Seared Tuna

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While we have our problems here in the Gulf of Maine the kind of Bravo Sierra that Bill is describing does not usually happen. In years past Lobstermen occasionally would get involved in shooting wars but that hasn't happened much in recent years. :)

Sometimes there is friction when " Coastal Lobsterman" (who are new to the business and don't understand the unwritten rules) start to drop their traps around the "Island Lobsterman". :(

Today, if a newbie encroaches in another man's territory, he usually gets a courteous warning by radio to find another spot, If after a warning or two, the newguy doesn't get it :roll: then the next time he comes out to collect his catch or bait his traps, he has a hard time finding them cause the Buoys and toggles have been snipped at low tide :shock:

Now if the new guy has marked his trap locations on a GPS/Chartplotter then its only a matter of throwing a grappling hook over the side and drifting through the area til he hooks up, recovers his traps, and finds his own damn area! :lol:

As far as Charter headboats are concerned; in my opinion there are several reasons I havn't experienced the stuff described happening in the Gulf of Mexico.

First; We don't have the population problems that places like Florida, and the other gulf coast states have.Maine geographically is a pretty large state.Around 36,000 sq miles but we have only 1,275,000 peeps here and 300,000 of them live in Portland.

This in turn reflects in the amount of boating which occurs. Our larger charters are mostly dedicated to whale watching; The skippers of these vessels are 100-200 ton Masters who are Merchant Marine's and are licensed by the Coast Guard. There are not many of these guys in southern Maine and they try to get along with tuna fishermen and the Sharkers and the other Sportsfishermen because while we are out there on a day to day basis We are the ones who know where the Damn Whales are! :lol: So we trade info on the VHF radio.

As Monty knows Isle of Shoals is only about 7 miles offshore so there may have been some problems there occasionally(small boats can get there) but most of the places I fish are are 25-45 miles offshore.Most of the guys out there know what they are doing and stay out of each others way.

Normally you will only find three types of fisherman out there, Tuna, Shark and Groundfisherman(Cod Haddock Pollock Cusk etc)..The tuna men run a chum line as do the sharkers...Its not polite to drive your boat through someone elses chumline...If I have been out there since O-Dark thirty getting my chumline going and a guy drives through it....I am no longer connected to my chumline.

Since we all are trying to do the same thing and we all pretty much know each other we tend to give each other a wide berth and stay in touch by radio..Chumlines are expensive to create these days and we all ask for the same courtesy. :)

I just believe that we are a much smaller fishermen's community up here and every skipper strives to be known as a "Professional" rather than to be known as a D _ _ _ H_ _ D :P

I guess one last thing to be mentioned regarding drunken fishermen on big party boats...We really don't have many large party boats in Maine. We have many small charter headboat skippers who take parties of 2-6 people fishing and they also must be Licensed Captains and while some of them will allow their clients to drink a few beers while fishing; They never allow hard alcohol on their boats. That is absolutely out of the question!

some years ago there was some of that stuff going on...But today I can assure you that the Penalties are way too severe! If your clients get out of hand then you as the Captain are responcible and believe me Captains don't tolerate it any more...

One call to the Coasties and they will come and arrest and remove the offending party from your boat!

This is my perception of what happens up here anyway 8)

Hope I answered your questions :D Its hard to answer that one in just a few words! :lol:


Besides! I don't know about you guys but I prefer to be Stone, Cold, Sober when I am dealing with one of these critters! 8)

OTBS # 14

This 503 pound Mako taken by another member of our small community, Captain Mike Jancovic Skipper of the EXCALIBUR" This Oceangoing Chainsaw was taken last week!
Perhaps I need to clearify my earlier post. The offensive situations I referred to are NOT common. They happen only occasionally and usually between one of the charter boaters and a newbie who has unintentionally broken one of the unspoken rules of basic courtesy. I have been fishing the Gulf for over 20 years and had only two incidents...... one was my fault and the other was not. The other incidents I referred to are things that are OCCASIONALLY reported in the local newspaper per the Coast Guard. I feel perfectly comfortable in going out fishing here. (I usually go about 20 to 40 miles out.) Most of the time after leaving the inlet and into the sea, we seldom see another boat until we return. My apologies if I misrepresented the situation. It's safe and only OCCASIONALLY is there and incident.

