Slow 7-Day in the RP, 9/8-9/15

tommysdad

I've posted enough I should edit this section
May 14, 2004
341
421
San Diego
Name
Jim
Boat
Parker 2320
Quick version: Hit the Rocks for ~28 Wahoo & similar # of nice YT; upper Ridge for all you can catch small tuna, 2 long, painfully slow days at San Pablo for not much, finished up at Colonet for ~56 decent YT.

Long version: Left Friday, 9/8 on the Accurate 7-day on the RP, with Bob Peterson as Accurate rep (a great fisherman and really good host).

Original plan was to head to Guadalupe (where we killed it last year), then maybe see if the BFT bite had recovered from the recent weather. Checked passports, paid for permits, off to bait barge for seriously good looking sardines that we were hoping the Guadalupe tuna would find irresistible. Crew was Jonathan Yamate at the helm, Dharyl, Eddie, Greg, Doug on the deck, Dave & Joe in the galley.

Couple hours south of the harbor, Jonathan makes an audible based on RR3 reports from the Island (lots of bites, not so many landed) and Excel at the Rocks (~125 wahoo over a day & half). So straight south we go. Really smooth ride. Anticipation was high, since the Rocks would be unmolested for 4-5 days by the time we arrived.

Trolling started mid-day Saturday, which was a mistake, because the lone troller hooked a huge marlin that cost us some precious time at the Rocks. Even lost the jig. Crew estimate was 250 lbs; seeing it tail-walk was cool, but not what we were there for.

Got to trolling at the Rocks a little before 10 on Sunday, and it started out pretty well. Fairly regular troll strikes plus a few jig fish (hot ticket was 6X Jr with a single hook, Tony the Tiger or some grey swirly thing that most folks would leave on the rack) got us up to ~15 within the first hour and a half or so. Nice start! Slowed down a bit, so we headed to the outer bank there for a dozen grouper (10-40 lbs, not huge) and a couple of dozen 30-35 lb YT, all on dropper loop.

Back to wahoo fishing, which was much slower in the afternoon, and scratched our way to about 28 total.

Jonathan made the decision to head to the Ridge to get some tuna, so East we headed.

Got to the 13 spot fairly early and started hooking tuna regularly. Started out with a few 20 lb fish, then got swarmed by 5-8 lb footballs, some bonita, and really pesky skipjack. Ended up with plenty of tuna, but the quality really wasn't what we were looking for -- mostly 5-12 pounds, with another slug at 15-20, and a handful of 25+ pound fish. Steady action all day though. Later in the afternoon we started seeing signs of wahoo -- a flatfall coming back all scratched up with hooks cut off, a couple bait hook-ups that were cut off immediately, and then a free swimmer right off the bow. So a couple of quick trolling rotations put another wahoo on the boat, plus a couple more small YFT. Everything worked for the YFT, from fly-lined sardines, to surface iron, to Colt Snipers. Getting baits past the skipjack seemed the most challenging part of the entire thing. The weather was really nice, though, so at least we didn't get pounded.

Headed up the line to San Pablo where the fleet had been having good action on quality YT. Well, the fishing pressure finally took it's toll, and we were limited to handfuls of calico bass & assorted bottom dwellers. Finally found a nice school that wanted to play later in the day and started out well - then the Independence set up right next to us upswell and that was that. I think we tagged less a fish per rod on the stop. I even snagged a fish an Independence angler hooked up on my yo-yo outfit so, yeah, that was a little close. We tried to make bait that afternoon in super tight to the beach, but even that didn't cooperate, giving us only huge mackeral or lizardfish. Not the best bait-making session I've had (but not the worst, either). Another marlin was hooked here, on bait. What little that did work here was primarily the yo-yo, although a few fish were caught on sardines with 2 oz sliding sinkers.

