What an awesome trip!!!!!!! That is the best way to sum up the trip we had on the Aztec. Dave set up the charter and 22 of us lucky anglers headed out on Thursday evening. Most of us were hoping to make the run to new fish but after Steve talked to us we headed out with the rest of the fleet to the zone of fish off N. County. On the ride we rigged up, shot the shit and drank many a beer with high anticipation of big fish. We were also lucky to be graced with the presence of the great Spike Ivins himself. It was a pleasure to talk to and watch a truly gifted angler work the decks. There is no better substitute for an alarm clock than the eager anticipation of catching fish. I was up early and ready to go. It was a weird sight seeing the stack of the Carlsbad powerplant, knowing I was fishing less than 15 miles from my house on a 2-day. It was obvious that the entire skiff and sportboat community in SoCal knew this was the area as well, as I have never seen so many boats in one place. Steve had us on a school early and we started to pick away at them. The grade of these fish was impressive with several in the high 40-50lb range coming over the rail. The bluefin and yellowfin were definitely quality fish. The bite started to slow down and Steve made the call to get away from the fleet and find some fish that were less pressured. Trollers went out and we started the hunt. We stopped on numerous meter marks and kelps and picked away at the fish slowly. The time between fishing was filled with incredible camaraderie. We had an incredible group on the boat. Everyone had a good time poking fun at each other and enjoying each others company. We continued to work the zone Steve wanted when we found the kelp we were looking for. Fish marks everywhere. Baits went in the water, poles were bent almost instantly and the screams of fresh one rang through the air. This was it and mayhem ensued. Yellowtail, yellowfin, bluefin and dorado came over the rail at a fast and furious pace. We reset several times on the kelp and each time we pulled fish. Even in all the chaos people kept their cool. Communication was great and people worked together like a well oiled machine. Few times have I been on a sportboat where the passengers and crew were so in tune with each other that no fish were lost to tangles. As we were drifting the paddy Jared hooked up to something big on the flatfall jig. Initial thoughts were it was a big tuna and several of us joked that it was probably an opah. After a 40 minute fight we finally got color and screams of "Opah!!!!!!!!!" were heard. Gaffs were sunk and there was a struggle to get it over the rail. A truly impressive and rare fish was now on our decks. High-fives and congratulations were given all around. Jared snatched the day one jackpot with his incredible catch. Once at the dock, the opah was weighed and came in at a whopping 140lbs. The sun set as we were still pulling on fish and after the last one hanging was brought aboard we went in search of the kelp to try to bag it for the morning. Unfortunately finding a kelp in the dark is near next to impossible and it slipped into the darkness and our memories...... The crew went to work on the fish in the hold while the tired anglers ate dinner and hit the racks in anticipation of another day. The next morning came early and thankfully advil had done it's magic for the many sore muscles that had occurred from the previous days fishing. Several us were fishing the grey and the tuna started to cooperate. Soon there were quite a few of us hooked up and the sound of tails beating the decks finished waking up those who were still asleep. The weather looked ominous as we could see the rain coming down, lightning strikes and the sound of thunder in the distance. The weather didn't slow the crew or anglers down. We worked the area, found kelps, meter marks and breezing fish. We picked away at the fish in the deluge of rain and lightning. The weather finally cleared up which made it much easier to find the kelps we were looking for. The crew found a good one and as we approached you could hear the elation in Capt. Steve's voice as he called out, "This is the one we're looking for! There are fish all over this. Get ready here they come!". Once again pandemonium ensued as the fish charged the boat. Bent rods were everywhere and "I'm bit!", "Gaff!" and "Hot rail!' were yelled. More bluefin, yellowtail, yellowfin and dorado hit the decks. We reset several times on the paddy and each time was as good as the first. As with every good time they eventually must come to an end. We had to get back to the barn so the next group of anglers could enjoy the spectacle we had been lucky enough to have been a part of. We bid farewell to the deep blue and reminisced the whole ride home of the fish we had caught and the memories that were shared. All told we ended up with 21 bluefin, 156 yellowfin, 55 yellowtail, 5 dorado and 1 opah. Quality of the fish was some of the best I have ever seen. The crew of the Aztec was top notch and we can't thank them enough for the hospitality they showed us. From all the anglers I say thank you to Steve, Justin, Aaron, Olen, Jono, Joey and Spike. To those who have never fished the Aztec you are missing out. The boat is in incredible condition since they refitted the bunk rooms. I can't recommend them enough. Dave, thanks again for putting an incredible trip together. To the rest of the anglers, thanks for an incredible trip of camaraderie and fishing. It was a pleasure to have gotten to spend rail time with you again. Once again there wasn't one "that guy" on the boat.