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Old 06-07-2012, 02:05 PM   #1
Lightfoot
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The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

I suppose everyone has their story of one fish that broke their heart the most, whiffed shots, safety issues, tear outs, seals, sharks, and everything in between. Mine happened Friday evening, June 1, the day before the Neptune's Bluewater Meet.

I was invited on Scott Defirmian's Parker with Lou Rosales, and we'd been on the backside of the island looking for seabass all morning, with no sightings. The vis had been 15-20 in most places with water temps from 60-62. We picked a little spot that several fish had been taken at in the past and jumped in. Lots of bait on the outside and deafening croaking from the depths kept us hopeful. Lou managed to get a sighting early on but wasn't able to get a shot. I kept to the center of the bed and decided to swim in shallower and look around. I came over an area with a massive boulder coming up from about 20 feet or so all the way up to 6-8ft from the surface. I dove down to cruise around the deeper side and just as I did, I caught something out of the corner of my eye. I looked up to see two bruiser yellowtail swimming right over this giant rock. They were less than 10 feet from me and the first thing I noticed was how big the eyes were and how tall they were. I have only shot a handful of yellowtail and the biggest only being about 23lbs, so I didn't have much to base their size on but I assumed they were 30-35lb fish. They were very close in size and I didn't spend much time comparing, I focused on the front fish, aimed and plugged him right in the pectoral fin, I saw the shaft sink in and knew I had a solid shot. The fish barely flinched and kept swimming like nothing was wrong. I swam after it, hand over hand on the reel line, hoping that it was stunned and if I could get to it quick enough, I could end the battle before it started. I climbed up the line as fast as I could and almost reached the swivel when he decided to kick my ass! I kept the pressure pretty tight as I knew my shot was good and I wanted it to tie up shallow. It managed to burn through 3 fingers on my gloves but somehow not my fingers themselves and took about half of my reel line before I got it stopped. I blew up my little popper float and proceeded to follow my yellow line through the kelp. I got straight above it and noticed the swivel and mono just peeking out of the kelp below me. I couldn't believe how lucky I was that it had just tied up at about 15 feet! While I was trying to catch my breath and calm down, I see the fish slowly fighting on the bottom, not ready to give up just yet. I managed to see Scott and yelled to him that I had just shot "his" yellow that would have cinched his Kent McIntyre award. He swam over and agreed that it was a BIG fish, while he watched me eventually go down and rip it out of the kelp. With one hand on the base of the massive tail and the other in the gills, I ripped and pulled it to the surface, and got it subdued. I put it on my stringer and went to push the sliptip through but it disappeared inside the fish. I disconnected my shooting line and swam it back to the boat, and got the tip our while on the boat.

We flagged down Lou and convinced him to take his camera in and get a few pics, as the sun was going down fast. We took a few nice shots and I swam back to put the fish on the hoop stringer, hanging over the boat. While on-board, Scott got the scale out and we were going to take a quick picture on the boat before the sun set. I leaned over to grab my prize, only to see that the clip had popped open and a wave had pushed it right off of the stringer! I panicked and told Scott that it was gone while I threw my gear back on, just about as fast as I could to see if I could catch a glimpse of it sinking away. The boat was anchored in about 70 feet and that was way out of my reach. Lou swam back to give it a shot but he was having ear problems and couldn't go anywhere deep enough. Scott had already taken a shower and changed for the night but changed back into his suit to give it a couple dives but it was just too deep and too dark by that time and my lifetime fish had been reclaimed by Neptune. Apparently I hadn't clipped the straight piece high enough to stay above the little "s-bend" and the weight of the fish along with a small swell, it popped free and was pushed off. It was obviously pretty devastating to all of us and could have been easily avoided looking back, but at the time the fish was dead and it was mine.

I was lucky to get the pictures, but I wish I had a real weight and maybe another above water picture to brag about. Once home, my wife and I used the lettering on my glove to "measure" the length and guesstimate a size with a little algebra and the pictures, and came up with between 64.5 - 67" in total length. Of course, that means almost nothing without real measurements but it's all I had. You can make your own guesses based on the pictures but everyone seems to agree that it was over 50lbs. I can only hope to be presented with a fish of this quality again. Live and learn...
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Old 06-07-2012, 02:11 PM   #2
Smudge
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

Heart breaker!
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Old 06-07-2012, 02:28 PM   #3
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

That's brutal! Definitely looks like a BIG fish for these parts. I had a sea lion nearly steal one that was hanging over the side in Pyramid Cove, so that's where I thought the story was going.

On the plus side, you landed it and got photos so I think it counts! What a bruiser.
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Old 06-07-2012, 02:35 PM   #4
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

Man what a heartbreak. That is an awesome fish. Looks like a solid 50.

I have had hoop stringers bust open in competitions right as I was coming in after 6 hours of diving and seen 10+ fish scatter into the surf.
Those hoop stringers are a joke, I will never use them again. One pinch in the wrong direction and the locking integrity goes out the window with those things. Sorry to hear about losing this fish. Bet you will never use one of those again...
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Old 06-07-2012, 02:37 PM   #5
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

That's a nice yellow, and a terrible story.

I hope you get a redemption shot a nice one soon.
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Old 06-07-2012, 03:11 PM   #6
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

neptune gives..neptune takes...at least you are now positive in the leder...due some something really nice

sorry for your loss, I'd be pissed
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Old 06-07-2012, 03:13 PM   #7
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

Congratulations on the fish!

And what an agonizing story to read.

It just proves that you cannot win all of the time. Great job taking it in stride.
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Old 06-07-2012, 03:42 PM   #8
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

Great fish, very sad story.
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Old 06-07-2012, 03:44 PM   #9
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

When you think it cannot ever get worse, this...

At least it was your fish and not your firend's fish, which was the case when it happened to me
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Old 06-07-2012, 03:57 PM   #10
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

Wow nice fish, i guess thats what happens when taking pictures is more important than filling the freezer
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Old 06-07-2012, 04:04 PM   #11
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

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Originally Posted by SpearsouthFL View Post
Wow nice fish, i guess thats what happens when taking pictures is more important than filling the freezer
What are you talking about? Did you even read the story?
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Old 06-07-2012, 04:10 PM   #12
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

Sorry man, at least you got the pictures. That really sucks.
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Old 06-07-2012, 04:18 PM   #13
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

Congrats on the fish, but that really sucks! Sorry . After having to recover fish for a friend (luckily it was close by and I managed to find it), I started stringing them them through the eyes. Really sorry for you, BUT you have pictures so it isn't a fisherman's tale.
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Old 06-07-2012, 04:25 PM   #14
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

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What are you talking about? Did you even read the story?
First off, hats off to the freediver. That was a hard battle for the fish. Im just saying you couldve easily thrown it into the cooler and take pics on the dock. I guess in California the popularity levels different. Sorry if I offended you

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to put the fish on the hoop stringer, hanging over the boat. While on-board, Scott got the scale out and we were going to take a quick picture on the boat before the sun set.
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Old 06-07-2012, 04:33 PM   #15
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Re: The one that got away... my sob story of a monster yt

I want to cry!!!
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