by Elliott Stark
The intersection between hunting and fishing runs deep. Both pastimes take place outdoors. Each can provide the excuse for relaxing with friends and getting away from it all. Fishing and hunting are also both pursuits marked by uncertain outcomes. Whether it’s venison or tuna for dinner, both fishing and hunting are about much more than filling the freezer. Beyond these similarities there are also a number of lessons taught by each activity that can crossover to the pursuit of the other.
To better understand the intersection of hunting and fishing, we here profile three men who are skilled practitioners of both big game hunting and big game fishing. Their perspective is valuable whether you enjoy fishing and or hunting – whether you make a career on the water or have been thinking about planning a hunt. More than anything, perhaps, reading about the men who have crafted careers that combine chasing the most powerful of the ocean’s creatures and matching wits with the craftiest of animals in some of the world’s most rugged country provide proof that the world really is what you make of it. Whether it’s a bugling elk or a marlin on the teaser that drives your vacation planning, there just might be something in these perspectives that will make you a better sportsman.
Captain Wade Richardson
With apologies to the rest of my contact list, Captain Wade Richardson is perhaps the most broadly talented person I have ever met. Wade is far from a look-at-me guy and never one to toot his own horn – in fact, he might shoot me for writing this. But were you to create a checklist for the ideal sportsman, it would likely look quite a bit like his resume. Richardson has nearly 20 decades of experience at the helm of sportfishing vessels, holds a degree in diesel mechanics from a technical institute in Wyoming, is a graduate of the Texas A&M Maritime Academy, is an accredited paramedic, and is an accomplished pilot (holding fixed wing ratings land and sea and a commercial helicopter rating).
Wade also knows his way around the back country of Idaho and Montana as well as a mule deer. Were that not enough, Wade is married to one of the best wildlife and fishing photographers in the world. If you’re lucky enough to catch a marlin with Jessica Haydahl Richardson on the boat, she could well turn it into a magazine cover.
The centerpiece of Wade’s fishing experience was running a private mothership/gameboat operation in the Pearl Islands for 15 years. The operation consisted of a 94’ mothership and two game boats – the Hooker, the legendary 48’ G&S, and the Picaflor, the second Merritt ever built – a 42’ classic. In addition to a pile of The Billfish Foundation Top Release Captain for Black Marlin and other awards, Richardson compiled a list of fishing stories that is second to none. Shooting a 50” corvina off the swim step of the mothership? Yep. How about the time a 160-pound yellowfin free jumped through the tuna door as his mate was scooping runners off a bait ball? That happened, too. Wade is currently overseeing a ground up refit of the Picaflor at the Merritt yard in Pompano Beach.
These days Wade is involved in a number of business ventures in Montana. A fourth-generation rancher, Wade runs beef cattle and flies the backcountry of Idaho and Montana. He is a regular with Richie Outfitters (www.richieoutfitters.com) in the Bitterroot Mountains of Idaho. Wade also hunts elk and deer at his family’s ranch in the Big Hole of northwestern Montana.
Captain Brad Philipps
Since the days of Ernest Hemingway billfish and dangerous African game have been recognized as the ultimate. Captain Brad Philipps is a master of both. A native of South Africa, Philipps is not only a longtime professional safari guide, but a sportfishing captain whose skill, focus and ability are the stuff of legend. Just how legendary are Captain Brad Philipps’ fishing exploits? He has caught more billfish (north of 35,000) than any captain in history. He captained the first sportfisher driven to Ascension Island (he would return the vessel to Brazil on one engine). He has also fished in many of the world’s most prolific fisheries – Bom Bom, Cape Verde, Nova Scotia, Australia, New Zealand and more.
While Philipps makes annual trips to fish in other destinations, Guatemala is his base of operations. With his wife Cindy, a former Miss Guatemala, Brad owns and operates Guatemalan Billfishing Adventures (www.guatbilladv.com). Fishing out of the 40’ Gamefisherman Decisive, Philipps targets sailfish and marlin on fly and conventional tackle. The numbers he posts are incredible. In his best year, 2016, Philipps released an incredible 3,711 billfish, a record breaker of sorts for sure. His best day produced 91 sailfish releases. Personal bests for single angler releases were 73 sails on conventional tackle and 51 on fly.
