Sunday, December 4, 2011

Busting Bluefin Tuna with Captain Adam Sherer from Shore catch December 3,2011

I got a call from Captain Adam from Shore Catch stating Bluefin tunas are in good numbers and close to shore.
New Jersey Bluefin tunas offer the ultimate challenge to many and to catch one on top water, one will have to be blessed with “a lot of luck”, skills and determination. Fortunate enough I know that I am fishing with one of the best Captain in New Jersey and was confident that he will put me on the right feed. He has done it in the past and I know that he is capable of doing it again this year!
During this same period last year I had the opportunity to land a nice fish on topwater with Adam and I am hoping today to set the pace of last year that was my attitude while I was driving from Princeton to Barnegat Inlet at 4:00AM.
We launched at 5:30AM and made it to the fishing ground at the right time, just when the sun was peeking out from the horizon. It took a while before we started seeing tuna rolling and crashing lazily all over the place and by the time we reached them…they went down under. We couldn’t get a good shot at them in the beginning but as the day progressed, things started to get better and better until we got into a nice feed with diving gannets and birds diving all over the place.
I made a cast to come up tight with a blue fish, we were a little disappointed when we notice that they were mixed in with the Bluefin tuna, it was pretty frustrating when we saw the blues and we all know how hard it is to score in New Jersey.
The Tunas started crashing again and this time, I saw bait flying out of the water, for a second I thought they were Anchovies or half beaks, is it possible? We all know that most of the times these fish are gorging themselves with sand eels but hey! Anything is possible!
Once I saw what kind of bait (FISH) were present, I switched right away to my trusted Moutoukenmaru Minopenmaru which was lucky enough to have the same profile as the bait.
A nice pod just busted not far away from us and in a split of a second they disappeared,
I made a cast to that same spot and saw my lure getting inhaled almost immediately,
I set the hook twice to secure it on the Race Point 200, got it to gaff within 4 minutes and Santa presented me with a nice fat 58 inch on the deck!
My day is made and now and I can rest, after a frustrating day we finally got the job done!!
I can’t thank Captain Adam enough for the incredible opportunity (we got blown out at least 2 times!) he gave me to get the job done again this year!!
Thank you Captain!!
Enjoy the pictures :)
Tight lines

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tokara Japan November 2011

Tokara Island has always been a dream that finally, became a reality,
I planned a business trip to Japan and decided to top it up with a bit of fishing. I contacted Mogi-san and ask him if I could join him in on one his trip, kind enough Mogi-san offered me 2 trips to choose from, stating it is not a prime time for GT Fishing, and the whole idea is to explore the area and gain more experience.
I was greeted at Narita airport by Mogi-san and beerman Okubo-san, they picked me up from the airport and we headed straight to Tokyo, we had a great dinner amongst nice people talking about fishing and discussing future destination.
I spend the 2nd day with Mogi-san touring and getting introduced to tackle shops, it is amazing how well the tackle shops are stocked up with products and how the Japanese in general are into fishing, I spend almost and hour in one of the shop and saw a variety of anglers from 16 years old to 70 years old buying tackle, I guess fishing in Japan is more like a cultural thing :)
Mogi-san had arranged the trip for me which made my life easy; he picked me up from the Hotel and off to the airport to take the flight to Kagoshima and then transferred to Amami island to be greeted by Fukui-san the master of the infamous boat in the region ( the big dipper),
We arrived and the weather was not looking good, heavy rain and big swells,
Fukui-san suggest to fish around Amami Island for the day and take off to Tokara on the second day, we landed one GT that day and made it back to one of the lodges on the island which is a typical traditional Japanese Inn, it was a great experience and reminded me from where my Mom comes from in the South of Lebanon.
Fukui-san pushed the big dipper in heavy rain and big swells and we finally made it to the first island, the scenery was out of this world and the structure added to it to make it look so unique, our second day was slow!
Right around dark Fukui-san called the day off and puts the big dipper next to the lodge on Takara Island,
Takara Island has a little story to be told: it is also called Treasure Island!
The story goes back to May 23, 1701. On that date in Scotland, just as he was about to be executed, the famous pirate Capt. Kidd shouted, “I have hidden treasure,” but the executioner paid no attention and carried out the sentence without hearing Kidd’s explanation.
It is believed that the treasure is still on the island.
We launched from Takara island on our third day and I can finally see the harbor and the marina, the harbor is build with high concrete barrier wall and on the other side you have natural rocks with about 7 to 10 feet from the sea level, this is where all the top water GT action happen in the past 20 years, and there is a prime time for it, the GT’s will push the flying fish inside the harbor and the top water bite will be on fire, it happens every year and it last for about 2 to 3 weeks , Mogi-san pointed to me where he landed his 60kg GT from the shore, I spoke to Fukui-san and manage to gather more info about casting from shore.
I decided to jig due to the slow action and manage couple of fish here and there, we popped in some area that you would imagine it to be loaded with fish but NOT!
Right before dark I start getting doggies on almost every drop and I lost a good one, lost 4 jigs that day due to cut offs, I jigged from 40 meters to 150 meters and had most of the strikes around the 60 meters mark. The guys manage 2 nice doggies on top water.
On our last day we made a couple of stops near Takara Island and caught more doggies and lost more jigs, at least I am going back home light J
The guys where only focusing on popping and none of them had any jigging outfit, some of them are not interested to do any jigging while others don’t even own a jigging rod.
We get a couple of fish and called the trip off.
I had a great time regardless of the fishing, adding Tokara Island experience to my log book is something that I was always keen to do,
I thank Mogi-san for his hospitality and friendship; he was so kind to me,
Delighted to have the opportunity to fish onboard one of the most famous Captain in Japan Fukui-san, a very humbled person!
Till the next trip TOKARA!
Enjoy the photo!!!
Tight lines

