After a 2 year break I cleaned the cobwebs of the boat and got her ready for an offshore run. I did a few Bay trips to burn off the old fuel and make sure everything still worked, to my surprise all I need was a pair of batteries and a little tuneup to the windshield wipers park switch. I also cleaned and oiled the reels and replaced the topshots on all offshore rigs.
We left Gloucester at 1:30AM and arrived at the ramp about quarter after 4, just enough time to rig the outriggers and get her off the trailer before the fleet headed out. Followed one of the charters out of the inlet and recorded a track so I could rebuild my route with the changes from the past couple of years. With the summer heat on I did not see anything exciting from a SST shot but the topography was showing an upwelling down near the point, decided to head to the 650 line and troll south towards the point. We got there about 7 and there was a lot of life around, birds, dolphin, and pilot whales milling about everywhere. Marked some bait and fish down about 30 fathoms. Got the spread out and picked up a small blackfin pretty quick, the poor thing wasn't even big enough to pull the bird under water. As the morning progressed the dolphin and pilot whales disappeared and so did any bites. Trolled around till about 12 and seeing some thunderheads building to our west we decided to head in. Back at the dock we talked to some other guys on a small boat that had fished between us and the point. They had picked up 10 or so blackfins and a couple of decent YF's. Like us they said they picked up all the fish before 8 and spent the rest of the morning just pulling baits.
I was kind of surprised by the actions of some of the OI charter captains. I have fished around the Rudee Captains quite a bit and most of them are pretty decent as long as you give them room. I may be wrong but the OI captains seemed to go out of their way to mess with the small boats out there.
Carolina Classic 25