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5/27/2009

Tony and Tim go to Tuna Town after waiting two years for good weather.

 

    Today my fishing buddies were Tony Calfee from Tennessee who has been trying to get into some offshore fishing since he first contacted me over two years ago and his best buddy Tim Quarles. Tony vacations in New Smyrna Beach about this time every year and it seemed like every time he came down on vacation he brought the "Small Craft Advisory" with him. I also asked a couple of my buddies Mike Ullian and Craig Ashline to fill out the tuna town crew.
    I took the boat up to Port Canaveral the evening before and spent the night under the stars on the bean bag and my crew showed up at the boat ramp at 4:00 AM and we were on our way by 4:30. Thanks to Mike for picking up some doughnuts and coffee from Dunkin Doughnuts for me in the morning.
    We had westerly winds for most of the day and the number of thundershowers on the other side coupled with the wind they produce made for a bumpy ride most of the day. With all of the rain and clouds we've had recently there were no SST maps available to give me an idea where the favorable temperature water would be located so I ran out on a bearing of 105 degrees and never found any water below 80.4 degrees, Since it was a little sporty and there were numerous thunderstorms scattered about and the forecast was for more afternoon thunderstorms later in the day I decided not to go too far offshore and went no further than 112 miles offshore. We only found a total of four flocks of birds all day and never even saw a Yellowfin tuna in any of the flocks. A little after lunch we decide that tuna would probably not end up on the menu so we went in search of some quality Mahi. We were successful in our quest and were able to get a total of 9 Mahi with the biggest weighing in at 50 pounds on a certified scale. The other Mahi were all quality fish with only a couple under 20 pounds.
    The highlight of the day was hooking up and catching a Blue Marlin that measured right at 11' from the tip of the bill to the fork of the tail that I estimated the weight at about 225 pounds. The fish put on a magnificent aerial display as well as the straight up and down dogfight that is typical of Blue Marlin. The leader material was targeted at Dolphin/Wahoo and was #7 wire rated at 69 pound test on 60# test Trilene Big Game fishing line. The battle lasted a little over an hour and I wired the fish to boat side and removed the hook which was embedded in the roof of the fishes mouth

Final tally for the day:
1 Blue Marlin estimated at 225# measured approximately 11' from fork of tail to tip of bill.
9 Mahi to 50 pounds

50 pound bull on spin!

Marlin is hooked up and grey hounding away with Tony holding on!

Tim take his turn and gives Tony a break.

Blue Marlin all lit up and in the cobalt blue waters on the
"other side" of the Gulf Stream

Getting close now and Craig takes a turn on the rod.

Gotcha or maybe you've got me, whichever,
you can stop beating me up any time now!

Let's make sure you're all better!

Beautiful fish and in excellent shape will live to fight another day!

All better now and ready for the release.

Tony's 50 pound bull on the scale.

The proof!

Plenty of groceries for today's crew!

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