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Question for you experienced offshore guys. Is running to the 30 line almost unrealistic to get a quality mako these days? The reason I ask is when booking a charter some very well known captains reccommend going to the canyons for a quality fish, which in turn costs more. Is it worth it? or do you just have to put your time in at the 30? Im interested in you guys opinion.
 

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It's been too many years since I actively fished for Makos, but when I did we always went to the 28 mile wreck and found them there. Keep in mind this was the early 1980's, no doubt conditions have changed since then.....

Theshers and dusky's were in the surf this past summer, a few were caught in the back bay, can't imagine Mako's were too far behind them, but in what numbers I couldn't say.....:huh:
 

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Threshers, Browns and duskys always come into the surf and hang on the local wrecks starting in August. The occasional Mako will make its way close to the beach.

Chicken Canyon is a good place
My dad got a 100lb Mako there this year.
 

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Question for you experienced offshore guys. Is running to the 30 line almost unrealistic to get a quality mako these days? The reason I ask is when booking a charter some very well known captains reccommend going to the canyons for a quality fish, which in turn costs more. Is it worth it? or do you just have to put your time in at the 30? Im interested in you guys opinion.
Its a crapshoot regardless. You can get VERY lucky and find a big one inside, or out in the deep. Most of the guys fishing the deep for BIG makos were and are fishing 1500-2000 line and deeper. Not many boats run that far off to overnight, you may be the only boat out there except the occasional LL or COM boat untill morning, they you might find a few guys billfishing if your in good water. Big makos are a rarity these days.

We do combo tuna/shark trips during the bluefin season and occasionally we find one chunking in the canyon for tuna, but its hard to say we are going to get a 250# + fish.. There just arent that many around anymore :thumbsdown:
 

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Define Good or Big

I agree with Fish & Chips that there just aren't that many BIG Mako 250 + around anymore. My biggest Mako last year was 74 inches and weighed 170 pounds caught on the 30 line.
We also had a 100 lb rat and a 50 lb mouse that we threw back that day along with 8 Blues. I think if you book a good Captain and let them know what you are trying to achive they will try there best to deliver. Most of the time that can be done between the 20 & 30 line:D
Another good point fishing on the 20 or 30 line will give you more fishing time and less time running to & from the Deep:thumbsup:
 

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The probability of catching a big mako (250+) most likely increases closer to the canyons. Let me know if I'm wrong, but I don't think anyone brought in a qualifying mako for the SJ tournament last year, and the limit is 60 miles (again I may be wrong on the exact limits). Last year, I have never seen so many small makos brought to the dock (fish under 150). When I was younger, I would always make my parents bring me down to the lobster house to see them hang the big makos... times have changed I guess
 

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Sorry But ya have to remember fish have no boundires, Find the water and feed and you'll find the fish. Plenty of large fish between 20 and 30 ya just have to know what to look for and what to bait with.

The studs in the deep let them alone ,,,,,,,,, Very few people know how to handle them their just gonna hurt or kill somebody.
 

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The probability of catching a big mako (250+) most likely increases closer to the canyons. Let me know if I'm wrong, but I don't think anyone brought in a qualifying mako for the SJ tournament last year, and the limit is 60 miles (again I may be wrong on the exact limits). Last year, I have never seen so many small makos brought to the dock (fish under 150). When I was younger, I would always make my parents bring me down to the lobster house to see them hang the big makos... times have changed I guess
Thats because not everybody can play :D
 

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question for you experienced offshore guys. Is running to the 30 line almost unrealistic to get a quality mako these days? The reason i ask is when booking a charter some very well known captains reccommend going to the canyons for a quality fish, which in turn costs more. Is it worth it? Or do you just have to put your time in at the 30? Im interested in you guys opinion.
your location could have something to do with how far you run. In sj a lot are caught around the 20 line. Each year can be different with because of.
Is there good water within reach?
Where is there food supply?
 

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As said above, find the right water and your in the game. Keep in mind that one of their main food sources are bluefish. If you run past the bluefish are you running past the Makos? I know that I have.

