Showtime on the Star

Discussion in 'San Diego Long Range fishing Reports' started by picasso, May 6, 2016.

  1. picasso

    picasso Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    los angeles
    Name:
    joe
    Boat:
    17 Boston Whaler
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    "Welcome back my friends, to the show that never ends..."

    The latest road trip, on this thrilling adventure ride we call San Diego Long Range Fishing, started last August when I contacted the offices of Royal Star about an opening I had seen on their Spring schedule.

    It was a first for me, yes, even at my age there are firsts.
    A 17 day/ 11 night excursion that allowed for flights to and from Cabo San Lucas to board & depart the boat.
    It's a great way to avoid those long three day boat rides to & from San Diego.
    You can ride either way, if you like.
    It's an option available to all, but chosen by few.
    I like the option to spend fewer nights on the boat, yet still having the choice to fish either the Shimada Seamount or Clarion Island, or both.
    This trip was being sponsored by a San Diego based fishing radio show called Let's Talk Hook Up.

    The young lady in the Star office answered all of my questions, handled all of the arrangements, and for some unknown reason, maybe she's got sales skills, maybe she's just a nice person, she treated me more like a friend than a customer.
    I sent a deposit check before she found out who I was and changed her mind.
    Some guys call me a nut, the nice ones just say I'm enthusiastic.

    In January, I started planning in earnest, replenishing my supplies and scouring the internet for discussions on the latest in tackle and techniques.

    In March, I saw my friends Sean & Rosie from Fisherman's Processing at the Fred Hall Fishing Show in Long Beach.
    F.P. and Royal Star are affiliated companies and share some common owners.
    When I told Sean I was going out again, and would, hopefully, be in need of his services, he said, "Let me grab my book."
    He started flipping thru the pages and asked me what the dates were.
    I told him.
    He asked me what boat I was riding this time?
    For the first time, in our long relationship, I said, "Royal Star."
    He put his pen down and extended his hand to me.
    He shook my hand and said, "Finally."
    "Welcome to the family."
    I felt like a "made" man in the mafia.
    Rosie came over and gave me the customary kiss on each cheek.
    Sean told me I was number one on the list for same day service.

    About a month later, the young lady in the office sent out a mass email to all of the participants.
    One name in the address bar jumped out at me
    I knew I had heard of him, but I couldn't recall the where or the when.

    I contacted a mentor of mine, a guru his own self, and asked him who "that guy" was.
    "Oh Joe," he says, "you are in for a treat."
    "You're about to fish with, one of, if not thee, finest gentlemen in the fleet."
    That's pretty high praise and coming from who it was, it meant a lot.
    I was really looking forward to meeting this individual.

    Looking at a fishing website I occasionally visit, I noticed there were a couple of "Bloody Deckers" on the trip as well.

    The young lady in the office told me one of them was on the same flight as I, and asked if I might keep an eye out for him.
    She probably warned him about me.
    I contacted Warlord, aka Steve Rohmine, of the famous Kansas Rohmine clan, and suggested that if we somehow "got along" at the load- in on Saturday the 16th, that maybe we might share a cocktail while waiting for our flight to Cabo on Tuesday, the 19th.

    He was agreeable, and when we met, I knew right away we'd get along fine.

    I had one more pre-trip obligation to take care of.
    I don't know who is who's sidekick anymore, but my good fishing buddy, The Kid, aka Nick Rekrut, got together one Saturday morning, so he could wish me luck, and I could raid his tackle box.
    He offered me some Soft Steel fishing line and I asked if he had any J hooks he didn't want anymore.
    Because he is one of the "cool" guys, he's a circle hooker now.

    He gave me a couple of handfuls of ringed J hooks in the 5/0 and 6/0 sizes.
    He discouraged me from using them, but resigned himself to the fact that I was unable, as he put it, "to think outside the box."
    The Kid forgets how old I am.
    I was there the day they built "the box".

