So here we go again, another year and another Halibut Classic tourney in the books!! Number 15 to be exact for
the After Thanksgiving Invitational Halibut Classic.... wow, how crazy that seems.... time sure flies!!
Tournament took place this past Saturday November 29th, and when me and my buddy Vinny showed
up at the ramp bright and early at 2:45am to get morning check-in situated and quickly run my boat over to the bait barge
to get bait before the crowd showed up.
We were greeted with semi dense fog which would come in pretty thick
at times, and then thin out for a spell before repeating itself again. First thing that came to my mind was great, there
goes the group photo shot as well as getting the drone up for some footage like we had hoped..... oh well!
So 5:30am rolled around and me and Vinny were ready to head on out to the group of boats waiting for the
start. This is ALWAYS a fun part for me, as it's just a cool & different sight seeing that many boats bundled up
right in front of the bridge in the wee hours of the morning.... I just dig it!!
So we get out in the group and Frank "Mo Betta" and his son Nate have been
snapping away for awhile now, getting some killer aerial shots of the guys and their rigs! I then radioed Neil who was
going to try and get the drone up for some footage and asked if he was able to get the drone going? He came back to
me and said it was up although I never spotted it, but he also said that the Seagulls were trying to dive bomb the drone
so he was bringing it down.
All in all though, the weather cooperated nicely, and the bridge
shots were not an issue at all, and the weather was very comfortable and the current and drift were perfect, since the
year before, the weather was almost too nice with nearly no current and no breeze to get a good drift. This year would
So here is the lowdown of how things went down.....
Vessel" gets things started by calling in a boated fish at 8:00am, by angler - Jon Fitchett. Not long after, a newcomer
to the ATIHC, team "Tail Chaser" (not to be confused with team "Tail Chasers") radios in the second
boated fish of the tournament at 8:30am, with angling honors going to Tami Carrillo.
are off to a steady roll now as another new team, team "Finding Flatties" radios in their boated fish at 9:05am
for angler Rob Fischlowitz. Is it just me here, or does there seem to be a slight pattern here with a few guys catching
halibut with last names that sound like fish
4th boated fish of the tournament would go to team "Ashley Dawn" and angler Mike Emerton
as they called one in at 9:25am. Team "Tail Chasers" had enough of this and decided it was their turn and called
one in just 5 minutes later at 9:30am...... this would be the 5th boated fish of the tournament and caught by angler Tim
Team "Blood Vessel" decided that one fish just wasn't enough, and called
in their second boated fish (and 6th of the tourney) at 9:40am. Next on the board would be team "En Fuego, as they
called in the 7th boated fish of the tournament at 10:28am, and angling honors going to Gary Lamoureux.
So at this point we have a good race going, and things would cool off for around 2 hours before heating up
again. Just a little before 12:30pm, my boat would lose all power, and render me unable to receive called in boated
fish by radio. I ended up getting towed in, and will explain more later. I did still get boated fish info by phone, which
continued on as follows.
The 8th boated fish of the tournament went to Cameron Bingham on
team "Honey Bucket" as they called in their fish at 12:30pm. Another half hour rolled around before the next
fish was radioed in, and that 9th fish went to Jeff Butle fishing on team "Trigger Down" and boated at 1:00pm.
Next up would be team "Seal Taco" with the 10th fish of the tourney, and going to Howard ? at
1:12pm. Team "Honey Bucket" jumped back into the game with their 2nd fish and 11th boated fish of the tourney,
going to angler Bryon Bingham at 1:15PM
Ya know the sayings "Never give up" or
"It's not over till it's over"?......... well no words could fit better in this instance, as the last but certainly
not the least fish to be boated was by team Albie Nut at 1:30pm and going to angler Frank Vazquez with fish number 12 of
The weigh-in (in order of fish caught) went as follows......
1. Team - Blood Vessel - 8am - Angler - Jon Fitchett - 27" 7.5 lbs
2. Team - Tail Chaser
- 8:30am - Angler - Tami Carrillo - 29 3/4" 8.0 lbs
3. Team - Finding Flatties - 9:05am - Angler
- Rob Fischlowitz - 31" 13.0 lbs 4th place
4. Team - Ashley Dawn - 9:25am - Angler - Mike Emerton
- 29" 9.0 lbs
5. Team - Tail Chasers - 9:30am - Angler - Tim Stipe - 30 3/4" 10.0 lbs
6. Team - Blood Vessel - 9:40am - Angler - Jon Fitchett - 42" 29.5 lbs 2nd place
Team - En Fuego - 10:28am - Angler - Gary Lamoureux - 27.5" 8.0 lbs
8. Team - Honey Bucket - 12:30pm
- Angler - Cameron Bingham - 27" 6.5 lbs
9. Team - Trigger Down - 1:00pm - Angler - Jeff Butle
- 36" 16.5 lbs 3rd place
10. Team - Seal Taco - 1:12pm - Angler - Howard ? - 24.5" 5.8 lbs
11. Team - Honey Bucket - 1:15pm - Angler - Bryon Bingham - 27" 8.5 lbs
12. Team -
Albie Nut - 1:30pm - Angler - Frank Vazquez - 43" 35.0 lb 1st place
4th Place - Team Finding flatties with their 31" 13lb Hali for a total of $100 & a $100 Dana
Landing Gift Card. All photos (unless specified) are by Frank & Nate Price
3rd place - Team Trigger Down, with their 36" 16.5 lb Hali
2nd Place - Team Blood Vessel, with their 42" 29.5 lb Hali
And a drum roll please ( yes we really did have drummers!) 1st Place - Team Albie Nut with their 43"
35 lb Hali.