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Old 07-08-2012, 01:54 PM   #1
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Why didn't I think of this sooner...

I've much enjoyed reading the stories and seeing the awesome photos of beautiful fish here on Big Water's Edge. That was my biggest motivation and kept me going out time after time. I had never caught the glory fish we all dream about. No White Sea Bass or Yellow Tail for all my effort, but I quickly realized I'd never catch one from my office. After many trips, I did luck out and land a nice Thresher a while back. Until that day, my wife questioned whether or not I was actually going fishing when I loaded the kayak.

Many of you have been long time fishermen, so you probably got into kayak fishing with some prior experience catching fish. Until two and a half years ago I had never so much as picked up a rod and reel. I jumped right into kayak fishing head first with zero experience! For those new to kayak fishing, read on as I share a few of my mistakes and what I, "wish", I would have known. In hindsight, clearly, I would have chose a different path.

After much trial and error I had decided enough was enough. It was time to take my game to the next level... and hire a professional. I began corresponding with none other than, The Darkhorse, in hopes of getting a day on the water. I had initially talked to Josh about 2 years ago... then for whatever reason never met up with him. Anyhow, we began with getting my gear squared away and the next thing I know Josh is available. I quickly rearranged my schedule and before I know it, the alarm's going off. It's time! Not only was it time, but this would be my first fishing trip that I actually felt rested. The day prior, Josh didn't stress about us needing to get up at 4am. In fact, it was the opposite. He simply asked, "what time of day would allow you to get a full eight hours of sleep"? He said, "I want you to be focused and sharp". What, you don't have to kill yourself and launch in the dark? Lesson number one...noted.

I met Josh at the launch a little after 9am. Having a time consuming career, not to mention four kids, this meet up time was music to my ears. Soon we were launching on what looked like a beautiful Southern California day. The first order of business was making bait. I was forewarned that making bait was going to be a serious challenge. That prediction rang true and hours passed by before even the thought of fishing was an option. I was getting stressed watching the clock tick by, but Josh assured me we would be in the right place at the right time. Eventually, Josh made the executive decision that we had better move on and check a couple other spots for fish and possibly make more bait on the way. It had been a few hours of making bait by now and according to Josh, our bait supply was looking grim. I would have normally made a few Spanish Mackerel and been on my way as soon as I made it past the reserve line! Lesson number two...noted.

Instead of just pinning on one of his prized baits, we waited for what seemed like forever...and waited, and waited some more! The pressure was mounting like a tea kettle for me. I kept checking the time on my phone. Eventually, Josh instructed me to send one back. I have to say I was relieved, because I REALLY wanted to catch some Yellow Tail (plus, if I came home empty handed one more time, I don't know how I'd face my wife!!!). I started trolling behind Josh and tried to pay close attention to his instructions. He probably saw I was worried that it was getting late and he had some wise words to share: "if you trust me and believe that you'll catch a Yellow Tail, we will". Followed by: "if you get discouraged or think that you won't you are probably right". I loudly proclaimed my stance, "I believe you Josh"! Not long after that my bait got real jittery and then WHAM! A solid hook up with my line smoking off the reel!!!

The build up to this moment in time was like something out of a movie. Especially the ten minutes immediately prior. All I knew at this point: this is no Thresher Shark!

To be honest, I had sensory overload when this photo was taken. I didn't even realize Josh had gone into photographer mode...capturing my first Yellow Tail fight! I couldn't remember much of the instructions that Josh had been giving me before that, ...but I felt like I was in the gym. And from then on Josh was my "trainer", but instead of shoutinh "give me one more rep", it was "keep cranking! keep cranking! ...wind on 'em, wind on 'em!" I wasn't prepared for that kind of fight and when I wanted to take a break or slow down, Josh made sure there was no resting. He said, and this I remember clearly, "you can fight the next one how you want, but this one's getting in the boat". And he meant it!