Growing up in a ranching family, Philipps has been exposed to wildlife conservation, hunting, and safari all of his life. Holding a dangerous game professional hunting/guiding license since 2002, Philipps has guided and hunted in many African countries – South Africa, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, and Zambia. These days, Brad and Cindy Philipps own and operate Toro River Lodges in the Kruger area of South Africa (www.tororiverlodges.com). From their base of operations, Philipps offers all-inclusive fully guided, completely immersive safari options that allow guests to experience South Africa’s diversity of wildlife and natural wonders.
Toro River Lodges offer a variety of experience and it may well be one of the most beautiful areas in Africa. Located in a non-hunting area, the Lodges place emphasis on photo/viewing safaris and first-hand interaction with the wildlife and its incredible biodiversity. Philipps is able to tailor each safari to his guests’ desires as he has some of the best areas throughout Africa, whether to pursue a purely viewing/photographic or a hunting safari.
Captain Travis Butters
Captain Travis Butters has a nose for fish. A native of Islamorada, Florida Butters grew up chasing the many fisheries available in the middle Keys. As captain of the Que Mas, a 70’ American Custom, Butters won InTheBite’s Captain of the Year Award in 2008 after winning tournaments throughout the Bahamas and Bermuda. From the grander he caught in Bermuda to an extended Pacific campaign throughout Panama and Costa Rica, Butters’ 20-year run on the Que Mas was one not frequently matched. These days he fishes along with Captain Randy Gendersee aboard the Sodium, a 75’ Weaver, throughout the Caribbean.
In addition to an innate ability to seemingly catch fish anywhere, Butters spends each September in Colorado’s Flat Top Mountains of Colorado guiding elk hunts with River’s Bend Outfitters (www.riversbendoutfitting.com). His specialty is calling in bull elk for archery hunters, though he is no stranger to the rifle. The operation consists of nine camps situated amongst private land and in the White River National Forest. Trips are six or seven days, with everything packed in and out on horseback.
Beyond the skill and perception necessary to read conditions in the mountains or on the water, Butters possesses a natural charm and ease in conversation. In addition to being handy with rope, and comfortable with stock, Butters ability to spin a joke or launch into a story make him perfectly suited for leading groups of people into the Colorado backcountry or the waters on the North Drop.
Shared Experience and Perspective
At first glance an article profiling the overlap between hunting and fishing would be a strange story for an offshore fishing magazine. There is, however, a body of directly relatable experience between the two. The skillset and outlook necessary to keep clients safe in a remote area are similar – whether it be a mountain side in the middle of nowhere or in a prolific, remote billfishery far removed from Palm Beach. In each case the responsible party must be self-sufficient, knowledgeable in the behavioral patterns of his quarry, understand the many possible eventualities – being prepared for the good and bad alike.
The other interesting intersection between the two is what comes over the client when success happens. Catching your first blue marlin or sailfish is a bucket lister for most anyone who ever picked up a fishing rod. For those who have grown up hunting – whether it be for deer or dove, the chance to shoot an elk or other big game animal may well be the result of years or decades of planning, hoping, and dreaming. Both creatures – billfish or big game animals – represent much more than some meat in the freezer or a mount on the wall.
Stories of anglers rendered frozen by the appearance of a marlin on the teaser are matched only by the hunters whose buck fever shakes lead them to shoot trees. For many, the adrenaline released in the moment is much more than something caused by only what is happening before them. For even captains with decades of experience, no matter how many dorado or sailfish or marlin you’ve caught, you can always remember a time when seeing one was magical. It is such for clients who turn to hunting or fishing guides to provide access and opportunity to experience the stuff of dreams. With the animal of your dreams in the site or at the end of your line, the pressure of the buildup can be palpable. The emotion and excitement uncontrollable. It is awesome…really full of awe.
