First Published by Donnel A. Tate, Lahaina News.
LAHAINA – The blue marlin bite was pretty slow from January through February. There were only six blue marlin weighed in January, with the first big blue showing up for the New Year.
New Year’s Day had an almost 500-pound marlin weighed, with the Hinatea starting off 2014 with a 499.6-pound blue by the father and son team of Jeff and Taylor Schoenekase. They were fishing with Captains Neil Preston and Chris Wong.
There were only three blue marlin weighed and one released in February.
The blue marlin bite slowly picked up for the first part of March. The big blue marlin finally showed up for the final two weeks, with two in the 600-pound range (684.9, 634.8) and four in the 400-pound range (491.5, 470.1, 410.3, 400.2). This was the best month for blue marlin over 400 pounds.
There were a total of 14 blue marlin weighed and another three released.
The Hinatea landed a nice catch for wahine angler Audry Morris during March weighing 400.2 pounds. She was fishing with Capt. Chris Wong and deckman Peter Wong. This was the largest blue marlin by a wahine angler for the year.
April was the second best month for big blue marlin, with two 600-pounders (669.4, 600.7), two 500-pounders (568.4, 533.2) and one 400-pounder (407.7) weighed. There were a total of 12 blues weighed and another two released.
A black marlin also made the lineup – the first one in 12 years. The Start Me Up Too landed a very rare catch for Maui waters and Hawaii, weighing a 161.0-pound black marlin by Harold Kenyon. He was fishing with Capt. Denny Putnam and deckman Ross Elkins.
The last black marlin caught by the Lahaina Harbor Sportfishing fleet was in May 2002, with a 101-pounder aboard the Hinatea. The largest black marlin for the harbor is a 559.5-pound fish by Capt. Dave Rockett aboard the Halcyon. This was also the winning fish in the first Lahaina Jackpot Fishing Tournament held in 1977. There have only been 19 black marlin verified and documented since 1977 out of Lahaina.
The Action joined the 500-pound marlin club in April with a 568.4-pound blue by Josh Padley and Kevin Phillips. They were fishing with Captains Randy Evans and Johnny Keiley.
Just four days after weighing a 684.9-pound marlin, the Jun Ken Po came in with a 533.2-pound blue by 16-year-old Caleb Henry. He was fishing with Capt. Gabriel Rogers and deckman Dyllon Smith. This is the largest blue marlin caught by the youngest angler and 12th largest for the year.
The March/April big blue totals were four 600-pounders (684.9, 669.4, 634.8 and 600.7, the four top blue marlin for the year), two 500-pounders (568.4, 533.2) and five 400-pounders totaling 11 fish. The two-month blue total was 26 weighed and five released for a total of 31 fish.
The top blue marlin for the year was a 684.9-pound fish by Gene McReynolds. He was fishing with Capt. Gabriel Rogers and deckmen Brandon Maxwell and Dyllon Smith on Jun Ken Po.
The Start Me Up Again made the 600-pound club with a 669.4-pound blue by David Dang and Seth Willer. They were fishing with Capt. Jason Duby and deckman Rob Cosgrove.
The Start Me Up Cuz weighed a 634.8-pound blue by Rodney Schwagel. He was fishing with Capt. Craig Schuler and deckman John French.
And the Start Me Up Again placed another blue into the 600-pound club – this one just making the cut at 600.7 pounds. This big girl was angled by Mike Roskopf while fishing with Capt. Jason Duby and deckman Rob Cosgrove.
Source: Lahaina News