What ended up being one of my most epic days of fishing started out as a low expectation day. A lat start and a chance to take a non-fisherman friend along meant that we were going to keep it simple.
Since we had a big breakfast at the house, we were making a late start. The plan was to troll a bit before we had to take Mike in for his drive back to LA. The water looked good on the way out of Mission Bay. A high tide was about to become an outgoing tide. It was a nice day, so I slowed on the first bit of kelp I saw and we started to troll. As we got near a little cut in the kelp that many people use as a channel, I got a bite.
It was a solid little fish. I thought it was a big barracuda, but it turned out to be a nice bonito. We sunnk a gaff and brought it in. The girls like bonito, so I decided to keep it. To make bonito tase very good, you need to bleed them pretty quickly. I cut the gill rakers and turned around to put the knife down. Splash! Somehow it got off the gaff. WTF! I can bielve that happened. The thing swam away too! We thought we might find it again so we turned around and trolled the other way.
10 minutes later I got another hit. My goal was to help Mike get a fish, so he had the tolling rig and I just had my bass rod and a Krokadile. It is a big bass rig that I’v ecaught 9 lb bonito on, but still it is a bass rig (Curado 300DSV on a Shimano Cruxis 7’11” swimbait rod). This fish semmed like a slightly smaller bonito. bonit travel in schools, so that made sense to me.
As it got close to the boat, it did the typical bonito thing; it ran. And ran, and ran. With some oomph too. I was getting worked, and it was taking line. I finally got color, and Andy said “yellow tail!” It didn’t sink it at first since I still had some work to do.
We gaffed this one too, but it didn’t get away. I was on a huge adrenaline rush, all in the first 15 minutes of fishing.
We kept on trolling up the channel. 5 minutes later we hit some barracuda. I made a cast for another and got a Calico. 20 minutes in and I’m on an epic day with the 3-B’s (bonito, bass and barracuda) and a Yellow Tail.
We headed back in to take Mike in. We stopped at the Barefoot Bar and Grill for a beer. We hung out a bit and relaxed. Then the girls came, to pick up Mike. Andy and I headed back out and had a nice afternoon. I pulled in one more big bonito that was pretty strong and stubborn. This one made it to the grill.