Gone fishing! Saturday consisted of fishing out in the open waters of the Pacific Ocean. This was super exciting for me because this would be the first time I fished off of a huge fishing boat and was in the Pacific Ocean. The only other time I tried fishing off of a boat like this was in Jamaica when I was in grade school, but that ended with my mother getting sick, my sister extremely nauseous, me slightly nauseous, and no fish.
We ate breakfast at a place called The Hookup, and although my stomach was not currently happy with me, I just had to get caramelized banana and pecan pancakes. The reason I am mentioning breakfast is because while there, we saw a fisherman with a Manasquan shirt on, which is the other inlet we use at home if we don’t go out of the Barnegat inlet into the ocean. On our way out, we noticed the guy next to him had a shirt on with his boat on it, which was named “Ashley Nicole,” which are my sister’s and my middle names. Even more coincidental was that the boat’s home is Point Pleasant, NJ, which is a 15 minute drive from us. I encouraged my dad to speak to them, and when he did, we learned the two fisherman also happened to know my dad’s co-worker. What a small world.
Anyway, we hopped on the Family and Friends, the boat we would be using, and met our captain and crew. They were all so kind and they gave off such a welcoming and happy vibe. Our boat for the day was a 50 foot Blackwell and it was a beauty. Without hesitation, we headed out to the ocean. My sister and I sat up on top with the captain the whole time we were moving, watching the land escape us and the waves split under our hull. The weather was cloudy and rainy, which was actually great. We didn’t want to be bombarded by hot, unforgiving sun rays the whole time we were on the water.
We reached our destination and cast the lines. Unfortunately, my sister caught some motion sickness and rested herself in the master bed in the cabin. We were trolling, which I talked about in a previous post, if you want to learn more about that. To my surprise, we had a bite within moments of starting, and I was the first to go up for the fight. My dad was so enthused about this because all he wanted me to do was “feel the fight” of a huge fish, and that is exactly what I did. With some coaching from the crew, I reeled a gorgeous wahoo into the boat, and it was almost as big as me! I was pleased I was able to reel that big boy in, which was, of course, my first one ever caught. The crew filleted it right there on the deck of the boat, and it was very interesting to watch.
Now that I caught a fish, I was ready to see some porpoises. I do love these creatures; they are so keen, beautiful and majestic in their own way. One of my favorite memories to this day is when I got to swim with dolphins at Dolphin Cove in Jamaica my senior year of high school, which is what I waited to do since I was a child.
Fast forward a few hours, and we were not killing it like we had hoped. My dad caught wahoo, smaller than mine, and we reeled in a few other fish. I did see some porpoises, but they were gone in an instant. However, we did have a fantastic lunch composed of the wahoo I caught, yellowfin tuna, salad, rice and beans. Not a second went by without me thinking I was in a dream. After a few more hours of lack of bites, we headed inward towards the coast and tried bottom fishing. We hovered over a huge rock at the bottom and luckily we caught a magnificent yellowtail snapper. We stayed there for no longer than an hour and headed in.
By the end of the day, we caught:
- 2 wahoos
- Yellowfin tuna
- Mahi mahi
- Yellowtail snapper
We thanked the crew and hopped off the boat. We found the Ashley Nicole a few slips down from us, and of course we had to take a photo. We headed back to the room, relaxed and swam before dinner. We ate at the steakhouse on the Marriot’s campus, where I got a mouth-watering surf and turf dinner.
From there, we went back and resided to our rooms to rest. And by rest, I mean get annoyed that I could not post anything because the Internet hates me.
I easily fell asleep in my cloud-like bed, where I dreamed of fishing and the adventures to come the next day.