Quick Report: Searcher 2.5 Day 5/14-5/17

PENN

tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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Tunanorth
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Just walked in the door, so will keep it short
Not a PFU trip, I just headed out to do a little field-testing onboard the Searcher's 2.5 day, with Captain Mike Todter at the helm.
The bluefin acted a lot like bluefin most of the time [day and night], massive meter marks, with the occasional daytime boils in the chumline, and a couple of impressive [non-biting] foamers.
We stayed in the vicinity of SC Island, and even snuck in close for a few hours Sunday morning to try for yellowtail, but only hooked one and lost it.
Daytime bite was a pick, best results on live sardines and 30-pound gear with a #2 Owner Mutu circle hook, I did get a couple on purple prizm 100gr. Williamson Gomame jigs w/hook upgraded to Owner ST-66 treble.
Night time also a pick most of the time, either on sinkered baits or various jigs.
On Saturday night, the fish decided to go wide-open from 9 PM-midnight.
All of the usual jigs saw fish hit the deck, I did well experimenting with various hooks styles of Williamson Kensaki jigs, and got bites on the 120, 170, 220, and 280 gr. sizes, all with some kind of zebra glow over plain silver, or chartreuse, or pink.
I also observed anglers using the Orange Creamsicle color jigs doing well, but I did not try it.
Grade was about 25-percent 25 pounders, about 5 percent over 100 pounds, and the rest between 50-60 pounds.
The group worked well together even during the hot bite, and the crew of the Searcher was exemplary as always.
 
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DennisV

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Jan 4, 2017
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Dennis Vagt
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Just a NuCanoe Frontier now.
2/0 is a good fit for 100 gram snipers.

Steve, were the jig fish leader shy at all ?
 
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tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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2/0 is a good fit for 100 gram snipers.

Steve, were the jig fish leader shy at all ?


Yes, that is correct on the 100gr models, but just in general, go with one size bigger than whatever the "stock" size is.
The fish were not leader shy at all during the night time, but during the day they definitely were.
 
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tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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Daytime bite was picky, so the TRQ15LD2 with 30 pound topshot was the way to go.
Saturday nights wide open bite was phenomenal!

CROPPED Steve Searcher 15LD2.jpg
 
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IronMikeAC

Member
Aug 2, 2013
914
1,037
torrance, ca
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Mike
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Vagabond
Just walked in the door, so will keep it short
Not a PFU trip, I just headed out to do a little field-testing onboard the Searcher's 2.5 day, with Captain Mike Todter at the helm.
The bluefin acted a lot like bluefin most of the time [day and night], massive meter marks, with the occasional daytime boils in the chumline, and a couple of impressive [non-biting] foamers.
We stayed in the vicinity of SC Island, and even snuck in close for a few hours Sunday morning to try for yellowtail, but only hooked one and lost it.
Daytime bite was a pick, best results on live sardines and 30-pound gear with a #2 Owner Mutu circle hook, I did get a couple on purple prizm 100gr. Williamson Gomame jigs w/hook upgraded to Owner ST-66 treble.
Night time also a pick most of the time, either on sinkered baits or various jigs.
On Saturday night, the fish decided to go wide-open from 9 PM-midnight.
All of the usual jigs saw fish hit the deck, I did well experimenting with various hooks styles of Williamson Kensaki jigs, and got bites on the 120, 170, 220, and 280 gr. sizes, all with some kind of zebra glow over plain silver, or chartreuse, or pink.
I also observed anglers using the Orange Creamsicle color jigs doing well, but I did not try it.
Grade was about 25-percent 25 pounders, about 5 percent over 100 pounds, and the rest between 50-60 pounds.
The group worked well together even during the hot bite, and the crew of the Searcher was exemplary as always.
Great info Steve. Thanks. I'm out on the Islander 5/21 2.5 day.
 
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Roadrunner

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Oct 3, 2004
372
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San Diego
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John Gleaves
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20 foot, Westcoaster, Roadrunner
Thanks for the report Steve. Gearing up now for this weekends' Searcher trip. Glad to hear you were picking away at them all trip long. One report had the American Angler not getting many till the last evening and then they passed the bite off to you.

If you did not catch it, Mike Lackey & Cameron were on Lets talk hookup Sunday. I was busy twisting my knee Sunday AM( thought I was going to have to sit out the upcoming Searcher trip) and only heard the first hour doing the archived show.

tight lines
 
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tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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Close-up pic of the jigs that caught bluefin for me on this trip aboard the Searcher.
All factory hooks and rings were upgraded.
Top to bottom:
Williamson Kensaki 170gr.
Williamson Kensaki 120gr.
Williamson Gomame 100gr.
Williamson Kensaki 2801gr.

