1-1-2013 - Year in review aboard the Alwaysforward in 2012:
A year in review aboard the AlwaysforwardEnjoy the excerpts below from some of my 2012 fishing reports
January 7th, 2012 report
Here is Jen holding up her first BFT. This fish wore her out (so she thought) until what she brought up later in the morning (see below)
Matt catches a Skipjack. (Just a reminder to fellow forum members to make sure you renew your HMS permit for your boat if you plan on keeping these.)
Jens biggest catch of the day. Notice the teeth marks near the tail. Something wanted this guy for breakfast.
January 21st, 2012 report
Here’s Adam fighting this Sail with the smallest rod in the boat. A Quantum 60 spinner on an Ugly Stik
March, 10th, 2012
As I was reaching for the camera again Cal screams out “LARGE BULLSHARK ON HIS TAIL” . Quickly grabbed the gaff and by now the cobia was up under our boat trying to hide from the 10ft Bullshark. He ended up wrapping himself around another line and the chum bag. Cal was in position so I handed him the gaff and we both had to pull this one over the transom.
Here comes the sharks. We picked up 3 more Cobia but all were short. Then a MASSIVE Hammerhead showed up and wanted to take a bite out of our cuda. The head on this Hammerhead was 30" wide without exaggeration. He was well over 500lbs. Biggest Hammerhead we have ever seen. He made those 8-10ft Bullsharks look like babys. When he came up to the boat, the Bullsharks would shy away.
April 5th, 2012
First ever Sailfish for JT.
Worked it for 1/2 hour with nothing showing up. Continued eastward and put out the Daisy Chains for some BFT's. 5 minutes after lines in we got a double header. Another first for JT. Congrats JT for another first today.
April 9th, 2012
We exited the SLI around 6:30am this morning to find only choppy seas at the inlet due to the end of the outgoing tide. Once we broke through the sets we were in calm seas. Taking Rick and his mom Betty out today.
We leave the first fin in until we get another hooked up then put that first one in the box. We get a third one hooked up but he got tied up in the motor and was gone… After a couple more bites and misses we ended up with two nice fins in the box.
April 28th, 2012
Came across some nice patches of weeds in 100ft and set-up a drift. We put out a Pilchard and Cigar minnow on the long rods and hung a cigar minnow by its tall 25ft off the back of the boat. On our second drift Matts minnow get slammed by a smoker that peels off 1/2 a spool.
My long line gets nailed an we see a fin jumping off in the distance. I pass the rod over to Matt so I could get ready for the chinese fire drill. I fix the spinner that got slammed an put on a pc of chunk bait then tossed over a handful of chunk bait. Matt brings the fin to the side of the boat but to our surprise, nobody came with him.
May 5th, 2012
Set-up a nice drift with the dines and after about 20 minutes my long line gets nailed by a Sailfish. Don is on his first Sailfish.
Here is Don after a successful release... He was tired out :grin
May 6th, 2012
We get about 6 miles north of the hill in 514 ft to an awesome rip with tons of weeds and dropped in some dines to bump troll our way to Shoeless. Jen immediately gets hooked up to her first fin...
Arrived to the AJ spot with nobody there. Quickly set-up the first drift. Dropped down a large goggle eye down to the bottom and Matt was immediately hooked up.
Went back up and now its Jens turn. We strapped on the fighting belt and get her set for the big fight. She gets hooked up on the 3rd drift on another large goggle eye.
May 19th, 2012
Wish that one didn’t come unglued as it was probably the biggest one. Here is Debbie with the only one that made it into the box. Congrats Debbie on your first ever fin...
May 23rd, 2012
All of the sudden we have a fin jumping behind the boat. I scanned all the rods and not one of them was moving. After about the 5th jump the downrigger rod pops… FISHON… We were surprised to say the least. We thought the fish was just putting on a show for us free jumping. :grin
We have now arrived in to 75ft and we are picking up the boat to make the run in when Kevin yells, FISHON… Picked up another fin on the short rod 25ft off the back of the boat.
May 25th, 2012
As we were drifting past the bucket the spinner with a sinker on it goes off and Kevin is on a 38lb Cobia.