    Despite that argument, we kissed and hugged, and he bade me, "Good Luck!"
    He knew, and I knew, I would need it.

    Truth be told, I missed The KId a lot this trip.
    We've been buddies for a few years now, and I guess I've gotten used to having him around to liven things up.
    Missed him a lot at the beginning as I transitioned back into being a "solo".
     
  2. Juanba

    Juanba CR

    Location:
    Pt Loma
    Name:
    John John John
    Boat:
    Kayak,Gregor, Panga, Long Range SD
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    Can hardy wait for more.
    Do we have to beg?
     
    Warlord likes this.
  3. picasso

    picasso Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    los angeles
    Name:
    joe
    Boat:
    17 Boston Whaler
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    SATURDAY, APRIL 16TH

    THE SHOW LOADS IN...

    2:45 a.m. Rise & shine for the drive from west LA to Diego.
    I really missed my chauffeur/sherpa, aka The Kid this morning.

    6:00 a.m. Arrival at the landing.
    Rather than board in order of ticket purchase, the Star has a first come/first served policy. Guys tend to show up at all hours of the night, trying to secure a primo spot for their tackle box.
    That's not important to me, so I tried to be sporting and give everyone a chance first.
    I took my spot at the back of the line and started introducing myself to the guys at my end of the line.
    There was Greg from NoCal, Steve J. from Chatsworth, and Dennis D. from Long Beach nearby.
    I spy sponsor representative Gary White standing by the tackle shop, and go over to say hello. We fished together years ago on the Qualifier but he has no recollection.
    A big, burly guy comes strolling over, wth a smile on his face, and says his name is Steve.
    "You mean Warlord, don't you?" I reply.
    His smile widens even further.
    "One and the same," he says.

    Captain/Owner Brian Simms is coming towards me now, pushing a cart, and says, "Good Morning."
    The puzzled look on his face tells me he's trying to remember where he's seen me, and whether it was a good or bad experience.
    Duty calls him away, and he's left with three days to ponder that riddle.

    I look behind me and I see a white haired, grand fatherly looking character has stepped out of the shadows and is pushing his cart to the end of the line.
    Damn, the guy's more sporting than me.
    He tells me his name is Bruce, but I know from my guru, that this is Obi Wan Kenobi.
    I say hello back and feel the Force in his handshake.

    By seven a.m., all of our gear is loaded on board.
    Four passengers have elected to ride down, and the boat takes off to put on multiple scoops of bait.

    The Santa Ana winds have been blowing and cleared the skies over Southern California.
    Visibility is unlimited as I drive north, up the coast, gazing at Catalina Island from the freeway.
    Poor surface conditions though, whitecaps.
    Maybe there is a tailwind for the boat.

    I got home @ 9:30, started watching the clock, wondering where the boat is, and hoping I didn't forget anything.
    Later, they told us they tried to fish on the way down.
    They got nothing for their efforts.
     
  4. gved823

    gved823 Member

    Location:
    Lakewood
    Name:
    Gary
    Boat:
    Sold
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    Awesome reading. As always. Looking forward to the next episode
     
  5. Rodless_Jim

    Rodless_Jim I've posted enough I should edit this section

    Location:
    Mexico, DF, Mexico
    Name:
    Jim
    Boat:
    Strictly a Rider
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    You GO Joe!
     
  6. Warlord

    Warlord Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    Granada Hills, CA
    Name:
    Steve
    Boat:
    22' Supreme Wakeboard Boat
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    Help us Obi Wan. You're our only hope. I have to say that I would welcome this gentleman on any trip ever! Unfortunately, even a Jedi master couldn't save us from our fate.
     
    Tim Turis likes this.
  7. picasso

    picasso Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    los angeles
    Name:
    joe
    Boat:
    17 Boston Whaler
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    I think you mean You from Your fate.
     
  8. picasso

    picasso Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    los angeles
    Name:
    joe
    Boat:
    17 Boston Whaler
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    TUESDAY, APRIL 19TH
    THE CAST ARRIVES...

