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Headed out Wednesday after lunch, destination Horn Mountain area. Nice smooth seas on the way out and an excited junior angler crew onboard with 3 anglers under 12! Two of which had never been on a multi-day trip like this







Hit Marlin on the way out to kill some time as storms were building over horn. Picked up a few corn fed hardtails and got sharked a few times on blackfin.

Pulled in and made our way to horn, not much going on so made the call to head to the drillship.

Arrived and started jigging, blackfin were pretty thick, almost every drop resulted in a hookup. We could have sunk the boat with blackfin.



Finally got through the blackfins enough to hook up with a Yellowfin. My brother fought him in and he laid on his side, another crew member gaffed him with my 8' 3" gaff... well the fish was obviously still a little green as he took off (with my gaff still in him). About 10 mins later we got the fish but the gaff was gone forever.



The kids caught blackfins until their arms couldn't take anymore, everybody crashed for a few hours before the sunrise bite.

We trolled live blackfin and hardtails at daybreak for marlin but nothing to show for it. Switched to artificials and started trying to find a break or weedline.

Found the rip near ensco 8505 and turned to parallel it. Scattered rain showers forced the crew into the cabin, with little/no action everyone had become complacent. I was at the helm facing port so I could see most of the spread... all of a sudden the starboard teaser reel just explodes behind me. I turn just in time to see a large dorsal fin and tail releasing the teaser and head across the spread. I'm not real adept at identifying billfish, but it was definitely a marlin, either a smallish blue or a big white.

He crashed across the spread and took another stab at an iilander on a bird and missed. I clearly saw the bill this time. By the time the crew got outside it was all over, the pitch bait never left the bucket.... :(

Trolled the remainder of the day along the rip with very little action. Made the call to spend the second night of the trip at the spur and try for some swords and larger yellowfin.

Within about 5 mins of getting setup at the spur we were hooked up on the shallow sword squid bait. After some discussion on what we thought we had it was decided it was a shark. I was manning the 80w so I essentially horsed the fish in with the drag past strike several times during the fight. After about 15min we see the fish... as the giant tuna swims past the underwater lights!! Talk about a chinese fire drill as the flying gaff comes out and everyone prepares to boat the fish.

My older brother takes the gaff shot and blows his knee out at the same time, he screams and hobbles inside the cabin. I'm now holding the rod/reel, handle to the flying gaff and the gaff line. :D We quickly re-group and boat the fish.



We re-set the lines and within about 10mins are hooked up again.... I give this one to my son (one of the 12yr olds that weighs 90lbs soaking wet). We have him in a youth harness on the 80w. He is harnessed to the reel and he is harnessed to the boat. My brother is holding him and I'm helping him work the rod. Absolutely certain this is a tuna this time, it's running and acting like a tuna.

Didn't take long to realize his fish was at least as big as mine, probably bigger. After about a 45min fight it appears in the underwater lights and it is a GIANT shark, probably 10' ++. My son is done with it and we cut it off.

Get re-set and drift again, but everybody is pretty much wiped out so people start hitting the beanbags. By about 3am everybody is out, the sonar is lit up with tuna, but nobody has the energy to catch them :D

At about 4am the wind shifts and the seas pick up, no longer a comfortable drift so we pull everything in and start easing with the seas. At sunrise we drop an artificial spread in and troll to the elbow, nipple...etc with little/nothing to show. Water was quite green, not a single weed in sight.

All in all, a fantastic trip. Lots of memories made on this trip that will last a lifetime with these young men. Lots of 'firsts' and 'bests' and good friendships made all around. Can't wait to get back out again!!!





Anybody have a weight guesstimate on this fish? He bottomed out our 60lb scales...?






Arrived back at the dock around 3pm on Friday. Friday evening we are sitting around the dinner table after finishing up a good meal of burgers and dogs... I say to the young men that were on the trip with us... well fellas, I figure we are going to take on diesel first thing in the morning, re-ice, pick up some groceries and head back out for a few days.... in unison they all light up and yell YEAAAAAHAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! At the same time all the wiped out adults groan NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

:thumbup::thumbup::thumbup:
 

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Ms Ruth 07 Pursuit 265LS
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Great trip capt, what a happy crew!
 

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Sounds like an amazing trip.
If you ever need crew you have my number. I tried calling you on the radio Sunday afternoon, and again Thur evening. We got 4 YFT and endless BFT each trip. Each of the 4 YFT could have fit a mold right around 45#. Nothing huge but a great trip. 8505 was our home both nights. Was quite sporty out there Thur/Fri especially for a 28'cc.
Great job making memories that will outlast any of us.
 

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Nice trip for the youngsters. Counting the days till my girls become mates and anglers.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sounds like an amazing trip.
If you ever need crew you have my number. I tried calling you on the radio Sunday afternoon, and again Thur evening. We got 4 YFT and endless BFT each trip. Each of the 4 YFT could have fit a mold right around 45#. Nothing huge but a great trip. 8505 was our home both nights. Was quite sporty out there Thur/Fri especially for a 28'cc.
Great job making memories that will outlast any of us.
Kevin,
I tried hailing you several times out there as well. By Thursday evening we were at the canyon, about 60 mi from Ensco. Glad to hear you guys had a good trip!! I'll give you a shout if we're ever short! You interested in tournaments? Seems like we're always looking for 1 or 2 for tourneys.
 

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Man them kids are ruined now!!! Dang great trip!!!
 

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I am OK with tournaments. I don't usually fish them, as it just drives the price of fishing up and I never feel like I can fairly compete with the guys who are out there every day. I usually also try to fish during the week as opposed to the weekends when it just turns into bumper boats.
 
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