Blue marlin, wahoo and scenic Pacific views from one of the world’s hottest sportfishing destinations.
Photography by Brandon and Meagan Rowan
September 1st, 2018
Photography by Brandon and Meagan Rowan
August 15th, 2018
The Texas Billfish Classic saw continued growth in participation and a substantial increase in prize money during its third year. The TBC fleet released eight blue marlin, one white marlin, six sailfish and weighed one big blue marlin. The TBC is one of the fastest growing billfish tournaments in Texas and the only event that allows participants to leave at noon on Thursday and begin fishing right away on the same day.
Draggin’ Up, a 74’ Viking from Houston, was the only boat to weigh a blue marlin on Saturday, Aug. 4 to claim top honors in the Blue Marlin Division. Angler Sam Rasberry’s 119.5 inch blue marlin topped the scales at 514 pounds.
“We were having a slow first day with no bites, so we decided to make a move for second day. We got the bite shortly after 9 a.m.,” said Draggin’ Up Captain Kevin Deerman. “We definitely knew the fish was a keeper after second set of jumps and got the gaffs ready. Great tournament and worked out for us betting heavy in the Blue Marlin kill pots!”
In the Billfish Release Division, Bimini Babe a 74’ Viking, took home top honors with three blue marlin releases and one sailfish, while Tico Time, a 65’ Hatteras, released one blue marlin and two sailfish to finish in second place. Over-Ride, a 64’ Titan, finished in third place releasing one blue marlin.
The Bimini Babe Team was also crowned Champions of the Billfish Classic Cup. This new event was developed to reward competitive teams fishing in both the Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic and the Texas Billfish Classic. Owner Babe Appling, Captain Robert Jones and team left with an extra $10,000 and custom art to commemorate the big win!
The Tuna category was won by Clark Miller from Smoker II with a 93-pound Yellowfin. No stranger to the podium, Kurt Pantle on $EA DOLLAR$ came in second at 90 pounds, followed by Lee Bull on the REHAB at 50 pounds. A nice summer wahoo raised the bar pretty high as Jasen Gast and the REHAB crew pulled up his 51-pound fish, barely topping the second place fish brought in by Tiger Neal on the Smoker II. Brian Wood of Draggin’ Up, came in third at 29 pounds. The Dolphin category was taken with the only qualifying fish at 23 pounds by Chris Gavlick aboard the REHAB.
The Top Lady Angler was Emma Griffith on Over-Ride and the Top Junior Angler Award was presented to Ethan Middleton on the Change Order.
1st- 514.0 lbs. Draggin’ Up – Angler Sam Rasberry
Catch and Release
1st – 2,000 pts – Bimini Babe – Captain Robert Jones
2nd – 1,000 pts – Tico Time – Captain Mike Hester
3rd – 600 pts – Over-Ride – Captain Jacob Dawson
1st – 93 lbs – Smoker II – Clark Miller
2nd – 90 lbs – $ea Dollar$ – Kurt Pantle
3rd – 50 lbs – REHAB – Lee Bull
1st – 51 lbs – REHAB – Jasen Gast
2nd – 47 lbs – Smoker II – Tiger Neal
3rd – 29 lbs – Draggin’ Up – Brian Wood
1st – 23 lbs – REHAB – Chris Gavlick
Top Lady Angler
Emma Griffith on the Over-Ride
Top Junior Angler
Ethan Middleton on the Change Order
February 6th, 2017
Photography and Videography by Brandon Rowan | email@example.com
Bad Intentions, a 64′ Viking owned by Debbie Conway, headed out to the Flower Garden Banks late January 2017 in search of BIG wahoo. The lines hit the water at first light but the wahoo bite didn’t begin until 10 a.m. and continued until late in the afternoon. The most successful baits of the trip were Ilanders rigged with ballyhoo and trolling weights, and heavy jetheads in purple/black or halloween colors. Watch the video above to see these hard running wahoo in action.
January 1st, 2017
By Jasen Gast | REHAB Fishing Team
Slice your fillets into smaller strips and soak in lime juice over night. Drain the juice out and add the mixed ingredients. Chill and serve.
By Debbie Conway | Bad Intentions Charters
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Remove four round fillets from steak and place in baking dish. Mix the olive oil, lemon juice, tomatoes and basil into a bowl and pour over the fish. Salt and pepper to your taste. Lift them up to allow liquid to equalize onto bottom of dish and make sure fish is coated on both sides.
Place paper-thin slices of lemons over the entire surface of your dish for garnishment and bake in the oven at 450 degrees for 15-20 minutes uncovered. Don’t over cook fish! Remove lemon garnishment and serve fish over rice.
July 17th, 2013
Olympic Silver medalist and former America’s Cup skipper John Kolius and his wife Joanne are living the good life on their 45ft Viking Express in Florida. The following interview has been shortened for our print copy. For the full interview, please go to www.gulfcoastmariner.com
GCM: Why did you leave Texas?
JK: We can’t really say which came first, deciding to cruise the Bahamas or wanting to fish more. All we know is that we both love the ocean and we both enjoy the feeling of being offshore.
GCM: What type of boat do you own?
JK: We have a 2006 45ft Viking Express Sportfish. The engines are 900 Common Rail Mans. She cruises comfortably at 24 knots. We have three AC units, two refrigerators, two freezers and two live bait wells.
GCM: What kind of fish do you like to fish for?
JK: Really big fish. There is nothing more exciting than a BIG fish behind the boat. The marlins, both blue and white, arrive in the Bahamas sometime in late April and when they do, we have a great time.
GCM: Who does most of the cooking on board?
JK: It’s about even. We have a small outdoor grill that travels with us and I usually do the grilling. Joanne prepares most of the sashimi along with any pan cooking that requires the stove.
GCM: Do you have any special recipes you can share with us?
JK: Sure! We eat fish a lot and we keep our recipes pretty simple. Bacon wrapped Wahoo: Take a loin and slice it open down the middle so that it opens up like a hot dog bun. Inside the loin use a mixture of paste wasabi and cream cheese. Close the loin. Wrap the loin in uncooked bacon. Place on the grill and cook until the bacon is done. Cut into medallions and serve with some rice.
GCM: Do you have any special places you like to go?
JK: We like to go to Hawk’s Nest on Cat Island. It just has a special charm we like. It’s a small hurricane hole with a good marina and the fishing is good.