Akule on th fly

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Posted by Don Memmer on 2005-11-27 14:57:29

Aloha, one of the specialized types of fishing we do here in Hawaii is akule fishing at night. Last night I went out with some friends and anchored out side of Hilo bay at about 6:30 and started to fish. We were using spin gear and dropped various types of bait down to the bottom in 60 feet of water. At first we caught some of the local snapper and grouper, taape and tauo. There aren't the targeted species, but I did get a nice big eyed papio, or trevally.
We kept at it and finally around 7:30 the first of the akule or big eyed scad started to show up. We kept fishing and loading the cooler while gringing musubis and miso peanuts. It was good fun and the action was pretty consistant. I got some more papio, and we started to catch various sized akule. We were going to head in at about midnight, but the bite picked up. The school had moved under the boat to about 30 feet of water. We talked about the possibility of the school comming to the surface. They hadn't done that in a while.
Our lights started to fade, and all we had left was the deck light, the ones in the water went dim as the batteries wore out. Then it happened, slashes on the surface signaled that the school was on top. I got out my 8wt and tried various flies. Decievers, clousers, shrimp, all refused. I tried a fishskin bait fish, and it got hit, but the hook is too far forward, so I switched to an epoxy smolt rainbow trout, and wham I was on. I had a blast fighting the 1-2lb akule on the surface. We even got an opelu, and something bit another one in half. The guys thought it was a shark, but I think I saw a big ulua cruising in the fading light.
At 2:00am with the lights out we decided to head in. In was a very productive night. In total over 200 fish, but the dozen or so I caught on the fly made it for me. I would like to say it is like that every night, but the reality is the fly only works when they are on the surface. If you ever get over here try akule fishing, and don't forget the fly rod. Mems.

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