Sunday, November 18, 2007

Yahoos with Wahoos

Yesterday was a red letter day after La Gringa's experiment with short drop offshore bathing suit bungee jumping on Friday. The weather was workable. And we had a workable boat. We needed to talk to some people on Pine Cay. So it just seemed that the thing to do was go for a boat ride. We grabbed a couple fishing poles to troll on the way. No action at all for about an hour or so.

Then La Gringa hooked into her first wahoo ever out in about 200 ft. of water. She had a few fun minutes of bringing the fish to the boat, but unfortunately, something else noticed. The fight suddenly went all out of it.

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He still looks surprised at this sudden turn of events, doesn't he? One minute he's zipping along scarfing up bait fish, goes for the shiny one ......Getting hooked was just his first problem. It got progressively worse. Talk about having a bad day.
We were a good distance outside the reef, and we hardly ever see barracuda out here. Besides, it was something bigger than that to consider this guy a snack.

Gives ya something to think about when snorkelling around on the outer side of the reef, that's for sure. But we still do it.

When Preacher sees a fish like this he says "they only left you the eyes.."

We were getting tossed around pretty good, in an 18 ft. boat on an honest 3-5 ft. swell with a foot of chop on the top of it. A couple of hours of that was about enough. I hooked something on a turn, but lost it. So we were heading back empty-handed to call it a day when La Gringa's lure took another hit. It was a good solid fish. She played the rod and the drag for a half an hour until she got it close enough to the boat for me to gaff and haul aboard.

She had just hooked her second wahoo ever, and we got to keep this one.

We took it to the Pine Cay dock to clean and fillet it.

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Demented Dog took it upon himself to guard the fish, just in case it needed to be bitten. He does this. We can't leave him alone with a fish. If it's in a cooler, he will follow the cooler. He doesn't eat them. He just dedicates himself to biting them at every opportunity. We had to keep him away from this one. This thing could have taken a big part of his face off.

Of course people in the marina had to come over and admire the fish. La Gringa got the congratulations, a nice side benefit of getting the rod and reel work right. It was a surprise to us that she caught this on a lure with a monofiliment leader. Wahoo (Ono in Polynesian) have teeth like two sets of razor sharp serrated scissors. They can even bite through light braided wire if they chomp it just right. We figure this one went somewhere in the vicinity of 35-40 lbs.

The Pine Cay marina staff certainly noticed me slicing fillets off this fish. One of their new employees is named Giselle, and he is from the Philippines. He is camera shy, but he came over finally and when I was just down to the backbone and head, he asked us "You throw?" nodding at the head and making a throwing motion toward the ocean. "Do you want it?" La Gringa asked him, and his face lit up in a huge grin. Yes, he most definitely wanted it.

He yelled out to a fellow countryman also working here, who had been watching this whole thing from another dock.

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" Hey , tesis pantalya ay giving ako ang buo panguluhan , tingin at lahat! "

I don't know what he really said. But I looked up what they speak in the Philipines, and it's Filipino, but that's just an Anglicized name for the Tagalog language. Something like 24 million people speak it as a first language. I guess I didn't know that. And in Tagalog, I hope that means:

"Hey, These dummies are giving me the whole head, eyes and all!"

We have had a lot of people ask us for the heads from mostly the larger of the fish that we get. There is a lot of meat in it, and it makes good soup. We know Giselle and his fellow immigrant Filipino on Pine Cay will be enjoying their own traditional cooking for a couple days.

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So, we made a couple new friends here. See how easy that was?

When we finally got back to Provo it was the end of the day. I cut up the two fillets into meal-sized packages. We have enough for about a dozen meals. La Gringa called Preacher to tell him we had fresh fish and he was over in literally five minutes. We gave him about a third of it to take home. So, there's three families that get fed by one fish. Doesn't take much to justify going after them, not that we needed an excuse.

So that was our Saturday. Today we are recovering from five hours of bouncing boat and sunshine, a lazy Sunday. And La Gringa has sore shoulders from working that some mysterious bruise she won't show me.


Anonymous said...

Hey, nice going guys! I am glad you all finally got a Wahoo!

