Summer is here! Well, almost. The cold fronts are more spaced out. The prevalent wind is from the south and generally pretty warm. The water temperature is more than 70 degrees. All these factors indicate the offshore fishing season is about to take off. So, my son Elliott, brother Dave and I set out to see for ourselves.
We pulled away from the dock at 6:30 a.m. and ran 58 miles offshore. On the ride out, we set the goal of catching our first mahi of the season. Upon arrival at a temperature break, in 250 feet of water, we deployed our mahi trolling spread. DTX lures on the flatlines. Rigged Ballyhoo on the short riggers and mahi colored cedar plugs on the long riggers. After about 30 minutes of trolling one of the DTX lures got eaten. The fish made a long scorching run. Before even seeing the fish, we knew it was a wahoo. It took a few minutes to get it to the boat. When we did, 35 pounds of the most delicious sashimi went into the fish box.
For the next few hours, we picked at the fish. Wahoo and blackfin tuna kept things interesting but the mahi were uncooperative. With enough fresh fish to eat, we went exploring. I ran the Yellowfin to another temperature break in 500 feet of water. Elliott and Dave re-deployed the trolling spread and we began looking for mahi. We did not have to look for long. A DTX lure and cedar plug got bit simultaneously. Pandemonium ensued. With two fish hook-ups that left me to drive the boat, clear the lines and gaff the fish. Thankfully, all went according to plan and a load of fish tacos hit the fish box.
With our mission accomplished, I cranked up the stereo and set the autopilot for home. On the way back in, we were all smiles and laughs. Summer is here! Well, almost.