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Old 07-26-2018, 02:03 PM   #1
Gun Rod Bow
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Default Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

I met my buddy Les almost 20 years ago while fishing Bonneville. We've stayed in touch. Fished together some.

Our mutual friend Marty invited me on my first long range trip a couple of years ago and I thought it was the coolest thing ever. Les was my bunkmate on the Royal Polaris that trip. Great guy.

He has been really focused on Bluefin the last couple of years. Made a few trips down to So Cal chasing them. But its a lot tougher fishery than some let on.

This year he got on a private charter on the Pacific Dawn with his and Marty's buddy "Rocky" Dave who is a long range Master of the first order. Big tuna killer and Avet service guy.

Les doesnt know how to post pics. So I told him I'd set up his report and he will jump in.



Les working the rail with a cow-class BFT



The result



Rocky where hes been LOTS of times. Tight on a big tuna



4 Gaffs in a slob of a BFT

Good job guys.

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Old 07-26-2018, 02:21 PM   #2
Salty Walty
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Well done and Congrats Les!
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Old 07-26-2018, 02:43 PM   #3
ron m
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Very nice! Fish that big are tough, getting them to the boat is work!
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Old 07-26-2018, 02:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

So Les has always been as generous as he is nice.

I was able to meet him on his way home and intercept some of the amazing, fresh, unfrozen deliciousness.



Check out the belly walls on this piece of belly.



Some good old sashimi

I'm not going to throw out my Ahi, but the BFT was noticably more rich. We had some sticky rice. Made a few pieces of nigiri. And mostly just dipped and ate.



The belly as sashimi was SO rich. Like popping a pad of butter in your mouth.



My buddies in So Cal say they "carmelize" it on the BBQ. So does Les and Marty. So I made a foil boat, salt and pepper, about 1/4" of soy in the boat. Then popped it in the Traeger for 30 minutes until cooked through.



As wrong as it seemed to cook fresh BFT. Cooking it brought the flavor out through the fat. I poured the mixture of soy and clear oil back over the meat as I took it off.

It was simply amazing. Especially over a little rice.

Thanks so much Les!
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Old 07-26-2018, 03:47 PM   #5
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Very nice indeed.
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Old 07-26-2018, 04:09 PM   #6
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Holy Cr*p how sweet so Impressive,, Thanks !!! for sharing
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Old 07-26-2018, 04:12 PM   #7
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Thanks for that.
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Old 07-26-2018, 04:49 PM   #8
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Oh my, on every level.
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Old 07-26-2018, 05:00 PM   #9
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Nice fish, and great looking sushi! Somehow my Rockfish dinner isn't sounding all that great...
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Old 07-26-2018, 06:08 PM   #10
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

So cool, congrats Booja1! And you're right GRB, he is one very good helpful guy, and obsessed with those bft's.

He's helped me a lot with my couple short trips down to socal.

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Old 07-26-2018, 07:08 PM   #11
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Wow. Great Pics. I’m headed to SoCal in a couple weeks to chase BFT. Any suggestions what gear to bring?
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Old 07-26-2018, 07:52 PM   #12
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Thx alot fo taking da time Mr Bruce, thx alot too Walt n QR

Jumped on da boat last Fri nite, back to dock Sun nite. Hooked up wit an old bud who happened to be da chartermaster and he let Rocky n I on. Boat came in while we were waiting with 8 fish fo 14 guys. Doesn't sound like an impressive fish count BUT the fish were all ova 100lbs apiece wit da biggie at 287. One hasta see these things in person to get da full effect. So we were hoping skipper would be able to find some willing participants in da morn. Many many times this stuff moves overnite n cannot find em da next day...Chartermaster calls all 16 of us into galley n shares da game plan.. we are going to gamble and go for da big stuff, which also means we can come home wit da beeg goose egg as well. No stopping on kelp paddys fo yellows, no stopping on breaking yft's (10-25lbs) just a one track mind and gonna grind all day into Sun. Another thing he mentioned on his charters, if we catch one fish or limit da boat, all fish is evenly shared wit all so u are basically fishing for the whole boat as a team. He said if u hang one, do not play macho man if u get gassed, hand rod off it u need to, nobody cares, just put that thing on da deck. All tastes da same no matter who landed it.

Skipper is incredibly fishy, Rocky has fished wit him awhile ago when he was first on da Excel way back when. He would see the fish on da machine and know if it was the right grade or not, of course Bluefin being Bluefin most of da time do NO cooperate.

