Author: Tavis Kagawa
Fall Fishing From A Kayak In Hawaii
"Early fall is usually a pretty fun time for kayak fishing in Hawaii as the bait is easy to catch and the pelagics are still around for a little longer."
After being away from the game for a few weeks, I was more than excited to get back in the water. With a massive south swell on the way, my launching choices were pretty limited, but I was able to find a spot suitable for a quick morning run.
Early fall is usually a pretty fun time for kayak fishing in Hawaii as the bait is easy to catch and the pelagics are still around for a little longer. I haven’t had much opportunity to run Bullbuster’s single strand wire, and I decide that I’m gonna stick to it today. I personally have pretty poor luck with the onos, but if I am going to get any it is usually this time of the year.
Day started out pretty typical and the wind report was spot on so a light 10-15 steady breeze. After loading up the baitwell, I decided to check out some of the more productive ledges. As with a lot of things in life, you have to push through in order to reap any kind of reward. The best marks usually have something going on with the movement of water themselves, so as I got closer the wind, current, and waves all amounted to making things a little rougher to me.
As I stare at the GPS, it is never fun to see that your forward movement is 1mph and your resting movement is 3mph in the other direction. Scanning the finder, I am looking at a desert below me and I am not sure if this decision was worth it. Worse of it is “Sharktober” and as far as I’m concerned that seems to be when most attacks occur in Hawaii.
It’s already been a couple of hours with nothing coming up on the sonar and no strikes at all. I decide that I will make a move about a quarter mile up and then turn around to calmer area. When I get there, I stop paddling for a minute and watch myself lose all the ground I just spent working to get to. I thought to myself “This sucks, but I guess that’s fishing.”
Naturally that is when the strike comes. A couple short tugs and them 100 yards flies out of the reel at full speed. I am convinced that I finally got my ono. Fish turns and comes straight at the boat before darting out again. My confidence is growing that this is the fish that I want. Then all of a sudden it makes a straight dive down and starts dogging me hard. My mental image is shattered and I start to wondering about what the fish could be as well or if the tax man has paid me a visit.
A few moments later, I see yellow and green. One poorly placed kage shot to the gut and I have a small bull on my lap. Technical difficulties with the bait well are making all my opelu do their death shakes, so I decide to head back. Halfway there I stumble upon a spot that looks productive so I decide to cash in some of my dead tokens. Went 2 for 6 ended up with an aha and a small ulua. While most people would laugh and shake their head at me, I was actually more excited about the ulua than the mahi. I only keep a specific size and is the best fish for one of my favorite dishes - fish jun.
Good way to end a nice morning run. Have to go figure out some of my baitwell problems and come out stronger next time. Pleasantly surprised that I caught all the fish on Bullbuster’s wire and looking forward to see what else I can get on it!
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