BY GUNDY GUNDERSON
SAN DIEGO- After a flurry of activity on the Hurricane Bank, with most of the fleet taking a swing at the trophy yellowfin tuna bite that has been the best we’ve seen in several years, things slowed down with many boats jumping into their annual maintenance regimen. For most of the week, there were no boats on the bank. The Intrepid arrived solo poised to fish the bank with little to no pressure. The first day saw a sample of quality tuna and a nice whack at the wahoo, a good portent for things to come.
Intrepid arrives at the bank
The Intrepid began the journey south on the Masters Invitational 16-day trip with high hopes. The fishing, this cow season, has been good with lots of quality fish on the Hurricane Bank. The bite has had some consistency, a trait rare in recent seasons. The big sportfisher, with Capt. Bill Cavanaugh at the wheel, sent this first report, “Traveling south in nice weather. Seminars for days. We covered tuna basics yesterday morning after breakfast. The day before we covered wahoo. This morning we will cover fishing big baits, fishing the chunk, and fishing the kite. Everyone is enjoying themselves and we are just about finished with all of our tackle prep. We arrive at the Hurricane Bank tomorrow morning. Thanks for checking in. Life is good.”
With the Intrepid, the only boat on the bank, there will be lots of elbow room for days to come. The timing could not be better. With great anticipation, the boat arrived and got to fishing. Cavanaugh sent this brief report, “We arrived to the Hurricane Bank just before lunch today. We picked up enough wahoo out of 2 stops for a few meals in the galley to start out. A good omen. We drove around a bit and saw good sign of tuna. We like what we see. Looking forward to taking a shot. Thanks for checking in.”
Big X returns
The Excel returned from an excellent ultra limited load 16-day trip that saw excellent fishing for 80- to 180-pound yellowfin with a sample of cow-size fish. The reporting was limited on the trip due to WiFi issues. The boat sent this final report upon arriving in American waters, “We got back this morning from our ultra limited 16-day and what a way to finish off a season! Everyone had a great time and it was smiles all around. We’ll be starting our annual maintenance shortly with the boat in the yard then topside when we’re back in the water. Pictures will be coming once we get the boat out of the water. We want to sincerely thank all of our passengers for making this season an amazing one. There were triumphs, heartbreaks, individual records broken and friends made. Every passenger gained new memories, for some it was their first long-range trip ever, for others it was getting to share the rail once again with family and close friends.
From the Captain, the crew and everyone here at Excel Sportfishing, thank you for joining us on these adventures and look forward to sharing many more with you in the upcoming season.”