Julia Benak-California Halibut – 46.1 lbs Feb 26th, 2006 Doheny Beach Official Women’s 16lb line class record.
Vic Van Wie, Studio City, California
Vic Van Wie, Studio City, California. 256 pound common thresher shark.
Gear: Daiwa 6’6″ Sealine-X rod and Daiwa Sealine-X SL-X30HV reel with 30lb. Izorline and Power Pro backing. I used a 5/0 mustad circle hook with a 300 lb. mono leader.
The fish weighed in at 256 lbs. on a physicians scale and measured 10ft.10in.
Vivian Oliva, Miami Florida. 41″ snook. June 30th, 2001
Fishing the outgoing tide at one of the exits from shallow Chokoloskee Bay, there was a lot of baitfish action. I started trolling with a 1/4 oz cottee red head jig with a 4″ rootbeer Gotcha swirl tail grub. After about 100 yards, my kayak came to a halt and started going backwards. A flash of silver and it looked like a tarpon so I grabbed the rod and got a good hook set, at which point the fish started taking me around faster into open water. Then it decided to do what all snook do to get free… head into the mangroves. As the fish was 5 feet from the mangroves I opened the bail and took the pressure off the fish. It stopped and started swimming out into the open again.
Great! I let it go and started picking up line slowly until it was clear of the shoreline and I resumed the fight. I finally tired it out. Paddling around for what seemed like hours to find CBK, Tom and TJ, I finally spotted CBK and he had a camera to record the fish. It measured 41″ but the girth was not taken so we will never know how much it weighed. I was fortunate to have been able to get the fish back in the water and it swam away.
Tackle used: Shimano 4000 spinning reel with a Falcon med/heavy action rod
FS-5-16. Line: Ande 10lb test with a 30lb mono leader tied to line with a
surgeons knot. The lure is tied to leader with a loop knot (very important).
Jeff “Rhino” Krieger, inventor of the Rhynobar, landed a 50 pound California halibut at the Los Angeles/ Ventura County line in 60 feet of water. Rhino used a bucktail jig on 15# test line. “I have always had good luck fishing on family birthdays and this fish was no exception. I had to get permission from the birthday boy, my eldest son Ryan was enjoying his 6th birthday, October 2nd 1999. The party was later in the day so he wished me luck and said “catch me a big one dad”. I launched at the LA/Ventura county line and headed out to 80′ where a squid boat was on anchor after fishing squid in that location the previous night. Sand bass were a fish a cast when the big halibut took my offering, a stripper jig 1-1/2 oz tipped with a squid strip, on 15lb Sufix clear mono line,Shimano Calcutta 400s on a Graphtech 7′ medium action rod. The battle lasted 20 minutes and the fish came in without much commotion for a big fish. The hen (female halibut), weighed an even 50 lbs. on the State Certified Grocers meat scale at my local market Green Acres in Simi Valley. Measured at 54″, it is still my biggest ever and probably will be for a long time.”
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Spotfin Croaker 7 Pounds, 26 Inches-12# test Shimano Corsair Reel, Abu Garcia Rod
Jerry Giberti- Alhambra, California- July 4th, 2004
“….a full blown Dana Point (California) Fourth of July was underway. The bite (in the harbor) was unrelenting! A combination of small barracuda and herring…..On the next drop, the pole suddenly turned into a ninety degree bendo, and I put my feet back in the yak. this fish began to haul my yak around the harbor, with spectators looking on as the battle continued…..After about fifteen minutes I finally got the fish high enough to see….. then down he went again. About ten minutes later,I finally netted my fish. It barely fit in the net. I found out it was a spotfin (croaker).”