Moved on east and stopped at some solid weeds in 240ft. Put the same spread of 3 dines on the surface and two down. One on the down rigger and one with a 4oz sinker. One of my top rods goes off and we see a large Sailfish tail walking off into the distance.
Then the downrigger pops and it’s another sailfish skying through the air close to the boat. The long line sail comes unglued and Kevin takes the down rigger rod and begins the long fight on this large Sailfish…
After a successful release we get back up to the same weeds and the spinner with the sinker gets slammed by a small sailfish. This was my first sailfish that I personally have caught in about 3+ years as I always hand the rod off to the crew. I truly enjoyed this fight so Thank You very much Kevin.
May 26th, 2012
Shortly after getting the lines out I noticed a bump on Johns rod and instructed him to dump some line. He quickly gets hooked up to his first sailfish skying out of the water about 100ft off the back of the boat and as quickly as he got hooked, he was gone.
Get ready to move then another rod get slammed. This time this fin is hooked. Another first for John. Love those smiles.
June 3rd, 2012
Amber with her first keeper fin. It was a bull as well. Great job Amber :thumbsup
We tossed out a livey and a Sailfish nailed it and Amber is fighting her first ever Sailfish. When this fish hooked up the fin in the picture above was off our bow so it was not the same fish.
Amber on her first Sailfish
Amber with her first Sailfish. Congrats Amber. Great job :thumbsup
June 10th, 2012
This is Scotts first trip offshore fishing so any fish he catches today will be a first. Here is his first Hammerhead.
Here is Scott with his first Fin :thumbsup
Next drift Paula hooks up to a gaffer...
She was hiding her face above so I made her lower the fish :grin
You can make out the sailfish splash between Scott and the T-Top
Gotta love those smiles :thumbsup Thats what it is all about :grin
June 13th, 2012
Here is Gary & Derek with Dereks first fin - Congrats Derek - Awesome job :thumbsup
Here is Garys son AJ with the other fin caught off this tree - Congrats as well AJ :thumbsup
We get a double header... Dan hooked up on this nice BFT drifting a dine along the ledge and at the same time the downrigger gets hit (75ft down) and AJ pulls in a monster Bonita.
Here is father & son :thumbsup
It was after 12 noon but after spotting a lot of action on the surface we opted to put out the daisy chains to see if we could scare up a mid day BFT on them. Gary gets hooked up just as we were gonna pull the plug on the BFT trolling.
Congrats Gary :thumbsup
June 30th, 2012
Within minutes we get a shout out from Bryan that he has hooked up and calls us over. As soon as we drop in a livey, RJ is hooked up. Thanks’ so much Bryan for the shout out and allowing RJ to catch his first fin.
We worked this area some more and found a tree and put 3 nice gaffers in the box.
Called over Bryan to join in on action… Opted to search around for some more weeds and after leaving this area (now in 1150ft) found some nice looking weeds SW in 1000ft. Dumped in the livey’s and FISH ON… Another Chinese fire drill was on. I think this was #3. It was all a blur from about 8am on :grin Gave a shout out to Bryan and he picked up 25 pounder here. Congrats B_W... Karma is on your side :grin
Here is Rick with one of his first fins he caught today.
July 7th, 2012
Loaded up a few runners in the wells and headed to the Hill for so some BFT. Opted to drift liveys again along the top of the ledge instead of trolling the chains to see if we can get the targeted species.
Minutes later... FISH ON... Diane was hooked up to what we hope was a BFT...
Targeted species captured... Congrats Diane on catching your first BFT
Went back up to the same start point and made another drift and Ken hooks up this time.
As Diane is reeling in her line she brings up a Remora with a partner. After a quick dehooking, Ken gets his fish to the boat and it's a Bontia. Still puts a nice smile on Kens face. That is what it’s all about.
July 8th, 2012
Here is Jamie with her BFT. This fish came up DOA... Choked on his new found breakfast :grin
Here is Jessica with her first BFT of the day.
Continued west and spotted some good looking weeds in 45ft of water and stopped again in hopes of getting the girls on some fins.
