By Captain Bouncer Smith:
On Friday September 12, 2014 John Scott Nichols set a new goal for billfish anglers.
Last September 21st Scott caught 2 blue marlin in the DR with Capt Quinton Dieterle aboard Git Lit. This started a quest around the angling world to catch a Royal Slam(all 9 billfish species- Atlantic and Pacific Sailfish, Atlantic and Pacific Blue Marlin, Black Marlin, Striped Marlin, White Marlin, Swordfish, and Spearfish.)
As luck would have it, Scott had a great year. By late August he had a Royal Slam, and only needed to tag and release a swordfish to be the first angler with a double Royal Slam in a year and be the first angler to tag and release a Royal Slam with TBF tags .
We were scheduled to go after that swordfish at noon on Friday. Clearing the inlet, the sky was black as far as you could see from north to south off Government Cut.
We voted to go for it. We had a little rain and some high wind periods, the the weather was breaking up.
We fished a Hooker Electric unit on a Penn International 80 wide with 65 pound braid for a downrigger. The terminal gear was a 15 pound weight 2 feet below a “big red release clip”. The clip was set at 12 pounds.
The fishing outfit was a custom Captain Harry’s Rod with a Penn International 70 filled with 65 pound Stren Invisa Braid.
90 minutes after hitting bottom in 1600 feet of water the drift had us into 1425 feet.
Mate Billy Springer called for “hitting the bottom” for the fourth time.
Billy dropped the downrigger while Scott dropped the bait rod. Upon hitting bottom both rods bowed over. The downrigger popped back to normal weight and line slipped from the bait rod as Scott picked it up.
2 and a half hours latter we tagged and released a. 82 inch LJFL estimated 350 pound swordfish.
Scott had his double Royal Slam and TBF tagged Royal Slam both in. 51 weeks.
Capt Bouncer Smith, Capt Billy Springer and John Scott Nichols returned to Miami Beach Marina aboard Bouncer’s Dusky 33 to celebrate the years events.