Takara Island Harbour

Where Mogi-san landed his 60KG GT from shore on Takara Island

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Southern Oman October 2011

Since my last visit to Southern Oman in April 2011 we have had many inquiries from friends and anglers that wished to fish with us in this amazing destination,
I contacted Nick from Ocean Active and we set up dates for 2011 and 2012.
Raymond and Igor are my companions for this trip, we made it to Dubai airport and got picked up at the gate by Nick and Kegan, Nick took the 10 hours drive to Southern Oman and we finally reached our destination to be greeted at the villa by Ashraf the owner of the lodge.
Our first day was full of excitement as we where all waiting to hit the water and see how long it will take before we get our lines tight.
We landed some nice size fish on that day, the biggest estimated to be around 44kg to 45kg by Nick, Yes Southern Oman still hold big fish right at the beginning of the season, the only problem we had is that the water clarity is poor, but for the first day everybody was happy and we all had the opportunity to land GT’s,
The clear water was only at a specific part of the islands and we manage to land 7 out of 9 on our first day, the trip was set with dedication to jigging as well,
Due to the limited time that I had on the previous trip we did not get any chance to jig,
As for this trip the plan was to jig for at least a day or 2, prior to the trip I was talking to Nick on a weekly basis to sort out the spot and the point for the potential Amber Jack. And boy did we hit JACKPOT!
On our second day the water clarity remained the same and we had the slowest day on this trip, we decided to jig and we had some fun and good time, right before we called the day off, Nick said lets give popping 30 minutes before we run home,
I looked at the water and said to myself there is no way that this water will hold GT’s,
Raymond get a massive swirl’s behind his popper, the fish missed his popper, came back again and hit it with revenge!
Raymond fought the fish like a champion and landed his first big GT’s, Nick estimated the fish between 47kg to 48kg, took a quick pictures and released and off we go back to the lodge with a smile on everybody’s face, Raymond saved the day for us!
On the third day the water start to get better at some point and we decided to stick to that particular spot, we doubled out and landed 2 nice GT’s, looking at the water and the way the current was forming we knew sooner or later we will have our shot at that point,
We put the time and all our effort knowing that the big one will come from here!
I get inhaled by a big massive fish that took my stickbait 2 feet from the surface; the fish took a prototype lure and with all it’s power; started peeling line like no tomorrow!
I tightened my drag 3 times until it became locked and from the side of my eye I could see where it is heading, yes right towards the edge of the drop off,
This fish will mark a memory in my life; I had never fought a fish with a complete locked drag and not been able to stop it!!!
I get reefed with anger but again this is part of fishing!!!
We decided to jig and got rewarded by black tip trevally, spangled emperor, grouper, brassy trevally, yellow dot trevally,
Our 4th day was dedicated to jigging and with the knowledge and the intel that Nick gathered, we where right on the spot to be rewarded big time, I won’t comment much about it and I will let the pictures do the talking,
We where sore from pulling fish after fish and decided to call it off and head to one of the island to take a break and have lunch, we popped for 2 hours and we manage to raise and hook a couple of fish.
On the 5th day and our last day started we launched from the marina at 6:00 AM in the morning trying to benefit from the early bite, we found a new spot and right after 2 minutes of popping I saw a black shadow coming towards my popper and hitting it twice, unfortunately he missed my lures but I saw over 8 GT’s chasing my popper, I shouted to Raymond to cast on the right direction and there it was, the dream shot, Raymond was tight followed by myself,
Raymond get rewarded with a nice black GT pushing every inch of the 35KG,
Igor right after us comes tight with a black tip trevally, we then decided to move to a different spot and landed a couple of GT’s ,
We had an amazing trip complimented with great company good laughs, I can’t thank Nick from Ocean Active and Ashraf the owner of the lodge for the hospitality and the service provided to us on this trip!
all pictures provided by all anglers so i can't take full credit for the shots.

Tight lines