The Effects of Adrenaline
“There’s a lot of similarities. You’re always looking at the conditions – the weather, the wind, the moon. It’s a lot like charter fishing. You take people out, you entertain them and you get to know people you would have never met otherwise,” says Captain Travis Butter when speaking of guiding hunters in the mountains of Colorado.
The outfit that Butters works with in Colorado operates nine camps that are accessible only by horseback. The average stay in camp is six or seven days. Hunters can anticipate walking between three to six miles per day – all at 10,000 feet of elevation. Beyond the chance to harvest the animal of a lifetime, the physical setting – the altitude, the sleeping in tents, the forest – produce anticipation and build that results in some great stories.
“Some of the funniest stories are the people who miss. Guys will miss at three or four yards. Some guys won’t shoot because it’s too close,” Butters says, describing the experience of calling in a bull elk during the rut. He’s had hunters draw back to shoot a bull elk, only to have forgotten to first load an arrow in the bow. “I had a guy draw back and shoot. I asked him, ‘Did you hit him?’ He said, ‘Yeah, it was only 20 yards.’ I followed the direction of the arrow where the bull was. The arrow was 20-feet up a tree!”
“I called in a bull and some cows,” Butters begins. He placed his hunter ahead of him and began calling from behind. The idea was to draw the bull elk to the sound of the call, placing the hunter in position for a shot. “The guy is under a tree. All of a sudden, I see elk run all over the place. He said, ‘They almost ran me over!’ He was shaking real bad. Turns out a cow had run right by him and taken the arrow off his bow. We found the arrow 15 feet away, with hair on the broadhead.”
Imagine how many similar scenarios unfold with anglers on big marlin. The ability of a marlin to induce backlashes, tangles, and san cochos is the stuff of dockside lore. The psychological effects of hunting and fishing can be very similar.
Preparation and Self Sufficiency
Captain Wade Richardson is a master of preparation. When asked about the importance of captains being able to work on their boats, he says, “If you can’t fix it, you probably don’t have much business running it.” When it comes to taking care of people and equipment (from boats to aircraft, and even livestock) in remote areas, Richardson’s emphasis lies in preparation. “Inventory of parts is important. It’s good to keep a handle on how everything is feeling – where all of your systems sit and what’s going on. Service intervals are very important too, especially when getting parts into a remote place can be a challenge” Wade says. “As a general rule, it’s good to be prepared for anything. Plan for the best, prepare for the worst. If you think it’s not going to break, it’s probably going to break.”
This approach served Richardson well. The mothership/gameboat operation he directed for 15 years was quite literally in the middle of nowhere. He would provision the boat in Panama City and remain self-sufficient for months at a time. “We never missed a day due to maintenance,” he says. He one time had an engine room fire while running out… but he was back fishing by 10:30 in the morning the same day.
The importance of preparation is also important when it comes to the back country of the American west. “You can never be too prepared. If you are getting ready for a trip, it pays to invest in good equipment – boots and rain gear, particularly,” Wade describes. If all you have is what you bring, it is best to bring what will serve your needs. “A hunting trip into the mountains is a good way to find out how good of shape you are in. It’s also a great way to find out what level of uncomfortable you are comfortable with. You can be wet, cold, or hot or sore from walking – you never really know what might happen.”
Guiding the Experience
When it comes to a combined big game hunting and fishing resume, it is hard to imagine anyone with a more impressive body of experience than Captain Brad Philipps. Beyond simply providing access to some of the sporting world’s most majestic opportunities, Philipps believes that an outfitter’s role is to make the process inclusive for the client. For most people, getting up close and personal with a blue marlin or a cape buffalo is the apex of a life’s passion – they want to feel involved in how it happens.
