Offshore Nice One on the Popper - 7/7

flyliner

@thereelflyliner
Aug 19, 2007
2,016
3,167
Santa Monica
Name
Jonathan
Boat Name
31' Cabo Express
Made my first offshore trip of the year at the end of June with Landesfeind and my long-time fishing buddy Stephen. Erik already covered this trip as part of his weekly fish report, but we found plenty of tuna, mostly in the form of fast moving breezers that would occasionally pop up on small bait balls while they were hauling ass to the West.

The fish were certainly hard to get on, and even when you did, they were picky, but I was pretty sure we would get some fish with the talent I had on the boat. Sure enough, all three of us hooked a fish on the popper, with Erik and Stephen landing both of their 30 pound fish, and me pulling the hook on mine just before gaffing range. Sounds about right.

I made another quick offshore trip last week. This time a solo mission to chase those local fish when they moved in tight off Dana. I found a few spots of 100+ pounders foaming, but they never let me get close enough to cast. I might have had a shot at picking up a fish on the troll, but I’m a popper purist and stuck to my guns.

Still I was encouraged by the volume of big local fish that I saw, I just need to hit it on a day they weren’t as skittish.

Yesterday morning I gave it another shot. The fish had moved much closer to my boat in Huntington Harbor, and Captain Mitch put two of his Enterprise passengers on fish the day before, so I was optimistic. Only problem was I needed to be back early for work…..oh well, life is short.

Made it to the zone by 6:30 am. Found a big foamer right away. Made a cautious approach, but it was clear these fish were not boat shy. They looked like the bigger grade, so I grabbed my new big fish popper setup. A 5 foot 8 inch Shimano Grappler XH jigging rod, and a new model Shimano Twin Power 14000 (probably the sexiest looking spinning reel ever made…lol).

Made a decent cast right in the center of the foamer, popped it once, and watched a big fish come out of the water with my popper in his mouth. I had the drag super tight, and could feel that this was a really nice fish, but was able to get him boat side in about 10 min.

If I had someone with me, we could have gaffed him right there, but being alone, I was a little worried to try the one hander when the fish was still green, so I let him do a few more circles for another 5 min before I had the courage to try to stick him.

Thankfully he made a calm approach and glided perfectly down the starboard side giving me a great angle right behind the head. He didn’t go ballistic, though I did need to be quick with the assist from my other hand given his size and a few strong tail kicks. Once he mellowed out, I opened the transom door and slid him on deck at 7:15 am.

Spent some time cleaning up, and headed in pretty happy with myself. Back in the slip by 9 am.

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Last edited:

woodfish330

I'm to smart to figure out how to edit this.
  • Aug 14, 2012
    2,667
    6,375
    San Fransisco,CA USA
    Name
    John
    Boat Name
    Fishead
    Alright.... maybe this year??? When did they do that MAJOR overhaul of the Zara Spook? Really? Cause it's clear?


    Heddon DOESN'T HAVE A HARNESS IN THAT LURE. So don't even think a $6 lure can do the BFT dance...you're in for a BIG disappointment! How big you ask? How big was that BFT swimming away? Swimming away from the "fool" who threw that $6 lure into a "foamer". Know what you'll get back? A "screw" eye.... and a nauseous feeling in the pit of your stomach. DON'T DO IT!!
     
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    IronMikeAC

    I Should Upgrade My Account
    Aug 2, 2013
    1,073
    1,259
    torrance, ca
    Name
    Mike
    Boat Name
    Vagabond
    Made my first offshore trip of the year at the end of June with Landesfeind and my long-time fishing buddy Stephen. Erik already covered this trip as part of his weekly fish report, but we found plenty of tuna, mostly in the form of fast moving breezers that would occasionally pop up on small bait balls while they were hauling ass to the West.

    The fish were certainly hard to get on, and even when you did, they were picky, but I was pretty sure we would get some fish with the talent I had on the boat. Sure enough, all three of us hooked a fish on the popper, with Erik and Stephen landing both of their 30 pound fish, and me pulling the hook on mine just before gaffing range. Sounds about right.

    I made another quick offshore trip last week. This time a solo mission to chase those local fish when they moved in tight off Dana. I found a few spots of 100+ pounders foaming, but they never let me get close enough to cast. I might have had a shot at picking up a fish on the troll, but I’m a popper purist and stuck to my guns.

    Still I was encouraged by the volume of big local fish that I saw, I just need to hit it on a day they weren’t as skittish.

    Yesterday morning I gave it another shot. The fish had moved much closer to my boat in Huntington Harbor, and Captain Mitch put two of his Enterprise passengers on fish the day before, so I was optimistic. Only problem was I needed to be back early for work…..oh well, life is short.

    Made it to the zone by 6:30 am. Found a big foamer right away. Made a cautious approach, but it was clear these fish were not boat shy. They looked like the bigger grade, so I grabbed my new big fish popper setup. A 5 foot 8 inch Shimano Grappler XH jigging rod, and a new model Shimano Twin Power 14000 (probably the sexiest looking spinning reel ever made…lol).

    Made a decent cast right in the center of the foamer, popped it once, and watched a big fish come out of the water with my popper in his mouth. I had the drag super tight, and could feel that this was a really nice fish, but was able to get him boat side in about 10 min.

    If I had someone with me, we could have gaffed him right there, but being alone, I was a little worried to try the one hander when the fish was still green, so I let him do a few more circles for another 5 min before I had the courage to try to stick him.

    Thankfully he made a calm approach and glided perfectly down the starboard side giving me a great angle right behind the head. He didn’t go ballistic, though I did need to be quick with the assist from my other hand given his size and a few strong tail kicks. Once he mellowed out, I opened the transom door and slid him on deck at 7:15 am.

    Spent some time cleaning up, and headed in pretty happy with myself. Back in the slip by 9 am.

    View attachment 1401369

    View attachment 1401370
    Beaut!
     
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    TriumphMark

    Newbie
    Jun 28, 2021
    5
    2
    39
    Oceanside
    Name
    Mark Simons
    Boat Name
    Shootz
    Nice. Went out today and didn’t see a thing. Left oceanside at 500 and started fishing around 7 on the east side of Catalina. Trolled thru 209 and to 181 and don’t see any life. No birds no pattys no foamers. Maybe next time. Nice fish dude
     
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