiramasa (Yellowtail) out of Ohara Port, Chiba, Japan on the Yamashomaru: https://m.facebook.com/yamashomaru/ Owner/captain Toru-San and his wife are so gracious and world class anglers, so this was going to be a real honor to spend time with them. They are pioneers for Yellowtail (AKA Hiramasa, Kingfish, Hamachi) fishing in Japan.

    Since the boat departure time was so early and trains stop shortly after midnight, and being that Tokyo is 2+ hours away from the port, boat owners Toru-San and his wife Hana invited me to come stay at their home the night before. Turns out they have a great studio out back which is next to their fishing storage "room." It's really more like a store, as they are both world renowned for their Kingfish/Hiramasa fishing and are sponsored by Shimano. The photos below are of their personal equipment! I was like a kid in a candy store except I couldn't eat anything. There is also a photo of the world record Kingfish (Yellowtail) which is over 100 pounds. The thing is huge!! Hana also has the women's Japan record for largest Kingfish, over 50 pounds (http://ameblo.jp/yamashomaru/entry-12283294662.html). They are both so in love with catching Kingfish it takes them around the world. They're in some magazines as well (see below). The rest of my story is in photos below.

    IMG_0137.JPG IMG_0138.JPG
    Boat brochure IMG_0139.JPG
    Lifesize, its huge! Video of the catch of this monster!
    IMG_0140.JPG
    This is the "smaller" one IMG_0141.JPG IMG_0144.JPG
    Personal collection
    IMG_0145.JPG
    Stella's everywhere IMG_0148.JPG
    The guest house IMG_0166.JPG
    The Yamashomaru. Unlike San Diego boats, this one is all lure, no live bait. Also you get an assigned space to fish from and don't move around Toru-San was kind enough to give me the starboard stern Corner to maneuver IMG_0171.JPG
    The men's room is a urinal behind a door IMG_0178.JPG
    Captain and owner IMG_0179.JPG
    Captain is a big advocate of catch and release, especially during spawning season. No gaffs in this boat all nets. He did let me keep my 22 pounder though!! IMG_0181.JPG IMG_0186.JPG
    A small one to start first stop, first fish on the boat. IMG_0189.JPG IMG_0191.JPG Hana weighing my bigger one IMG_0195.JPG
    Sure. You can hold my fish! IMG_0199.JPG
    Cutting the gill arch between the 2nd and 3rd plate IMG_0201.JPG
    Fully bleeding before spiking and Ike-jime



    IMG_0211.JPG IMG_0217.JPG
    She's quite the angler as well IMG_0222.JPG IMG_0269.JPG IMG_0244.JPG
    All spinning rods and lots of Stella's IMG_0251.JPG IMG_0261.JPG
    Packed for the 2 hour train ride home IMG_0256.JPG
    Dropped off at friend's restaurant so we can eat in a day or two. IMG_0206.JPG
    Don't go inside the cabin if you're sick IMG_0247.JPG New Zealand. Toru and Hana
    IMG_0157.JPG IMG_0159.JPG IMG_7791.JPG IMG_7792.JPG IMG_7796.JPG

    IMG_0155.JPG IMG_0173.JPG
    Pencils were the hot ticket.
    IMG_0207.JPG
    Everyone brings their own depth finder for vertical jigging IMG_0232.PNG IMG_0243.JPG
    Step off the boat and the wash is right there along with the parking area super convenient IMG_0267.JPG
    Night before dinner with captain and Hana
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2017
  2. gved823

    gved823 Member

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    Very cool report. Enjoyed the details. Thank you for sharing & taking the time to post
     
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  3. watersdeep

    watersdeep I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    You pretty much covered it. looks like fun. very cool.
     
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  4. Chico Tan

    Chico Tan Member

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    That is awesome. Can you speak Japanese? Language barrier have any impact with the other anglers?
     