FISHON... Hallelujah Jamie got her first fin in the box. Opted not to leave this guy in the water as I wanted to insure she landed her first fin. Congrats Jamie on a great job catching your first fin.
July 15th, 2012
Alie with her first BFT and a fair size one at that :thumbsup Great job Alie :thumbsup
Here is Pam with her fish. A very large Bonita :thumbsup...
Ran back up to my start point and deployed the same baits. One large sardine and one small sardine... The BFT hit the smaller dine last drift and the Bonita hit the larger sardine.
Alie picks up another BFT
Alie has been the BFT slayer today :thumbsup
Here is Gary with his first BFT on the day
Decided to run back up and make one more drift before the rains close in on us.
Gary gets hooked up again to the largest BFT on the day. Great job Gary :thumbsup
July 28th, 2012
Jim with his Jack...
Ran in to a weedline in 140ft as we heard the fins were biting. Gave it a quick drift and opted to hit the AJ spot as it was nearby. Jim put down the lone Bluerunner he caught this morning and immediately hooked up to a nice AJ... :applause
July 29th, 2012
Bareden gets hooked up immediately...
The smile says it all :applause
First Bonita almost jumped out of his hands... Good catch Braeden :USA
Run in to the Sandpile to end the day and we hook up Bonita and Ethan catches this awesome Snook. Congrats Ethan :USA
August 5th, 2012
A few more drifts produced a couple more BFT with one of them the biggest of the morning...
Back to the report... :grin. We get back to my start point and set out a large sardine about 30 yards out then hook up the Instant Downrigger to get that bait lower in the water column. All the sudden it gets nailed and we see a Sailfish on Steroids skying off in the distance..
John fights this fish while I clear the other line and as I get it to the boat it is looped over the line that has the Sailfish on it. After a quick clearing I get to the motor and John is frantically yelling we are getting spooled... WE ARE GETTING SPOOLED...
I crank over the motor and nothing. I fire it up the second time, turn the boat and John yells WE ARE ALMOST SPOOLED.... SNAP :banghead
Sorry John... I owe you a Sailfish on our next trip out together... Captain error. I should have just left the line tangled up and gain some line before clearing the tangle. Lesson learned for the next time it happens to me. :grin I will be sure to email you a picture of the next Sailfish we catch John :grin
August 11th, 2012
After stopping at the Sandpile and topping off the wells, we arrived at the Hill just after 8:00am and on the first drift we get a get hooked up to a double header. Here is Mark with his BFT.
While Chuck was reeling in his BFT all the sudden the line starts smoking and then we see this jumping off in the distance. Hey BlackCat, I told you we would catch a sailfish next trip out. :grin Sorry, John... I can still hear the "SNAP" as your line got spooled by one of these guys last weekend. I owe you one for sure :grin
Here is Chuck fighting his sail...
August 18th, 2012
Congrats Kevin :applause The smile tells it all :beer
We made one more drift cutting our start point short in hopes of getting back on this same school with no luck. After seeing Pete run out deep and not finding any weeds we dialed in the AJ spot and headed NW from the Hill. On the way we spotted a large patch weeds so we pulled up and dumped a handful of chunked baits down, a few squirts of Menhaden oil and milk then dropped in some livey’s.
Shortly after drifting away from the patch is was the Chinese fire drill we were looking for. Riley brought the first fin to the boat with its buddies in tow. Kevin gets hooked up and we toss Riley’s fin in the box. We spotted others but they ran back to the weeds so we put Kevin’s in the box and ran back to the patch.
We get back to the patch just as another boat was drifting up to it so we stopped short and tossed some more chunks out an started another drift. As we got about a few hundred yards away Riley gets hooked up again. The key was to keep dumping line to keep that bait near the patch. Great job Riley :applause
Riley gets hooked up again to the biggest of the fins so far. None of them were gaffers but good eats for sure :applause
September 3rd, 2012
The smile says it all... Skipjack in the box.
Matt catches a 5ft shark at the same time.
