Tuesday, June 7, 2011


WK Buoy 
Off the coast of Kauai
(This and all subsequent photos in this post, with the exception of a couple of images, 
are presented by courtesy of Silas Kaumakahia Aqui.)

The best fishing hole in Hawaii?

Arguably, it may very well be just past the WK Buoy off the southeast coast of Kauai.  

At least, the testimonies of my brothers, Charlie and Glenn, and Glenn's son, Jared, and the pictures that follow seem to bear this out.

I mean, 5 koshibi (baby ahi, or yellow fin tuna) and 15 aku (bonito) are pretty solid evidence for bolstering my case.

My brothers did most of the fishing while Captain Jared adeptly piloted the boat through the deep liquid turquoise.  Getting up very early to make this trip, they were able to spend twelve fruitful hours in the hot Hawaiian sun.  

Weather and tide patterns held up well, and by day's end, these tired,  hungry and well spent Hawaiian mariners were ready to pack it in and head on back to terra firma.

If the following photos are any indication, it would appear that deep sea fishing isn't about heavy labor but, rather, recreation for the body, mind, and soul.  A time for ohana, or family; a time for talkin' story--making good conversation; and truly a time for healing, for connecting with nature, for introspection, and for deep gratitude for a God who provides.

Braddah Glenn with a freshly caught aku.

 Fish On!  for Braddah Charlie.

Braddah Glenn congratulates Braddah Charlie  on landing this good-looking aku. 

 A friend's boat partially disappears behind a large wave.

 Captain Jared steering the boat.

 In deep slumber, the Sleeping Giant rests with Mt. Waialeale, the wettest spot in the world, providing a picturesque backdrop.

 Glenn helping his son, Jared, with another exciting catch of the day.

 Jared chops an aku into small pieces that will be used as chum for drawing koshibi (young ahi, or yellow fin tuna) closer to the boat.  Larger pieces of aku will serve as bait.

 Hey, wake up, Sleeping Giant!  You're missing all the action!

 Glenn might be the head guy on this boat, but he's wise to check in with the real boss of 
fishing operations, wife Linda.

 A great looking koshibi!

Glenn's t-shirt slogan says it all:  BETTER LUCKY THAN GOOD!

 The three fishing poles are secured at the stern of the boat.  Check out the size of the fishing reel!

Glenn proudly displaying two of the five koshibi that were caught.
(Photo courtesy of Linda A.)

The majority of the day's catch.  (Charlie took a few home.)
(Photo courtesy of Linda A.)

Nothing is wasted.  While squid-like lures were used for the most part, some of the aku was cut up and used as chum and bait to catch koshibi.  Some of the fish will be sold to pay for fuel for the boat and for business revenue.  The rest of the bounty will be eaten raw, dried, fried, and/or put into the freezer for future use.

The very next morning, Charlie sets out strips of aku to dry in the hot Hawaiian sun.

When afternoon shadows are finally swallowed whole by the impending darkness; when the old yet sturdy and faithful boat has been parked, ever so carefully, in the back yard (watch out for the dogs and cats and chickens, now!); when the fish and tackle are cleaned and put away; and when freshly showered, weary, aching bodies finally merge into the comfort of familiar beds, the dreams will come.

Dreams borne on the tradewinds that rouse the ghosts of ancient times.  Dreams of the fish that were caught today--only now with voices speaking in the ancient Polynesian dialects, their music swelling with the percussion chorus of the vibrant sea.  Dreams of a more peaceful era, an age of antiquity when everything blended harmoniously and sensibly, when men treated each other and all other living creatures with dignity and respect.

Where brothers and sisters could man a huge outrigger canoe and ride the surf--yea, even ride past the surf--and find the sweet spot where hooks of bone baited with the flesh that Mano, the shark, had sacrificed for the sake of the island village, could be lowered into the water to make their alluring siren call to the great fishes of the deep...

Hele mai, Ono!

Hele mai, Mahimahi!

Hele mai, Ahi!

Hele mai, Aku!

Hele mai, you denizens of the eternal deep blue!

Ua mau ke ea o ka aina i ka pono!

Hele mai...

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