  5. JoshInSD

    JoshInSD Well-Known "Member"

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    I can speak some Japanese. Owner/captain and wife speak a little English. No issue with other anglers as everyone has an assigned space. Communication on a boat is as simple as pointing and making inquisitive faces!!
     
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  6. Whalebreath

    Whalebreath Well-Known "Member"

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    Very Cool but the Coolest part is the Lucha Libre T-shirt the Captain is wearing!
     
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  7. Derby

    Derby My "Member" is Well Known.

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    Thanks. That's cool.
     
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  8. pacificscout

    pacificscout Hey! You got any frozen ice?

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    That must have been a trip of a lifetime.
    Good memories made.
    Thanks for sharing.
     
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  9. JoshInSD

    JoshInSD Well-Known "Member"

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    Another day... nice slab of bluefin!

    IMG_8109.JPG IMG_0562.JPG
     
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  10. Nudle

    Nudle Member

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    Wow...great report!
     
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  11. momaguro

    momaguro Member

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    Josh

    Thanks for sharing what looks like a great time experiencing a whole new way to enjoy fishing. Whatever their endeavor is the Japanese usually devote their full attention to the details which clearly comes through in your story and pictures. Most importantly the emphasis is on the value of close relationships which the overnight stay at their house in a tatami room reveals and all the way to the end where the clean up and maintenance is performed.

    I have lived and traveled extensively throughout in Japan but never seriously considered to go ocean fishing there but your story sharing is great inspiration to go for it next chance.

    Did you use the depth finder and how does it work? What fishing technique or tackle do you want to try at home?

    David
     
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  12. Eastcapedon

    Eastcapedon Member

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    That is some incredible looking maguro and toro action. Thanks for posting. Don
     
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  13. Speernfish

    Speernfish Newbie

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    That's the life right there.
     
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  14. JoshInSD

    JoshInSD Well-Known "Member"

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    David you are right on all counts.

    The depth finder was for the vertical jigging. They use it just to know the depth so when they drop their jigs they count off and try to avoid hitting bottom. I'm not practiced in that so I just waited to hit bottom and started there, hoping to avoid snags!

    Learning how to bomb underhand casts was pretty cool, tossing a pencil and being taught by them their style of retrieve. I'm looking forward to trying that back at home. I bought a bunch of pencils and other topwater lures to experiment with in SD and N. Mexico.
     
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  15. Tifoso

    Tifoso Chinook,lings,bottom fish. And everything else.

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    Outstanding report, Josh. Very cool.
    You basically lived the Japanese version of my dream Italia trip. Attaboy!:cheers:
     
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  16. medicidela

    medicidela Member

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    This story is like a dream come true!

    What can be better than good fishing, most probably in clean water, with a good caring personable crew/family. For many people, this would be the trip of a lifetime!!

    Happy for you Josh, and thanks a million for sharing!
     
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  17. Texlee

    Texlee Well-Known "Member"

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    Thanks for sharing man. Great report. Congrats on a great trip. Tex.
     
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  18. Brad I

    Brad I Common Sense Isn't Common Enough

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    A wonderful trip and a wonderful read, thank you.

    Interesting that they left a little blood meat on the yellowtail sashimi--no doubt it was deliberate--any idea why?
     
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  19. JoshInSD

    JoshInSD Well-Known "Member"

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    Yes I noticed that and asked myself that night but did not get a clear answer, but it is certainly deliberate. Perhaps it adds a little flavor or texture, I'm not certain, perhaps somebody else can chime in
     
  20. aznboy619

    aznboy619 Not a Newbie

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    Josh the taste in farm yellowtail and wild yellowtail is different. As farm yellow is usually in the 9-11lb range when it is harvested and is fed with feed that fatten them up. Wild yellowtail will have some discoloration due to it being a muscular fish that has to chance there own food. Usually all yellowtail will have some or blood line left in it and it doesn't really change the taset at all. Here is something that might be able to inform you

    https://shizuokagourmet.com/japanese-seasonal-fish-buriyellowtail/
     
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