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 Sean Magoun's Ahi

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Posts : 194
Join date : 2010-01-31
Age : 69
Location : Kauai, Hawaii

PostSubject: Sean Magoun's Ahi   Mon Feb 15, 2010 4:58 pm

One day I was with four friends off the south side of Kauai in my 25 ft twin engine Parker boat. We got a later start than usual and didn't manage to motor the boat out of the harbor until 8 am. We were all anxious to try our luck as rumor had it that a few Ahi had been brought up in the last several days.

We headed out of Port Allen Small Boat Harbor into mild seas running 2-4 ft with trades blowing about 15 knots. The gentle wind and less than normal sea conditions (Kauai is usually rough water fishing) allowed me to select a variety of lures to put in my five lure spread. I often run two lines out wide on the outriggers, two corner lines and a centerline. Experience has taught me to run the outriggers the furthest back with "slant" lures or jet heads of reasonable weight and size. Often the seas around Kauai average 6 to 10 foot seas with 10-20 knot winds and that kind of rough water fishing means that heavier lures are the better bet resulting in fewer issues with tangles. The ocean being as calm as it was allow for some lighter quality lures to be put into the lure spread.

As we passed the break wall I began to ready the lures. I picked out two outrigger lures, one being ice blue skirt with white underside and red/black under skirt on a resin slant head. The other was blue resin head with black/blue outer skirt and orange/pink under skirt. I set my two outrigger lines first, often dropping them back 25 to 30 seconds and then attach them to an Aftco release clips on a 17 foot outriggers.

Next, I set my center line with a heavy weight scoop jet that was skirted with purple/blue on the outside and red/black underneath, at about 20 seconds down the middle. My two corner lines were set at about 15 seconds back, each were held down with Aftco transom clip. The transom clips help keep the lines running true and not get "pushed" by the wind.

On one corner I ran a Mark White's ceramic lure. It's head had a flat face, often referred to as a pusher, with a metallic finish, with dark blue/clear belly top skirt and pink inside skirt. On the other corner I ran gold resin head with Ika (squid) colors, maroon top/clear belly and purple/silver under that. With all of the lines set, the task of double checking drags and clickers was next on the list.

We proceeded up the 40-fathom ledge to see if there was some unsuspecting Ono lurking. We had been motoring for about 30 minutes when one of the outrigger clips snap and line peeled off the 14'0 Penn Senator reel. One of the guys jumped on the reel and began the quick work of reeling in what I had hoped was an Ono. The other two guys cleared the three back lines, the two corners and the center line. As the fish neared it began bucking it's head, which I knew meant it was a fair sized Ono. A few additional cranks of the reel showed the pigtail swivel was visible and the silver and black stripes of the Ono could be seen a few feet under the water. Using the Ono's swimming speed and timing it with the leadering of the fish, I tossed the 30 lbs Ono into the boat with hardly an incident and or missed gaff.

The lines were reset and we then turned our attention to deeper waters heading out towards the 1000 fathom ledge, all the while picking up on the direction the birds were heading. The birds appeared to be diligently heading southwest, so we followed suit and began trolling with the birds in the same direction of AA and PP buoys.

After an 45 minutes of trolling, and scanning the horizon for something more definite as far as birds working, we saw a pile of white birds mixed with other birds off in the distance. The pile was about a half mile away down wind, yet it appeared to be moving fairly quickly. As luck would have it the pile was moving toward us! Doesn't it seem like any good bird pile is usually heading away from your boat! Anyway, we adjusted our course slightly and turned towards the birds with the following sea at our backs.

As we got closer to the bird pile it began moving outwards towards the deeper water beyond the 1000 fathom. The course of the pile would cut across our bow if they didn't change direction. As we neared we could see fish breaking water slightly as they were chasing the bait but no real big splashes that initially. We continued on a course that would cut through the outer left edge of the birds as they move from right to left. The upwind tack was to anticipate where the pile of birds and fish where headed.

Entering the bird pile I saw splashes on the surface that were more than just little Aku, but Ahi ripping through the bait balls. The boat finally got to the pile and we made a pass in front of the birds and the fish went by the back lines. As I was watched the lines off the back of the boat I saw this bullet of an Ahi come form the left of my lure spread all the way across to my right corner lure nailing the blue and pink Mark White Pusher. The transom clip SNAPPED and the corner pole bent over in objection to this tuna peeling line of the reel. In seconds, I was looking at half a spool of line! Then the fish slowed and the task of working it up to the surface turn by turn began. About 30 minutes later we boated the 130 lb. fish and were all stoked! We looked for the pile after landing the beautiful Ahi, but the birds and fish we out of eyesight. We felt good about the day's adventures and decided it was time to head for home.

Mark White's ceramic lures have proven to be a valuable tool in my trolling spread when deep sea fishing. Here in the rough seas of Kauai, HI, his lures have withstood numerous tests under different conditions. They have also withstood strikes by a range of pelagic fish. Unlike conventional resin heads that have cracked under the onslaught of an Ono's (Wahoo's) attack, Mark's lures have returned to the water again and again to catch more fish. Also, you do not have to worry about the pitting that occurs with a stainless steel jet head when used infrequently. There isn't a deep sea fish that I haven't hooked up using Mark's Ceramic heads. If you'd like to bring home some trophy fish, get a ceramic head in the water and hold on!
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