Kona Hawaii Fishing Report – July wrap-up.
We're right in the middle of the famous Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament and this is their 60th anniversary. It's been an interesting tournament so far. If you've been a regular reader of mine, you would know that the big marlin have been quite scarce so far this year. The minimum "keeper" weight for the tournament is 300 lbs. Anything under that needs to be tagged and released. It's possible that there won't be any keepers this year but the interesting part is the variety of billfish being caught. Pacific blue marlin are the main catch while offshore fishing in the summer months along with some spearfish so of course, both of those have been caught and released. In the winter, the striped marlin are around but as of yesterday, two striped marlin were tagged and released. To top that off, two sailfish were tagged and released. Sailfish are pretty rare here in Hawaii. Some are saying that it's because of the approaching hurricanes (Erick and Flossie) but I'm not buying into that one. They're just too far away to be an influence right now and both are expected to loose power and just become tropical storms. The first one, Erick won't be coming until late Friday, at the end of the tournament. We also had the World Cup tournament at the beginning of the month but with no big fish around, we never even saw a (500+ lb.) qualifier.
The "blind strike" ahi bite has remained strong and is the best I've seen in a few years. The same can be said for the ono bite. The last two ono seasons were awful but this year is going strong! There lots of otaru tunas around but hard to catch.
I had some successful bottom fishing drops at the beginning of the month but because of the good trolling bite, I spent most of my time trolling. Then came a double whammy! I had problems with my email server so almost everyone that I emailed back about charter availability didn't get my emails. Most went to spam and others weren't being delivered at all. I got the problem fixed just recently but it cost me a week with no charters. Then, the boat breaks. A coolant fitting on an oil cooler broke so now I'm waiting for parts to arrive. That takes a while when you're on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. I've been trying to enjoy the extra time off and trying really hard not to worry about the loss of income. Worry never helps any situation and costs some sleepless nights but on the bright side, my "to-do" list got real short.
See 'ya on the water,
Capt. Jeff Rogers,