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Jan 5 – Chowie’s Ceviche

January 6th, 2010 – 7:01 am
Tagged as: Costa Rica

This is Chowie’s Ceviche recipe. He makes it on the boat on the way out and then it is ready for lunch. Yum!

Ingredients:
• one ziplock of fillet (usually Dolphin)
• One green pepper
• One medium onion
• One bunch of cilantro
• One can Ginger Ale
• Six limes

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Preparation:
• Mix water and a lot of salt in a bowl
• Cut the fillets into 1/4 inch cubes
• Put the fish into the salt water
• Stir fish, allow to stay in salt water for about 5 minutes
• Drain the fish and rinse with fresh water
• Squeeze the limes into a bowl.
• Put fish (only) in lime juice, stir and
• Allow to sit while you chop vegetables
• Chop onion, pepper and cilantro very finely
• Add chopped veggies to fish and lime juice
• Add about 1/2 can of Ginger Ale. Stir.
• Add two splashes of the Luzano Salsa
• Add Tabasco if you like it hot

Put the bowl in the Freezer for 30 minutes and then refrigerator for another hour and serve.

December 31 – Costa Rica

January 3rd, 2010 – 6:27 am
Tagged as: Costa Rica

Ending the Year on 97

We set out from the Los Suenos Marina on another beautiful Costa Rican day.  The last day of the year, and Capt. Mike jokingly said that we had to catch six marlin to get he and Chowie to 100 for the year.

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Well, we didn’t quite make it but we sure gave it a try.

For most of this season there have been so many Dolphin around that it was hard to fish for anything else.  We had a similar experience shortly after we put our lines in.  After catching enough for Chowie’s mom’s New Years party that night, we just dragged teasers for a while and watched scores of 20 pound Dolphin try to rip the teasers off the boat.

DSC_9920 how to get off pain pills We managed to leave the pack of Dolphin in our wake (finally) and made it into some really pretty blue water and started looking for those marlin.

The sailfish showed up first and we managed to catch 4 of them by the end of the day.  With only one angler, things were busy in the cockpit.

Finally we saw that BIG splash we were hoping for.  We got the hook set and we were in business with a Blue Marlin around 200 pounds.  Perfect for the 30 pound gear.  The fish put on a show, tail walking and coming 10 feet out of the water.

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After the release, we didn’t have to wait long and another marlin hit.  The jumps were far out and into the Sun we we had to wait to get it to the boat before being sure it was a Striped Marlin.  We were all pretty excited now.  Mike and Chowie needed four Marlin to hit the 100 mark for the year and we had just caught two in 50 minutes.

Well, the reason you are reading this here and not watching the made for TV movie on ESPN 87 is because we did not make it.  We caught one more Striped Marlin but that was it.

What a great way to end the year.  One Blue Marlin, two Striped Marlin, four Sailfish and enough Dorado to keep Chowie’s mom happy.

Hope you had a great one too!

– Jeff Radke

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Dec 17 – Costa Rica

December 17th, 2009 – 3:29 pm
Tagged as: Costa Rica

Here is a fishing report that I cannot wait to write!  Over four days ending December 17, Black & Blue member Mike Rehberg had a bunch of guys down for a little fishing.

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Everything was proceeding as normal until they heard Captain Mike call out, “Killer Whale, right teaser!”.  What???  Check it out.  A Killer Whale came up and bit (and missed) the teaser.  Chowie said it was a sissy bite too.  Well, when that Whale jumped right afterwards everybody headed away from the transom and back towards the salon.

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The other great story is that one of the guys on the trip (another Mike) caught, from his wheelchair, a Sail and a Striped Marlin.  That is a pretty cool story to go with those great shots.  Way to go Mike!

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Oct 11 – Bermuda

October 12th, 2009 – 11:46 am
Tagged as: Bermuda

We were out a fair amount this week.  We lost Thursday to weather but that was it.  Wednesday we were out with George Dragonetti and friends and was it ever rough.  About as much as you would want to deal with, that is for sure.  They were troopers and we managed to catch a reasonable number of Wahoo.  Well done guys, way to hang in there.  By Friday the wind had quit and all we were left with was the swell.  Much more comfortable, but still bumpy.  We had Argo out and we were able to catch enough Wahoo and Yellowfin Tuna to keep the day interesting.  The Wahoo we are catching trolling dead bait are in the 20 – 40 pound class.  We have not been catching many Wahoo bigger than that over the past couple of weeks.

