Considerably less than ideal weather, and a dearth of offshore options cleared the way for a southerly stampede as even the bravest of salts is sated with fruitless ventures into the abyss. Across the personality and practical spectrum it is the only thing to do. Though distasteful in principal, we sacrifice our innate originality in favor of the generic maneuver. Fear of being singed in another offshore sojourn, and dulled by the certain prospect of another 15 hour rain making session, we beeline for terra firma allowing the offshore zone to lie fallow for at least a few days. It is the only logical thing to do.
Armed with a new group of anglers, and the most perfect bait one can imagine for the job, we are in travel mode south leaving miles of northern cold water astern. This is some turn of events. While frustrating as hell, and even depressing if one is prone to drama, it is impossible to not recognize, and at least be interested, if not fascinated, by this enormous deviation in the grand mechanism. Admittedly I am sickened by the lack of favorable conditions, and definitely over it, but I am also observing with keen interest. This is an anomaly that I will catalog and follow closely to see how it plays out. We are either going to be incredibly surprised by big offshore happenings late, or talking about what happened to the summer of 2010 by the end of this event. Not that such a prediction is any revelation, or is freighted with the profound.
As we head south on this voyage I have to comment on this group of extraordinary anglers, who have fished with me on Royal Star since I began operating her in 1992. Even before my tenure as Captain on Royal Star the Pfishcadora's have made their annual four day voyage in August experiencing just about every variation of fishing at this time of year that one can imagine. These gentlemen are amazing. And I use the word gentlemen to denote and extend pure respect. Incredible individuals; some of whom are in their late eighties and early nineties. Avid fishermen who appreciate their time on the water as something to be relished and coveted; that and the company of long time friends they enjoy in the distinct atmosphere of a boat at sea. While I recall saying it before I gladly forward the thought again: I can only hope that I, and my friends (yes, surprisingly I do have at least a couple) are in condition in our advanced years to live and share such experiences. A few of these gentlemen are glowing examples of what I aspire to if longevity is in my cards. Amazing individuals, exhibiting amazing drive and ability - to me anyway.
With sixteen participants ready as they can be we are prepared to make the most of what opportunities we encounter. Needless to say our production capacity, adjusted for these seasoned fishermen, is somewhat different than a voyage fortified with youthful horsepower. The size of the pile rarely dictates the story of fishing encountered on this annual voyage. It is surprising however. There have been a number of times when these anglers put fish on board with a vengeance. Like I said, they are amazing.
Speaking of amazing, our photo today features angler Rick Moon from the last trip pulling on one of his many yellowtail landed with the spinning tackle. I know, I know -anglers using the spinning tackle are inferior, they are kooks, they are a bunch of spooners who don't know how to fish, or aren't worthy to share the rail with "real fishermen" who only use conventional tackle. This is the stereotype, majority Southern California sport boat mentality. I was among the camp in my youth snickering at the boobs using spinners on the Pacific Queen during my four year apprenticeship in the local fleet. Tell it Rick. He used the gear pictured to outpace, and out fish everyone on board - especially in the slow periods. Oh, and one more thing. He has, and effectively uses conventional tackle as well; the best of both worlds.
One is free to bring and use the spinning tackle on Royal Star. I have learned in the present, and days of old, that it can be extremely effective in the hands of proficient anglers. As long as it is appropriate for the size of our quarry, and setting we are in, have no fear. You will not be ridiculed or minimized. You manhood will be respected, and remain intact. And, if my advice is worth two bits - Shimano Stella's. Or any other of the Shimano line of spinning reels that are bullet proof and light years beyond the competition. They are the best - simply put. Enjoy the day!