Its the south island east coast salmon fisher here.
I spoke to you and said I was keen to trailer my boat to Tutukaka , Northland, NZ.
Well after 24hrs of driving we made it to Toots. I was there for just under a month but only had 9 or so days on the water due to big seas and terrible weather. I followed exactly what you told me to in your chat session and in your videos. For the 9 days we had 2 hook ups and caught and released 2 striped marlin. For a rank beginner I was stoked. many thanks.
Please make sure Peter reads this. Took my witch doctor and the rest of the lures I purchased from you and ran them as recommended. I was very critical about their exact position. My wife and I along with my captain fished no more than 30 miles from La Paz, BCS. We fished very hard and steady and in 8 days had recorded these results which can be verified by photos. We raised 20+ stripe marlin. Coming into the spread in 1-4 at a time with several double hookups. We eventually were able to catch and release 17. More importantly in an area that has not been friendly over the past 5 years. In addition we raised about 12-15 blue marlin. We hooked and brought to the boat 8. Smallest estimated weight of 125 lbs and the largest was a measured weight of 441 lbs., which was tail wrapped and died prior to betting it in. All others were successfully releases with no injuries to them or us. Most were in about 250 lbs with two others being big at an estimated of over 350 and the other slightly larger at possibly 400. We ran all of the lures, colors and position as you recommended. We did include the Mexican Patrolero out of respect for my captain who was in the state of shock when after 3 days it did not get a hit. It was being run in the shotgun position and even I was surprised. My wife didn't care...she was reading her book and only responded when summoned to clear lines and the witchdoctor. We also won a small tournament that included 8 pangas and had a blast. Never have we done this good. I just wanted to let you know that the lures worked flawlessly and out performed everything else. I have no less than 100 lures on the boat and only used 7. I will be ordering the shredder today if for no other reason than I don't have one. This is not a fishing story and if you would like some photos of the lumo sprocket on the big blue send me your email address. People were actually following us around and I even have photos of that. Thanks so much. Take care. 3MJ
Whoever receives this please forward it to Peter.
I have been fishing the Sea of Cortez between La Paz and Cabo San Lucas for the past 15-20 years. I currently own a 58 Donzi sports fisher. I don’t claim to be an expert like yourself but have caught my share of marlin. I have good fishing equipment, wear good sun glasses and cheap clothing.
For the past 6 years I have taken my two youngest grandsons fishing to Mexico. Just grandpa and two grandsons…no one else allowed. It’s obviously a highlight I love, as do they. Now that they are 12 and 13 years old they are able to help with the fishing.
I have never written to anyone regarding their product either pro or con. I am sending you this letter in hopes it puts a smile on your face knowing that you contributed to a grandpa and two grandkids having a very successful annual fishing trip using your lures and suggestions.
My boat is loaded down with the standard fishing equipment i.e. rods, reels, fishing line, lures, teasers, dredges, and other must have necessary equipment. (My wife of 45 years just doesn’t understand…but has given up)
I’m not sure how, but one day while using the internet I came across a film of you explaining the “Witch Doctor”. (I am a huge fan of teasers). I also liked the way you made up your hooks. Simple, yet very practical. Not sure I fully understand the 60 degree offset of the hooks but I’ll figure it out. I of course ordered the Witch Doctor directly from you rather than a copycat version, along with a host of other much needed equipment. My wife had to help me as I have never placed an on line order in my life.
About a week or so later your stuff arrived and I packed it up and headed south to my boat with both grandsons. Hurricane Blanca was passing through and so the ports were closed and we kept busy with preparation until they opened on Tuesday.
Overall fishing was slow so we headed south. On June 11, while fishing near the south end of Island Cerralvo, with the Witch Doctor and other lures of yours, along with two proven teasers and the infamous Mexican Petrolero lure that is probably number one in our collection. My Captain and I witnessed two stripe Marlin come into the pattern and come between the witch Doctor and the rear of the boat. They circled the Witch Doctor as if trying to figure it out! Reminded me of curious porpoise. It was obvious to anyone and everyone that they were checking out the Witch Doctor!!! One of the marlin eventually hit on your famous green lumo sprokett. My Mexican Captain was in complete shock and his feelings were hurt as the marlin had bypassed his Mexican Petrolero. On June 12 this exact same thing happened once again! The marlin did not appear to be attacking the Witch Doctor but only curious…..again they passed up the infamous Mexican Petrolero for the green lumo sprokett. ( side note…not the same two marlin). Obviously the witch doctor drew them into the pattern. Fortunately for them we are a catch and release gang.