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Note how trim the shirtless one looks!

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The tuna catchers. Good job, Miss Makenna!

With the tide running to the West, the action in on the Eastern side of Challenger.  Argus has produced a number of good days for other boats, but we focused on Challenger this week as the bait moved from the Southeast corner to the Eastern turn and even to the Northeast corner.  By Sunday the bulk of the bait had moved north from the Southeast corner and we were doing better with the Wahoo and Tuna up that way.

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Way to go Mr. Rhyn!

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Want to feel like your boat is bigger? Put these two in the cockpit.

What we did find on the Southeast corner were Robins, and lots of them.  We had Rhyn and Makenna Bearden out and they put a hurting on the Robin population, filling up the livewell and then the chumming box.  Later in the day we were able to cash those live Robins in for some much nicer Wahoos.  i think we ended up with two fish in the 60 pound range and one in the 50s.  Fishing with live bait is great fun as long as you don’t focus on how many fish you lose, but instead enjoy the larger size of the ones you do catch.

We are going to be out of commission for a little while pretty soon as we bring MAKO back to Carolina for some odds and ends to be done.  We will be back to Bermuda in time for January which, last year at least, produced really great fishing for Yellowfin Tuna and Wahoo.

We will be able to sneak in another week of fishing before we depart.  If your freezer is empty, call and book a trip.  The Wahoo fishing remains consistent.

– Capt. Allen DeSilva

Oct 4 – Bermuda

October 4th, 2009 – 11:48 am
Tagged as: Bermuda

As the weather moves towards Bermuda’s fall pattern, so are the fish.

In late September and early October a typical year would see a migration of “Ticker Mackerel” (that is what we call them in Bermuda, they are actually small Little Tunny or, thanks to the Florida Museum of Natural History,  how much rupees for viagra tb Euthynnus alletteratus) moving from the Harbour out to the Edge and the Banks.  Don’t ask me why they move from inshore, where they are the top of the food-chain to offshore, where they are everybody’s favorite snack, but they do.  These baits are small enough that they are bite sized for Yellowfin Tuna and especially Wahoo.  2009 seems like it will shape up to a year with a poor live bait season.  Those Ticker Mackerel are not to be found offshore – at least yet.  The only spot we have found them reliably is one small section of Bermuda’s Edge.

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The lack of Ticker Mackerel, together with a strong West tide, is making live bait fishing an unproductive use of time.  There is a bonus to all of this, however.  The lack of bait has made the Wahoo ready to bite and bite well on the troll.  Similarly, the Yellowfin Tuna that are around are ready to eat.  This has added up to a number of pretty respectable catches this week.  It seems like the Eastern Turn to the SE Corner of Challenger is holding the most fish lately.

Friday – Monday we had the Radke boys fishing with us and we produced a pile of Wahoo and a pretty good haul of Yellowfin Tuna.  I love fishing in October as the Wahoo strikes often come in doubles or triples (we had two quadruples this weekend).  Calling Wahoo fishing exciting for the guys in the cockpit is an understatement.  There is plenty of work for the Mate, the customers and the Captain.

We will try to get out a fair amount this week – weather permitting.  I hope to have more of the same to report next week.

– Capt. Allen DeSilva

Costa Rica – Sep 20

September 23rd, 2009 – 5:19 am
Tagged as: Costa Rica

We just finished a six day trip to Costa Rica and were able to put together a great trip even though September is not known as the best of months in Costa Rica. What September often does see is a run of Marlin offshore from the town of Flamingo, about 150 miles NW of Los Suenos. This marlin run was our objective for the week. While things did not work out as planned, the trip really highlighted the benefits of Black & Blue over traditional chartering.

sep 19 180We began moving De Mako NW on Friday, fishing most of the way. We were able to catch seven sailfish out of about ten bites on the way. We made it into Flamingo Bay around nightfall the first night. The next day we fished off of Flamingo in the morning with no luck. No bites, no bait, no birds. It was a pretty ominous beginning. We ran into Flamingo Bay at lunch to pick up the rest of the members for the trip and headed back out for the afternoon. While the weather was great, the afternoon was more of the same – no signs of life at all. It was so bad that we all made a pretty quick decision when we got back to Flamingo Bay that night. With the water so empty off of Flamingo we decided to head SE in the morning and keep going until we saw signs of life. All of the anglers checked out of their hotel rooms and took a Pango out to De Mako at 6 am and we set out to the SE in the same green water. We ran quite a few miles in this unpromising water and then set out the baits as the water started to turn bluer. The fish we had caught on the way up were about half way, off the coast from the town of Correa and, sure enough, that is where we found them again. We caught three or four sails and and a 24 pound dolphin. By the end of the fishing day, we decided to run to Los Suenos and the condo to spend the night.