We anchored up for the night and tried for YT again on Wednesday, but didn't tag a single fish before Jonathan made the decision to head north around mid-day. The RR3 & Excel were also in the area and had only a handful (or less) of YT each. It was really, really dead. The trip north Wednesday night was the worst weather of the entire trip, with some pretty stiff winds. Not tagging a fish didn't help folks sleep, either.

Made it to Colonet around 10:15 yesterday. And never did a day of 56 15-20 pound yellowtail seem so welcome on a 7-day trip before. That pretty steady action of 1-3 going for 5-6 hours was a welcome respite from the shellacking we received the previous two days. For the first 30 minutes or so they responded to yo yo jigs, and a few surface iron fish, but after that it was all about sardines on 1 oz sliding sinker rigs. We even had another marlin hook-up. Jonathan called it a trip a little after 4pm and home we came.

Fortunately, the crew as usual was excellent, and the food was top-notch, but what made the trip was a really decent group of guys. Those who had trouble getting out of the way knew their limitations, and everyone worked together fairly well. If anyone complained about the action, I didn't hear it. Not all trips come home with trophies, and it seems our timing was just little late, for either local cow BFT, the wahoo at the Rocks, or the quality YT at San Pablo. But there's always next year.

With no real stand-outs, I'll pass on the pictures and save the electrons. Better luck to everyone else headed out soon!
 

Pangamaster

Cow Town Here I come!
Jul 1, 2008
1,932
1,108
San Ramon, CA
Name
Dave
Boat
SD Long Range or Bay Area Day Boats.
Thanks for the report! Not every trip is gang busters! Sometimes you pay your dues into the karma bank. Still sounds like a fun trip ......better than any day at work!
 

freegaff2

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 31, 2014
858
1,479
73
Name
Craig Simcox
Boat
none
I've been on some really successful 7 days...and just as many that went like this. Too many times a 9 or 10 day would head back to the rocks, or that little nest of skin that didn't want to bite the first time around on the ridge, and we made the trip because of the extra couple of days. Newell went to 11 day charters on the Q just so Don could cover all the wahoo water, and then hit the better spots again. :D
 

kevina

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Sep 10, 2006
2,073
1,469
93
redondo beach
Name
kev
Boat
25' aqua sport
Quick version: Hit the Rocks for ~28 Wahoo & similar # of nice YT; upper Ridge for all you can catch small tuna, 2 long, painfully slow days at San Pablo for not much, finished up at Colonet for ~56 decent YT.

Long version: Left Friday, 9/8 on the Accurate 7-day on the RP, with Bob Peterson as Accurate rep (a great fisherman and really good host).

Original plan was to head to Guadalupe (where we killed it last year), then maybe see if the BFT bite had recovered from the recent weather. Checked passports, paid for permits, off to bait barge for seriously good looking sardines that we were hoping the Guadalupe tuna would find irresistible. Crew was Jonathan Yamate at the helm, Dharyl, Eddie, Greg, Doug on the deck, Dave & Joe in the galley.

Couple hours south of the harbor, Jonathan makes an audible based on RR3 reports from the Island (lots of bites, not so many landed) and Excel at the Rocks (~125 wahoo over a day & half). So straight south we go. Really smooth ride. Anticipation was high, since the Rocks would be unmolested for 4-5 days by the time we arrived.

Trolling started mid-day Saturday, which was a mistake, because the lone troller hooked a huge marlin that cost us some precious time at the Rocks. Even lost the jig. Crew estimate was 250 lbs; seeing it tail-walk was cool, but not what we were there for.

Got to trolling at the Rocks a little before 10 on Sunday, and it started out pretty well. Fairly regular troll strikes plus a few jig fish (hot ticket was 6X Jr with a single hook, Tony the Tiger or some grey swirly thing that most folks would leave on the rack) got us up to ~15 within the first hour and a half or so. Nice start! Slowed down a bit, so we headed to the outer bank there for a dozen grouper (10-40 lbs, not huge) and a couple of dozen 30-35 lb YT, all on dropper loop.