RESIZED Kensaki bluefin.JPG
 
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Scott McPherson

Throw a couple of Wilson’s here
Aug 17, 2017
194
352
Califonia
Name
Scott
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Shogun
Close-up pic of the jigs that caught bluefin for me on this trip aboard the Searcher.
All factory hooks and rings were upgraded.
Top to bottom:
Williamson Kensaki 170gr.
Williamson Kensaki 120gr.
Williamson Gomame 100gr.
Williamson Kensaki 2801gr.

View attachment 1280785
Hey Steve
Congratulations on another great trip and thanks for the post.
What rod reel and line were you using on the 120gr and 100gr. Rigging?
Regards
Scott
 
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TOTW

Time On The Water
Dec 23, 2005
1,282
1,913
San Diego
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Chris L
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Leo's
Had a couple buddies on this trip. Sounds like it was a good one. Looking forward to putting my Kensaki jigs to use, too. Glad to see they've been effective.
 
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tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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Tunanorth
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Hey Steve
Congratulations on another great trip and thanks for the post.
What rod reel and line were you using on the 120gr and 100gr. Rigging?
Regards
Scott


The 100gr. jig was on a Torque TRQ25NLD2 with 40-pound mono topshot. On 8-foot rod rated 20-50.
The 125gr. jig was on a Torque TRQ30LD2 with 50-pound mono topshot. On 8-foot rod rated 30-60.
 
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Scott McPherson

Throw a couple of Wilson’s here
Aug 17, 2017
194
352
Califonia
Name
Scott
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Shogun
The 100gr. jig was on a Torque TRQ25NLD2 with 40-pound mono topshot. On 8-foot rod rated 20-50.
The 125gr. jig was on a Torque TRQ30LD2 with 50-pound mono topshot. On 8-foot rod rated 30-60.
Thank you
Did you use a flouro leader or direct tie to mono?
 
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tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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Tunanorth
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Thank you
Did you use a flouro leader or direct tie to mono?


Four feet of fluoro; bumped up one test from the topshot, attached with 4-turn Surgeon's knot.
I do use a swivel to attach the leader with 60-pound tackle and up, but not in these line classes.
 
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ljg619

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Jun 30, 2020
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Chula Vista
Name
Leonard Gibson
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SS Minnow
Close-up pic of the jigs that caught bluefin for me on this trip aboard the Searcher.
All factory hooks and rings were upgraded.
Top to bottom:
Williamson Kensaki 170gr.
Williamson Kensaki 120gr.
Williamson Gomame 100gr.
Williamson Kensaki 2801gr.

View attachment 1280785
Hey Steve,

Are those Mustad assist hooks? What size are you using on 170gr and 280gr flatfall?
 
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tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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Tunanorth
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Bass Tracker 16
Hey Steve,

Are those Mustad assist hooks? What size are you using on 170gr and 280gr flatfall?


Yes, but because there is no standardization of hook sizes, and the sizes even vary with the same manufacturer between different models, it seems a little funny.
As shown, the 170gr. has 9/0's, and the 280gr. has 6/0's [not a typo, that's what the packages say].
 
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tunanorth

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Dec 4, 2005
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Tunanorth
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If I have the jig in the correct location in the water column, what is the best technique for properly presenting the Kensaki jig to the bluefin?


I let it sink about 50 feet deeper than whatever depth the captain says the fish are holding at, then crank it fast up through that depth, and about 50 feet above it.
Repeat.
Bites will come on both the sink and the grind.
 
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ljg619

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Jun 30, 2020
42
46
45
Chula Vista
Name
Leonard Gibson
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SS Minnow
Yes, but because there is no standardization of hook sizes, and the sizes even vary with the same manufacturer between different models, it seems a little funny.
As shown, the 170gr. has 9/0's, and the 280gr. has 6/0's [not a typo, that's what the packages say].
Hey Steve, thanks for the recommendation. Caught a 55lbs bluefin with same 270 gram Kensaki jig exactly same setup you posted.
AF034658-677F-4A46-B363-81309D66C568.jpeg
16379941-58BD-43A2-9090-6B8261FC159C.jpeg


D83F65C2-4815-4D0D-B92E-CD42F3B9CADA.jpeg
 
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