    5:30 a.m. Up and at 'em to get ready.
    7:30 a.m. Taxi to LAX.
    8:30 a.m. Find the Warlord for that cocktail I promised him.

    10:30 a.m. Our flight boards passengers. I bid the Warlord good luck as he heads towards the coach section, and I take my seat in first class.

    12:30 p.m. Our flight arrives. It is 1:30 p.m. in Cabo.
    We get thru customs & immigration.
    I get us a taxi and we hit the pavement.
    Somehow, we've ended up in a van with 8 or 9 other people, and the van is making stops along the way, delaying our arrival at the landing.
    Finally, we get near enough to the harbor, that I know a place where we can get a water taxi to the boat, which is anchored nearby.
    We are the last of the passengers to arrive.

    4 p.m. The crew hauls the anchor and we shove off onto the adventure that awaits.

    4:05 p.m. Martini time. I go off to mingle and introduce myself to the other passengers.
    You met a few last Saturday.
    I'll introduce the rest of them to you now.

    Baltimore Jack was rooming with Gary White.
    NoCal Greg turned out to be with a buddy, Dave Ebola.
    Blaine de Vegas, aka Maximus, was a solo.
    Bloodydecker Mark, aka Old Salt was with his young friend Jordan, who reminded me a lot of The Kid. Had that wonderful youthful enthusiasm.
    Bloodydecker Terry W., aka TDub, was on board.
    Another Bloodydecker, Andy B. aka Matador, was checking in from San Clemente, and I got to know him a bit the first night over dinner.
    ER Doctor Stuart Exall, I met him right before dinner the first night, and loved every moment I spent in his company.
    Ramona's Dave B., I met him last. The next morning in fact. Really cool guy.

    I mentioned Captain/Owner Brian Simms previously.
    Our second ticket was recently commissioned, Captain Paul Carramao.
    The Headman on the deck was crewman Blake Wasano.
    He was joined by crewmen Steve Gregonis & Ryan Browne.

    For a long time, Royal Star had a chef everyone called the Savant.
    I was looking forward to his cooking when I booked the trip.
    When I got on board, someone told me the Savant left last week to go become a fireman.
    Lucky for the firehouse that gets him.
    Unlucky for me.

    But Chef Mike Smith has stepped into the breech, and did an admirable job under adverse conditions.
    Galley assistant Nestor Paredes did some pretty amazing stuff of his own.
    We didn't starve.
    They took care of us real good.

    6:00 p.m. Dinner is served
    I share a table with Warlord and the previously mentioned Matador.

    7:00 p.m. Listening to music in my cabin, I'm unpacking & unwinding.
    It's been a long day.
    9:00 p.m. Dreamland.
     
  9. bob1825

    bob1825 I've posted enough I should edit this section

    Location:
    San Fernando Valley
    Name:
    Jason
    Boat:
    Anyone the fits my schedule
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    Great intro...
     
  10. The Matador

    The Matador Gaff Man

    Location:
    San Clemente, Ca
    Name:
    Andy
    Boat:
    Waiting
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    It's like reliving the trip all over again.. Nice job Joe!!
     
  11. reellady

    reellady I'd rather be catching TUNA

    Location:
    fresno, ca usa
    Name:
    donna
    Boat:
    reel lady
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    Thank you Loreto, I always enjoy reading your stories. Now bring on the rest.
     
  12. hagridfish

    hagridfish Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    Aurora Colorado
    Name:
    Kevin
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    None
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    Hi Joe.
    I love your writing. You spin a tale with the best of them, always assumed you do it for a living. Anyway, Please stop teasing, and get on with it!!!!! LOL I'm really looking forward to the rest of it. Did Brian ever remember who you were???
     
  13. IParker

    IParker Newbie

    Location:
    South OC
    Name:
    Ian
    Boat:
    None
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    No more Drew?
     