Back to wahoo fishing, which was much slower in the afternoon, and scratched our way to about 28 total.

Jonathan made the decision to head to the Ridge to get some tuna, so East we headed.

Got to the 13 spot fairly early and started hooking tuna regularly. Started out with a few 20 lb fish, then got swarmed by 5-8 lb footballs, some bonita, and really pesky skipjack. Ended up with plenty of tuna, but the quality really wasn't what we were looking for -- mostly 5-12 pounds, with another slug at 15-20, and a handful of 25+ pound fish. Steady action all day though. Later in the afternoon we started seeing signs of wahoo -- a flatfall coming back all scratched up with hooks cut off, a couple bait hook-ups that were cut off immediately, and then a free swimmer right off the bow. So a couple of quick trolling rotations put another wahoo on the boat, plus a couple more small YFT. Everything worked for the YFT, from fly-lined sardines, to surface iron, to Colt Snipers. Getting baits past the skipjack seemed the most challenging part of the entire thing. The weather was really nice, though, so at least we didn't get pounded.

Headed up the line to San Pablo where the fleet had been having good action on quality YT. Well, the fishing pressure finally took it's toll, and we were limited to handfuls of calico bass & assorted bottom dwellers. Finally found a nice school that wanted to play later in the day and started out well - then the Independence set up right next to us upswell and that was that. I think we tagged less a fish per rod on the stop. I even snagged a fish an Independence angler hooked up on my yo-yo outfit so, yeah, that was a little close. We tried to make bait that afternoon in super tight to the beach, but even that didn't cooperate, giving us only huge mackeral or lizardfish. Not the best bait-making session I've had (but not the worst, either). Another marlin was hooked here, on bait. What little that did work here was primarily the yo-yo, although a few fish were caught on sardines with 2 oz sliding sinkers.

We anchored up for the night and tried for YT again on Wednesday, but didn't tag a single fish before Jonathan made the decision to head north around mid-day. The RR3 & Excel were also in the area and had only a handful (or less) of YT each. It was really, really dead. The trip north Wednesday night was the worst weather of the entire trip, with some pretty stiff winds. Not tagging a fish didn't help folks sleep, either.

Made it to Colonet around 10:15 yesterday. And never did a day of 56 15-20 pound yellowtail seem so welcome on a 7-day trip before. That pretty steady action of 1-3 going for 5-6 hours was a welcome respite from the shellacking we received the previous two days. For the first 30 minutes or so they responded to yo yo jigs, and a few surface iron fish, but after that it was all about sardines on 1 oz sliding sinker rigs. We even had another marlin hook-up. Jonathan called it a trip a little after 4pm and home we came.

Fortunately, the crew as usual was excellent, and the food was top-notch, but what made the trip was a really decent group of guys. Those who had trouble getting out of the way knew their limitations, and everyone worked together fairly well. If anyone complained about the action, I didn't hear it. Not all trips come home with trophies, and it seems our timing was just little late, for either local cow BFT, the wahoo at the Rocks, or the quality YT at San Pablo. But there's always next year.

With no real stand-outs, I'll pass on the pictures and save the electrons. Better luck to everyone else headed out soon!
By reading the reports they posted for the first 2 days, It sounded like you had a great start. As they say believe 1/2 of what you hear when boats publish their reports. At least you had good weather for the most part of your trip with good company and food. Hopefully your next trip will compensate for this trip!
 

Steve K

Hey, I'm gettin' bit...
Jan 2, 2005
11,212
6,605
Bishop
Name
Steve
Boat
18' Bayrunner, but I like the American Angler and the Red Rooster III
"some gray swirly thing" Probably a Salas 6X Jr Tar Baby. Amazingly productive color. One of the several Catchy Tackle Sea Strike 33 Wahoo jigs I picked up years ago is a painted pattern, mottled gray and black. It works, too.

