May 2000

Didn't get out in April, seems like the weather and projects got in the way.   Al and I hooked up once again and went after the Yellowtail. They had been wide open for over a week, and so we went for it. Mark had gone the day before and got a couple and one White Sea Bass on the troll. He was fishing South of South Island. So that's where we headed. We picked up bait at 5:30 and headed South. Seemed like we went forever before we saw any boats. As we passed South Island, we began to see a grouping. There were about 20 boats, some trolling and some drifting. We began trolling CD-14's and 1 Fish Trap in the general area. Water temperature was 60 degrees, but as we headed West, it got up to 61.5. Boats in close to shore in Mexico were complaining the water was 59 degrees. Then we got a double on the CD-14's. We boated 2 nice yellowtail. A little while later we got one on the Fish Trap. Then two more on the CD-14's. The last fish inhaled the Rapala with only the bill sticking out of it's mouth. By now there were 50+ boats in the area, but not party boats. We were hearing chatter from the North side of North Island about catching Yellowtail and White Sea Bass. So after a dry spell, we decided to troll to the North.

 

When we got between the Islands, I checked the lures, they all had grass on them... no wonder no bites. Within minutes after cleaning them off, Al got a bonito.   And when we got to the North end, I got a Bonito.

0500-bon.jpg (11251 bytes)

 

0500-YT.JPG (51878 bytes) As  we moved closer to the fleet, there were 20+ party boats and 50+ private boats... Water temperature worked its way to 65 degrees as we went from South to North. On  the North side, they were getting White Sea Bass and Barracuda to go with their Yellowtail. We stopped and drifted with the masses, but didn't catch anything, so we trolled our way out of the pack and headed toward Point Loma. When we passed all the boats, we stopped to take pictures and get set up to clean the fish. We had pulled the Rapalas in close to the boat.  As Al was taking this picture, a Yellowtail jumped on this Rapala that was just laying in the water!!  Great day on the water.

I fished the next weekend with my neighbor Ben and his son Charlie. Boy, what a difference a week makes. The water turned cold and the fish scatttered. The spot off North Island was 59 degrees. The water was so dirty, I poured out some warm V8 juice and it looked nearly the same color as the water. We heard of a report off the 9 mile bank were someone got 3 Yellowtail on the troll. The water was reported to be 62-63 degrees. We picked up and headed that way and the water wwas warmer. We trolled for hours without any takers. We did hear of some scattered lucky souls who managed to find the right combinations to pick up a few fish. There was one report of limiting early on a kelp paddy west of the 425. There were confirmed reports of Albacore to the South off Ensenada mid-week. We could hear the boats trolling, but didn't hear of any caught. Bill Clausen was out on his 'Santa's Sleigh', kinda of hitting the spots we did after we did and he came up dry as well. Mark tried for Threshers North of La Jolla but no luck.