We get up around 0430 after engines shut down on top of fish on East end of Clemente. Fish are 250-350 ft down. Start dropping 250g flatfalls ova and grinding back up. Hafta rest afta two or three drops. These do catch some fish but no sniffs fo us. Daybreak start driving around looking. About 9am see a full on foamer which btw is an amazing site just to see, specially when the fish are all ova 100. Finally a guy goes bendo, he gets worked pretty good, down to a T-shirt but he puts it on da deck, 212lbs. We think it's crowded here chasing albies around, down there it was da wknd and all kinds of traffic running chasing these foamers around. Party boat does not have a chance at 10 kts when these yachts can easily beat u to da fish, BUT most of time fish do not play. About 3pm all day boats n private pots start leaving and only a cpl party boats in the area.

About 6pm skipper says here comes da right size, hope they wanna play..wait wait wait, one guy gets bent, maybe 10min later, got a double, another 10 min now it's a triple. Rocky gets bit but fish jus mangles bait, put anotha one out, comes up tight, a quad going..we eventually land all 4 and no mo bites fo evening. Finish day wit 5 in da RSW.

Start Sun in dark once again dropping flatfalls, one guy hangs one for a sec but falls off, he got one Sat so pressure was off him, n that was it. I have my doubts as stuff didn't play in morn Sat, boat traffic etc back out in force, no sign around in same area, skipper gets intel fish have moved 5 miles to da west overnite. Skipper says we have till noon befo we hafta start our 7 hr ride back to San Diego. Skipper finds gold once again, says these are beeg Buggas, hope they bite, finally first guy hangs one and he's grinding away, a little bit later one fortunately says hello to me, turning da handle in da stern, then says lets go to da bow. First guys lands his in stern, then mine in da bow wants to come home wit us as well,,3rd n last guy hangs last fish in stern and this fish is extremely squirrely as these Bluefin can be. Unlike Yft, Bluefin can take awhile to settle down in the straight up n down fight. They can go side to side almost as fast as a wahoo. Anyways this 3rd fish is being pulled on by a guys 20 yr old son. This son got a 120 last yr so he knows whassup and he did a great job on this fish finally bringing it to gaff.

We ended up wit ONLY 8 fish for 16 guys BUT da grade was simply amazing as all the fish were btwn 190-212lbs apiece. Technique is key, let yer gear kill da fish, don't get too excited early on cuz you'll be gassed at da end when u need all u got to bring to gaff range. Many many anxious moments when fish is circling, going unda boat n all, hoping connections don't fail, hook doesn't pull or whateva...those of us who caught were very very fortunate to have da opportunity on this beeg stuff, all kuddos goes to skipper n crew as they flat out almost hold yer hand when yer turning da handle wit Beeg Mo on otha end...this is third consective yr this "shortfin" has popped up down there and these "good" ones do not always play. Any Bft is a trophy to me since they seem to be so hard to come by but these triple digit buggas, are really special
As wit anything, there are some guys that consistenly catch this stuff down there, whether small med or jumbo sizes, but believe me, it's not that easy at all. Sure we see all da pic, BUT if you get an opportunity, that's all one can ask fo.....

Last yr there were a few fish ova 3 landed, so far this yr I don't believe anything that big YET, but just this morn da Pacific Queen weighed up a 297!!
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Old 07-26-2018, 07:58 PM   #13
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harms Way View Post
Wow. Great Pics. I’m headed to SoCal in a couple weeks to chase BFT. Any suggestions what gear to bring?
what boat are u going on? 1.5 or 2 day maybe?

The fish were biting da kite ONLY last wknd so one can use da boat gear for that. dropping flat falls use at least 100lb on da reel with maybe 150lb fluoro leader to flat fall. Bluefin have teeth so fluoro is for chaffing aspect.

we were using 50 size reels wit 130lb string for them good ones..

things could change, we had a one track mind for big uns, you guys may come up on smaller Yft and wanna toss dines, so maybe 20-30lb. wait till it's almost time to go as things can change by then....
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Old 07-26-2018, 08:16 PM   #14
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

WOW that's awesome.
What a great report to read.
I love the way you put the accent into the type
I'm green with envy 🤢💚

I should have tried doing that a few years ago when I was still in good enough health that I could have done it.
Only one of the very few regrets in my life

Thanks again for sharing
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Old 07-26-2018, 08:43 PM   #15
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

Thats fantastic.
Would love to catch one of those !!!!!!
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Old 07-27-2018, 05:05 AM   #16
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Pretty impressive Les and team, it must be a real rush when one of those hits the deck.

Kind of makes Albacore look like bait,.......

Les was that your retirement trip?
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Old 07-27-2018, 06:19 AM   #17
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

LES!!!

God looks down on His children and gives them BIG TUNA!

You are blessed beyond measure! So glad you got this opportunity and I am absolutely hoping my number comes up sometime soon!

Jeff
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Old 07-27-2018, 12:13 PM   #18
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Default Re: Local boy finds his cow (Bluefin)

OMG that belly sashimi has me drooling into my lap!



What a heavenly treat!
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