In all my years, I have never seen marlin so curious about anything. Thank you.
Since I have purchased the Witch Doctor and other stuff from you I have noticed similar products being sold elsewhere. Before passing away my Dad told me the best form of flattery is to be copied. However, It does become upsetting at times to see others make a profit from something you have developed and sincerely believe in. Some people will buy the copied version and maybe it is good. I don’t know and I don’t care…I’ll pay the extra to support the right people.
Just thought I would let you know.
Pakula lure wow and wow again. Love using these skirt. The take the reel spinning. The fight wow
Hey mate I'm Michael Lassen from the SCGFC and I joined half way through the season and I have a pakula addiction. There the only skirts I run in my spread. The quality and results are incredible. My total for this season finished on total from when i joined last season: blacks: 21 sails: 6 Dolly's: 12 spainards: 11 yellow fin : 8 wahoo; 4 and 90% of that was on your skirts. The boys are teaching me a bit of live baiting these days and I'm really keen to keep improving my fishing. But just letting you know how great your skirts are and really impressed with your product. I got first billfish for the club this season and I'm going to enter my first tournament in October. If around you should come up.
Adam Voss - Fiji
Bula to the Pakula team. I think you have done a great job with the new web site. I have just made another on line order and it is a much improved experience. Again well done and keep up the great tackle and service.
Kevin Harrison - Texas
I'm new to fishing the Gulf of Mexico, been a bay fisherman. A friend of mine asked a friend of his, who has won tournaments all over the world, what kind of lures I should use. He said the only lure I need is the Lumo Sprocket head. Sure enough the first time I went out, I muddled around trying to figure out what I was doing and they worked great. Thanks again, Kevin
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5. Fighting Fish: Angler
Between The Lines - Ch: 12 Fighting Fish
From the time the angler has pulled the rod out of the holder, he has control of the rod and reel. The angler contribution to the fight can be far more than just keeping the line tight. Just as the boat should not be in neutral throughout the fight, nor should the reel. Line should either be coming off or going onto the spool.
If you didn't do the angler exercises earlier, please go back and go through the exercise and practice them so you are ready for what follows. Just as importantly, all the gear should be prepared to a level whereby you can trust the reel, rod, all knots and joins, leaders, hooks etc, as now more than ever you should be in the frame of mind where your only concern is catching that fish: not worried about losing them. You know your gear, you know how it feels at various pressures and now it's time to put it all together. Plus of course, we'll add a bit more information and a couple of concepts and tactics. Don't worry about things that can go wrong, they will - it's all a part of fishing.
Before getting into pumping, winding and thrusting, we'd better pause and go through a couple of concepts so the angler's energy and crews' time is not wasted and the fish is not fought to death in the fight. The correct positioning of the boat throughout the fight is also crucial, manoeuvring to aid the angler by maintaining the best overall relative positions of the angler to fish.
Tight Line, Straight Line
There are several factors involved with how straight the line is to the fish such as the direction of the fish in relation to the direction of the angler, which in this case is the same direction as the boat. That is up until the fish is close then it can change according to which side of the transom the angler is positioned. The more the two are travelling in the same direction the straighter the line will be. (Fig 1)
If the angler and fish are moving parallel to each other the line will have its greatest belly. (Fig 2)
When the fish is arcing, that is not swimming in a straight line, on a run and changing direction, the line will follow the course of the arc and the changes of direction. (Fig 3)
The degree of ‘straightness' is a factor of how tight the line is, that is how much drag, how thick the line is, and how fast the fish and boat are travelling in relation to each other.
The factors we can control is how much drag we apply, the angle of pull on the fish, and for most of the fight, the distance of the fish from the boat.
The angle of the line to the fish is used to either tire the angler or tire the fish, certainly the latter is the preferable choice. Although we are dealing with the relative positioning of the fish to the angler which is three dimensional, we will simplify the system by breaking it up into depth and distance.
