When commercial fishermen from Agua Verde lost a cow-sized tuna at Isla Santa Catalan near Loreto in the Gulf of California and spotted others crashing at dusk on Jan. 5, they shared the knowledge – resulting in a valiant angling effort and a pending IGFA record.
Robert Ross, an American off-road racer and resident of nearby Playa San Cosme, with sons-in-law, Jorge Lazo, Tijuana, and Jay Yadon, owner of Outpost Charters in Loreto, joined by deckhand Tony Winkler responded to the news.
They set course on Jan. 6 in Ross’s 37 Boston Whaler Rampage for the often-fertile waters not far from the Marina Puerto Escondido where they had previously landed a 400-plus pounder, setting the stage for their three-day tuna-chasing marathon that would include six hookups with four landed.
The two largest were caught by Lazo on an Accurate Valiant BV2-800 reel loaded with 50# P-Line, 100# Hi-Seas fluorocarbon leader with a Mustad 6/0 hook on a Seeker rod. The largest tuna weighed 424.6-pounds, topping the current IGFA record of 385-pounds, 12 ounces by a click less than 40-pounds. Lazo’s second tuna weighed 319-pounds — a two-day fish total for both the angler and his Accurate Valiant BV2-800 of 743.6-pounds.
“I’ve never caught two fish that large, that quickly, back-to-back,” Lazo confessed. “The reel’s compact size and unfailing consistent drag system was a ‘game changer’ for me catching those two monsters.”
In addition, two other yellowfin were landed – one at 242-pounds taken by Ross and the other by Yadon rounding out the three-day catch at 212.5-pounds.
Underscoring the entire adventure was Ross’s success on Sat. – the day before their Sunday-thru-Tuesday’s valiant effort – when he had landed, by himself, a respectable 267-pound tuna plus two amberjack, each weighing in excess of 70-pounds.
The ultimate small reel big fish story for sure. Not one but two fish of a lifetime back to back days.
Photo Credit: Jay Yadon, Outpost Charters