IMG_7662Needless to say, I was pretty happy about last Friday’s outcome.  Going into that trip, the hope was to find some yellowfin tuna, or at least some paddy yellowtail.  A couple boats had found YFT within day range the previous week.  To find bluefin, big ones, in May…quite the surprise.  With a major jewel in the crown, it was time to look for another one – yellowtail.

Saturday May 23rd – Enterprise Sportfishing

During the week, one of my favorite boats, the Enterprise, had gotten into some local yellowtail.  The fish have been around for awhile, but just like everything else this year, they’ve been getting fat on that pelagic red crab.  Well last week, they decided to bite.

Naturally, when there is a local yellowtail bite, it will attract a crowd.  Me and my buddy Randy went down to get in on the action.  We were part of a group of 34 anglers that decided to ride with relief captain Jeff Patrick.  Alex and Smokey were working deck and Skeeter was in the galley.  Deckhand Nick Kim was onboard to fish and Sivvy rounded out our crew for the ride.

When we got out to the spot, it was a parking lot.  Sportboats from the local landings (Long Beach, Long Beach Marina, 22nd, Pierpont) as well as boats from as far south as Newport were all there.  And oh yeah, the privates were out in force as well.

enterprise_ nick_YT_052315Jeff decided to try outside and see if we could find our own fish to start.  Nice idea, but it didn’t play out.  When we came back inside and joined the crowd, we had our best opportunity of the day.  I chose to go surface iron, but they were holding a little deeper and wanted a heavier jig.  By the time I switched, the boat pressure sunk them out.  Crap.  Jeff decided to drop the pick and wait them out.  They did come back through.  They were holding right on the bottom, so I went dropper loop and bait.  Good call and I got bit.  Given the crowd on our own boat, the close proximity of other boats (and associated anglers’ lines) and the presence of sea lions…I pulled hard.  I must not have had it hooked that well and lost it.  Ugh.  It ended up being my only opportunity for the ride.  Despite my personal loss, the boat did pretty well notching 23 fish…all nicer grade 20lb+ local size.  Nick was high stick with 2 fish.

We ended up the day sculpin fishing and it was pretty much all you wanted.  I wasn’t interested in taking any home, but put a bunch onboard for the boat.  I fished a leadhead with a grubtail and tipped it with squid.  The combination tended to keep the smaller fish off and landed me a couple plus sized (for scullies) fish.

The best part of the day for me was just hanging out with my buddies and enjoying a beautiful day on the water.  I brought a big hunk of bluefin and the crew took turns having their way with it.  I had Skeeter make me a seared bft sandwich.  Nick sashimi’d up a bunch and had a really nice teriyaki wasabi sauce for dipping.  Siv went seared with sriracha.  The quest for the Triple Crown was over, but it was still a great day.  I still had the trip that night…

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