And on the other hand Capt. Billy Verbanas out of Indian River made a living on running to the deep deep deep for the big boys.

If this year is anything like last.... stay in sight of the beach and get one of those whip tails :thumbsup:
 

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Jls

There were only 2 Qualifing Makos in the SJ Shark Tourney last year, a 232 and a 212. I took the boys down there both days last year for the weigh ins. There were some MONSTER Threshers several over 500:eek: unfortunately they are all feamles with pups.
Hopefully NJ gets in compliance to be able to land the sharks we catch this year:confused:
 

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Don't know if it's the reason or not, but i've seen some makos kept that were very small. Would not be bragging about these fish.:thumbsdown: All i know is, my cousin back in the day, would bring home 2 nice size makos almost every trip, and i'm talking real nice size ones. So who's to blame. The guys keeping all the big ones back then, or the guys keeping these little guys now?:huh:
 

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There were only 2 Qualifing Makos in the SJ Shark Tourney last year, a 232 and a 212. I took the boys down there both days last year for the weigh ins. There were some MONSTER Threshers several over 500:eek: unfortunately they are all feamles with pups.
Hopefully NJ gets in compliance to be able to land the sharks we catch this year:confused:
Thanks for the correction:thumbsup: I just remembered that there were very few makos caught. Definitely were a lot of big threshers brought in, but like you said, full of pups. I also remember a boat near ours that brought back a mako under 100 pounds and the people were sitting on it and posing next to it like it was 500 pounds :huh:
 

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This is a very tricky question as you can tell by the responses. What is considered a nice mako in your book? While this is still a relatively small one, the general opionion seems to fall about the 200lb mark. I have caught a Mako over 300 less than 15 miles from the beach (the way the crow flys). This was back some time ago though. I now fish, virtually unfished areas for these devils with teeth. Rarely ever seeing another boat. If I were to guess the average weight of my fish over the years from those areas it would be about the 200# mark. I fish about the 30 and 40 FTHM lines to get to the spots I really like.

The Mako game is one of my favorites but I do not like to kill smaller fish. If a fish doesn't look to be in the 200# range or better, especially on personal trips. I usually with let them swim but do consider the trip. Example, if I a got a young guy and it is his first fish and he wants to keep it I will.

So how far to run, They are close but your chances are better further generally speaking. One thought is that Mako's take independant migration routes and repeat those routes each year. This has been observeed when tagging fish. Some fish with a mile or so of the same place they were a year or two ago. So, fish the unfished areas, off the beaten path and you'l increase your odds.

We can get you a shot at a legit respectable fish for less than a $1000. If that is your interest.
 

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Fishing in the deep is no longer a given to catch a big MAKO. Over last few years the number of big fish has decreased. These are my results (Keep in mind I have not done it the past 3 seasons so it may have changed)

Last 3 trips bewteen 1000 and 1500 fathoms in known reliable big fish spots

1 trip 3 makos over 400lbs
1 trip Tiger and small mako
last trip 0 makos fought a 300lb Bigeye and pulled hook at boat.

Inshore we are avregaing over 4 makos per day. Some days as many as 6 makos. I persoanlly have never caught a mako over 250lbs inshore.

That being said I prefer to fish inshore because I belive there is still a oportunity to catch one over 250 we just havn't had our chance yet. I would prefer to stay inshore now as the action is so much better on light tackle.
 

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Don't know if it's the reason or not, but i've seen some makos kept that were very small. Would not be bragging about these fish.:thumbsdown: All i know is, my cousin back in the day, would bring home 2 nice size makos almost every trip, and i'm talking real nice size ones. So who's to blame. The guys keeping all the big ones back then, or the guys keeping these little guys now?:huh:
By far the guys keeping the little ones.

If it was the big ones then numbers would be down. My guess is the little dont have a chance to grow bigger and there are so many little ones. If we gave them 1 or two more seasons they would get at least to a respectable size and be plentiful.

If cacthing the big ones had an impact there wouldn't be so many small ones.

Most importantly back in the day we all released small ones so that's why there were so many 150-200lb fish. Now there are so many people killing small ones they have no chance at growing.
 
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