“One of the big things is communication – making a client mentally prepared for what they’re doing. It’s important to let them know what their job in the process will be and what to expect before it happens. Whether it be for dropping back to a marlin or on safari, physical and mental preparation are equally important,” provides Philipps. “The best guides are inclusive. They make the safari goer/angler included in the decision process from the time he or she books the trip.”
Communication and knowing what to expect is important on the photo safaris at Toro River Lodges as well. “A lot of the photo safaris are on foot. The client must understand what guests can and can’t do in certain situations. You can’t run – and you must trust your guide. This involves teamwork and is built with trust. It is always so special to get on foot in a wild area and learn about Africa.”
“There is a lot of crossover clientele – fishing guests who want to Africa. It’s important that the guide knows the guests and the clients. The guide must always remember that it’s always the client’s trip,” Philipps provides insightfully. “In my early days, I built my career on talking with guys before the trip. What may happen – what to do in certain situations. The ifs and thens. If the lions come from this direction… If there is an elephant over there… If the marlin does this…”
“Mental strength is one of the most important considerations. The more extreme and wild the adventure, the more it may test your mental state and experience level. It is important to prepare the client for as many eventualities as you can. Pre-talking is very important,” Philipps says. It is easy for a captain or outfitter who hunts or fishes for a living to forget that the experience may be a once in a lifetime type event for the client. A great guide or outfitter will utilize his or her experience and knowledge to provide the client with a roadmap of what might happen and how to interact with it. This is as much about imparting confidence and understanding as it is anything else.
“A guide must have the basics – a good adventure sportsman first, but he must also be able to communicate and be inclusive. This is what separates the good guides from the great ones,” Philipps says. “A lot of young guides guide for themselves. When you progress you realize that the whole thing is about what’s best for the client. The guide, then, acts as a catalyst to provide the experience the client is looking for.”
InTheBite is more than just a printed magazine. The company offers a complete suite of channels across digital, electronic, and social media platforms. The combined package is designed to reach the sportfishing industry across the any ways in which the modern world broadcasts information. The result is great, informative content designed to entertain and inform. For those with products or services, the platform represents a well-rounded, cross channel method by which to relate to the sportfishing industry across age, region and demographic. Just as there is always a place in the salon for a physical copy of InTheBite Magazine, we’ve got the digital and high tech users covered too.
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Congratulations to Brad Wachowiak and the crew of the Katherine Anne, a 63′ Spencer, for winning the Island Time Tournament in Isla Mujeres. The Virginia Beach-based crew won the tournament by a minute. The Island Time Tournament raises much needed funds for the Little Yellow School House.
All of the proceeds from the Island Time Fishing Tournament go towards the Little Yellow School House, providing services, free of charge, to special needs children on Isla Mujeres. The Little Yellow School House began with one room and six students and a really big dream. Because of generous donations and the Island Time Fishing Tournament the school now has six classrooms, full-time teachers and over 50 students. The school has a 70% success rate at getting special needs children back into regular school.
Captain Chris “Kiwi” Van Leeuwen runs the Allure II, a 40′ Caps, in Guatemala. Kiwi and his wife Liz own and operate the Sailfish Oasis Lodge, an upscale, boutique operation. Van Leeuwen and the Guatemalan tourism board hosted InTheBite Magazine in November 2017. The great fishing and hospitality provide the backdrop for a feature in the January/February Issue of InTheBite and this Dock Talk Video. Hope you like watching it as much as we enjoyed making it….
For more on the great fishing in Guatemala, pick up the January/ February issue of the magazine. Subscribe here.
InTheBite’s Dale Wills and Elliott Stark were on hand at the awards ceremony of the Fish Heads Invitational Tournament in Stuart, Florida to present the 2016 Contender Florida Division Captain of the Year Award to Capt. Scotty Fawcett. Fawcett, who runs a 31′ Contender Off the Chain based out of Stuart, had a remarkable 2016 season. His 1,300 points were tallied on two different private boats on which he was hired to fish tournaments.
