Islands Freedom Overnight Report 07/31/2021


Mar 3, 2012
Redlands, CA
Been lurking on the forums for awhile so I decided to contribute!

Went out on the Freedom for an overnight trip on 07/31/2021. Mother Nature seems to hate me as every time I book a trip, it's always windy and we have no conditions.

Nothing changed for this trip as wind was suppose to blow all week and little to no conditions once we got to the island.

Got to the landing around 7:00 PM, checked in, got my bunk reserved and ran upstairs for a couple beers with my buddy while we waited for the crew to get the boat ready.

Boarded around 9:45/10:00 and got situated and made our way to the bait barge for some healthy sardines & anchovies mixed in. We all pitched in as well and got some live squid for the trip along with some fresh dead.

Captain's plan was to hit up SBI as it would be rough trying to make it to SNI. We got to the island around 4:30AM, anchored up and tried to make some squid. I ran up to the bow and fished dropper loop for a bit in hopes of snagging a WSB or Yellowtail. Nada, no bites for anyone.. squid didn't float much either so we made a move to try for some yellows.

It was dropper loop or sliding egg in the morning. First biter of the trip was on the dropper loop (4-5 oz w/ 4/0 -5/0 hook with whole squid). Slow pick throughout the day for most of us.

I got my first one of the morning on 40# fluorocarbon topshot, 1/2 oz sliding egg with a 6/0 hook fished on my UC Monster paired with my Saltiga 35. Guy on my left gets picked up and he clicks over and hangs the fish for 5 seconds only for it to pull the hook.. Bummer! I get ready as I'm hoping I'm in the same zone as the guy on my left and another yellow would pick mine up, sure enough, something grabs my squid and I give it few seconds to eat and click it over. I'm on! Fish takes off like a mad man and I'm going over and under everyone as I try to make my way up the port side to fight my fish. Couple good runs and I get it to color up on the port bow and bam deckhand sticks him! On the board now and skunk is off. I "walk" (drag) my fish back to the stern to get tagged, woo.


Couple more over the rail throughout the morning as we had a little tiny bit of current.. I switched over to flyline sardine as Captain said he started to see marks in the water column. Grabbed my UC Tilefish Jr paired with a Fathom15ii & 30# fluorocarbon topshot and tied on a 2/0 ringed Owner. Butt hooked a lively sardine and pitched it out. Super strong swimmer and before I knew it, I was picked up and line was screaming off the reel. Clicked it in gear and a battle ensued. Hooked up on the mid-starboard side and it ran me to port and all the way up the bow and almost wrapped up on the anchor. Couple short pumps up after that and bam, gaft shot to the head and I was on the board with #2. This one was a big one, hit the deck with a nice loud thud.

I finally broke in my UC Tilefish Jr! The rod performed great and had so much power/backbown to it. I would say this is my new favorite setup in my quiver.


We got a few more here and there but it slowed down a lot. Captain called the Thunderbird over and both boats threw down a heavy chum line to see if we can bring the fish back up.. nothing.. we made the move to try another spot and nothing once again, fish all disappeared.. tried a couple halibut drifts as well, I did have my sardine get raked by one while fishing a reverse dropper loop but couldn't connect to it.

We struck out on the halibut drifts, tried one more yellowtail spot for nada. By then it was starting to get late in the day so Captain decided to make the move to fill sacks with white fish. Wide open fishing for white fish with easy limits for all.

Overall, it was a good trip and a few of us were fortunate enough to connect with the target species. Got lucky by being in the right place at the right time. The Freedom is a great boat w/ awesome captain crew! Good group of passengers on board too, good times!


Sorry for the long winded report, tight lines!

Great report and some nice looking yellows.
Thanks for all the detail, headed out Friday!
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