With a full day of traveling now under our belts, the peak levels of exuberance and accomplishment have not faded for this ecstatic group of fifteen anglers. For that matter the same sentiments, that have prevailed now for over two months, have actually matured in us as the most incredible fishing for giant yellowfin we could ever imagine continues. As I sit here on watch while traveling northward reflecting on a host of interesting, relevant topics, the predominate thought this morning is about numbers of two hundred pound yellowfin being landed and why.
As every previous concept of what constitutes a good long range trip on two hundred pound yellowfin tuna has been cast aside in this insane "going for the record" environment, where do we go from here? Over the past two months we have all experienced/witnessed just how effective our vessels are and how efficient we have become at landing these giant yellowfin tuna. With this in mind in this present atmosphere I feel the need to make several points. First, when fishing is this good the individual scores on boats are the result of crew/operator experience, number of anglers on board or what we call "horsepower", available hold space, and length of fishing time in that order. Being what it is, without minimizing the accomplishments of anyone, I want every angler who has participated in this remarkable fishery to take this into account. What I have experienced and witnessed in others in our fiercely competitive human spirit is the remarkable accomplishments of one voyage cast aside as another returns with yet greater numbers of two hundred pounders. This is nonsense!
Can one imagine being on a fall ten day voyage that catches twenty yellowfin over two hundred pounds, hearing the final score at the dock, and feeling disappointed that the boat didn't catch more when it is discovered that another vessel exceeded their total? It has happened and is happening. Let's take a step back and remember that to begin with the smaller, limited load vessels such as Royal Star and others, fishing side by each with the big boats, simply can not return with greater numbers of fish as their hold space and number of anglers on board are considerably less. If one still wishes to stoke the competitive fire (as I do) observe the per angler average and enjoy a sweet smile of success. Otherwise solely focus on your voyage and cherish every moment. Remember that just two months ago the opportunity to fish for a two hundred pound yellowfin on a fall ten day was considered special and to land one was almost a news worthy event. Trust me, those days will return, so I don't want any anglers to miss out on the appropriate sense of accomplishment they should be feeling following any one of these voyages this season.
All that said I now have to address the fact that the remarkable catches of giant yellowfin being made are not simply the result of luck. Some of the vessels are consistently producing higher averages of two hundred pound yellowfin and it is directly attributed to crew experience and the gear being used. This has been the most remarkable opportunity for all of us to demonstrate our expertise, practice our skill, and apply our knowledge, but most importantly it has been a remarkable opportunity to learn. In addition it has been a remarkable opportunity for crews to teach, and those wanting to learn have become very adept at catching giant yellowfin tuna in short order. Of course the education process sometimes ruffles a few feathers as the "experts" are reacquainted with the fact that we possess history, experience, and results to fortify our instruction, but in the end when that beautiful fish of a lifetime is laying on deck it is all worthwhile.
I can certainly think of more but will end this report expressing admiration for my colleagues, who have done such a remarkable job this season, and gratitude to all anglers who have ventured a fall 2005 long range voyage. All of you were richly rewarded with the greatest fishing the long range fleet has ever experienced and we are thankful that you were here with us. On behalf of this charter group I would also like to thank these businesses and individuals who provided equipment and product for this voyage.
Ken's Custom Reel
Ken Volk Vineyards
In addition I want to personally thank the below listed manufacturers for their incredible, well tested products.
Eagle Claw for the outstanding series 2004, 9/0 hooks.
Smitty rod belts
There are many other fine products worthy of mention but these are exceptional stand outs on Royal Star.