"It was really good fishing wahoo at the bank," said Rothery at the sales. "We stayed there two days and then went in to the southern banks where the big fish were."
All the big fish (there were 13 tuna over 200 pounds weighed on the certified scales at Fisherman's) came from the southern banks. There were just as many from 100 to 200 pounds as there were cows, and those were found in both spots.
"The Baja tuna were real steady biters," said Rothery. "There were lots of ‚Дтem around, we could see ‚Дтem at the surface and on the meter most of the time."
Research biologist Chugey Sepulveda got the big one, related his pal and fellow biologist Scott ("Scootch") Aalbers of San Diego. Chugey wasn't able to be at the weigh-in.
The fish weighed 306.2 pounds. Chugey had two more cows, at 220 and 201 pounds. "Scootch" said Chugey got the big one and the others on one of the boat's heavy rigs and the kite. He used two sardines on 6/0 Mustad 7691 hooks, tied to 130-pound P-Line and 130-pound Izorline Spectra, on a Tiagra 50 W reel and a Calstar 655 XXH rod.
"He got it on the next to the last day," said Scootch, "about four p.m. He fought it for an hour and 15 minutes, and it wrapped him around the anchor line about 15 times. The crew helped out a lot with the fork."
Tom Bass of Newport Beach won second place for a 274.8-pound tuna. He also had a 232 and a 206-pound yellowfin. Tom said he got his fish on a sardine and an 8/0 Eagle Claw hook, pm 100-pound Blackwater fluorocarbon leader of 15 feet, tied to 130-pound Izor Spectra on a Tiagra 50 reel and a Calstar 6460 XXH rod.
Hack Bernstein of Valencia bagged a 269.6-pounder. He fished a sardine on an 8/0 Eagle Claw hook tied to 130-pound P-Line and 130-pound Izor Spectra on a boat rig: Tiagra 50 reel and a Calstar 655 XXH rod.
Pat Jaeger of Bishop posed with his daughter Maggie, three, and the 268-pound tuna he got with a double sardine rig on the kite. He said he used 100-pound P-Line and 130-pound Izor Spectra on a Penn 50 W reel and a Baja Boomer rod.
Ryan Gillette of Orange was another who used a double trouble sardine rig on the boat's rod and reel to take a 246-pounder.
Robert Kalatschan found a brace of cows, at 226 and 213 pounds. There were two more cows that appeared at the scales without tags, said Susan Rothery. One weighed 214 pounds and the other went 202.