OPAH!!!!! Aztec Sportfishing 2-day 7/16-7/18 Epic trip! Pic Heavy

Discussion in 'Southern California Offshore Fishing Reports' started by Marcus, Jul 20, 2015.

  1. Marcus

    Marcus "Oddjob"

    Location:
    Carlsbad
    Name:
    Marcus
    Boat:
    Tuna Jihad toilet cleaner/Intrepid
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    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.

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    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.


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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    Last edited: Jul 20, 2015
  2. fishsmith

    fishsmith Captain

    Location:
    murrieta/ca/usa
    Name:
    Jim
    Boat:
    21' Proline "MarLinz"
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    Sounds like an OK trip!
     
  3. Paul Ward

    Paul Ward I've posted enough I should edit this section

    Location:
    Costa Mesa
    Name:
    wooddog
    Boat:
    Boaty
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    holy smokes great trip in our front yard even
     
  4. stella marina

    stella marina Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    santa cruz
    Name:
    Andrew
    Boat:
    Parker 2320, 16 Klamath cc, 10 ft Livingston "bass slayer"
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    good stuff, great report, you're making me jealous.
     
  5. Scott Higbee

    Scott Higbee Newbie

    Name:
    Scott Higbee
    Boat:
    Tenacious
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    Sick local two day trip and sick report. Nice job!
     
  6. Wandering Blues

    Wandering Blues I've posted enough I should edit this section

    Location:
    The Land of Entrapment
    Name:
    Curtis
    Boat:
    A Pair of Simms G3 Waders
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    Last time I read something that good, it started with "Dear Penthouse Letters, I never thought it would happen to me....." Straight up fish porn, and for that, I thank you.
     
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  7. 26grumpy

    26grumpy who hooked who

    Location:
    Anaheim Hills
    Name:
    Joe
    Boat:
    Freefrom Boats Club
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    Some good vibes on that trip for sure.

    That's just incredible fishing no matter where it was!!!!
     
  8. STEVE IN SOCAL

    STEVE IN SOCAL Member

    Location:
    San Diego/Independence ,Ca
    Name:
    Steve
    Boat:
    14' Alum w/1956 Johnson 10hp
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    Wow...we were on that same boat the day before for a 1.5. They took us to Mexico, 90 miles down. Didn't turn out so well. Glad you guys got the trip we were hoping for.
     
  9. 26grumpy

    26grumpy who hooked who

    Location:
    Anaheim Hills
    Name:
    Joe
    Boat:
    Freefrom Boats Club
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    Oh... and offshore post of the year award!!! :urno1: :appl::appl::appl:
     
  10. g's toy

    g's toy Member

    Location:
    sd
    Name:
    Mike
    Boat:
    2301,swirl--sold
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    Been there on a day and a half on the same boat with poor results also. Glad they fished inside WHERE the fish are being caught, not outside or down in Mexico right now!
     
  11. Marcus

    Marcus "Oddjob"

    Location:
    Carlsbad
    Name:
    Marcus
    Boat:
    Tuna Jihad toilet cleaner/Intrepid
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    We started with the fleet and it was going to be a scratch pick at best if we had stayed. We went outside where no one was and found them there. It could have sucked had we not found the fish. It was a good gamble that paid off for us. Steve and crew want to get people on fish. Sometimes they go with the best available info and it doesn't pan out.
     
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  12. I'M OFF

    I'M OFF Really off

    Location:
    On the deck
    Name:
    Tommy
    Boat:
    2
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    Nice Marcus! Nice!
     
  13. jdmanowar

    jdmanowar Member

    Location:
    so cal
    Name:
    jason
    Boat:
    none yet
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    Epic trip, wtg!
     
  14. downtime

    downtime I've posted enough I should edit this section

    Location:
    San Diego
    Name:
    Ronson
    Boat:
    26 Skipjack "Reel Hard"
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    Awesome trip!! That bull dodo was huge!
    I need some of that for the BBQ!
     
  15. Munnster

    Munnster Member

    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    Name:
    Michael Munn
    Boat:
    20 foot, Searay
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    What a great trip and report, thank you!
     
  16. The Dr.

    The Dr. Member

    Name:
    Kenji
    Boat:
    Ranger 521VX
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    EPIC!!!
     
  17. Rimack

    Rimack Old School

    Location:
    Elk Grove
    Name:
    gary
    Boat:
    Nope
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    Epic trip... Indeed
     
  18. spike

    spike Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    San Clemente CA
    Name:
    Spike Ivins
    Boat:
    any chance I get
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    The most fun trip I've been on in along time, in large part to the group we were fishing with, and I mean the anglers. Everyone got along great and I could really feel the comradery amongst the group, it's one reason I really like fishing sportboats, fishing with a good group is a lot of fun.
    We started on the inside with the fleet of 2 day, overnight, full day, 3/4 day, and half day....... we caught some but 150 plus boats in one postage stamp area is tough on the kinda trip we were on, it's not how you fish a two day, you got to stretch your legs and cover some water to find your own fish. I was happy we got the best of both worlds and did get lucky enough to find our own school super late the first day, and start of the second, and we were all ecstatic!
    Weather the second day was awesome! Pouring rain, thunder and lighting, flat calm, warm, and muggy, as well as catching fish. I did help glass for breezers, jumpers, and kelps most of the trip, so when it was poring rain and we only had 100ft visibility I was on the bow just standing their having a beer and a couple guys come up, and say - "See anything?" I was not sure if they were joking or not, but I said "Yeah I do!" I stomped my foot and said to Steve "Jumpers 1/4 mille to Starboard!"; Steve turned.... I couldn't see shit though, I yelled up a minute later, "10 degrees more Starboard!" Then I started getting a little nervous cause Capt. Steve was spinning the boat to what ever I said..... Then I saw him spin the wheel hard over to starboard, it was evident he had a school on the sonar, so I said, "IT WAS RIGHT HERE!" Then Stve came over the PA - THROW BAIT! Thank God, I think we had 40 YFT up to 40lbs on that stop. The angler came up to me later and said you got really great eyes, I replied thank you lets find another, so I stayed on the bow soaking wet for the next 3 hours trying to find more humbly.
    I was super happy to be apart of this trip, and a big thank you to Davies for letting me come along, and it was a pleasure fishing with all of you. Great write up Marcus, it was really cool for me knowing at least one other angler stepping on, and a pleasure to finally fish with you. I look forward to fishing the Aztec again.
     
  19. spize909

    spize909 Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    i.e.
    Name:
    jeff
    Boat:
    no
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    Great report. Glad to see Capt. Steve getting it done!
     
  20. ZHALVAJE

    ZHALVAJE Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    San Diego
    Name:
    Alex
    Boat:
    Which one is killing fish?
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    I miss fishing with ya' dude! How's the family?
     
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