  14. fujirose

    fujirose Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    Roseville, CA
    Name:
    Jim Fujitani
    Boat:
    21' Seaswirl
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    GREAT WRITING!!! As usual!

    But please tell me that Drew is still a Royal Star Chef, and not a Fireman!!!!
     
  15. picasso

    picasso Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    los angeles
    Name:
    joe
    Boat:
    17 Boston Whaler
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    WEDNESDAY, APRIL 20TH
    THE DRESS REHEARSAL...

    5:00 a.m. Shower & look for a cup of Joe.
    Find one & sit down to chat w/ Chatsworth Steve and Dennis Dee.
    Dave B. from Ramona is on the back deck, and we finally get a chance to say "Hi".

    6:30 a.m. Bacon & Eggs. Can you smell them?

    7:00 a.m. Start rigging tackle in earnest.
    What is normally a three day process, has been compressed into one, which meant your pre-prep work at home could be vital.

    9:00 a.m. Captain Paul holds a tackle seminar for everyone in the galley.
    We contine rigging tackle.

    Sometime later, the Skipper came down and gathered everyone in the galley.
    He said the PA/Intercom system was down with some kind of a "glitch".
    Another boat in the fleet, Independence would be bringing down some parts in a few days, so they could make a repair.
    In the meantime, you could phone him, text him, or tell a deckhand.
    Someone would get back to you.

    He laid down some rules for the jackpot.
    I declined when asked.

    Crewman Steve added some line to one of my reels, and liked the rod I had it paired with. That made me like Steve right away.

    Noon
    I skip lunch and continue rigging heavy tackle.

    3:00 p.m. Oh-oh. We've got a plumbing problem. Apparently, a drain has backed up and some carpets in some cabins are soaked. The crew goes to work.
    With those men at work, I'm unable to access my reel bag so preparation grinds to a halt.
    I console myself with a cold beer and chat with the Warlord.

    4:30 p.m. They fixed the drain, and my rigging is complete. I've tied on hooks and checked drags. Again.
    I get a feeling and go upstairs and give the Skipper my entrance fee for the jackpot.
    That feeling.
    With Obi Wan aboard, I knew I was out of the running for the Sportsmanship Award.
    I figured I may as well compete for the jackpot...

    5:30 p.m. Happy Hour!

    6:30 p.m. Dinner.
    First, Last, & Only Call for Dinner.
    I came upstairs looking for good food and good company.
    I invited myself to join some gents at a table.
    They looked me over and didn't object.
    Obi Wan was talking to Dr. Stuart Exall.
    If that name sounds familiar, it's because he's another angler who lives on a different plane of existence than guys like you & me. I will tell you more about Stuart as we go along.
    Maximus was already seated at the table, and Captain Paul came and joined us later.

    This afternoon, Paul & I got a chance to talk about tackle.
    He too, was discouraging me from using the J hooks.
    He recommended the circle hook, but said if I was determined, he advised me to use the strongest of the choices I showed him.

    Dinner was fantastic.
    Nestor's baked alaska knocked it out of the park.
    And set off the smoke alarms.
    Before leaving the table, Captain Paul asked me about a guy named Loreto.
    I pretended not to hear him.

    After dinner was done, Gary White passed out a bunch of goodies to everyone.
    I won a T-shirt I re-gifted to Nestor.
    I won a lure I passed onto Stuart.

    Now, with my tackle prepared, I'm liking the fact we don't have three more days of travel ahead.

    8:00 p.m. Fishing tomorrow. ETA 0530.
    I showered and went to bed.
     
