We are seeing the Blue Marlin flags flying high in the riggers amongst the charter fishing fleet here in Honokohau Harbor on this day after Thanksgiving , 2015. Some Striped Marlin are showing up as well , along with the Shortnosed Spearfish , one of the rarest members of the billfish family , and with the water temperature cooling off a bit we are seeing more Mahi-Mahi. Speaking of Mahi-Mahi I refreshed my memory recently of the Hawaii State record Mahi which was caught off the Kona Coast in 1987 on the boat “Sundowner” weighing in at 82 lbs , which still stands as the biggest Mahi caught in Hawaiian waters as we speak. This reminded me of the one that Captain Wayne Knight and I landed 4 or 5 years ago on his boat while on a charter. I worked the deck for him that day , long story short we caught this 56 lb Mahi on a live Skipjack Tuna , about 3lbs , attached to a live bait rig with a circle hook attached to it. It was pretty exciting pulling this fish alongside the boat trying to put a gaff in it while it was dancing around like a wounded gorilla. Here’s the best part of this story; When we got back to the dock and after we took some photos I commenced to fillet the fish for our guests and after taking one side of the fish off and flipped it over to fillet the other side the Mahi slid off the cutting table right into the water below Waynes boat. Wayne said “No Worries” as he was putting on a mask and snorkel and searching for his swim shorts to jump in and retrieve the big Mahi in about 12 to 15 feet of water. As I was keeping a good eye on the Mahi laying on the bottom while Wayne was changing , along came one of the huge Green Sea Turtles that reside in the harbor. When I say huge I’m talking upwards of 200 pounds. With Wayne not in sight (he was still changing into his shorts behind closed doors) I had to do something so I dove in head first , sunglasses , hat , wallet, phone, etc. When I got to the fish and grabbed the tail end , the turtle had just grabbed on to the other end so a tug of war ensued and I won , brought the Mahi back up to the surface, laid it back on the cutting table and finished slicing off the beautiful fillets. I think our guests enjoyed this part of the charter most of all as they were a hooting and a hollering with laughter ! Thank you for letting me share this story with you as I continue hunting for the biggest fish in the Ocean.
Captain James Dean