Wednesday, July 30, 2014

1.5 Day Fishing Trip on the Prowler

By Darr Colburn

I had been watching the fish counts out of the San Diego landings and really wanted to take my boys Parker and Paul on their first tuna fishing trip.  Ted and Gowdy at Phoenix Fishing Supply got my reels filled with new line and got us the hooks and gear necessary to go fishing.  The counts were looking good so we decided to run over and jump on the Prowler out of Fisherman's Landing.  My good friend Bryan Otts joined us for the trip.  We got to the landing around 6pm and got checked in.  We walked over to Mitch's Seafood to grab some dinner and watch the returning boats unload. 
Mitch's Seafood is a great place to eat dinner and watch the boats.

After dinner we loaded our stuff on the Prowler and met captain Buzz and the crew.  Buzz and the crew were super friendly and we had a good feeling about the fishing.  Once the boat was loaded we headed out to get bait and then on to the fishing grounds.  We would be fishing Mexican waters in the morning.  We got all our rods rigged up and listened to suggestions from the crew about the bait (sardines) and how to fish them.  We headed down to try and get some sleep but Bryan and I slept very little the first night.  We started fishing the next morning right at first light.  Buzz had seen a large patty and we pulled up on it.  The boat came alive with hookups and chaos.  "Fresh one" and "I got color" were heard constantly for 30-40 minutes.  Paul was still sleeping but Bryan, Parker and I caught 4-5 yellowtail a piece.  We went back to the patty 4 times and ended up putting around 100 yellowtail on the boat the first hour of fishing!

Paul woke up just in time for the next patty stop.  The boat came alive again as yellowtail started coming over the rail.  The captain started telling everyone to release the yellowtails since we were at our limit.  We did pick up a few yellow fin tuna as well on the stop.  Paul landed 4 yellowtail and one yellow fin at that stop.  Parker and Bryan also hung several more fish.  One hour into the trip the boat had limits of yellowtail!  Captain Buzz started searching for tuna and we had a couple of really good stops for yellow fin.  We trolled and stopped all day picking up a fish here and there.  We got on a couple more decent bites in the evening and picked up several more yellow fin tuna.  The boat total for the day was somewhere around 150 yellowtail (limits), 103 yellow fin and 3 dorado for the 24 anglers on board.  We released lots of other yellowtail that were not counted in the totals.  All the people on the boat were very friendly and the captain and crew bent over backwards for us.  The crew really went above and beyond to help my boys catch fish.  This was one of the best off shore fishing trips I have been on.  We will definitely be getting back on the Prowler for another trip.  Once we got home the work began packaging the 29 fish we brought home. 
Paul with a yellow tail.

Bryan Otts with a nice sunset yellow fin tuna.
Parker with a nice yellow fin tuna.
The smile on Paul's face says it all!
Colburn boys with a yellow fin double.
Paul fighting a yellow fin tuna that would be just ounces away from being the jackpot fish.

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