Against the grain of traditional thinking that Wahoo want bright shiny things.
 

eric harner

Caliente Tuna
Oct 7, 2009
1,912
1,048
62
Phoenix Hellazona
Name
Azlandlocked
Boat
RRII, PV, the Big X
"some gray swirly thing" Probably a Salas 6X Jr Tar Baby. Amazingly productive color. One of the several Catchy Tackle Sea Strike 33 Wahoo jigs I picked up years ago is a painted pattern, mottled gray and black. It works, too.

Against the grain of traditional thinking that Wahoo want bright shiny things.
I love my Tar Baby's when it's cloudy. :jig:
 

Steve K

Hey, I'm gettin' bit...
Jan 2, 2005
11,212
6,605
Bishop
Name
Steve
Boat
18' Bayrunner, but I like the American Angler and the Red Rooster III
As I was about to tie on the Pink/Black 6X, Matt said: "That's a good lure"

20170916_085841.jpg 20170916_085848.jpg

And here are a couple of darker Sea Strike 33 jigs. A few toothy tatoos.
20170916_085953.jpg
 

tommysdad

I've posted enough I should edit this section
May 14, 2004
341
421
San Diego
Name
Jim
Boat
Parker 2320
"some gray swirly thing" Probably a Salas 6X Jr Tar Baby. Amazingly productive color. One of the several Catchy Tackle Sea Strike 33 Wahoo jigs I picked up years ago is a painted pattern, mottled gray and black. It works, too.

Against the grain of traditional thinking that Wahoo want bright shiny things.

I looked on the Salas website, and the pattern was green sardine, but the paint color was straight gray. A couple guys (who were fishing together) had them.
 

Workplacesafety

Reducing workplace injuries and illnesses
Feb 20, 2010
3,412
2,763
Long Beach Ca.
Name
Jeff Bruner
Boat
14ft Valco, San Diego Long Range Boats
For the surface iron, hard to beat Fishdoggary's "purple pleaser" this one got cigar smoked on the slooooooooooooow deliberate wind, fish flying out of the water, pretty exciting.

035.JPG
 
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Steve K

Hey, I'm gettin' bit...
Jan 2, 2005
11,212
6,605
Bishop
Name
Steve
Boat
18' Bayrunner, but I like the American Angler and the Red Rooster III
Salas-tar.jpg
I looked on the Salas website, and the pattern was green sardine, but the paint color was straight gray. A couple guys (who were fishing together) had them.
On the Charkbait website, they call it Black Sardine.
 
Last edited:

LEGENDS

Yogi Bear
May 7, 2011
1,174
320
Lakeside
Name
Sam
Boat
None
Ohhhh what a bummer to hear of a trip like this. Back a couple years I was on the same Accurate 7 day and I couldn't wait to get off that piece. Same capt. and some of the same crew. We never made it down past hippolitto bank... spent 3 days at San Clemente for a whopping 25-30 small yft. I choose a much better operation.
 

TShooter

Team Cheesy Poof
Mar 24, 2004
413
20
Alpine
Name
Robert Peterson
Boat
Yak, Cheesy Poof
Ohhhh what a bummer to hear of a trip like this. Back a couple years I was on the same Accurate 7 day and I couldn't wait to get off that piece. Same capt. and some of the same crew. We never made it down past hippolitto bank... spent 3 days at San Clemente for a whopping 25-30 small yft. I choose a much better operation.
Poor opinion... that trip HAD to spend time up north due to a hurricane. I guess you would have rather them risk your life?
 

LEGENDS

Yogi Bear
May 7, 2011
1,174
320
Lakeside
Name
Sam
Boat
None
No, safety is first, but there were a few factors that contributed to a bad trip. A/C not working, rice in about 3/4 of the meals, poor attitudes from some of the crew. I get it, not every boat or trip is perfect. I wasn't the only person who felt this way about the trip.