The big boys are here! Spring continues to be a banner time for the Pacific Blue Marlin in Kona Hawaii. Today was no exception! Peter Lamm visiting the Island from New York landed this beauty fishing aboard Fire Hatt. A nice 175+ pound Blue Marlin was tagged and released by Captain Joe Shumaker and First Mate Austin Toth. Peter has been fishing the Big Island for many years. Wonder what keeps him coming back? Another exciting day on the water…
It was a Five Star Day aboard Fire Hatt for a family visiting from Los Angeles. Our guest released his first Blue Marlin today. To add to the thrill, Captain Joe Schumaker and First Mate Austin Toth hooked another one on the way back to the harbor. Our guest released two trophies in one day! Making this family fishing trip in Kona, Hawaii a memorable one for his two Sons on board too!
When Bill Emery and Kim Graham Rawlins arrived in Kona for Spring Break, their main goal was to escape to paradise and go fishing aboard Fire Hatt, enjoy sunsets, have a lot of beach time, enjoy good meals and just chill. Bill’s main goal was to catch food fish. Sometimes that is a tall order. We headed out to “Ono Lane” and had our first fish early. Bill brought in a nice 20+ pound Ono. We had another mystery bite and then on the way back to the harbor, we had a Hail Mary bite just as First Mate Austin was starting to bring in the lines. Kim is in the chair and brought in her 20+ pound Ono! Neither Bill nor Kim had ever caught this species. They did great! We had excellent weather, calm water and we were so lucky to have had such a great fishing & memorable experience with an awesome couple!! They couldn’t wait to eat some of their fresh catch, so Captain Joe sent them to a local restaurant that will prepare some of the Ono for them for dinner!! Armed with a cooler full of Ono, Bill and Kim returned to North Pole, Alaska where they will have fond memories every time they enjoy their catch from paradise.
Fishing in Kona Hawaii has always been known for the calm waters and sunshine. Bill and Kim have been fishing in Alaska, Mexico and Hawaii. They put this trip is at the very top as their favorite!
Escape to Paradise
Well, they’re back on the snowy East Coast and regretting every minute of it. It’s 28 degrees and they have 10 inches of white on the ground. a reality check for this East Coast Family, and fellow Texans as well! The Bolton family has fished aboard Fire Hatt with Captain Chuck Wilson for several years, nothing compares to the day they had this time…Christmas Magic?
John Bolton and his son, Kyle, both from Northern Virginia, and John’s nephews Kevin and Alex Harrison from Beaumont, Texas, and Albuquerque, New Mexico, respectively, booked a half-day of family fishing in Kona Hawaii aboard Fire Hatt for the day after Christmas.
We took off from Honokohau Harbor around 7:00 AM with Captain Joe Shumaker at the controls and first mate Anthony De La Cruz setting the lines. About 10 minutes out, we’re hooked up on two lines! Kyle is in the chair reeling in the larger fish, while John tries to bring in his fish from the starboard aft. Kyle’s fish makes a couple of long runs, so Anthony first helps John bring in a nice striped marlin, which we estimated at about 80 pounds. Anthony successfully tags and releases the striped marlin, then goes to help Kyle bring in and then release a blue marlin, estimated at 175 pounds. Also tagged and released.
A great start to the morning only gets better. After trolling near an offshore buoy, Kevin and Alex spot whale spouts closer to shore, and Captain Joe brings Fire Hatt to a spot where we see at least four humpback whales frolicking. One of the whales puts on a spectacular breaching display. After about 30 minutes whale-watching, we’re off to do more fishing, and not long after we’re hooked up again!
This time, Kevin is the chair, and after 15 minutes of hard reeling, he brings another blue marlin — this one estimated at 225 pounds — to the boat. Beautiful fish, as you can see from the pics.
Unfortunately, we could not get a fourth fish for Alex to bring in, but Fire Hatt entered the harbor flying flags for three marlin.
Reality Check for East Coast Family
A Fleeting Marlin Moment for Michael and Kia Worth while aboard Fire Hatt this week. The Worth’s booked a 3/4 day Charter Fishing trip in Kona Hawaii with the hopes of catching a Pacific Blue Marlin. The Worth’s are celebrating their honeymoon after just getting married in Maui. Kia is from Minnesota and Michael from Australia. With busy careers, the two have enjoyed some down time in the Islands.
