Offshore Relentless two day 4Jun21 - Coast Guard rescue

PENN

kbray001

Member
Aug 18, 2009
877
1,017
South OC
Name
Kirk
Boat
Regal 24
Relentless two day – 4-6Jun2021

Short version: Had a fantastic trip on the Relentless catching Bluefin. At least 10 PB’s were caught on this trip. My dad and I both broke our PB with BFT estimated just over 100 lbs. Everything worked at different times of the day. Fish from 40lb-120lb. Great crew, fishing, and food. Unfortunately, we did have an emergency coast guard air lift. Scroll to pictures.

Long version: I apologize this is a really long story that I was not sure if I should write. But the way the crew of the Relentless handled an emergency situation was truly impressive and deserves to be told.

Due to the plague this was our first charter fishing trip since Aug 2019. Spent the last few weeks scouring reports and figuring out our flat fall setups. Every year prior this trip was an exploratory trip to SCI to fish YT, bass, and rock fish. With the crazy BFT fishing going on Captain Mike had given us the heads up that we were most likely going BFT hunting!

Left from home Friday morning, 4Jun2021, with a truck packed with gear. As we did not know exactly what the plan was, we brought the kitchen sink and had rigs from 20lb-100lb. Made it down to San Diego and did the obligatory stops at Squidco and a few other shops for last minute “must haves.” Get down to the boat and Captain Mike gave us the game plan. We were going to kill some Bluefin!

Right around 6pm we left the dock with 18 in our group. Our group is a very seasoned group of fish killers. With most of them either currently, or formerly working in the sport-fishing industry. This group came to play with the big boys. Everyone was ready with heavy rigs. Up-armored flat-falls, knife jigs and heavy fluorocarbon. We loaded up with primo bait and pointed it South.

Saturday morning about 0300 am Captain Mike put us on our first sonar school. We dropped our heavy jigs and a few guys fished the sinker rig. First bite came at about 0400 am on an 80lb sinker rig. Second fish was on a “Gangster Jig.” That is what it is called and looks like it. Sent down my 230 gram Nomad buffalo with upgraded stinger hooks and 300lb bite leader on a Penn Fathom 40nld2. At about 200 ft. I get bumped. Start to tell my buddy I just got hit and my reel starts screaming! Throw it in gear and hold on. Fish does a couple laps around the boat as I hear a fourth fish is now hooked. Fishing straight braid to flouro the headshakes were crazy. After about 20 minutes Captain Mike and two other gaffs stick my fish. First fish on the boat and my new PB. Crew estimated it was somewhere between 100-110 pounds. Our group went 4 for 4 on that stop with all the fish being in the 80-120lb range.

D3889D07-8150-4CAE-B2C6-1AB793DE302E.jpeg


About mid-morning we hit another good school and had multiple hookups. During the fight we had two fish get wrapped. That is when all hell broke loose. One of the tuna that was at very deep color decided to do a huge lap around the stern and tangled about ¾ of the boat. This caused a giant knot of braid, mono, sinker, and jigs that weaved itself between the fish. Captain Mike and crew jumped in and were able to get one of the fish unhooked and eventually landed. That left the one fish with about ten lines still attached to it. As the giant ball was sliding down the crew decided to not cut all the lines. So everyone in the tangle just put their reels in freespool and followed the mess around the about at least ten times. It was a crackup watching the fishing version of human centipede circle the boat. After a bunch of near misses including splicing the line onto another setup that devil fish was finally landed. Watching the crew work to save that fish was truly incredible. You could see how much each one of them cared about landing that fish.