Keep a tight line and enjoy that Tuna.
Fla Bill,

Message recieved; If It seems in any way that I intimated that you or Monty were part of the problem as opposed to being part of the solution then I apologize. :oops:

That was not my intention at all. :(

Perhaps I assumed that when you have a heavy land and boating population more incidents are bound to occur.

My mistake!


Not to worry! As I had said I only had a couple of problems on the Isle of Shoals. And the Coasties actually found that one of the offending boats was being captained by an unqualified person. (Don't remember if it was unqualifide or "suspended") Anyway CG thanked me for turning him in.

As for your type of fishing....God bless you! Like I said before I would rather go after the fishes that won't go after me.

Now, that all said and done...I hunt bear with a bow! :D

Gotta get your kicks somehow!

Cheers, Friend!
Hey Ranger,
I second Monty's sentiments.... "Not to worry." I don't hunt bear but I do try to catch my share of fish, hit a few golf balls (you notice that I didn't say play .... that would be a stretch) and love to smoke meat.

You sound like the kind of person I'd enjoy fishing with and afterwards (I agree with you on the sobriety on the water policy) having a cold one. Hope you have a wonderful weekend and enjoy some outstanding Q. .... and by the way, Monty, same to you. God bless you both.
Hi everyone,

If you want to get in a real nautical piss fight, then you should come on down to Louisiana and get in on this one;

Now this is all about the fact that at flood level from the Mississippi River just north of Lake Providence, La , you can access one little piss ant lake, that is on a big money hunting reserve, and take a boat load of 2 - 3 pound crappie that are coming in to spawn.
Wow! What a crazy goings on down there!

Its too bad that all those who call themselves sportsmen, of any type of sport, do not follow the true ideal of sportmanship which includes sharing with and understanding your fellow sportsmen. (Or should I be following the federal mandate of gender neutral terminology and be using the word"Sportsperson"?)

The world is getting crazier by the minute and it all seems to be driven by money and greed! Happy to announce that I jumped ship seven years ago and have not looked back!

Cheers from the hills!
Ranger, Thanks for the news update. I am glad they found his body and now he can be put him to rest. I don't know what to say seeing how I was a lobsterman for awhile and know how things work on the boats. It's a dangerous job and hard work. I take my hat off to all the fisherman that work so hard and I wish them a safe journey at sea.

Ten-Dash-Four Joe!

I was also glad to see that his body was recovered; while I didn't know him personally, I do know a score or so of Bug Haulers that did knowhim and know his family.

He knew my boat and I knew his and we would exchange waves as we occasionally passed one another coming or going from the Jetty.

I do know that he was a guy that everyone liked.

HI Guys,

Saturday marked the last fishing trip of the season and I took two of my friends from the marina out shark fishing. I still had 3 buckets of ground frozen chum, a 50 pound flat of Mackeral, a 25 pound flat of Herring and another 10 pound flat of Herring and 2 gallons of menhaden oil left over so instead of wasting it we hit the deep water 30 miles offshore.

Left the Marina bout 6:00am with the offshore weather calling for 2 to 4 foot seas with bright sunny skies and 5-10 knot winds from the Southeast. :)

Once we got about 8 miles out it started to blow a little harder and the seas were more like 3 & 1/2 to sixes with an occasional 8 thrown in just for Chits and Giggles :D

Got out to my spot and got my chumline going while the other two started rigging up the Penns. 8)

Shortly after we got set up I noticed a vessel which cameout from the north of us and set up about 5 miles off my Port Bow and a little after that another one set up about 5 miles off my Starboard Quarter. All were running a chumline so it was a great set-up. The current and wind was such that we were all drifting to the East South East. 8)

We were drifting in about 600 to 700 feet of water and water temp started off at 58 degrees and we crossed a break into about 61 degrees and we got into the blueDogs and caught a bout a half dozen and all the while the seas were starting to flatten out a bit. :)

Long about Noon the tide went to Ebb and things slowed down and it got warm enough to peel a couple of layers off and enjoy the sunshine.

