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Published Date: Mar 22, 2024

Written by Peter Ricks, Pacific Northwest Manager for Novamar Insurance.

The Pacific Northwest is renowned for a few things- seemingly constant rain (a rumor spread to keep folks away :), spectacular mountain ranges, and fantastic outdoor opportunities including hunting, crabbing, and salmon fishing.
This magical corner of the nation is also renowned for a number of little known facts:

  • The Pacific Northwest gets less rain than Atlanta, Ketchikan, or Hilo annually. (We’re #29 in annual rainfall),
  • During WWII, Boeing built a fake town on top of their production plants to conceal the factories from aerial bombing!
  • The far northwest corner of Washington is home to a temperate rainforest!
  • The coastal waters of Oregon and Washington are home to a world class tuna
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Yes- TUNA! Albacore tuna, to be exact- that high performance white meat sportfish prized around the world in warm, temperate waters.

Well, it happens that every summer, there’s an upwelling of warm water (between 60-65 deg F) that develops in the tropics and marches its way east arriving along the coast from the California-Oregon border to Vancouver Island, Canada.

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This warm water influx brings in the life to support a tuna fishery- plankton, krill, anchovies and (on the upper end of the food chain) the warm water gamefish. In the past few years, we’ve seen an uptick in exotic species being caught, including bluefin tuna, yellowtail, dorado, and billfish.

As my mother is from Jamaica, and was born with a fishing pole in her hand, we decided to arrange a charter with one of our clients to celebrate her 85th birthday. Jason Takayoshi is the owner of Pacific Bluewater Sportfishing and has brought a unique vessel to the Pacific Northwest for his charter customers. Current Situation is a 39’ SeaVee center console powered by quad 400 hp Mercury outboards.

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This vessel is more at home in the waters of Miami or Hawaii, but she offers 360 degree fishing, state of the art electronics, and a fast comfortable ride to and from the fishing grounds, with a cruse speed of 35-40 knots vs the average charter fleet speed of around 20 knots.

So, off we went to Westport, WA for what would proved to be a very successful adventure!

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We boarded Current Situation at 0530, met up with captain Patrick Walker and deckhand Marina May, and cast off after all gear was stowed and the mandatory safety briefing was given. Shortly thereafter, we put some live bait onboard and were soon headed westward as the sun came up in search of some tasty treats.

At 40 knots, the trip to the fishing ground 50 miles offshore flew by, and we were soon on the hunt, looking for signs of life- birds diving on baitfish, and tuna crashing thru and going airborne thru schools of anchovies they had corralled (called boiling)…out goes the troll gear, and soon we were on- multiple strikes on both trolling gear ad with live bait, over and over and over again!

We left the fish biting at noon because we ran out of room in the fishboxes, and were dockside by 1:15pm. The results- 6 happy anglers that took home 70 lbs of tuna loins EACH, and the memo rings of a lifetime for my mom and my 11 year old grandson.


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Written by Peter Ricks of Novamar