F2D657EC-F90F-4CD8-BF18-F829029F40C3.jpeg

7AB12465-88A1-4391-9C03-7964A66ADEB5.jpeg


For the rest of the day, we stopped on multiple schools of bluefin being bluefin. Around sunset we finally found a school that wanted to play. So far my dad had not had put one on the deck but did almost get spooled by a tuna that was not stopping. As the sun was setting his sinker rig on 60lb got bit hard. The fish first took him up to the bow and right away you could tell this fish was pissed. With coaching from the night-captain, Johnny, my dad was doing work on this fish and soon had him to deep color. That is when the fish dove for the back of the boat and caused an all-out scramble. From there it was a slug fest in the dark to bring that fish up. After what seemed like 20 circles just out of gaff range Captain Mike stuck in the first of four gaffs that put an end to the fight. My dad’s new PB. Which was just slightly larger than mine. Yea trust me that hurts inside. Haha

BBE37EB7-5A1E-4FA6-8E2C-9A9CBDEFB673.jpeg


After that Captain Mike decided to make a little move so we had dinner and got a few hours of sleep. The food on this trip was great. Some of the group fished during the night but we decided to get a few hours of sleep before Sunday festivities which started at oh dark thirty. The morning for us was a lot of show and no go from the blue fin that were all around the boat. Captain Mike and the crew did an outstanding job the whole trip letting us know what he was seeing and recommending setups on every stop. Their enthusiasm was contagious and even though I was tired and sore I fished hard every stop.

Mid-morning, we finally found fish that wanted to die. These were smaller grade that ate both flat-falls, sinker rigs, and fly-lined baits. We had multiple hookups going in a typical BFT plunker bite. When the dust settled, I believe we had close to 20 fish from that one stop all from 40lb-70lb. On this stop a very close family friend did work on a nice BFT so our crew was now all on the board. I was having a hard time getting bit, so I dropped down to 30lb on my favorite Avet MXJ and phenix abyss setup. I know… I know. I hooked up and paid for that one. That fish would not move and took some serious convincing. But finally, I had him at deep color and worked him up to meet a gaff.

E27A0D7D-34C5-4CCB-961A-C157E223AC76.jpeg

4F9AD0FB-767B-4EB1-87E0-69819887E4F0.jpeg


Now this is where the story really gets interesting… After that stop we found another school of BFT being BFT. After dropping my flat-fall for a few minutes, I decided to go get a water. When I walked into the galley, I saw some of our group helping a regular on our charter into the galley. The look on their face made it clear something was seriously wrong. I quickly ran and grabbed my dad as we are both former EMT’s. We got into the galley and multiple passengers and crew were helping the passenger. As we started working on an assessment, it became very clear that this guy was in trouble. Out of respect to him and his family, I will not go into any detail. Captain Mike and the crew were already notifying the Coast Guard. That is when the backup captain Johnny came in and took over. Johnny is a retired paramedic and quickly assessed the passenger and was coordinating with Captain Mike in the wheelhouse and the crew. Captain Mike already had the boat pointed towards home and was running wide open throttle. The crew later mentioned they had never seen the boat go that fast.

As Capt Mike and Johnny were updating the Coast Guard, my dad, one of the crew, and I stayed with the passenger. Taking vitals and working to keep him awake and comfortable. After a while one of the crew let us know that the coast guard was sending a helicopter that should arrive within the hour. I had been so focused on the guy that I had not noticed all the movement around us. The crew had been asked to clear the back deck to prevent things from flying around when then helicopter made its approach. All of the crew and passengers sprang into action and were helping secure the deck and prepare for the helicopter. In the time we stayed in the galley with the sick passenger every few minutes someone would come in to see if we needed anything or there was anything they could do to help.

Within an hour we got a heads up that the Coast Guard helicopter was close. At this point the crew huddled in the back of the galley and started working through their plan. The crew was not only going over their plan but was also working through the contingencies. Even to the point of who was responsible for getting the ladder if the swimmer happened to go in the water. Shortly after we heard the helicopter closing in.

After circling the boat, a couple of times, the helicopter made its final approach and dropped a line down to the back deck of the boat. While the crew held the line the rescue swimmer was lowered down to the deck of the moving boat. Once inside Captain Johnny quickly gave the rescue swimmer a run down of the passenger and gave him the two pages of notes that we had written on the passenger’s conditions and vitals. After that, the crew moved the passenger into the rescue basket and helped the rescue swimmer secure him. Once secure the helicopter lifted the passenger and then the rescue swimmer back into the helicopter with amazing precision. And in what seemed like a flash the helicopter was out of site taking the passenger to the hospital.