  16. lee337

    lee337 ahuntnfisherman

    Name:
    larry lee
    Boat:
    bass boat
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    I love reports like this,sometimes I wish I wouldn't find them until all the chapters were written!:appl: The waiting almost kills me!!! :-):-):-)
     
    seadragon_1981 likes this.
  17. seadragon_1981

    seadragon_1981 Member

    Location:
    San Diego
    Name:
    Ryan
    Boat:
    *
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    Me too
     
  18. Rodless_Jim

    Rodless_Jim I've posted enough I should edit this section

    Location:
    Mexico, DF, Mexico
    Name:
    Jim
    Boat:
    Strictly a Rider
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    I can't write these anymore. I've lost the ability to remember the way I used to. I'm so glad that Joe is still writing these reports! His were always better than mine anyway.

    Don't worry, Joe. I'll wait patiently. I know what it's like!
     
    NaplesJohn likes this.
  19. NaplesJohn

    NaplesJohn Never Forget 343

    Location:
    Port Aransas, TX, USA
    Name:
    John
    Boat:
    Wilderness Systems T-160...and just sold the boat!!!
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    I miss your reports, as you had a gift also. The epic reports are a lot of work, but always enjoy the finished product of the few guys who put the serious effort into the reports.
     
  20. picasso

    picasso Well-Known "Member"

    Location:
    los angeles
    Name:
    joe
    Boat:
    17 Boston Whaler
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    THURSDAY, APRIL 21ST

    THE CURTAIN RISES...
    THE OPENING ACT.

    5:00 a.m. I'm up, and at 'em.

    5;30 a.m. It's still dark outside.
    I gulp hot coffee, gobble my black beans w/ chorizo & eggs.
    I take some tylenol to stay ahead of the pain.
    I feel good.
    I wish everyone around me, "good luck" in the days ahead.

    5:45 a.m.
    We approach the island from the northeast.
    We slow down and put jigs in the water to troll for gamefish.

    7:00 a.m.
    Zip, zero, nada on the troll.
    Team One gives us a glimpse of what we can expect from them for the rest of the trip.
    We stopped to soak some baits.
    The sharks got on us pretty quick and thick.

    8:00 a.m.
    We looked around.
    We would stop to soak baits.
    We would hook sharks.
    Ramona's Dave B. and I ran into each other at the bait tank.
    Being the sporting gentlemen we are, I offered to let him go first.
    He insisted I take the honor.
    It would shame us both if I refused.
    Chummer Ryan Browne, standing atop the tank, watches our little dance, then dips his net and brings out a monster sardine.
    He motioned for me to hand him my hook.
    He slides the hook into the back of the sardine and motions to the starboard corner.
    I thanked him,
    and I thanked Dave B. later.
    A gentle underhand toss and that bait took off.
    I thought that bait was magic.
    It swam a long time, and came back to me in pristine condition.
    I wanted to save it for later.
    Then I realized, that even if I hooked a tuna right now, I would never be able to get it thru the gauntlet of grinners swimming around our stern.

    8:45 a.m.
    We stopped to soak baits.
    Someone spotted some birds crashing the surface, way off in the distance.
    We took off to go see what we could see.
    When we got there, we could see they were the "peanut" size grade of tuna.
    We put three on the boat to use for "chunk" bait later, and kept going.
    The marine layer is thick, blocking the sun.
    It's cold when the boat turns into the wind.

    10:00 a.m.
    Team One finally gets bit on the troll.
    It's a micro size tuna.

    We drop anchor and fish.
    I'm humming songs to myself at the rail.
    Warlord suggests a bloody Mary, but I decline.
    I had another nice bait on, was in the zone, and had avoided the sharks, so far.

    10:30 a.m.
    We haul the anchor and go on the troll.
    Team Two takes over.
    I look for Warlord and reconsider the bloody Mary.

    11:00 a.m.
    We've moved around to the south side of the island now.
    We've found some porpoise, but now willing biters.

    12:20 p.m.
    I get up from my horizontal resting position, look out the galley window, and realize we have left the island.

    We closed the curtain on the opening act.
    It wasn't much of a hit.
    We packed up everything and got the show on the road.
    Our next curtain call is in 18 hours.
    We'll be on stage at the Shimada Seamount.
     

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