A Break From Alaska

Monica and James Lavell with their 40 pound Short Bill Spearfish

A break from Alaska finds this charming couple their largest fish ever!  James and Monica Lavell were on a delayed Honeymoon here in Kona Hawaii.  It was their first trip to the Islands.  The couple live in Eagle River, AK where James is a Operating Room Nurse and Monica is an ICU Nurse.  While charter fishing in Kona Hawaii aboard Fire Hatt, they were hoping to catch anything!  That anything turned out to be a  nice 40 pound Short Bill Spearfish!   James said “It all happened so fast!”  Captains Joe Schumaker and Brian Schumaker had James swiftly  in the chair and fighting the fish in a matter of seconds.  With Monica cheering him on, he brought the Spearfish to the boat in just under 15 minutes.  Fishing in Kona Hawaii was sure to hold a lot memories for this couple.  Hope to see them again on another break from Alaska and have Monica get her biggest fish too!


Hawaii Market Name: Hebi
Scientific Name: Tetrapturus angustirostris
Hawaiian Name: A`u
Japanese Name: Fuuraikajiki

Shortbill spearfish are commonly known as Hebi in Hawaii. Its dorsal fin is shorter than that of other billfish species, and its bill is very short in comparison. Hebi caught in Hawaiian waters are usually between 20 and 40 pounds in weight.

Hebi has white to pink colored flesh that is somewhat softer than that of Nairagi or Kajiki. Its flavor is mild (although more pronounced than ahi). It is one of several species of billfish, which are suitable for grilled or broiled “catch of the day” menu items in restaurants.

Fire Hatt is a proud member of the AFTCO  Pro Fishing Team.  You can go to and AFTCO Logo 2read their amazing story.

Banner Day Aboard Fire Hatt

Banner Day Aboard Fire Hatt.  It just doesn’t get better than this!  Heather and Rob Dawson from Kamloops, Canada spend a few weeks a year here fishing in Kona.  The Dawson’s own a boat and are avid fishermen at home.  This year the two of them put in three full days of fishing.  The first day did not even produce one bite!  It has been a frustratiing couple of months for fishing here in Kona.  the bite has definately been off.  A few fish being caught each day is all that has been reported.  Every year that the Dawson’s arrive, Rob announces that he wants to go Shark Hunting.  A few years back we landed Rob a 300+ pound White Tip Shark that we tagged and released.  Last year we did not produce one for him.  So this year he wants to try again.  So on this day we head way south to “UU Buoy” to give it a try.  We head out and will troll to the area and hope to at least catch them a food fish on the way.  Then just10 minutes out of the harbor we are Hooked Up!  Four lines are screaming! A quadruple Stiped Marlin Bite!   Heather is in the chair and Rob is deciding what line HE wants.  Rob gets his fish to the boat first and it is successfully tagged and released.  The fish is estimated at about 50 pounds.  Heather brings her fish to the boat after about a 10 minute fight.  Hers is also successfully tagged and released.  Her fish is the bigger of the two estimated at about 80 pounds.  This is Heather’s first billfish ever.  Nice Work by these two anglers.  With lines back in the water we are under way for the anticipated shark encounter.  We are hooked up again.  Heather is in the chair and this time she lands her first Shortbill Spearfish.  Now we arrive at the buoy and there are a few boats fishing the area so we know there are bait fish around.  We stop outside of them and begin to put chum in the water and within a few short minutes we have our first shark sighting.  Looks like a White Tip Shark.  We bait a single hook and offer it.  One bump, two bumps, a short run and the bait is gone.  We try again and after about an hour, we have another visitor.  All we see is a big dark shape in the water and it is interested in the bait.  Again, the fish bumps the bait a few times, takes it for a short run and we set the hook.  Rob is in the chair with a huge grin on his face.  He got his Shark.  When we got it to the side of the boat, we were surprised to see that it was a “Blue Shark”.  They are known to be in the area, but not seen that often.  Rob wanted to be the one to release it, so with assistance from Adam our crewman, he held the leader and let Rob cut him loose. We photographed the fish and successfully released it back into the deep!  The score at the end of the day…Three Striped Marlin Releases, one Boated Shortbill Spearfish and one Released Blue Shark.  A Banner Day!

Big Island Big Fish

Big Island Big Fish.  This month, Pacific Coast Fishing Magazine did a story on Linda and I and our succes here in Kona Hawaii.  We hope you enjoy the Magazine too.

Kona is the anglers Paradise.  It is on the lee of the largest of the Islands, twice the size of all the other Islands combined.  Our ocean water temp never goes below 75 degrees for a couple of months in the winter, and it is rare to go over 85 degrees at its warmest.  Air daytime temperatures stay between 83 to 87 degrees year round.  It is just plain Paradise.  There has been a thousand pound Blue Marlin caught every month of the year except November.  As is true in most of the giant Marlin hot spots in the world, you just have to be here to hook them up.  Please accept our invitation to come to Paradise and enjoy this magnificent part of our planet.  We will show you both the similarities and differences in your fishing experience and how we do it and why, in Kona.  Our 43 foot Hatteras is immaculate and we use the finest in reels and equipment.  All matched in size and manufacturer with different size capabilities from light tackle to the 130 Shimano Tiagra reels for the big girls.

