It’s been a long winter especially for those of us who are passionate about fishing. Collin and I have been busy this winter not only doing maintenance on the boat, gear, and tackle but a number of upgrades and improvements we are very excited about. We are hoping to be done by the end of march and have the Karen Lynn back in the water at Cape Ann Marina in Gloucester for Spring ground fish charters. Here are some highlights of our winter projects on the Karen Lynn.
New Live Bait Well/Brine Tank/Ice Box Combo:
Gone are the blue and green plastic bonar insulated boxes from our deck that in the words of one of our clients, “gives the KL that Xmas tree look”. We are replacing the two boxes with a custom 200 Gallon Baitwell and a super insulated Ice Box that will hold 600 pounds of ice for 7-10 days that we built this winter. Additional it will double as an insulated brine tank for Blue Fin. We think the 200 gallon Live Well will give us a crucial edge next year…(continue reading)
Middle of November and the giant bluefin were on a feeding frenzy. My first time fishing the big Chatham bite. It had not been this good in over 5 plus years. We arrived to the spot, about 30 to 40 boats. We were a little nervous, due to the fact that we had heard so many different fishing methods to employ while here. Big current, you need 50oz. of weight and so forth. We started chumming, had not marked much.
All of a sudden, a large tuna boiled the surface like you see on the youtube. videos. He was eating the frozen baits we were tossing right off the surface! So I reeled my bait back over the boil. I dropped the reel into free spool and fed out the bait. Bam!! The…(continue reading)
The Karen Lynn was out this morning at the bank with Rick Wise and his group. It was hard fishing today with NE winds gusting to 25 knots and steep sea’s really building in the earlier afternoon. Only a couple of other boats were out including Captain Tim Brady on the Fulmar who was fishing through the pain!
As soon as we got to the bank we flooded our ballast tanks and the extra 5000 lbs of water settled the boat down so we could troll in relative comfort. Rick and his buddies hung tough and by 9:00 AM we starting getting into fish and ended up hooking 4, including a nice 58″ fish we took, and tagging 2 which wasn’t easy today. Gilad (from the Large Pelagic Lab) somehow was able to take his tissue and blood samples and extract gonads from the fish in a very impressive display of balance and agility. The ride home in confused sea’s with the tide running hard was not fun, but we were just happy we were…(continue reading)
All of us who chase Bluefin Tuna lose fish. It is inevitable and part of the game. The goal is too simply raise the odds in your favor of not making a mistake or having a gear failure. We have learned some painful lesson’s over the years giant fishing and most would apply to catching 50″-60″ fish on lighter stand-up gear.
1- Set your drags often and right! We set and reset out drags on a fairly regular basis using a basic brass drag scale, but not by hand or feel. We also will pull the drag 10-15 times before setting the drag. Warmed up drags are different than cold.
2- We never “jack” the fish to set the hook, just crank on the reel to set the hook.
3- In general, we will leave our reels set at 75% of strike while trolling, knowing that at strike they are dialed into a drag setting that we have confidence, is appropriate for the gear. When the fish hits. We will crank up the slack quickly, as they are often…(continue reading)
We had continued good luck fishing and tagging for small/medium BFT at the bank this past week. Other than one slow day we had 4-5 bites most days, most in the 55″-60″ range. We are going to be out Monday 9/8 right after the tropical storm passes and we are antcipating really good action with lots of bait and fish pushed inside into Mass Bay and the bank. Here are some pictures from last week.
Jim and Collin
Karen Lynn Charters
We are currently editing some video’s of catching BFT Giants and some tagging and other scientific work on the Karen Lynn by the Large Pelagics Lab at UNH.
Captain Jim Ansara, Karen Lynn Charters
I have seen a number of questions on this site and been asked in person and on the radio by others about how to best kill, care, and handle Blue Fin Tuna. I thought it might be helpful to some of the newer BFT fisherman on this site to post how we try to do it. I think it is great that so many people who are newer to BFT fishing are landing fish. I can tell you that for me, it was a long and at times discouraging learning curve in the Giant fishery. This is by no means the “only” or “correct” way, it is simply one method and the way we were taught in the commercial BFT fishery where the difference in caring for the catch in the first 30 minutes, can be worth thousands of dollars. I have try to modify this for the 50″ to 65″ fish most of us have been catching recreationally. I hope it is helpful. Part 1. Killing and bleeding the fish This sounds simple and obvious but how you kill a BFT greatly affects the quality of the meat. With fish…(continue reading)
We had two tuna charters this weekend and trolled at the bank successfully both days.
Saturday was just one of those awesome days where we had a slow early morning but after a very helpful call from Nat of First Light, we made a move and soon after started hooking up. We ended up Saturday hooking ten fish trolling, bringing six to the boat. Our clients were an assortment of Boston Restaurant people and the group had originally included the sushi chef from the very high end new Boston restaurant “Oya”. Unfortunately the sushi master had to cancel at the last minute. Most of the fish were in the 45″-60″ range with our last one being an absolutely beautiful 65-70″ very round and fat fish which we released at the boat. Our group had a lot of fun and they were planning a big sushi party for many of their friends tonight at Oya.
Today, we took out another well know Boston chef/owner and his family, Steve DeFillipo of Davio’s restaurant and others. We got a very late start and didn’t get to the bank until 10:15 AM but apparently we had missed much. With…(continue reading)
After a frustrating start to the week including being shut out of BFT Monday on a trip with three Scientists from the Large Pelagics lab at UNH and being in the wrong place at the wrong time on Tuesday’s Giant trip, we had an awesome day at the bank yesterday Hooking five Big fish yesterday on mackerel and whiting.
Tuesday Night we realized as we were cleaning up the boat that we still had a tank full of live macks and a few jumbo whiting in the other tank and that the wind was forecast to blow 25-30 Knots out of the East on Wednesday. East and Northeast are often good on the bank especially if it is snotty.
We got out to the bank to find our friend Dave, a very good and successful commercial BFT fisherman already set up and fishing. Other than us and a few boats trolling it was pretty quiet. Quickly we started marking big fish and soon after Dave went off and we watched him for the next 1 2 hours fight what must have been a 700+ lb fish. Dave has caught a couple of hundred giants and…(continue reading)
We just got back last night from the 2008 Martha’s Vineyard Monster Shark Tournament and we are totally exhausted but I wanted to post some of the pictures that we got over the four day trip. Our Charter, Joe Bianco and friends, were great to fish with and we had a awesome time with them. Not only did they bring huge amounts of incredible food (Joe owns a specialty meat and sausage company) but Joe’s son Louis, diligently took many great pictures when he wasn’t fighting a fish.
Over the two days we caught and released over thirty blue sharks with ten very large sharks we estimated to be over 250# and a few in the 350# range! Additionally we lost a nice Mako at the boat, and caught a thresher shark that missed the 250# cut off for adding points. The thresher may have come up short for counting in the standings but gave us an incredible fight. In the end, everyone went home very happy and extremely tired.
This was our second year at this tournament and there is definitely a steep learning curve. This year things went very smoothly and the weather was generally…(continue reading)