The event was a festive affair, full of many distinguished captains and crews. Just how distinguished? On hand were six InTheBite Captains of the Year. Joining Fawcett were Capt. Rob Moore of the Fa La Me, Capt. VJ Bell — the first Captain of the Year, Capt. Mike Brady of the Cowpoke, Capt. Glenn Cameron of the Floridian, and Capt. Wink Doerzbacher of the Showtime.
Congratulations to Capt. Fawcett on the award. For the up to date tally on this year’s highly competitive Florida Division, see the results.
Blue Marlin Fishing Chronicles
Chapter 1. Originally published in InTheBite, April/May, 2015.
Captain Mike Lemon – North Drop Expertise, St. Thomas.
Describing fishing as long periods of boredom followed by frantic seconds of action was probably first written by a blue marlin fisherman. Who in their right mind enjoys riding around the deep blue ocean for hours on end, happy with just one encounter of the ocean’s apex predator- the blue marlin? Imagine yourself in the cockpit of a sportfisher looking aft at a boat wake and prop wash; lures and teasers bubbling for hours with no encounters. It’s boring!
Next you see a boat backing down, hooked up with a blue jumping across the surface. You can’t help but wonder what the other guy is doing to be successful? If and when you do get your shot, you better give yourself the best opportunity to succeed and understand why the long wait was worth it. To help you be more successful we delve into the techniques of top marlin skipper Captain Mike Lemon, who opens up with some very helpful tips for your summer marlin fishing season.
Mostly gone are the days exclusively trolling big lures with big hooks and heavy drag for marlin. And while “drag and snag” still has its place on some very good boats, those words are certainly not echoed up and down the docks like in years’ past. The changes have more to do with releasing fish using circle hooks and dredges. Whether you’re fishing in St. Thomas, the Dominican Republic, Bermuda, the mid-Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico or the Caribbean, today’s blue marlin fishermen are dredge and teaser fishing.
Captain Mike Lemon, who ran the record-breaking Revenge, fished the blue marlin-rich waters of the famous North Drop out of of St. Thomas for 30-plus years. To know captain Lemon is like knowing one of your high school science teachers- very knowledgeable and uniquely different in his approach. Like all good captains who are open to change, Lemon started using the dredge in 2011 after declaring, “I saw too many good fishermen trying it not to give it a shot.”
Captain Lemon’s standard North Drop spread is one dredge, two bridge teasers, two short rigger teasers and two long riggers with hooks. With trolling speeds anywhere from 7.5 to 8.5 knots, Lemon uses a light six-arm “Zing” brand dredge equipped with six mud-flap style teasers and a bowling pin teaser positioned in the center to create more of a swerving action. Lemon also points out that his dredge is controlled from the cockpit.
“Our dredge is positioned around the second wave, with the bridge teasers around the third wave,” he says. “With the dredge on the second wave I always felt that we had ours way too far back and probably raised some fish to it but didn’t know it. I wish I could see it better but a lot of that is training yourself to look there.”
Lemon goes on to say, “When we raised a marlin on a bridge teaser, the first thing we did was wind the dredge up. Then one of the mates or anglers on the teasing side would crank the short rigger in near the initial bridge teaser position. I do this for a couple reasons but mainly to be in a better position for a back up shot should the fish not get hooked on the pitch bait. Pulling the short rigger in is also much easier to keep clear of a crazy fish getting tangled in the spread after coming tight,” says Lemon.
He points out the importance of paying attention and understanding how the marlin is teasing. “I try to do as much as I can to provide my angler with an “anticipated” bite versus a “surprise” bite on the pitch,” he says. “To help with this, I’ve learned not to tease the marlin all the way up to the transom and yank the teaser away to see when and where the marlin shows up again. In an ideal tease, the angler is listening and seeing what is going on and most of the time visually picking up the fish. I’m teasing by hand versus using the electric bridge teaser reel and I like to get the marlin teased just past the first wave before we present a bait– then I pull the teaser away as the pitch bait goes back.” The goal is to have the marlin smoothly transition to the pitch in a more predictable manner versus a now you see now you don’t approach. It’s important that the angler can see what is going on and get a softer bite versus a unpredictable crash bite.
