So this was a trip where I had the honor of taking a special needs young man with me as my guest. See Chris has autism. I took him down to San Diego a couple of days before the trip to show him around. He’s been counting the days for months so the day I picked him up he thought we would stay at my house and leave in the morning. Well soda pop being soda pop I had a big surprise for him. When he got to my house I had the truck all packed up and I picked him up in the Tesla. He loves that car. When we got to my house my wife gave him a haircut while I double checked to make sure everything was ready. After that haircut my wife and I said well you ready to head to San Diego. He said tomorrow and we said we have a surprise we’re leaving right now. Boy he was bouncing off the walls. We get to San Diego around 3:00 and upload the truck and once everything was safe in our room we go walk the docks then head over to squdico to buy some last minute stuff and get him a couple of t-shirts from squdico and Joey gifted him a t-shirts. Great tackle store that treats everyone like family. We leave our reels with squdico and will pick them up with fresh line in the morning. We go back to the docks for another walk get Chris ( little brother) yes he now has a nickname and he loves it a sweatshirt from fisherman’s landing and head over to see if anyone is around in the independence office. We got lucky and the office manager was there and picked him up a couple of independence t-shirts. After dinner we head to get some much needed rest for our departure Friday morning. At 2AM little brother wants to load the truck and stand in line so we can be first so we do. On the independence you get a tackle number when checking in and the line starts from the 1st person to load first. So let’s talk fishing. Captain Matt was our captain and after we loaded the very good grade baits ( big healthy) after clearing the point we have our safety seminar and put a game plan tougher for the next 8 days. We first head to fish the bank 10 miles from the rocks and see if we can get these yellowtail to bite our offerings. GAME ON. The yellowtail were first biting the dropper lupe then they bit any which way you fished them. Dropper lupe-6X jigs-Fly line and even surface iron. They were big and wanted to eat anything that hit the water. After about a day and fishing the next morning we had our limits of yellowtail. Captain has a meeting in the galley before dinner and said I hear the bluefin wants to play so we’re making the long move back up north 60 miles from San Diego. We arrived at the bluefin grounds and it was a slow pick bite on flat falls and knife jigs and some were using 8 ounces of lead with a 2/0 hook. I myself stay up 9 then hit the hay. Next morning I wake up and try the knife jigs. I really suck at this kind of fishing. It’s only my 2nd time bluefin fishing. The 11-18 day trips I usually do we don’t fish bluefin. After the sun comes up I go to a 2 ounce egg sinker with a 40 pound fluro setup. I get bit and hand it off to my guest little brother. It’s about a 45-50 pound bluefin. Deckhand says soda go up to 50 the bigger models are moving in. I never second guess a deckhand so I grab my 50 pound setup with a 2 ounce pin a bait on and let the line go out slow and after about 15 seconds I get nailed. This fish is a much larger model. I yell for little brother and the deckhand helps him land a nice 100 pound bluefin. He’s stocked and says he needs to rest his arms. I quickly agree with him and maybe I just might get one. See this trip I was planning on handing off the fish to little brother. I check my line and toss in my 2/0 hook with my 2 ounce egg sinker and BAM HOOKUP. in about 10 seconds I get hooked into a nice 100_-+ pound bluefin. The next night fishing was pretty good but little brother and I headed to bed to get up at 3AM. My report from the all night gang was flat falls and knife jigs in the 250-300 grams. At around 315 the 2nd captain calls for little brother and he’s hooked up. He needs help so I quickly come help out. All deckhands are busy and we have about 10 fish going all over the 100 pound mark. Hitting knife jigs and live bait with a 2/0 with a 6-8 ounce sinker. It’s game on big time. I yell out color and a deckhand sinks a gaff in little brother’s 100+ pound bluefin and we both rest a bit and watch the full on bluefin bite. After a little bit of a rest we have some delicious breakfast and go back out do get a few more bluefin. We ended up with 11 bluefin and 21 yellowtail for our trip as a team. Now I want to thank the entire crew of the independence. When we got settled in the crew all came out with a present for me. I was shocked and gleaming with gratitude. They presented me with a jersey with my nickname soda pop and the boat name on the front reading INDY. I also want to take time to thank all the wonderful people that helped little brother out and made this a very special trip. And last Rick from Avet-Graftech rod’s and the group from Turner’s outdoor for more than generous giveaways.