Sunday, June 01, 2008

Fish Report 6/1/08

Fish Report 6/1/08
Disaster Coming      
Hi All,
Might have thought it was the first week of May. That's when we usually see some of the prettiest fish of the year.
Lost a couple days to weather early in the week. Tuesday's one day NE wind caused a minor water temp dip and corresponding loss of appetite. Managed to scratch 'em up a dinner or two day after the wind. Thursday was A-Ok; couple limits. Friday same.
Saturday - eh, can't be all gravy - a near washout. Most had begged off when I called with a weather warning the night before. Took a handful of guys out for a two fish tog limit. Rough - in very early. Saw almost all of them again the next day.
Very nice bass Sunday. Not as much action, high man 17. Beautiful fish though.
It's fishing. Every single day plays differently.
Had to pull anchors Sunday in a great big hurry. A small scallop boat was bearing down on us on it's way in from the opening of a new area off the coast. Laid on the horn --a very loud horn-- with no effect. Having pulled one anchor, turned 90 degrees with the other anchor still in the water and managed to get out of the way.
A close call.
If I hadn't seen the boat coming.. Headline news.
No one was on watch. No one at the helm. Everyone on the aft deck shucking scallops.
This stuff goes on all the time. Every party boat in OC has had close calls with these guys; some have had to cut anchor lines. A tug skipper hailed a boat repeatedly on VHF 16 today. No answer. Ocean going tug and barge, I bet he had to give-way to a 40 foot scalloper on auto pilot with no one on watch.
Rules for safety at sea are as serious as it gets. Rule number 1: maintain a lookout. Not: get the catch shucked so we can get back out on the next trip---again and again; before the area is closed or the quota's caught. Fatigue and no one on watch.
I know how this is going to end: a collision on the Bass Grounds artificial reef site.
Hope I'm wrong.
Believe this: we'll be on watch.
Capt. Monty Hawkins
Party Boat "Morning Star"
Reservation Line 410 520 2076

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