Captain Mike also feels that it’s his role as the captain to eliminate any surprises on the pitch bait and adds that pitching natural baits with a well-orchestrated tease are the best combination for success. “Keeping the fish far enough from the transom area helps me communicate what the fish is doing and helps the angler in seeing the fish,” he says.
Unique Rigger Execution
Another unique aspect to Lemon’s approach is how he likes to keep his short riggers in the same halyard position once a marlin is being teased and then cleverly transfers the short rigger tease over to his bridge teaser with the help of his crew. To do this takes practice and timing. On Lemon’s command, the mate controlling the short rigger basically teases the marlin right into the bridge teaser. When Captain Lemon gives the “clear” command, the short rigger is reeled in quickly and cleared and the marlin is left seeing the bridge teaser without really knowing the short rigger teaser was changed.
Again, the goal here is to communicate and control the tease before the final transition to the pitch bait. Seeing the marlin for both angler and captain is a huge advantage. “Having control of my bridge teaser and hand teasing has worked well for us,” adds Lemon. Many crews like to pull the halyard down close and get the fish coming in closer to the corner but Lemon says he likes to keep the fish outside the alley in cleaner water for better visibility.
Captain Mike Lemon is one of the top blue marlin fishermen in world– with well over 1,000 blue marlin released so far. Do yourself a favor and incorporate some of these tried and true techniques into your spread the next time you are fishing the North Drop! You’ll be the boat backing while the others are watching– you guessed it – the boat wake, the prop wash and the bubbling of the lures and the teasers.
By Capt. Peter B. Wright
Several years ago I did a boat trial on a new Hatteras for Motor Boating and Sailing Magazine. I knew the captain, Pete Grosbeck, had a great reputation in California, but I had not yet gotten to know him personally. What he taught me that day in Mexico, has helped me catch hundreds of billfish and win copious amounts of money in tournaments all over the world.
I deliberately did not write about it, until now! Over the decades I have passed on this knowledge to many of my anglers and deck hands; I really don’t consider it to be a secret anymore (sorry Pete). When I share this information with new customers, or crew members, who have not yet used the tactics that Grosbeck taught me, they are usually skeptical. Once they see the success that comes along with the unusual set-up, they always put the rig into their own bag of tricks.
After I climbed through the boat and tested its ability to dance, with me at the controls, Captain Pete asked me if I wanted to catch a couple of sail fish. Of course I did! He handed me a light, 20 pound, outfit and a huge, plastic headed marlin lure with multiple skirts! I blinked and said, “I can’t catch sailfish on that!” He replied, “Do you want to bet?” in a tone of voice that put me on guard immediately.
He was way too confident in what looked like a ridiculous set up for me to bet any real money. I knew Pacific sailfish were larger than the Atlantic ones I grew up on, and I had caught several, large sails in Australia by that point.
At the time, I rarely used lures as large as the one Pete had handed me, even on full grown blue or black Marlin! My hookup ratio was not high enough using large lures compared to smaller lures. Only after using Grosbeck’s lure was I able to realize it was the hooks, and not the lure size that made the difference.
I could not believe a sailfish would even try to eat such a huge artificial lure. If it did, I was sure that the hook up ratio would have to be at, or near zero! Little did I know that in a short period of time that day, I would have 5 strikes from sailfish, and tag and release 3 of them! I was amazed! When I carefully checked out the hook set that Grosbeck was using, it was like nothing I had ever seen before. He was using 2 small and short shanked “J” shaped hooks, sized about 5/0.
I can best describe them as being similar to what we used during live bait fishing for small Florida sailfish before switching to circle hooks. I tested the hooks on a line testing machine and it takes right at 100 pounds of pull to straighten one out. Each hook was on its own individual leader, and the hooks were not completely inside, or outside, the skirt’s tail! The skirt just barely covered the eyes of both hooks! It was an IGFA legal set up! Each leader had a loop eye and the main leader passed through the eyes of both leaders.
