Friday, December 5, 2008

Islamorada Sailfish Championship, Day 1 Report

WOW!! The Sailfish are here.

Some of the numbers I had the other day appear to have been off, as there were actually only 30 or so boats this year, and typically about 60, but the Sailfish were here in great numbers. In fact, there were a confirmed 145 releases today amongst the entire field.

Our boat, the Cloud Nine, started out a bit slow, but finished with 8 fish, including a triple header that turned into a double when one fish through the hook, another double, and then 4 single fish. We had 7 others that also broke our anglers off, so we ended 8/15 on the day. We caught two Dolphin fish as well, though neither big enough for the other species category.

15 is actually the number leading now, and there were a few other boats that finished in double digits, and one at nine, so we're around 6th after day 1, and kept ourselves in contention.

The morning started at 5am in the skiff running to get baits that we caught previously from the pens, and then more bait fishing and rigging. Lines in were at 8:30 and we fished until 4:30. We finished at 6 pm after clean up and re-rigging for tomorrow, and now I'm off to cut more leaders in preparation as well, and then to bed for another 5:30 am call.

Definitely learning under fire for me. I had a few missteps, but I think I did better as the day wore on. I feel like I'm still learning to crawl when I know it's time to run during the big tournaments, but all I can do is try to continue to improve, and not directly cost us any fish. There's a lot going on, but fortunately I'm working with some understanding guys, and three great laid back anglers, so it's all good.

Hopefully we'll be on them again tomorrow.

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