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By Bobby Buzaki

 

As 2013 came to an end, I enjoyed reflecting on the fish I caught, the fond memories I made, and the great people I met. The year was full of trips where everything seemed to come together. Whether it was landing a monster AJ on a short summer morning trip or a day full of hard fighting trash fish, like bonita and blue runners, I enjoyed every trip. There are a few trips in particular, however, that truly stood out. The first one that comes to mind was towards the beginning of the year when my dad and I went fishing out of Dania. On the way in from a decent day offshore, we stopped in around 120ft of water and he caught a small AJ, no big deal. But then, not 5 minutes later, he hooked, fought, and successfully landed a beautiful sailfish from the kayak.
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Another fun trip was what I call “the trash fish day” in July. My buddy Doug Richard, my dad, and I went out of Dania on a full moon and fished in 300ft of water. Doug was able to snag a tuna from a passing school, and every time the school would come by, I would hook a big bonita. At one point, Doug hooked a tuna and was somehow able to tail wrap another one while still having the first one on the jig!

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A week later was one of those trips where an early start really payed off. We launched at 5:00am and 20 minutes before sunrise, a school of big kingfish came through and hit every single bait we had out! Seeing those kings skying on our baits was an incredible sight. We ended up with 2 out of the 3 hooked. After that, the bite was slow until a storm rolled in. Doug asked me if we should head in, but my gut told me it would pass and the tuna were waiting for us in deeper water. When we got to about 240 feet of water, we dropped down and I immediately got hit on the way down. After a relatively quick fight, I got the tuna to the surface. Soon after, my dad hooked up to a tuna of his own. Unfortunately, while lifting his tuna into the kayak, it gave a good head shake and shook the hook into his hand pretty badly. We paddled on in as quickly as he could manage with the painful injury.

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The highlight of my year that tops them all has to be catching a tuna on a bare hook. While in the Bahamas, we were reeling up from the last drop of the day and BAM, fish on! Now, how many people can say they caught a quality gamefish like that??

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This past year was full of great fishing and memorable outings. I am certainly looking forward to what 2014 has in store!