The next four days we fished out of Los Suenos. We continued to fish SE of the Elbow. We had a couple of double digit Sailfish days and ended up with about 32 Sailfish for the trip. The rain held off for us duing the day and we were able to fish in nice weather with the swell being significant on only one day. In addition to the Sailfish and assorted Dolphin, September is typically a good month for Yellowfin Tuna. We found this to be the case as we followed flocks of diving birds to find big schools of Tuna sep 19 199working in front of equally large schools of Spinner Dolphins. The Tuna would boil to the surface, eating small bait that looked like Krill and then go back down. There were several fish we saw that looked to be better than 100 pounds in the melee. We caught our share of Tuna out of these schools but we did not catch any of the big ones. I guess the big ones get big because they know what a bait or lure looks like! Even better than catching the Tuna was watching the show. Tuna jumping, Spinner dolphin chasing, birds diving….what a site.

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October is maintenance month for us, De Mako is getting hauled and we have the usual bits and bobs to get done before the Costa Rica season begins in earnest. November through March is generally the best fishing and we are really looking forward to this year.
We will be back with an update when we get back to fishing.

– Capt. Mike Springer

Panama – Aug 3

August 7th, 2009 – 9:38 am
Tagged as: Panama

We finally were able to fish Panama when the water conditions were right. It is always tricky when there are weeks between trips to keep track of fishing conditions. Schedules being what they are, you have to find a gap in the work schedules and hope for the best.
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Well, we got lucky. Four of us flew down last Wednesday, took the 20 min taxi ride to the boat from the airport, hopped on the boat and ran 60 miles to San Jose Islands. We anchored up for the night there. The islands are essentially empty but provide a great way to break up the run (I think of it as South but it is really mainly East) to the fishing grounds.

We woke up early Thursday and ran another 20 miles to fish down towards Pinas Bay. The first day we went 9 for 12 on Sails and caught a few nice Dolphin. Day Two we worked the Zane Grey Reef for a while, trolling live baits for Marlin while catching Yellowfins and Amberjacks with poppers cast from the bow. Later on in the day we moved offshore for a bunch more Sails, big Dolphin and an estimated 250 pound Blue Marlin. We had a great dinner on De Mako and had a few cocktails as day turned to night and recounted all of the stories from the day.  Not a bad day at all!

Friday (Day 3) was “The One”. It made the trip! Like the previous day, we started off live baiting the reef in hopes of a big Black Marlin and we got her! Captain Mike Springer, who has caught his share of big fish, estimated her to be 700 pounds. On a 50 pound outfit. Stand up! I fought her for close to three hours and we got a great jumping release. I sure was glad to have a trained professional along (Kenny the dentist) to take care of all those teeth I had ground down to nothing during the fight.

smilebox_2366176We moved offshore, caught a Sail quickly and then caught an estimated 500 pound Blue to complete the De Mako’s first ever slam! I won’t go on and on about the Blue because I was not the angler.

Day Four consisted of a bunch more big Sails and Dolphin and finished with the heart breaking loss (because I was the angler) of a 200lb class Yellowfin after a three hour battle with under-matched spinning tackle (looks like I am going shopping!!).  Overall, an amazing trip!

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I am really glad Black and Blue had a great trip in Panama to make all of us anxious to return next year. De Mako is making the trip up to Los Suenos shortly so that the boat is in place to fish the Marlin run off Flamingo in September / October.   By December (hopefully November) the action should be heating up off of Los Suenos. I know we are all anxious to make it back to Costa Rica this winter.

So anxious, in fact, that the days are being booked faster than I would have expected. If you are a member and have not picked your days for this winter, I would suggest that you take a look at the calendar and start picking. If you have been waiting to join, we have a few more months before we close out the “Founding Member” category (they get first cut at scheduling days), so you might want to get in touch and become a member before that ends.

