Kyle had his 13th birthday yesterday. He asked if, instead of a party, he could go deep sea fishing. Sooo, I got together with some other guys I know and we chartered an overnight to Catalina Island as a Father/Son trip.
Some of the highlights included Kyle inking people with squids from the bait tank, having flying fish land on the deck, and trying to relieve one's self successfully in a toilet on a boat in heavy swells...... But, this trip was about fishing!
Sadly, the action was pretty light with little Calico Bass, Sculpin, and the occasional Mackeral getting hauled in. Two of the guys landed some nice Yellowtail. Kyle landed a huge Bat Ray in the early morning hours (which was promptly released), but we had no other bites. But then it happened.
My pole bent straight down and I knew we had something special. As soon as the hook was set, I handed the pole off to Kyle. Whatever was on the line proceeded to walk him around the boat several times. With me in one ear shouting encouragement, and a deckhand in the other offering advice, and a background of voices yelling support, Kyle fought the fish like Captain Ahab battling Moby Dick.
A full 10 minutes later, we saw our first glimpse of a silvery beast under the water. Kyle's arms were shaking from exhaustion. I wrapped my arms around him and helped him support the pole, and together we hauled that fish to the surface. A quick gaffing, and the fish was in the boat. Not just any fish, but a 30 pound White Sea Bass! Knowing the propensity for fisherman to embellish, I offer up the photograph as proof of the catch. And, when the fish finished in the money on the boat jackpot, Kyle and I split our winnings and walked away with an extra $50.00 in our pockets apiece!
As I type this, Kyle is upstairs sleeping. I think he's been out for about 12 hours now. Partly because he is a teenager now, but at least partly, I hope, because he had the best adventure yet on his birthday.