Stan Kaplun Reports: Finding The Right Kelp Patch Is Still The Key

Stan Kaplun Reports: Finding The Right Kelp Patch Is Still The Key

Stan Kaplun Checking In- Here's another report out H&M Landing in Point Loma. I went out on a 3/4 day on the Fisherman III with Captain JD McGriff. You have to put your time on the water. 

Stan Kaplun and Eugene Kim

Stan Kaplun and Eugene Kim

Stan Kaplun Checking In- Here's another report out H&M Landing in Point Loma. I went out on a 3/4 day on the Fisherman III with Captain JD McGriff. I was invited by my buddy Eugene Kim, a genuinely good guy who is extremely fishy. He also works as a deckhand on this boat, but today he was finally given the day off to catch some fish himself.

We launched at 5:30 AM with 39 people, nearly a full boat, and were off to the bait barge to get bait. The bait was predominately smaller anchovies, which is what these smaller grade Yellowfin have been consistently eating lately. Even still, there were some larger sardines, as well as brown bait mixed in.
 

We got to the bait barge just as the sun was coming up, so a handful of us did a little fishing while we were getting bait. I was throwing a 60g green Shimano Colt Sniper, and while the tuna wanted nothing to do with it, the fish at the barge couldn't resist it. I caught and released 2 bonito, 2 mackerel, and a barracuda in our short time there, in addition to the handful of bites that I missed. Being able to stick a couple fish on the way to the tuna grounds is a good start and a confidence booster.

We went just about as far as a 3/4day trip goes, and we were rewarded for the long boat ride. We went about 45 miles southwest into Mexican waters, and fished a kelp paddy that has been producing limits for the fleet the week or so prior to our trip. Between Gene and I, we caught 19 Yellowfin, with one of us catching 10 and the other 9. We gave away most of our fish and kept a couple. Our final numbers for the boat were 96 Yellowfin Tuna and 11 Skipjack Tuna for 39 people.
 

As I had mentioned, the paddy that we fished was approximately 45 miles southwest of Point Loma. It produced many limits and over 2,500 fish for the fleet in the last week.that doesn't include the large amount of private boaters that also got in on the action of this paddy. As far as I understand, this paddy is moving 12 miles a day to the west, and is no longer in range for the 3/4 day boats to fish. It seems like we had one of the last trips to the "golden paddy".


For Gene and I, the main thing that allowed us more hook ups than most was patience and knowing when to change bait. Tommy, one of thedeckhands, was chumming bait and getting the tuna to come up to the surface, which he did a phenomenal job of. The thing to keep in mind is, there is such a thing as too little and too much chum. If you overdo the chum, the fish get full very quickly and stop feeding. If you under do it, the fish can sink out, which ends a great bite quite abruptly. As Tommy would chum, placement of the bait was key. If you could flip the smaller anchovies out in the area where he had just threw out chum, you were sure to get hit instantly.

While we did well, thanks to RD's long but smart boat ride, the rest of the fleet wasn't as lucky. Capt Patrick Doroety of the Sea Adventure II was one of the few in the fleet that was able to salvage a slow trip with a monster 70lb wahoo that was caught on a small Marauder on the troll (photo below).

It was a fun trip with a great captain and great crew, who did their very best to put us on the fish. Although a full boat usually means a lot of tangles, especially with many beginners who have never been out for tuna, communication amongst the anglers was good and we were able to deal with or avoid many potential issues. I'm looking forward to hopping back on this boat soon! 

Check back in soon for more reports!

Check back in soon for more reports!

Stan Kaplun

Stan Kaplun

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