– Jason Doyle

Bermuda – July 26

July 27th, 2009 – 3:39 am
Tagged as: Bermuda

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It never fails. The tournaments over, Colin Barnes went out on the Indigo Blue and it took him 20 minutes to get a bite from a fish he figured would have made the minimum 500 pound weight had it been a day earlier. MAKO took Sunday off but we were out on Monday and had similar action. We went 1 for 4 for the day. That included a doubleheader of blues each over 500. They both came loose, but it sure was fun for a while.

I gave Mate Peter Lewis kudos a few weeks back for pitching a Blue on a big lure so it is only fair that I relate a story from this week that went the other way. We had a fish come up in the spread that was hot. It went after my bridge teaser very aggressively and I felt confident we would get a bite out of her. Peter had the pitch bait rod ready and dropped back to just before the second wave so that when the teaser disappeared and the fish turned, she would see the pitch. All went well except the fish did not seem at all sure about that pitch lure. In fact, after following the pitch for what seemed like a minute, she cut over and ate the short right lure – which was covered, covered, covered in weed. So much for that pitch attempt. At least we got a bite!

The weed is really, really bad on both banks. So bad that trolling is awfully difficult. Normally, the weed starts coming in in September and gets really bad by December. Who knows why this year is so much earlier – but we all wish it would go away. If you are trolling 5 or 6 lines, it feels like half of them are covered in weed at any one time. Later this week the Sea Toy and Challenger went down North of the island and found some relief from the weed. As I recall, they both got a fish up there; Challenger might have caught two.

While the weed is the bad news, the Yellowfin Tuna remain the good news. On the outside edge of Argus you can see them on the surface in pretty good numbers. A good class of fish too, 50 to 100 pounders. Live Robins fished deep seems to be the best way to get a bite. It sure is fun fishing and those Tuna can PULL!

Most of our firends on the visiting boats have made their trip home or will do so this week, we wish them all safe trips. It was great to have you here. It’s going to feel empty out there for a while.

I got an email from my friend and Black and Blue member Mike Sandusky that said the bite is on off Hatteras. They had great weather this week so I look forward to hearing all the stories out of the Outer Banks.

The pictures were kind of sparse this week. We will do better next week. Talk to you next Sunday.

– Capt. Allen DeSilva

Bermuda – July 19

July 20th, 2009 – 5:19 am
Tagged as: Bermuda

So ends the tournament season in Bermuda. MAKO managed a 9th place finish. Not great, but not terrible. Congratulations to Bree, the big winner!

Our Sea Horse tournament was a challenge. The first day we went 0 for 4 on whites. The second day, “everyone’s favorite redneck”, Todd Holleman put on a one man show catching a White and then a Blue. We managed to catch a lot of the activity on the boat cameras. Look up by the time and date to see that Blue put on a show on top. The third day was quiet again, I think we missed two bites, on a white and one a suspected Blue. We had a big fish come up on the shotgun – at first, I thought the shadow was a Manta Ray – that is how big it was. As is so often the case, this big fish PILED on the shotgun with water splashing everywhere and a huge hole in the water and…..missed the darn lure completely. Ah well, next time.

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Just before the tournament the tide (current) switched and is now running into the East. As the bait and fish adjust to this new tide it will take a little scouting to find out where they are living now. It will be interesting to see if the Tuna, which have been great this year, set up again in such good numbers. They tend to get scarce around mid-July, but every year is different.

Until next Sunday…

– Capt. Allen DeSilva

Bermuda – July 12

July 12th, 2009 – 5:44 am
Tagged as: Bermuda

Sunday. The rest day after the Bermuda Big Game Classic. Dan Jacobs and his team pulled off another great one – thanks to all of you.

I am pretty sure that Bree won the tournament. We will know for sure tonight at the awards banquet.

MAKO had a tough tournament, releasing a Blue in three days of fishing. We missed two bites on the first day and one sneaky White Marlin attack on the third day. Things were quiet for us, but we could have done better. That is what suckers you into going out and doing it next year!
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There is one more tournament in Bermuda next week…the Sea Horse Anglers Club. We are looking forward to that.

Finally, the wind has died down. The last day of the Classic was nice and it is really nice today. Let’s hope it holds.

Tuna fishing remains hot on the North side of both banks. I am not aware of anyone who tried tuna fishing on the North side of the Island, but that might pay off too. MAKO’s calendar for the rest of the summer is looking pretty good, so with the right weather we ought to be able to provide some pretty regular advice as to conditions.

Talk to you next Sunday.

– Capt. Allen DeSilva