Women With 300-Pounders
Sometime over 10 years ago, June Pierce, fishing with her husband Larry aboard the Red Rooster III on an 18-day, 18-passenger limited load trip, caught a tuna just over 300 pounds. I believe it was after that that Joyce Corrigan of Cerritos got the first of two 300-pounders she caught on different trips aboard the Royal Polaris. Now it appears a third woman will bring in a long range 300-pound yellowfin tuna, when Kathy Rounds of San Diego comes back aboard the Royal Polaris with owner-skipper Frank LoPreste.
Kathy is a fifth-generation San Diegan, according to her father Darryl Rounds. She went to San Diego State University and has a degree in accounting. She works for Brehm, a residential developer. Sheís a rep for Izorline and Accurate reels, and she was using those products when she took a fish that taped at 305 pounds a few days ago. The line was likely 130-pound Izorline, and Jack Nilsen of Accurate called the boat to confirm the reel Kathy used on her giant yellowfin was an Accurate 50W.
This hoped-for 300-pounder isnít the first big fish for Rounds, but it will be the largest. Last year she brought in a 235-pound tuna, her best to that date.
In August of 2001, Kathy caught a 248-pound halibut on 15-pound test Izorline, and was awarded a womenís record in the 20-pound line class. This is not uncommon; most premium line tests at higher than its projected strength. Her first good-sized yellowfin was also caught aboard the Royal Polaris; about an 80-pounder.
On the current expedition to the southern banks of Baja, Rounds is fishing with her sister Nancy Page. Nancy has a fish taped at 195 pounds. The Royal Polaris is expected to dock at Fishermanís Landing Monday morning, along with at least six other boats.
Another Tuna Record?
Well, if that donít beat all! We may not know for sure until Monday, but it looks like the huge record catch of 57 tuna over 200 pounds made by Billy Santiago aboard Royal Polaris November 25 may be in danger. Randy Toussaint, writing aboard the Royal Star November 30, said,
ďI must say I'm speechless after today's fishing so I'll let the numbers speak for themselves. We ended up with 30 fish out of two stops, 26 of which were 203-280 with 4 from 180-195. Our code boats in the area also had big days, thus making 11/30/05 one of the best days of cow fishing in the history of long range. The weather is grease calm which is making this experience all the more surreal. We are going to give this one more day before starting to work back up the line.Ē
Randy already had at least 11 tuna over 200 pounds (including a 300-pounder) on the boat, and he had another day to fish, so itís possible he could claim a new catch record Monday. Thatís assuming he has room to park that many more giant yellowfin in his holds on the 90-foot Royal Star.
Many of the other rigs in the nine-boat fleet that sailed the day after Thanksgiving will also park at the dock on Monday, so there will be another day-long scramble for this writer to keep track of the arrivals December 5. Come on down to see the tuna, but leave room for the crews and dockworkers to deal with this huge incoming load of cows.