Years later, while, trying to catch Fonda Huizenga her first world record spearfish, we would catch a 300 plus pound Big eye tuna, and tag an estimated 500-pound blue marlin, which became the first Atlantic blue marlin ever to wear a satellite tag! We finally got the Ladies Spearfish Record late that day! All the fish were caught on IGFA 50 pound class line, with the Grosbeck hook set on small Mold Craft “needlefish” lures!
I have won several tournaments using that same set-up. Including the Dunk Island classic, a 12 pound IGFA class line competition for Sailfish and Black Marlin, for three consecutive years. We might have won it 4 years in a row if I had not made a silly mistake!
Trailing my old deck hand, Laurie Wright, by 3 fish on the last day, I figured there was no way we could get 5 releases before Laurie got at least a couple more. Sailfish and small Black Marlin tagged and released were worth something along the lines of 35 points each. Marlin over a certain size could be gaffed and boated, and were worth a point per pound of body weight.
I knew we could catch a decent Black on 12-pound so we went for broke and ran outside the edge of the reef to where the big ones lived. Almost immediately we got a bite! Instead of being worth 5 sails or small blacks the fish we were fighting on 6 Kg. line was a full grown female in excess of 800 pounds! And worth a point a pound!
If we could catch her, we would win by a mile! My mistake was in not changing from the 80-pound test leader we used on the little blacks to something much heavier! I managed to get the leader to Doug Haig over 10 times! Each time he pulled as hard as he could, without breaking it, then dumped it, turned to me and said “Sorry Pete, I was going to break it.”
“Great job Doug,” was my reply. “We still have her on!” We were never able to get a tag on her and get the release points but it was one of the best fights we ever had! Whenever I show amateur crew members and anglers how to use the “Grosbeck Rig” I tell them to always use heavy leader and go fast.
One new friend called me up recently and told me “It works!”. “What works?” was my puzzled reply. “I got my wife her first sailfish, then we hooked another one! But it was not a sail. It was a marlin right here in front of Stuart. We messed up trying to tag it and broke the leader at the boat.”
THANKS AGAIN TO PETE GROSBECK.
Mr. Christian Ostbye of Barranquilla, Colombia was the lucky winner of the 2017 ITB Subscriber Trip. Joining Christian was his friend and fishing buddy Andres, along with ITB’s Dale Wills and Elliott Stark. The fishing was aboard the Wave Paver with 2015 International Division Captain of the Year Russell Sinclair. ITB would like to thank Wave Paver owner Jr Davis for his generosity, along with the Ocean Club Marina at Port Canaveral for sponsoring Christian’s airfare.
Anytime you get the opportunity to fish with nice people and a great crew is a good day and this trip was no exception.
The 2018 ITB Subscriber Trip will take place with 2016 East Coast Division Captain of the Year Harvey Shiflet, aboard the Anticipation– a 61′ Spencer.
We look forward to spring and the many vacations parents will be embarking on with their kids. We salute all of you who teach and spend time with the next generation. Captains, crews and parents and anyone who takes a child out on the water… To feature your little ones please send images to email@example.com Subject: Kids
A proud Captain John Brennan of Quepos, Costa Rica sent these pictures of his 11-year-old daughter Elish. She caught and released eight blue marlin in a single day on the Portafino with her dad at the helm. What an accomplishment, Elish, keep it up!
Twelve-year-old Emily Bracher won top junior angler at the Alice Kelly Ladies’ Tournament in North Carolina. Emily caught a blue and a white—two thirds of the slam her team caught in the last 22 minutes of the tournament. At the wheel was Emily’s Uncle Arch.
Mackie Zierfuss with her first billfish, a West Palm sailfish caught on the Osprey with Capt. Joe Drosey. That’s Mackie’s unbelievably proud father, Karl, on the bill with his head down. When she’s not bailing sailfish, Mackie is reading InTheBite.