We continue eastward and in 800ft straight out from Push Button Hill I spot a floating log about twelve feet long off the Port side. We get the baits ready and pull up and it is loaded up with large Banded Rudder Fish. No fins in sight but knew if we started chunking we would get them to appear. A minute later and we are covered up with over 50+ fins. Let the Chinese Fire Drill begins.
We had a hard time getting past the Rudder fish but we ended up boxing 3 fins, one gaffer and Matt caught his first ever Wahoo. :beer
This smile says just how happy Matt was to catch his first Hoo...
Here is Gary with his first ever Fin.
Love the smiles... Congrats to both of you for checking off some firsts today :beer
September 8th, 2012
I woofed the first gaff shot and gave this fin a new fin doo... The second shot wasn't much better and the fin came off just above gunnel level. I swung again and caught him mid air before he hit the water. First fin on the day is in the box and high fives all around :beer
Not to many pictures while we were here and it was mayhem the first hour... Here is Brett on his first Bull Dolphin... Congrats Brett on the biggest fish of the day.
This fish isn't jumping so Cal and I are thinking Wahoo.. Sure enough. Cal yells out stripes and and he flings the hoo into the box. High fives all around... :beer :beer :beer
Zach aboard the FISHHUNTR gets hooked up to a large fin on a small spinner as we see it sky out of the water in the distance. We run over to get some pics and a short video.
September 29th, 2012
Looped around and picked up another BFT and this one went into the boat. With the ice broken we decided to change up the lures on the chains and Paul hooked up to the biggest BFT on the day… Congrats Paul :USA. I don't like changing something that works but this proved to be a good move.
We chunked a lot of bait here with nothing showing. We rigged up the instant downriggers on the rods and Travis hooks up just as we were planning on making a move.
October 6th, 2012
Chuck gets his first fin in the box…
We dropped in the hoos again and started to troll around the outside of this area and immediately got a double header… I boxed my fin and Chucks came unglued. We rigged up some more hoos and continued with non-stop action for the next two hours but with zero more boxed fins. We lost two at the boat that got tangled up in weeds and 5 others…
November 3rd, 2012
Lines in the water before 7:00am, Chucks lure puts a fish in the box at 7:10am… Gotta love it when a plan comes together. :grin
We reset and my new rig gets hit as I am letting it out. 2nd BFT hits the box. It must have been that Turbo Rattler...
Not bad, two BFT in the box before the sun rises…
We dropped in the hoos and started trolling northward. Within ten minutes Chucks line goes off but the fish never jumped. We didn’t know what we had on until we can see the green fin breaking the surface he was passing the boat 50 yards out. As Chuck gets the fin close it looked like it wasn’t hooked good so I quickly gaffed him and he hit the deck going berserk.
I grab the lure bag and Chuck grabs a black & purple Iland Jr and we are now rigged back up to head north once again. We get about 300 yards past the last hook-up spot and Chucks rod goes off again.
December 23rd, 2012
I immediately flick the reel into freespool and hand off the rod to Jim. I told him it was a Cobia and to let it run & stop before getting tight on it and sure enough, Jim lands a nice 35” cobe.
We pass Blade Runner and they caught 7 fins along this same line trolling south. We give them the heads up on the bite we just had and continue trolling north. We catch a couple of Bonita on the flatline lures then the Bluewater/hoo combo gets nailed by a fin and Joe quickly gets it to the boat an into the box.
December 28th, 2012
We then move on south to Bullshark with no luck. Then hit the yellow buoys south of Bullshark and picked up a few small runners. As we were trying to catch some baits we spotted this awesome sunrise. The sky looked like a large orange blanket.
We turn back north and port daisy chain goes off and Greg is on it with the first BFT in the boat.
Then Amanda grabs the blue & white Bluewater lure rod that gets nailed 50ft behind the boat and brings in BFT #2…
Gotta love the smiles fish tend to put on people’s faces… Congrats on your first BFT aboard the AF… :applause
As soon as Greg’s bait gets down about 140ft it was FISH ON.
Greg brings up a nice size Amberjack…
Greg gives her a helping hand with her first AJ… Congrats again Amanda for another first aboard the AF… :applause
Hope you all enjoyed this year in review aboard the Alwaysforward. Looking forward to even a better 2013 for :fishing