After a few more "wind on 'em..."wind on 'em"..."harder"..."short pump..."short pump"..."now's the time to really let him have it"...and this beautiful fish is in my lap. Finally!

I don't know how long the fight was, but I was so ready to land this beast that I just kept doing what Josh said. With hopes that in the end I could give my arms a break! I had heard that pound for pound the Yellow Tail was one of the best fighting fish out there, but I was not expecting my first yellowtail to be so big! FINALLY, after a couple summers of no "luck" I had landed my first yellowtail! To say I was happy is an understatement and I could have headed home right then and there. I would have been totally satisfied at that point. But Josh said, without a glimmer of doubt, "alright let's catch another one". Who says that? That's what I like about Josh, he was focused on making it the best day ever for me instead of leaving me happy with one solid fish... and I'm glad I listened.

We trolled another hour or so and I was so excited about the fish I had, I was actually anxious to get home and "show off" to my wife and kids. Then, I was instructed to wind my bait to the boat at one point and thinking nothing of it. Josh is in mid sentence saying, "if you get hammered while winding in just keep winding...them WHAM!!! HERE WE GO AGAIN! Once more, we get the fish free of the kelp as I'm pulling as hard as I can. All I had to do was listen to my "trainer" and within a few minutes (which felt like hours to my arms) fish number two was in the bag! This one was significantly longer, but thinner than the first. Who am I kidding, they were both giant! For me they were both serious accomplishments and something to be proud of. We were now headed in...I don't think I could of landed a third.

Josh gave me some great advice, to sandbag the wife. He said, "just tell her I sucked and it was a waste of money". I called my wife on the way back to shore and our conversation went like this:
me: "I'm heading home"
wife: "did you catch anything"
me: "just bait fish"
wife: "you only caught mackerel?"
me: "yeah, but I learned a lot from Josh, so I'm sure I'll have better luck next time I go out"
wife: "ok, well, I'll see you when you get home".
My brother and his girlfriend were there when my wife was talking to me and when she hung up, she told them, "he has been fishing ALL DAY and only caught mackerel". She was a little upset

She was out with some friends when I got home, so I cleaned up and set the ice chest up in front of the door and got her reaction on video when she got home: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JyJZ4fmXHhI

Here are a few of the things I learned, that I wish I would have known two years before: #1- I didn't have a coach - in my real estate business and in my real estate training company, I've always looked for coaches to cut down on my learning curve. I don't know why I didn't get with someone like Josh 2.5 years ago. I would have caught a lot more fish and been much further along in understanding how to fish La Jolla and my wife would have been a lot happier with me. I wish I would have made that investment from day one! #2- I wasn't going out for long enough. It's better to go out once for 8-10 hours instead of twice for 4-5 hours each trip. I wasn't even giving myself enough time to figure anything out besides just catching bait. It's hard to see patterns when you only have a few short hours at a time. #3- I wasn't trolling correctly. I quickly learned that just because you're trolling a Mackerel doesn't mean you're even in the game. There's way more attention to detail that I never even considered. I can't list all of the specifics here, but Josh helped me understand, how far back to troll, when and where to troll and how to be prepared to catch trophy fish. All of which made a huge difference. I'm talking night and day.

I want to thank Josh Pruitt for spending the day with me, it has me totally excited to be back on the water again. I feel so much more confident, knowing that my technique and approach is headed in a new direction. I'm 100% confident that I'll be more successful on future trips. I look forward to going out with Josh again in the next year to help me learn how and where to catch some fat White Sea Bass, too! Thanks for taking the time to read about my journey to get here.

A better angler by many days of trial and error...one in particular alongside a professional who really knows his stuff.

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Old 07-08-2012, 02:07 PM   #2
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Awesome man! After a year of not catching anything I went out with the sea samurai, the yellows didn't show but I learned a massive amount of info.