“TANDEM RECORD CALIFORNIA HALIBUT-MONTY MOCK, KEITH JOHNSON” 53.8 LBS
JULY 5TH 2002 – “CAMPING AT SAN ELIJO STATE BEACH CALIFORNIA, NEAR CARDIFF REEF, MY FRIEND KEITH JOHNSON AND I (MONTY MOCK-CYPRUS,CALIFORNIA) WENT FISHING JUST BEYOND THE KELP AT HIGH TIDE. I DROPPED A 12″ LIVE MACKEREL TO THE BOTTOM WITH MY 700XL CALSTAR GRAPHITER ROD WITH 25LB ANDE LINE ON A PENN JIGMASTER. IN A COUPLE MINUTES MY LINE GOT VERY HEAVY. AFTER A COUPLE SHORT RUNS I GOT THE FISH UP AND IT QUICKLY RETURNED TO THE BOTTOM. AFTER A FEW MORE MINUTES I GOT IT BACK UP. I OPENED THE HATCH AND HANDED KEITH A LITTLE HOME MADE GAFF. I GUIDED THE FISH TO KEITH IN FRONT OF THE KAYAK. HE HOOKED THE FISH IN THE MOUTH WITH ONE SHOT AND LIFTED IT UP WRAPPING HIS OTHER ARM AROUND THE HUGE FISH. EVEN AFTER THAT THE HALIBUT WAS STILL HALFWAY IN THE WATER GOING NUTS. THEN KEITH STUCK HIS HAND UNDER THE FISH’S GILL PLATE AND OUT ITS MOUTH. KEITH TOOK MY KNIFE AND BLED IT, THAT SLOWED HIM DOWN. IT TOOK ALOT OF STUFFING TO FIT THAT BEAST THROUGH THE HATCH. ONCE WE GOT IN WE TOOK IT TO BLUE WATER TACKLE IN SOLANO BEACH AND IT WEIGHED IN AT 53.8 LBS AND MEASURED 50″.”
Dave Robinson-Sarasotta Florida, Estimated 130#Tarpon
“The fish in the above picture was caught with my “back up” rig and took quite a bit longer. This rig was really just one I use on the flats here and consisted of a St. Croix med action 10-20 lb rod with a Shimano Calcutta 250 reel spooled with 30 lb. Power Pro with an 80lb leader and baitbuster. This fish took 1 hour and forty minutes to bring yakside. Our best guess is that it weighed somewhere around 130lbs. We take great pains in resusitating the fish we catch and she swam off just fine after a bit of work. That is the last time I brought the light outfit out for Tarpon as it’s no good for fish or fisherman. Tarpon are a gift from above and should be treated with the utmost care and consideration. My thanks to Jeff Gaston for taking the picture.”
29# Baqueta- Also called “gulf coney” and “red grouper”. October 2004 launching off the beach, guided by Spike on the Sea of Cortez.
Fishing deep for tuna, “Anacapa Bob” Kirk from Newbury Park, California landed this rare catch he hooked at about 200′ on a Megabait iron. As big as they get at 29#, these fish don’t come shallow and are not targeted by sport anglers. It didn’t take long for commercial and recreational take to effect the viability of all the world’s groupers. We strongly recommend anglers adopt a no-take policy on severly impacted species and release all you can. Follow this link for an easy release tool (bottom of page) to increase the mortality rate of fish with bladders.
Derwin Chang of San Diego landed this 65.5# WSB w/ 15# P-Line on May 16. 2009. Thanks to Sonny Carig for the submission.
“I was fishing the Barber Poles about a mile and a half outside of the Dana Point harbor with my fishing buddy Mike Graham Wwe were in 90′-100′ of water catching our share of nice size calico and sand bass. I was using my bass rod with 15# test P-Line, fishing the bottom, with a 6″ gulp grub on a 3/4oz. head, when all of a sudden the rod went big time bendo. The battle lasted for 45 min. and only after it took me for the ride of me life. When I was done landing the fish I managed to tow it back into the harbor were we weighed it at the fuel dock. It tipped the scale at 65.5 lbs., was 57″ in length and had a 32″ girth. I consider myself very fortunate to have caught such a fish and it just goes to show that you never know when you’re going to be in that right place at that right time.” Derwin Chang
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Dennis Spike with a kayak fishing record 75# white sea bass landed in early May 2000. The big croaker was 2″ shy of 5 feet with a 32″ girth and taken a few hundred yards off the first point on the south end of Broad Beach in Malibu. “Falcon and I were following the squid, looking for white sea bass. I threw a small Krocodile and was busted off on a 12 pound test outfit. Today, I use a heavier outfit than that for making bait! Flylining a giant live sardine on a 20 pound leader with 25 pound line, I got picked up, hooked up and pulled about 1000 yards in 3 magnificent runs. The fish was exhausted at the end and easily landed, lifted with a gaff hook under the lower jaw. Following me on the initial run, Falcon got hooked up trolling a swimbait and eventually boated a 59 pounder. The last thing I heard was a fading “You’re on your own” as he was pulled in another direction. We’ve shared many epic days since. We used the Tournament scale that isn’t licensed but is dead accurate. Falcon’s fish was exactly 59#, one pound shy of the scale limit. My fish was cut into 3 pieces with the belly contents bagged and weighed and scale recalculated and checked many times. There was virtually no fluid loss in the process. It is notable that the egg sack weighed 10#, was delicious and shared by many!”
Spike & Falcon near the end of an epic day on the water. Brian “Falcon” Campbell (on the left) of Newbury Park, California landed his 59 pounder.