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Lahaina Harbor’s top fish in 2010, Part I

By Staff | Jan 13, 2011

This 725.2-pound blue marlin was landed by (from left) Bryan Kurz, Capt. Sal Tarantino and Capt. Chad Leonillo. Photos by Donnell Tate.

LAHAINA — The 31-foot Bertram Exact jumped to the top of the marlin leader board for the year, for Maui County, with a 725.2-pound blue by Bryant Kurz. He was fishing with Captains Chad Leonillo and Sal Tarantino.

They raised the marlin in 130 fathoms of water south of the Palaoa Point Lighthouse on the southwest corner of Lanai. It was caught on a Seth Kizel glitter bullet lure from the short rigger position. Bryan boated his fish in an hour using 100-test line on an 80-class reel.

The marlin was 13’5” long with a 10’6″ short length. It had a 34-inch half shoulder girth, a 30-inch half-anal girth and a 16.5-inch caudal circumference.

The Exact brought another monster marlin to the scales, weighing a 706.3-pound blue by Jim Honniball. He was fishing with Capt. Sal Tarantino and deckman Jimmy Francis.

They had picked up 23 mahi fishing the SO-Buoy ten miles off the southwest shoals side of Kaho’olawe. On their way back to Lahaina, Sal headed straight in toward Manele Bay, Lanai. He was about five miles from Manele when they raised the fish on the short corner position. It was an hour-and-15-minute fight using 130-class tackle. This was the second largest marlin of the year for Maui County.

From left, Liz Watkins, Capt. Brad Coombs and crewman Brian Edmisson caught this 596.5-pound marlin.

The Start Me Up Das It landed the third place blue marlin, weighing 688.1 pounds by Dwayne Raczynski. He was fishing with Capt. Randy Evans and crewman Rich Lynch.

Randy was working the bait on the up-current side of the SO-Buoy. He made several passes through the bait, and as he circled back around through it, they had a strike on the short corner position. It was a fifty-minute fight using 130-class tackle.

The No Problem skipped all the lower marlin clubs and jumped straight into the 600-pound club with a 675.2-pound blue by Les Bobocel. He was fishing with Capt. Steve Lambert and crewman Mason Jarvi.

Steve had been working the SO-Buoy for mahi without any luck. He left the buoy and started trolling north. About four miles away, they had a strike on the short rigger position. It was an hour fight for Les on an 80-class reel packed with 100-test line. Even though the marlin had grabbed a lure, it had a seven- to eight-pound aku stuck in its throat.

The Start Me Up joined the 600-pound marlin club for the year with a 641.0-pound blue by Jason Hayner. He was fishing with Captain’s Timster Putnam and Hunter Betts along with crewman Gabe Rogers. They were about two miles from the LA-Buoy ten miles south of Olowalu when they raised their fish. It took Jason just over an hour to boat his fish using 130-class tackle.

From left, Capt. Chad Leonillo, Capt. Dave Hudson and Rob Leslie with their 76.2-pound sailfish.

The Luckey Strike II made it to the top of the 500-pound marlin club for the year with a 596.5-pound blue by Liz Watkins. She was fishing with Capt. Brad Coombs and crewman Brian Edmisson.

Brad headed south out of the harbor toward the LA-Buoy located 11 miles from Lahaina on the 100-fathom ledge off Olowalu. As they were coming up on the buoy, Brian spotted a marlin bill pop up right behind the long corner lure. Its head came out of the water, mouth open, as it kicked after the Steve Elkins “Aku” Popsicle lure. It took Liz one-hour-and-40-minutes to fight her fish on an 80-class reel and 80-test line. This is the largest marlin on the lightest tackle of the year for all anglers. Liz’s marlin is also the largest by a wahine angler, sixth largest blue of the year, and the 15th largest by a wahine angler since 1990 for Lahaina Harbor.

The first day of summer saw the Die Hard land the largest striped marlin of the year: a 98.3-pounder by Wyatt Loft. He was fishing with Capt. Fuzzy Alboro and crew Leo Vendiola. Just seven-tenths-of-a-pound away in second place was a 97.6-pound striped marlin by Phillip Hinds. He was fishing aboard the Action with Capt. Patrick Dorn and crewman Rich Lynch.

A 58.3-pound shortnose spearfish by Randy Basil topped that category. He was fishing aboard the Kai Akua with Captains Jeremy Webb and Hunter Betts. This 6’6” long, 11.25-inch half-girth fish is the largest in the last three years and the sixth largest spearfish weighed since 1984.

The Finest Kind weighed a rare catch in Hawaiian waters: a 76.2-pound Pacific sailfish by Rob Leslie. He was fishing with Captains Dave Hudson and Chad Leonillo on the southeast edge of Molokai, in an area known as “Blue Roof,” looking for ono.

They were only in ten fathoms of water (60 feet) when they raised a fish. It grabbed the short rigger lure and pulled the 80-test line off an 80-class reel. It took Rob 15-20 minutes to land his surprising catch, when the marlin unfurled its sail.

This sail was a female that was nine feet long from tip of bill to tail, with a 6’6″ short length. It is the 12th largest for Lahaina Harbor since 1979 and the largest since March 2005. Since 1979, the Lahaina Harbor sportfishing fleet has captured 76 sailfish. The average weight is 30-60 pounds.

The Joyce’s Choice landed the only other sailfish weighing 50.1 pounds by Russell Brown. He was fishing with Captain Steve Elkins and crewman Bobby Lozoff.