And it really does help having somebody coaching you through when you want to stop reeling
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Old 07-08-2012, 02:19 PM   #3
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congrats! josh is truly amazing... one day...
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Old 07-08-2012, 02:20 PM   #4
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That is AWESOME! I might have to give him a ring myself one of these days. Congrats, and
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Old 07-08-2012, 02:38 PM   #5
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Sounds like hours and hours of bait making boredom and then hell bent fury pulling on those logs. Thanks for sharing Amazing pics and a Great read.
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Old 07-08-2012, 03:01 PM   #6
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another satisfied customer LOL ya gotta love the 2 Fish??

Yeah! I've made my mistakes, I've seen my heart cave in, I've got my scars, I've been to hell and back again ,Born for the blue skies, We'll survive the rain, Born for the sunrise, We'll survive the pain
We're singing...
Hey, you can't count us out
We've been running up against the crowd
Yeah, we're the Dark Horses

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Old 07-08-2012, 03:10 PM   #7
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Haha your wife's face was classic. JP is no joke when it comes to kayak fishing. Unbelievable you can spend so much time on the water and nothing and then the day you go out with the horse so much success. Its definitely no walk in the park with Josh. You earn your fish with the amount of hours of paddling or peddling. Congrats on your fish.
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Old 07-08-2012, 03:54 PM   #8
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Nice job man!

I've been waiting for your thread since you teased it last week. Well worth the wait for sure!

Also, the pics are sick! Good to know Josh can always fall back on a photography career, though I not sure weddings and bar-mitzvahs would keep his attention the way screaming drags do!
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Old 07-08-2012, 04:04 PM   #9
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Outstanding post !! I've said it before, and I'll say it again: That man (Josh) is by far one of the most considerate people around. I've spent more than enough time on the phone chatting with him and he's always given me more than enough info to help me out, and I haven't paid him a damn cent!

All of this is totally to his detriment, by the way. I mean, giving away some vital key info to a relative stranger for free would normally be a helluva good way to ensure never getting paid by said stranger. What would be the purpose if you are giving away tips, know what I mean?

Well, that's just the way Josh is (at least in my point of view). And that's exactly why I will be paying him when the schedules line up for both him and me.
Jerry Moore
Need a car or truck to yaul your yak? Ring me up.
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Old 07-08-2012, 04:35 PM   #10
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WOW! That's great and great story. Beautiful fish.
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Old 07-08-2012, 05:05 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Journeyman View Post
Nice job man!

I've been waiting for your thread since you teased it last week. Well worth the wait for sure!

Also, the pics are sick! Good to know Josh can always fall back on a photography career, though I not sure weddings and bar-mitzvahs would keep his attention the way screaming drags do!
Yeah, I don't think that is Josh's cup 'o tea... although I agree, he is an awesome photographer

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Old 07-08-2012, 07:01 PM   #12
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nice work. every jedi needs a yoda.
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Old 07-08-2012, 07:34 PM   #13
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Nice fish! Shit- I'm calling him now.
James Caldwell Yellow Prowler
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Old 07-08-2012, 07:47 PM   #14
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Great job, you did awesome!! I hope to get out in the big ocean soon!, I have been playing in the big bay I think way to long and I am overdue!

Awesome job!! Once again...
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Old 07-08-2012, 08:51 PM   #15
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hell yeah. awesome
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Old 07-08-2012, 09:12 PM   #16
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Her reaction was priceless! Awesome story!
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Old 07-08-2012, 09:21 PM   #17
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Great Video! That was funny! Congrats on some awesome action.
"It depends on what the meaning of the words 'is' is." –Bill Clinton
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Old 07-09-2012, 12:25 AM   #18
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congrats on a couple of nice YT
The shorter you are, the bigger your fish appear
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Old 07-09-2012, 11:37 AM   #19
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Nice Twin's
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Old 07-09-2012, 11:46 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by NextBite View Post
Nice Twin's
”The beauty of the Second Amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it.”
~Thomas Jefferson.........maybe
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la jolla, the darkhorse, yellowtail

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