2E3E2453-8613-46B5-80B3-5C7C0507BE1E.jpeg

9C52BD60-5F34-4334-A146-23715892CF4C.jpeg

D54F6376-5418-41A2-A1F7-30C3965DBA1D.jpeg


The rest of the ride home was somewhat somber. Following the trip, we received updates and the passenger is doing ok. This trip truly had the highest highs and the lowest lows of any trip I have ever been on. What made me want to write this novel was the true professionalism that I saw from the crew of the Relentless and the Coast Guard. I already knew this charter group is a special group. When this happened, every single person jumped into help in any way that they could. I would like to sincerely thank Capt Mike, Capt Johnny and the crew of the Relentless for everything they did. They already were my favorite boat, but this put Mike and his crew on another level. I would also like to thank the Coast Guard. They are true heroes, and we are blessed to have them.

2B6C9048-7D47-4ECA-9A37-C9A03CF41ECF.jpeg
 
Last edited:

bazzturd

I fish in the ocean, not the internet
Aug 7, 2008
621
1,060
Westminster, CA
Name
Brian
Boat
2005 Grady White Seafarer 228 (no name yet)
I would guess the passenger must have been having some serious medical emergency e.g. STEMI or CVA. I haven't been on a party/cattle boat in a while, but I would always question when a captain would not ask to have any and all EMS or healthcare passengers identify who they are and what they do.

Good to hear there were some handy people for the emergency and some good fishing went down.
 
Upvote 0

esgeo

over 40 victim of fate
Feb 12, 2015
535
637
Tulsa, OK
Name
Eric
Boat
Feelfree Lure 11.5
I believe this is the second thread I’ve read of Captain Mike and crews stellar handling of an emergency at sea. Speaks volumes about the way these guys view their job responsibilities. Personally, the only negative thing I’ve ever read about this boat was a wet carpet in the berth area from AC issues during the summer maybe 5 years ago. Truly a great operation and awesome folks. Glad to hear all worked out for the best and that you had solid action to boot. Outstanding report!
 
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1toughfish

Newbie
Mar 11, 2013
85
66
San Francisco/Los Angeles
Name
Young
Boat
none
Nice job on the PBs for both of you guys and also on keeping yourselves, the patient, and situation calm which is the most important! Glad to hear they're doing alright. As a medic that's the last thing I want to see on vacation or fishing especially without my equipment but we can at least help in small ways. Recognizing things is the biggest factor and I'm glad he didn't go lay down in the bunks or hide in the bathroom.
 
Upvote 0
Jan 7, 2020
95
491
San Diego
Name
DTS
Boat
Boatless
Sounds like
Relentless two day – 4-6Jun2021

Short version: Had a fantastic trip on the Relentless catching Bluefin. At least 10 PB’s were caught on this trip. My dad and I both broke our PB with BFT estimated just over 100 lbs. Everything worked at different times of the day. Fish from 40lb-120lb. Great crew, fishing, and food. Unfortunately, we did have an emergency coast guard air lift. Scroll to pictures.

Long version: I apologize this is a really long story that I was not sure if I should write. But the way the crew of the Relentless handled an emergency situation was truly impressive and deserves to be told.

Due to the plague this was our first charter fishing trip since Aug 2019. Spent the last few weeks scouring reports and figuring out our flat fall setups. Every year prior this trip was an exploratory trip to SCI to fish YT, bass, and rock fish. With the crazy BFT fishing going on Captain Mike had given us the heads up that we were most likely going BFT hunting!

Left from home Friday morning, 4Jun2021, with a truck packed with gear. As we did not know exactly what the plan was, we brought the kitchen sink and had rigs from 20lb-100lb. Made it down to San Diego and did the obligatory stops at Squidco and a few other shops for last minute “must haves.” Get down to the boat and Captain Mike gave us the game plan. We were going to kill some Bluefin!