You can read the article that is in Pacific Coast Sportfishing Magazine this month at

Wahoo! Fishing in Kona Hawaii

Wahoo! Fishing in Kona Hawaii. One word sums up today.  Textbook.  Rick and his family from Massachusetts boarded the Fire Hatt for a fun filled day of fishing down to Captain Cook Bay, getting in the water for a little snorkeling adventure and then fishing back to the harbor.  On the way down the coast, one line goes down, then another, then another.  J.T. is in the chair, Mom Peggy and Rick are fighting theirs out of the gunnells.  We call this “Controlled Chaos”.  Three lines hooked up, three fish landed.  Everyone is still excited about their morning catch as they are getting into the incredibly clear pacific blue water to snorkel.  With much anticipation about the trip back up the coast, and Suzie the only one that has not caught a fish, we leave the cove and put lines back in the water.  Heading offshore this time to hopefully find a Blue Marlin, we are hooked up again, Suzie is in the chair and she brings in her prize.  Her first Wahoo! (Also known as “Ono” here in Hawaii)Suzie’s parents now realize they have just created a fishergirl for life!  She couldn’t get enough and her excitement was a sheer joy to watch.  I think we will see this family again….

Kathy’s Kitchen Owner visits Kona Hawaii

Kathy’s Kitchen Owner visits Kona Hawaii.  Kathy (Illinois State Fair Winner for over 30 years) along with her Husband, Darrell spent the day fishing with us, what a treat to finally meet her.  For Years we have been purchasing wonderful products from Kathy’s Kitchen, a family owned business from Virginia, Illinois.  Most notably for us, we use her Vidalia Onion Relish.  Some of you probably saw my recipe in an article I write for Coastal Angler Magazine.  Back to fishing… once we left the harbor we returned to an area where we had several bites the day before.   Once we got there we found a porpoise school we headed for it.  After just a few passes we are hooked up.  Adam’s new favorite lure that had been getting the bites all week is bit.  Light tackle, porpoise school, screaming reel and five other lines to clear, you get the picture.  Kathy gets to the chair, Adam transfers the rod to her and after just a few moments the line goes slack!  Ouch!  Now we realize that not only is the fish off, so is Adam’s lure!  Another painful loss.  (Last week Lucky Linda was lost.)  Luckily, we have photos of the lure and now the search is on to find another one just like it or one similar.  I always tell our guests, “The best lures made are on the bottom of the ocean”.  Adam is now going through all the lures on the boat looking for a temporary replacement.  Do they have support groups for situations like this?  We finished our day with several more strikes with nothing sticking.  Still very exciting.

Recipe for Vidalia Onion Coated Fish:  (Spearfish and Ono our favorites, works wonderfully on skewered shrimp too.) Basically, we soak a cedar plank for hours and then prepare the relish along with real mayonaise and coat the fish.  I place very thin sliced lemons or limes under the fish and arrange them on the cedar plank.  Dust the fish with a little smoked paprika and place on the grill on medium and cook for about 20 minutes.  You should try it!

Contact Kathy at 217-452-3035 for everything from Beet Pickles to Jalapeno Jelly

KONA The Anglers Paradise

The Mahi Mahi are here!  It is that time of year again when we see greatly increased numbers of the highly prized food fish arriving.  Make sure you have the Binoculars and eyeballs tuned up, to help locate the “Floaters”.  Since we have no grass or kelp here in Kona, it is floating nets, ropes, wood and trash that provide sanctuary for bait and schools of Mahi as they float along in current lines offshore.  Mahi like the more temperate waters found in the fall and winter here.  Temperate water temperatures are a relative term, being that Kona’s water temperatures rarely go below 76 degrees.  Right now, we still are seeing 81 degrees but there have been several floaters loaded with Mahi under them.  When you contend with Mother Ocean, you just never know what will happen.                                 

Check out this months issue of Coastal Angler Magazine.                                                        

World Class Hawaiian Fishing Adventure in Kona

Saying “Welcome to Kona Hawaii” is just an understatement!  How about “Welcome to a World Class Hawaiian Fishing Adventure!”  Casey Jedynak’s family are newly transplanted locals from Richmond WA.  Imagine your family arranging for a day of fishing in the beautiful waters of  Kona for what turned out to be a battle with a estimated 500+ pound Pacific Blue Marlin.  Yes it was Casey’s first Marlin.  His largest fish until now was a 20 pound Salmon.   We were one for three today.  This was the second bite for the day.  Casey did a great job on the rod.  The strength and determination of youth was surely a factor in this fight!  I am proud to say it was taken on the Lucky Linda Lure by Bomboy Lures.  Lucky Linda has been on a brief vacation lately.  The current batch of marlin have not taken her seriously.  She is now back in business!

Iron Man, Doug Mackenzie’s First Blue Marlin

Doug Mackenzie, a 17 year participant in the Iron Man Competition caught his first Blue Marlin while fishing aboard the Fire Hatt with Captain Chuck Wilson in Kona, Hawaii. He effortlessly fought the fish for about six minutes before we released the beauty. Doug was aboard with friends Brian and Bonnie Barber and John and Eva Jones all from Canada.