January 26, 2012 Lahaina Harbor, Maui, Hawaii


Official Sponsor of Bloodydecks
Dec 9, 2008
Lahaina, Hawaii, USA
Start Me Up Sportfishing
Aloha from Lahaina Harbor, Maui, Hawaii. Most of the fish being caught right now are tunas, mahis, and onos, with emphasis on tunas and mahis. The billfish bite has not been great, but there have been some around. If last year’s fishing is any indication, the striped marlin bite should pick up soon. If there are any questions about the fishing, feel free to contact Deli in Start Me Up’s Lahaina Harbor booth at 808-667-7879 or [email protected]. The following report includes some of Start Me Up’s anglers and their catch from the middle of January.

This lucky group of anglers had an exciting day on the water. Not only did they get lots of bites, they took advantage of the strikes had an amazing hookup to fish landed ratio. At one point they thought they had a monster hooked, but the fish turned out to be a 30 lb shibi that was foul-hooked. Snagging a fish in the body instead of hooking it in the mouth allows the fish to fight much harder.

The striped marlin have sporadically been showing up behind the boats. Jack Phillips was fortunate enough to get a striped marlin bite and then successfully tag and release the fish.

Ray Flavelle was in the zone where striped marlin have occasionally been swarming the lures. Ray thought he might have been in the middle of a striped marlin attack when the long rigger came down hard. The fish was not a striped marlin but Ray was more than happy to catch a 32 lb bull mahi.

The fishing team of Jeff Newcombe, Willie Overton, Wayne Lee, and Ed Vannordek was up to the task of catching. The anglers caught a stringer of tunas while working a FAD on the north shore of Maui.

Charles Selman was trolling along a current line that happened to be running over the 100 fathom ledge off the coast of Lanai. The current line along the ledge looked promising and, sure enough, Charles ended up catching a mahi.

This bull mahi clobbered the purple softhead running on the short rigger. The mahi, definitely a quality fish, may well be one of the nicer mahis that will be caught in the month of January.

The ono have been relatively scarce, but there really is no telling what one might catch while trolling off the coast of Maui. Austin Wilson caught an afternoon ono while working the inside ledges and pinnacles. The fine specimen tipped the scales at 46 lbs.

Adam Jones was also lucky enough to find a rare ono. Adam’s ono came into the pattern of lures aggressively and struck the large jet-head lure that was running close to the boat on the long corner.

Bart Pickens, Martan Loubry, Mike Martin, Clayton Jolly, and John Symborski composed a group of tired anglers. They went out on an early departure trip and found themselves in a tuna flurry before the sun came up. Bart, Martan, Mike, Clayton, and John used live bait to catch as many tunas as they could before the tuna dove deep and the bite shut down. The shibis were a lot of fun on standup gear.

Many people prefer to let their fillets firm up in the refrigerator, often meaning that the fish is eaten the day after being caught. John Sheldon, on the other hand, caught his mahi on a short morning trip and had time to chill the fillets and eat them on the same day. Fish doesn’t get any fresher than that.

Team Hackler caught a very nice bull mahi while Brent Davis settled for a smaller cow mahi. Although Team’s fish was bigger, Brent had an equally enjoyable time. Feeling a fish tug is just plain fun; the intensity of the pull is secondary.

The Ahi P bullet lure on the short rigger was simply too enticing to pass up. This mahi made the mistake of biting the lure and Jim Pattermann took care of the rest.

Keeping things simple was an effective game plan for Steve and Cindy Wey along with Larry Anderson and Dave Cummings. The anglers fished an area where fish had recently had been caught and that same area produced yet again. This time four nice shibis wound up on ice.

There’s no need to change tactics if the one being used works. Glenda and Gerald McNair were joined by Blake and Jeff Zima as well as Bob Harper in fishing the same area where tuna had been coming up. The fish were not as big in this flurry, but the bites were more numerous.

Most of the shibis have been found as part of schools frequenting the perimeter of the islands. Garrett McMahan, however, found an odd fish that was traveling alone and close to the shoreline. At the depth Garrett was fishing, he was expecting to catch a mahi or even possibly an ono. Catching a shibi was on the back of his mind, but sometimes things work out that way. There’s no way to tell what will bite the lures.

Cheri King, Gary King, and Annika Parske had some bites while trolling with a variety of lures including poppers, jet heads, and straight runners. Cheri, Gary, and Annika caught their mahis in the area surrounding the shoals of Kahoolawe.

Cheri King had to go fishing one more time before returning home. Cheri showed Karen Kasperick how to catch a mahi and then Karen proceeded to catch her own mahi.

Mike Beard and crew fished away the afternoon and returned to Lahaina Harbor with an elusive shortbill spearfish. Mike and his friends also managed to catch a few nice kawakawas while trolling near shore.

Mahis come in a wide range of sizes. Wayne Tedder’s mahi was the perfect size for the barbeque where he was staying.

Bri St. Jean, Christian Jacobson, and Matt Feit made a few lure passes at MC buoy and caught a fish each time. Bri caught her ono on the first pass, followed by Christian with his mahi and then Matt with the second ono.

John Nelson and Garth Stewart took advantage of a good bite on the 30 fathom ledge. John and Garth each picked up a nice mahi on a short morning trip.

The success along the 30 fathom ledge continued on a short midmorning trip. These anglers had a double trolling bite at secret spot, which is 15 minutes out of Lahaina Harbor. One of the fish came off quickly, but a 25 lb mahi as well as another small one came in on a pitch bait that was deployed soon after the double bite. Unfortunately, those mahis didn’t swallow the hook attached to the pitch bait. At the end of melee, the most important fish, a 41 lb bull mahi, was on the boat. The bull dwarfed the other mahi that was caught even though the smaller fish wasn’t actually that small.

Brian Whyte and Greg Dyck were without a strike in the deep water off Lanai when their day changed for the better. Line started screaming off two reels at the same time and everyone leapt into action. Brian and Greg capitalized on the double bite and landed the pair of nice mahis.

The Montgomery and Snyder families teamed up to pursue tunas. Lisa, Mike, Bradley, Rick, Tyler, and Brian caught their shibis using a combination of natural bait and artificial lures.

The Duke family enjoyed themselves on a short trip despite not having much success. They had such a good time that they went out again, this time doing a longer trip. Their persistence paid off as they caught some nice mahis, including a 28 lb bull, and a few shibis. They also caught and released an oceanic whitetip shark, which are known for their acute sense of smell. There’s no doubt that the Duke family will be back again in the near future.

Guido and Lisa Gatti arrived at MC buoy as another boat was leaving the area. Guido and Lisa apparently showed up at right time because the tuna bite was fast and furious. Guido and Lisa reeled feverishly to catch a bunch of shibis and a few mahis. The tunas were hooked on artificial squids, also called rubber ducks, while the mahis ate other lures that can be considered more conventional than the so-called rubber ducks.

Thanks for looking through this Start Me Up fishing report. Remember to direct any questions toward Deli at 808-667-7879 or [email protected]. Until the next report, tight lines.