After a quiet morning with Captain Joe Shumaker and first Mate Anthony De la Cruz, an estimated 350 pound Pacific Blue Marlin exploded on the long rigger line. While Michael jumped into to the fighting chair, the marlin jumped and ripped out line the whole time. A minute into the fight…the marlin threw the hook. Ouch! While getting out of the chair Michael made a spontaneous comment that I’m sure he will be reminded of for years to come… “That was the most exciting minute of my life!” Kia will surely grin every time this story is told.
Fleeting Marlin Moment
The Shortbill Spearfish, Tetrapturus angustirostris, is a species of marlin native to the Indian and Pacific Oceans, with occasional records from the Atlantic Ocean. This species occurs in open waters not far from the surface. This species can reach a length of 230 cm (91 in), though most do not exceed 190 cm (75 in). The maximum recorded weight for this species is 52 kg (115 lb). It is of minor importance to commercial fisheries and is also a game fish.
Although spearfish live in many oceans, they are not abundant anywhere, and rarely caught anywhere except Hawaii and the Mediterranean. Shortbill spearfish live in the Pacific and Indian oceans. Mediterranean spearfish live only in the Mediterranean. Roundscale spearfish live in the eastern Atlantic and the western Mediterranean, around Portugal and Spain, and closely resemble white marlin. Longbill spearfish live in the northwest, central and south Atlantic.
Spearfish are surface feeders, eating other small or medium fish and squid. They mature at two years old, and rarely live past three years old. The maximum age may be up to five years. Spearfish are not caught as gamefish in most parts of the world as their numbers are too low and being reduced by accidental bycatch. Most spearfish kill is incidental. They are caught by “sport” fisherman targeting other billfish, by commercial longliners fishing for tuna, and by troll fishers.
Featured in the top photo is Elaine and Johnny Vaughn from Huntington Beach, CA with Elaine’s Shortbill Spearfish caught here in Kona Hawaii
Featured in Lower photo is a prime species Shortbill Spearfish sucessfully released here in Kona Hawaii by First Mate Brett Lazenby aboard Fire Hatt.
The Shortbill Spearfish
The “Allii Brothers Marlin Hui” is alive and strong and living right! Today, Buzz Colton and his brother Father Gary Colton fished an action filled day aboard Fire Hatt. They are both avid fishermen and purchased this trip through a donation we made to the IGFA Foundations Silent Auction. Buzz has snagged this trip several times over the years. We thank him for supporting the IGFA (International Game Fish Association) .
Using light tackle (for here) Two Shimano 50’s and two Shimano 80’s were their choice. The day started with a nice rip on the stinger, we are Hooked Up! Buzz was in the chair and after a few minutes the fish came undone. A short time later, the long corner was hit and this time Father Gary is in the chair. Father Gary successfully brings a nice Striped Marlin to the boat and the Crew on Fire Hatt released the fish. And then not to be undone, we have another bite, Buzz is back in the chair and the fish again comes undone! We had one more mystery bite to complete the day. I think God has a favorite here! Buzz and Father Gary have been fishing waters of Kona, Hawaii for over 50 years. They have fished numerous Tournaments, won their share of trophies and have stories of a lifetime. We are proud to call them friends.
Father Gary Colton
Born in Van Nuys, Calif., Father Colton and his family moved to Maui in the early 1950s because his father, a dentist, loved Hawaii and wanted his family to live in the islands. Later, the family moved to Oahu for the elder Colton to set up a private dental practice in Waikiki.
On Friday, June 2nd , 50 years to the day, St. Theresa Church in Kihei hosted an anniversary celebration with Colton serving as the main celebrant during Mass.
Father Gary continues to serve as a chaplain for the Maui Police Department. He’s a member of the advisory board for Catholic Charities Hawaii, Maui; a member of the Diocesan Board of Education for Hawaii Catholic Schools; and he’s one of the founding members and an ongoing member of the board of directors for Ka Hale A Ke Ola Homeless Resources Centers.