Right around 6pm we left the dock with 18 in our group. Our group is a very seasoned group of fish killers. With most of them either currently, or formerly working in the sport-fishing industry. This group came to play with the big boys. Everyone was ready with heavy rigs. Up-armored flat-falls, knife jigs and heavy fluorocarbon. We loaded up with primo bait and pointed it South.

Saturday morning about 0300 am Captain Mike put us on our first sonar school. We dropped our heavy jigs and a few guys fished the sinker rig. First bite came at about 0400 am on an 80lb sinker rig. Second fish was on a “Gangster Jig.” That is what it is called and looks like it. Sent down my 230 gram Nomad buffalo with upgraded stinger hooks and 300lb bite leader on a Penn Fathom 40nld2. At about 200 ft. I get bumped. Start to tell my buddy I just got hit and my reel starts screaming! Throw it in gear and hold on. Fish does a couple laps around the boat as I hear a fourth fish is now hooked. Fishing straight braid to flouro the headshakes were crazy. After about 20 minutes Captain Mike and two other gaffs stick my fish. First fish on the boat and my new PB. Crew estimated it was somewhere between 100-110 pounds. Our group went 4 for 4 on that stop with all the fish being in the 80-120lb range.

View attachment 1288225

About mid-morning we hit another good school and had multiple hookups. During the fight we had two fish get wrapped. That is when all hell broke loose. One of the tuna that was at very deep color decided to do a huge lap around the stern and tangled about ¾ of the boat. This caused a giant knot of braid, mono, sinker, and jigs that weaved itself between the fish. Captain Mike and crew jumped in and were able to get one of the fish unhooked and eventually landed. That left the one fish with about ten lines still attached to it. As the giant ball was sliding down the crew decided to not cut all the lines. So everyone in the tangle just put their reels in freespool and followed the mess around the about at least ten times. It was a crackup watching the fishing version of human centipede circle the boat. After a bunch of near misses including splicing the line onto another setup that devil fish was finally landed. Watching the crew work to save that fish was truly incredible. You could see how much each one of them cared about landing that fish.

View attachment 1288224
View attachment 1288226

For the rest of the day, we stopped on multiple schools of bluefin being bluefin. Around sunset we finally found a school that wanted to play. So far my dad had not had put one on the deck but did almost get spooled by a tuna that was not stopping. As the sun was setting his sinker rig on 60lb got bit hard. The fish first took him up to the bow and right away you could tell this fish was pissed. With coaching from the night-captain, Johnny, my dad was doing work on this fish and soon had him to deep color. That is when the fish dove for the back of the boat and caused an all-out scramble. From there it was a slug fest in the dark to bring that fish up. After what seemed like 20 circles just out of gaff range Captain Mike stuck in the first of four gaffs that put an end to the fight. My dad’s new PB. Which was just slightly larger than mine. Yea trust me that hurts inside. Haha

View attachment 1288228

After that Captain Mike decided to make a little move so we had dinner and got a few hours of sleep. The food on this trip was great. Some of the group fished during the night but we decided to get a few hours of sleep before Sunday festivities which started at oh dark thirty. The morning for us was a lot of show and no go from the blue fin that were all around the boat. Captain Mike and the crew did an outstanding job the whole trip letting us know what he was seeing and recommending setups on every stop. Their enthusiasm was contagious and even though I was tired and sore I fished hard every stop.

Mid-morning, we finally found fish that wanted to die. These were smaller grade that ate both flat-falls, sinker rigs, and fly-lined baits. We had multiple hookups going in a typical BFT plunker bite. When the dust settled, I believe we had close to 20 fish from that one stop all from 40lb-70lb. On this stop a very close family friend did work on a nice BFT so our crew was now all on the board. I was having a hard time getting bit, so I dropped down to 30lb on my favorite Avet MXJ and phenix abyss setup. I know… I know. I hooked up and paid for that one. That fish would not move and took some serious convincing. But finally, I had him at deep color and worked him up to meet a gaff.

