Pending Female Record For Blue Marlin
By Mark Johnston
A big congratulations to angler Carol Hinkle-Herren, her husband Capt. Bruce Herren, and crew members KJ Robison and Bevan Beauchamp on the 54’Spencer Raptor fishing out of Honokohau Harbor in Kona, Hawaii. Carol probably has a pending world record for most blue marlin caught by a female angler in a single year. As of this writing on Nov. 3rd Carol has caught an amazing 102 blue marlin out of the 124 blue marlin caught on the Raptor in 2015. With more fish predicted to be caught before 2016, the Raptor may get a Kona record of its own for most blues caught in a single year.
In September 2014, I wrote an article for InTheBite about Carol. At that time she had just caught her 50th blue marlin in a nine month period. After some research it was considered a Hawaiian state record for a female angler to catch 50 blues in nine months, if not for an entire year. I was not sure if it was a world record though, so I asked the readership to chime in and it turned out another female angler, Denise Wishney, had remarkably released 74 blue marlin from March to October in 2002.
Carol humbly credits her angling achievements to her husband Bruce and his boat handling skills, and to longtime world angler Pat Brian (Custom Rods) of Austin, Texas for giving her pointers and for showing her specific marlin fishing techniques. But what makes Carol an exceptional angler is her self-confidence, the critical factor for any angler. Carol said “you can’t challenge fish five or six times your size without a lot of self-confidence”, and Carol’s confidence also comes from experience. The best way to learn how to catch big fish is to fish for them.
When asked how it felt to achieve her goal of a 100 blue marlin with her husband, Carol responded “it means everything to achieve this with my husband. He put in the time and money to help me get 100 blues. We were on the water together for about 200 days. It was an amazing effort. I didn’t catch my first blue of 2015 until Feb. 16th and by Sept. 2nd I had 63, another 22 had been caught on the Raptor by guests by this point. After Sept. 2nd Bruce decided it was just me in the chair. There were a lot of fish around and we pounded it. I knew once we made that commitment – if the fish stayed around, I could reach my goal. By November first it was done. I reached my goal of 100 blues. Bruce gave me the biggest gift a husband can give a wife – he believed in me”.
As for her crew Carol said “my crew was amazing. Bevan Beauchamp and KJ Robinson worked super hard to help me achieve my goal. I am very grateful for them. And the support from the local community was incredible. Jim Rizzuto reported our catches throughout the year, and Shawna Haynes, Lahela Lau and Olivia Beauchamp were my biggest cheerleaders”.
As for future goals for Carol in 2016 ? She replied “catch more blues, I love catching blue marlin”. Worth noting is the Raptor killed only two blue marlin out of the 124. All the others were released. Congrats to all involved in this memorable accomplishment.