About 2:00pm we hooked up again and we thought for sure we had a Mako on the way it was acting. :P

Fought the fishie for about 45 minutes and then it sounded directly below the boat and stayed there for awhile "BeinStubborn"! After another 20 minutes it started tiring out and easily came to the surface when we were disappointed to see another Bluedog.She was about 7 & 1/2 Feet long and fun but certainly did not end up being a Mako :(

Now it was after 3:00pm and it was starting to blow again so we peeled our gear and started for shore while the other two vessels seemed to be doing the same.

We were running at 305 degrees "By The Compass" and we had started to recieve a following sea abaft the Port Beam; needless to say we were pitching and Yawing to beat the band along with a little "Swell Surfing" due to a following sea. Gawd I love that Nautical Lingo :P

For anyone reading this who is not familiar with the Ocean and offshore vessels, plainly speaking, IT WAS A CRAPPY RIDE HOME! :lol:

But it was also a sad ride home for me and my two mariner buddies because we knew the season was now over for us and we all had to pull our boats out of our marina on the following day, which was yesterday,
and all of our fun and games out on the briny and all our parties in the marina are now over for this season. :cry: :(

We will all be depressed for a few weeks; That is, until "Deer Huntin" season opens on October 28th or there abouts :lol: YEEEEHAAAA!

May God Bless you all!

ranger72-out-for now :P

OTBS # 14
Greetings Mr. Ranger,
Great post and probably one of the finest sunsets I have ever seen. Good picture! By the way, what is a Bluedog? I don't think we have them down here .... at least not by that name.

I sympathize with you on having to take your boat out for the season. The weather gets pretty crappy during the December to February time frame but there are ususlly a few days when we can get out. Have a wonderful fall/winter and good hunting!
Good Morning, Fla. Bill!

We Mainiacs who fish offshore refer to the Common Blue Shark as a Bluedog and in some places its known as a Blue Whaler. I believe the Blue Shark has a global habitat so there may be some down your way but perhaps known by another name.

Yes, our season is relatively short.My marina opens in the middle of May and ends the beginning of October.Its quite different here as opposed to Florida due to the fact that we have extreme tide differentiations.

Here is a link for a tide chart in my general area:

As you can see during some parts of this month low tide can be a minus 1.3 tide whereas high tide 6 hours later can flood in at 10 or 11 feet which makes for a 12 to 13 foot tide change in just 6 hours. :shock:

Consequently, our docking systems are engineered to float while they are attached to pilings driven into the earth til they hit bedrock.These pilings can be over 30 feet tall in some parts of Maine.

The floating docks rise and fall (with the tide) on the pilings and are attached to the pilings with the use of roller chains.For example if I get to my marina on a given day and time and its high tide then i will walk out a wharf to a rising and falling (with the Tides) ramp which rests on the floating dock system.If it is high tide when I get there then the whole system may be level with the parking lot. :?

Circumspectly, If I leave at low tide then the floating dock system may be 13-15 feet lower than the parking lot and I have a very steep walk back up the ramp to the parking lot :shock:

Have I thoroughly confused you yet? Check out the picture of our docking system taken from the dock to the parking lot.
here is a photo from another angle so you can see the pilings that the whole docking system rises and falls on.

When we have a high lunar tide I can rest my arm on the top the piling with the black plastic cones while standing on the dock.

I would have to be a giraffe to touch the top of the piling cone at low tide :)

I believe most of the docking systems built down your way are fixed as the tide differential is minimal most of the time.

During certain times of the day and night when the tide is rising and falling the current near the mouth of the river into the Gulf of Maine can be running at 18 Knots :shock: :roll: Which makes for some very challenging docking situations based on a ripping tide and especially when its blowing hard.

Sometimes its great fun to watch the rookies trying to dock their boats! :P

Oh well! I'm rambling on!

here is a picture of a 10 or 11 foot Blue dog we caught sometime or another.


ranger72 8)
Hats off to ya, Ranger! From one Mainiac to another I can truly appreciate your feelings about having to put up the boat. But there is always next year! With some good hunting in the middle!

Not many men can honestly say that they actually pursue their dream lifestyle and make a buck at it too! And it takes a special type of man to do what you do.

Thanks for sharing with all of us and I sincerely hope you continue posting those fabulous pics!

Cheers! is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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