I wouldn't want to tangle with the creature that left you just the head of that first fish! I can only guess that it probably was a sizeable Shark that dined on that one!

It was nice of you to share some of the fish with Preacher and the guy from the Philippines! Looks like some good eating to me!

When we catch Speckled Sea Trout here we fillet them and cut the heads off, then the throw the skeletal remains of the fish in the pan too! These "frybones" we call them have some great tasting meat left on the fish's skeleton! Its my favorite piece of fish!

Good luck on your next outing and thanks for the article and pictures!

Matt Cook said...

Nice fish and congrats. I've read every post on the forum (yes, ALL) and keep up with it here too now. Wanted to say that the snippets about the dog are always funny. I know someone with that kind of dog and they really are just so "quarky". So thanks again for all those stories.

Good thing La Gringa got this set up for you, I know posting on THT really IS a pain.

Congrats and tight lines!

Anonymous said...

I caught a wahoo last spring, which we now know is the end of the season here. We had baked wahoo last night. Excellent! I still prefer grilled.

Many years ago I ate Ono almondine at a restaurant very near the Parker Ranch on Hawaii. I tried to find a recipe online today, but no luck.

The dog...well..he's a trip. Both La Gringa and I had dogs before, but they were always big dogs. Labs, mostly. But this thing has convinced me that size doesn't really have anything to do with how much dog is in there.

Anonymous said...

Tell La Gringa my wife said "Way to go"

I took her out yesterday Grouper fishing, and she got her first King Mackeral, our nearshore version of a Wahoo. Those things will fight something fierce.

La Gringa said...

And a high five to Mrs. Cpt. Dubble!

It was a pretty exciting experience and great for my ego after the bathing suit fiasco! :-)

Anonymous said...

Nice fish.Next time you hook up,keep on going.Wahoo are pack fish and there is a very good chance ya'll will hook up to three or more.
Philipine people are some really nice people.Never learn much Tagalog myself other then a few words,then again I have a hard time with english.

Anonymous said...

hey guys its trish here nice one guys . i went out this mornin and caught 3 the biggest being 40 lbs and 2 15 - 20 pounders and lost another but they are commin in now definately and if you troll between dellis cays to leeward you will definately run into them and again keep on the edge of the wall and i caught mine today on hot pink, bright lime greena and a blue and white lure.... so they are goin for any bright colors right now. anyways you guys are doin good at this fishin business and im always on shirlock's dock if you need any pointers or clues as to where the fish are runnin!!!! till then.

Unknown said...

Nice going La Gringa!!!!!! And always thanks for the blog, great story and always my first read of the day...Mark

Anonymous said...

oh yeah and when you bring in a massacred fish theres only two things that distinguish what had it. now if your wahoo look like someone took a knife and cleanly cut it then it was a wahoo..... if your fish looks all ragged up and has like edged cuts then that was a shark.... now lookin at your wahoo pic that looks like a clean cut to me and i am positive that you had a wahoo about 50lbs up to even 100lbs come up and eat your wahoo!!!! pretty scary eh!!! anyways guys thats cool that you caught some..... oh yeah this is trish by the way if i didnt mention it in the first comment!!!

La Gringa said...

Hi Trish!!!

Glad you stopped by! :-)

I have to say that catching that Wahoo was definitely the high point of my fishing career!

Thank you for all the advice you guys have given us since we started learning to fish here. It's finally beginning to pay off I think.

We're already talking about when we get can out there again!

Anonymous said...

Hello Trish,
Thanks for checking the blog. Yeah, we got lucky that same day we saw you at the dock. There are at least three photos of you scattered throughout these posts, by the way.

There might also be some people reading this who would love to ask you some questions about fishing and chartering in the TCI.

I know we have gotten a lot of email questions from people who are considering coming down to visit and would love to know what to expect if they charter a fishing, diving, or cookout trip.

Anonymous said...

thats all good..... im always open to questions and help.... you know me.... um other then the fact that i'm subscribed to this site so everytime you post something new it tells me in my email i don't know how to know when people post comments..... um i can give my email and if people want they can either post a comment or email me but tell me how to help people out with questions and i will do the best that i can....

La Gringa said...

Funny... you neither look scary nor like a grandma! :-)