The deeper the fish the less impact the angler has on it as the pull is coming from above the fish. Most predators have large pectoral fins designed to help the fish glide. As long as the fish can use these, only brute force can lift it with a direct pull from above. The greater the angle to the fish the greater the chance of leading it or getting it back to the surface. In fact getting the fish to use its pectoral fins to raise the fish rather than to dive deeper.
The more aligned the fish is to the line the more it can use all its muscles and fins to fight as is the case with low drag settings. (Fig 4) As you change the pull to the side of the fish by increasing drag (Fig 5) thereby not only making the line tighter, but also straighter to the fish, the less fins and muscles it can use to combat the effects of the line and drag. In effect the drag setting controls not only the effective fighting angle but also the amount of belly that is in the line and how direct the pull is on the fish. (Fig 6) Once again the actual angle of the line to the fish depends on how the fish is positioned relative to the boat, the direction the fish is going and how much drag is applied.
By working through the combinations of angles you'll find the optimum is a fish near the surface with the line at a low angle to the surface and also pulling at the side of the fish.
The greatest control of the fish is gained by pulling directly from the side. In fact when a fish is close you can easily turn or roll it over by having the rod tip level with the fish and sweeping the tip from the front of the fish to the back. (Vid 1)
As the fish runs, as long as it is running away from the boat, then the angler can simply lift the rod out of the holder. Note if the outfit is a heavy tackle outfit or if the angler is small or unfit, the angler may have to back off the drag to enable them to get the rod out of the holder and stay in control. Note here as well, the reel should still have as much drag as the angler can tolerate. The rod should stay upright and loaded through this procedure. Once the angler is either set up in the chair or gimbal and harness, that is, as soon as possible, the drag should be returned to at least ‘strike' i.e. one third of the breaking strain.
As long as the spool is turning, and the rod is loaded - that is, bent under load - then the angler is in reasonable control. If the reel should stop turning - the fish has either stopped running or the boat has caught up with the fish - the angler should retrieve the line as quickly as necessary maintaining the loaded rod. If the fish surges or the boat slows, the angler should allow the fish to pull the rod down to allow the reel a smoother transition from being still to turning. This is to cushion the initial turning of the reel which is in a state of inertia. This procedure is called ‘bowing the rod'.
To get slightly more advanced, if the spool is turning, the angler can safely increase the drag setting to around 50 percent of the breaking strain. And to get the adrenalin rushing, go to 70 percent, although this may be reserved for more experienced anglers. As long as the fish is running and the spool is turning or you are retrieving line you can maintain these high drag settings. If the fish begins another run, as you bow the rod, back the drag off once again to a third, and once the spool is turning you can go back up again.
The two main points to understand are: 1- Going from a stationery spool to a moving spool the drag should be around a third. 2 - As long as the spool is turning or you are recovering line, you can have an increased drag setting. (Vid 3)
The situations where backing the drag off would be advisable is if the fish is small relative to line class, for example a 60 kilo black marlin on 37 kilo line. A drag setting of 12 kilos would flip the fish backwards in any jump and rip the hooks out of its mouth. A reasonable proportion of drag to fish is a maximum of around 10 percent of the fish's weight.
At under a third drag setting, nylon is not stretched to any great extent as one of the characteristics of nylon is it undergoes most of its stretching between 20 and 30 percent. Thus, in effect, using under a third means you are using a rubber band, which makes catching small fish on heavy tackle rather difficult and losses from slack line are high, as these low drag settings mean you are never actually tight to the fish.
The more line out, the safer it is to use high drag settings as there will always be a degree of stretch and belly that will cushion the line. As the fish gets closer to the boat, say 50 meters or less, there is far less belly and far less cushioning, so you will have to react quickly, backing the drag off slightly if the fish surges or starts to take line.
The angler should be aware the less line on the spool the higher the drag setting will be and this is certainly a consideration, however, by going through the previous chapters in detail you will have a full understanding of this.
The difference between a good angler and a beginner is the smoothness of technique. The smoother the better while maintaining an even pressure on the fish. This does not mean these motions are slow, in fact, you can become incredibly fast and smooth while maintaining a high drag setting on a fish, this is when you reach the level of ‘master angler'.