Six Species in Two Days for Joe Gunja aboard Fire Hatt. Now and then a person enters your life and it is almost as if they were sent for a reason. Joe Gunja called me and we discussed a two day fishing Charter on FIRE HATT, fishing for Blue Marlin in Kona Hawaii in November 2017. A little history on our adventure, Joe is from Springfield Missouri. I was born in Harrisonville about 90 miles away about the same time. Joe is a retired high ranking Federal Bureau of Prisons Regional Supervisor, effectively making him the second in Command, supervising over 20 Wardens. Myself as a retired Chief Officer in the Fire Department we both had a lot of stories to share on our Public Service times and experiences.
Joe had fished many of the Lakes and rivers I had as a youth and he updated me on the new (40 year old) Harry S. Truman Dam and Reservoir that is in the middle of the Southern Missouri Fishing and Hunting Region. Joe’s wife passed away suddenly this past year with no previous illnesses and he himself had suffered Leukemia and is now in remission. Joe is a former Army Military Policemen and then rose through the ranks of the Federal Prison System including being the Warden at three prisons. While a disciplined and structured Man, Joe has a love for adventure and fishing.
Joe, my backup Captain Joe Schumaker and I set out and started combing the waters off Kona Hawaii and shortly later caught a 40 pound Shortbilled Spearfish, a rare species World Wide and only found in the waters of the Central Pacific. Many Anglers throughout the World come to Kona to try to capture this rarest of Billfish as they had caught most of the other Billfish Species that lived in their Ocean waters. This turned out to be just openers as over the next two days Joe caught six different species of Gamefish that reside here in Kona Hawaii. Finishing off our first day adventure was a 20 pound Skip Jack and later a 15 pound Barracuda.
Day two began with an early morning bite with the first species being an Ono, also called “Wahoo”, followed by a small Mahi Mahi and then came the Big Pacific Blue Marlin. Estimated at 300 pounds while being released, it was by far Joe’s biggest fish of his life, so far. Attached are some glimpses of the Blue Marlin as we hooked up brought it to the FIRE HATT.
Joe Gunja and I have become solid friends and we will share many more of these adventures as time goes by. Thanks Joe for coming out to fish FIRE HATT in Kona Hawaii!
Fire Hatt Family Loses A Dear Friend. Ten years ago almost to the date, we met a wonderful family from my wife Linda’s home state of Texas. Bob and Barbara Collins from San Antonio and their family chartered with us. This meeting started a long time friendship. Bob and Barbara brought their Daughters, Leigh Ann Timber and Lori Collins along with their Grandson, Cameron Timber almost every year after that fateful first Fishing Charter. We caught many fish over the years and came up empty handed several times too. They loved fishing in Kona. We enjoyed golf with Bob and his Grandson. Then the love of Bob’s life, Barbara passed away suddenly, leaving a void in all of our lives. The Collins’s traveled together, played together and most importantly Prayed Together. Bob and daughter Lori came back to Kona this past month and lovingly scattered some of Barbaras ashes along the beautiful Kailua Kona Coast that she loved so much. We were so honored to perform the ceremony aboard Fire Hatt. A part of Barbara Collins will always be here with us…
Hawaiian style fishing at its finest! The 30th Firecracker Open Big Game Tournament kicked off the 2017 Tournament Season. It was an intense two days of Tournament Fishing aboard Fire Hatt! There were many hook ups both days and three boated Blue Marlin.
Jody Bright, the tournament director”s comment today: “Krista O” with Capt. Mike O’Shiro, Darren Hayashi and David Magallanes have won the 30th Firecracker Open Big Game Fishing Tournament – in a 17 foot boat – with a 533 pound blue marlin. It’s “OFFICIAL”.
Some of the finest, funniest, local characters competing against some of the biggest names and war wagons in the game. In true Kona Style, we all celebrate your win – a hui hou!
Fire Hatt had a Spearfish release on day one by Charles DiBona, and a Blue Marlin release estimated at 175 pounds in just under 15 minutes on day two by Jeff Curry. We had two other awesome marlin strikes that did not stick. Last year during this tournament, Charles DiBona tagged and released his first Marlin, this year, Jeff Curry tagged and released his first Marlin. Our crew, Captains Chuck Wilson, Joe Schumaker and Jack Leverone are awesome! Chuck and I are looking forward to the next event. Check out the Kona Tournament Schedule here at konatournaments.com
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