Big Yellowtail in Mexico! [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Big Yellowtail in Mexico!

02-04-2008, 09:46 PM
Well we are back in La Paz after a month of sailing the central Sea of Cortez. It is time for us to get Hannah ready for her 2700 mile passage across the the pacific to the Marquesas around the second week of March after the cyclone season ends in the South Pacific.
Thought I'd tell you about our son Nolan's big fish on light gear. Nolan is 15 and has never even hooked a big fish but he did a bang up job and stayed focused the entire fight. Nolan and myself were fishing in our 8.5 avon with a merc 8 hp k one morning at an island called Isla San Fransico where there are so many game fish from Darado, rooster fish, tuna and yellowtail. The yellowtail were heavy feeding on a gazzillion sardines and the Mexican panga fisherman were out in force. We used lures and flies for 2 hours and these fish even though they were in a frenzy would not touch a lure. The Mexicans gave us some live sardines and we started to troll live bait and about a minute later Nolan was on a fish. We had just spooled his new light saltwater spinning reel with 250 yards of fifteen pound test the night before so I guess there would be no excuses. The yellowtail spooled most of the line in about a minute or less and I turned the boat around and started to chase it. Nolan kept the line tight and got all but about 200 feet in before I slowed the avon down. By this time we had gone from 30 feet of water to open ocean and 400 feet deep. The fish was diving now strait down and taking line hard again but Nolan finally got it stopped. For the next two hours the fight was on with the fish towing us further out to sea. I was a bit worried because the forecast for the day was for 30 knot Northers and I kept an uneasy eye out toward the North. The panga fishermen were great and stayed near us for the entire fight and every once in awhile one would go back to the Island and let Tracy my wife know about the fight. They would tell her that Nolan was getting tired but that he may have a world record on light gear and wasn't going to give up. A few times over those two hours he lost focus and I had to get on his case about the lost sleep one gets when you loose a big fish and all you do is replay it in your mind. We didn't have a gaff with us but a boat came by and handed us one as Nolan was finally making slow progress. Once we saw the fish we really knew we had a special fish on but we still had 30 minutes to go. I was worried that I would loose the fish on the gaff job and kept telling Nolan that our chances of landing this at gaff time were slim but we would do our best. Well the gaff job went perfectly and the fish was in the boat. Nolan took our spray bottle full of cheap Tequila and sprayed it's gills worried that it would jump over board or kill us both if he came to life again. The Mexican panga fishermen went wild yelling at nolan that he was machissimo and that he had a world record. By the time we landed the fish we were at least 4 miles off shore.
We found a scale on one of the other cruising boats anchored near Hannah and weighed the fish it came out at 40 pounds even. Later we had old sinktip check out if it was really a new world record but it does not look like it was, besides we cut it up and ate the damn thing. I'll tell you the kid grew up a whole lot that day and we have noticed the change in his behavior.
Sorry I can't post a pic here of the fish but you can check it out on our blog site at

02-04-2008, 11:51 PM
Nice! Nolan is definitely living the life. You can't learn this stuff in school back in Seattle.

Been following the blog an looking forward to hearing about the trek across the pacific.


02-05-2008, 09:59 AM
Great report and congratulations to Nolan.

02-05-2008, 03:21 PM
Great report, and wow, that a fish! Are those the same as the NZ Yellowfin? le.jpg
Here's your pic!