Over the course of two in a half days in Mexican waters, 20+ anglers caught dozens of Bluefin Tuna, Yellowtail, and 1 Dorado while on the Top Gun 80 located in San Diego, California. I had a chance to be a part of this fish hungry group of men, mainly older, that came from all over the world. It wasn’t the insanely good fishing that was expected but rather I got to see first hand what it was like to be in the middle of the sea with no communication to anyone other than the anglers, the captain, the cook, and the two deckhands on board.
My father, my brother, my sister, and I boarded the Top Gun 80 early evening on Friday, July 20th, for a 2 1/2 day trip with high hopes for Tuna. The Weather Gods had other ideas in mind for my poor sister. Although I hadn’t gotten sick, my sister was practically on her death bed the entire trip. To be offshore in weather like that does not make for sweet dreams.
Clearing Point Loma that night, we headed south west towards the Mexican Sea. I managed to climb out of the sack about 7 AM, both mornings, and was greeted with cloudy skies and a light wind. An early jig strike quickly produced two yellow tails which provided some optimism that was caught by myself as well as my sister, Shonda. Another small kelp bed helped us land a few more yellowtails, but painfully not as many as we had hoped.
It continued like this through the next day — an occasional kelp turning out a handful of yellow tail, but at least the ones we did find were hungry. I caught a total of 3 fish while the rest of my family hooked a total of 5 other yellowtail…all pretty good size. Although we hadn’t caught as many fish as we would have liked, it was a great time with my family and the fellow fisherman.
As I had no prior experience overnight on a boat like this, I was amazed to see the fight that each angler had. Whenever the boat slowed down, the captain came on the loud speaker, or the screams of “fish on” or “fresh one” rang through the air.. each one of the anglers disbursed quickly from the cabin determined to be the first one on the fish! Although the men had this fierceness about them, they were very polite and sincere to myself, a twenty year old female, but I could see it in each and every one of those eyes the determination that truly comes from years of fishing.
This attitude of being the first one to cast your line in the water played a huge role in catching the yellowtail. But, of course, there’s always that one person to prove that theory wrong– my sister! When she was feeling very ill lying just inside the cabin, everybody ran out and began to fish; my sister slowly followed behind every angler. Within minutes of casting out her line, BAM! FISH ON! Everyone turned their heads, shook there heads a little bit, and were in awe as they had even forgotten that my sister was on the boat. A great end to a great two in a half days out on the water! A big THANK YOU to my parents, Chad and Cassandra, for working hard in the months leading up to this in order to fund another fun adventure of mine!