View attachment 1288233
View attachment 1288227

Now this is where the story really gets interesting… After that stop we found another school of BFT being BFT. After dropping my flat-fall for a few minutes, I decided to go get a water. When I walked into the galley, I saw some of our group helping a regular on our charter into the galley. The look on their face made it clear something was seriously wrong. I quickly ran and grabbed my dad as we are both former EMT’s. We got into the galley and multiple passengers and crew were helping the passenger. As we started working on an assessment, it became very clear that this guy was in trouble. Out of respect to him and his family, I will not go into any detail. Captain Mike and the crew were already notifying the Coast Guard. That is when the backup captain Johnny came in and took over. Johnny is a retired paramedic and quickly assessed the passenger and was coordinating with Captain Mike in the wheelhouse and the crew. Captain Mike already had the boat pointed towards home and was running wide open throttle. The crew later mentioned they had never seen the boat go that fast.

As Capt Mike and Johnny were updating the Coast Guard, my dad, one of the crew, and I stayed with the passenger. Taking vitals and working to keep him awake and comfortable. After a while one of the crew let us know that the coast guard was sending a helicopter that should arrive within the hour. I had been so focused on the guy that I had not noticed all the movement around us. The crew had been asked to clear the back deck to prevent things from flying around when then helicopter made its approach. All of the crew and passengers sprang into action and were helping secure the deck and prepare for the helicopter. In the time we stayed in the galley with the sick passenger every few minutes someone would come in to see if we needed anything or there was anything they could do to help.

Within an hour we got a heads up that the Coast Guard helicopter was close. At this point the crew huddled in the back of the galley and started working through their plan. The crew was not only going over their plan but was also working through the contingencies. Even to the point of who was responsible for getting the ladder if the swimmer happened to go in the water. Shortly after we heard the helicopter closing in.

After circling the boat, a couple of times, the helicopter made its final approach and dropped a line down to the back deck of the boat. While the crew held the line the rescue swimmer was lowered down to the deck of the moving boat. Once inside Captain Johnny quickly gave the rescue swimmer a run down of the passenger and gave him the two pages of notes that we had written on the passenger’s conditions and vitals. After that, the crew moved the passenger into the rescue basket and helped the rescue swimmer secure him. Once secure the helicopter lifted the passenger and then the rescue swimmer back into the helicopter with amazing precision. And in what seemed like a flash the helicopter was out of site talking the passenger to the hospital.

View attachment 1288229
View attachment 1288230
View attachment 1288231

The rest of the ride home was somewhat somber. Following the trip, we received updates and the passenger is doing ok. This trip truly had the highest highs and the lowest lows of any trip I have ever been on. What made me want to write this novel was the true professionalism that I saw from the crew of the Relentless and the Coast Guard. I already knew this charter group is a special group. When this happened, every single person jumped into help in any way that they could. I would like to sincerely thank the crew of the Relentless for everything they did. They already were my favorite boat, but this put Mike and his crew on another level. I would also like to thank the Coast Guard. They are true heroes, and we are blessed to have them.

View attachment 1288232
Sounds like an awesome trip. Glad to here about the happy ending. We’re heading out on the NLA on the 18 hopefully fishing keeps up.
 
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fishincrazy

100 Ton
Jun 21, 2005
738
546
50
San Diego
Name
Mark
Boat
25' Mako "Get Hooked"
Great report and glad the guy is recovering. USCG is a great service. “Sempre Paratus” They are always ready!

I have fished on the Relentless and spent a few hours with Mike in the wheel house. He is one great person and an awesome Capt.

Oh, by the way nice fish! Congratulation.
 
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Baja Bev

Women of the West Rule!
Mar 8, 2016
64
94
Los Gatos, CA
www.bajabev.com
Name
Beverly Seltzer
Boat
crew
Outstanding report! As a former EMT we had a similar incident on one of Ronnie Kovach's trips while fishing San Clemente. Guy had a seizure next to me and I caught him as he collapsed. We had a coast guard rescue just as you described. Gotta love those brave men and women with mad skills.
 
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