Unusual Labor Day Weekend Fish Report…Even For El Nino
Yellowtail, yellowfin, bluefin, dorado…the bite just kept going this weekend. Bluefin kind of made a “comeback” if you will with several boats getting on these prized fish again. They weren’t the monsters of earlier in the season, but there were a lot of nice grade 30 to 50-pound models.
A few events really grabbed the spotlight from this past weekend.
Free Gaffed Dodo!
I was coming home from chasing yellowtail on the Island Spirit out of Ventura Sportfishing. Among other things, we saw a marlin jumper near Anacapa on that trip. Anyway, when we got back into cell range, I noticed this video on my feed. My buddy, Capt. Gabriel Ceballos of Liberty Sportfishing had just free gaffed a dodo in their slip at Long Beach Sportfishing. I texted him when we got in and got the story.
Gabe worked deck on the ¾-day run, so a relief captain was going to take his twilight run. The relief captain was getting ready to gas up the boat when Gabe noticed the dodo swimming around in the next slip over. Gabe grabbed a gaff off his boat and missed on his first try. The fish wasn’t as fortunate on his second try when Gabe connected.
Somehow weird, random fish find their way into the back waterways of Long Beach / Wilmington. There was that yellowfin earlier in the season we all remember and a wahoo a few years back. My colleague Erik Landesfeind commented that the same thing happened last El Nino. We were fortunate though to have indisputable video evidence on this one. Congrats Gabe!
Another Confirmed Wahoo
Sunday I was getting in from my second trip of the weekend, an overnight trip on the Seabiscuit out of Channel Islands Sportfishing. I had a fish report come through from Ryan Cicero of Oceanside. Ryan launched Sunday out of Oceanside Harbor aboard The Maisy, owned by Steve Dikeman. They were trolling not far off the coast when the wahoo came up and bit the mackerel-colored Rapala that Ryan was pulling on straight 50-pound on his trusty Penn 113, paired with his custom 80-pound stick.
Pictured with the prized catch is (left to right) Ryan, Steve Dikeman, and Bob Anspaugh who also gaffed the fish. Congrats to all of you.
Opah On Sea Adventure II
Finally, the cherry on top of the weekend is this HUGE opah weighing in at 165.8-pounds on the scale at H&M Landing. Sea Adventure II crew member, Patrick Dorety, posted the picture of angler Carl Cottrell. Cottrell bested the beast in about an hour on 30-pound test. The fish is thought to be the second largest opah ever caught on rod and reel. Way to go Carl!
As we head into fall, we enter into what many seasoned anglers consider the best time of the year.
Offshore opportunities abound with fewer of the crowded frenzies of summer.
Take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy a season that we’ll be talking about for years to come.