photo: Carol Lynne
Kona is a special place. Nestled on the west-end of Hawaii’s Big Island, the calm and rich waters outside of nearby Honokohou Harbor host some of the planet’s best fishing for Pacific blue marlin. At any moment, at any time of the year, your next strike could be a “grander” – the coveted 1,000+ lb. billfish.
Below: break out the "big gunz" when you're trolling off Kona
Blue marlin legend and long-time PELAGIC Pro Team Captain, Marlin Parker, has kicked off Kona’s big game tournament season for over a decade with his Marlin Magic Lures Tournament. Now in its fifteenth year of operation, PELAGIC was honored to join Capt. Parker as sponsor and co-host of this great event.
Below: Capt. Marlin Parker, along with Gary Eoff, produce some of the finest big game lures on the market today - Marlin Magic Lures
The two-day tournament saw a 22-boat field compete for over $200,000 in cash prizes. This tournament is unique in that no live or dead bait is allowed; lures only. Teams can score points by providing video evidence of a released blue marlin or by weighing a fish of over 400-pounds, accruing 1-point per pound.
As a side note, most tournaments in Hawaii have adopted the 400-pound minimum rule as a means of eliminating the smaller and actively-reproducing females from being harvested; the fish that are weighed are not wasted and either donated to local villagers or to food shelters.
Below: special thanks to Corona for coming on board as a party sponsor of the event!
Winning the Tag and Release category was Team Last Chance with Capt. Tracy Epstein, recording two blue marlin releases during day one of the tournament.
Below: Team Last Chance -Tag-n-Release Winners
Weighing a 511 lb. blue marlin on day one of the tournament and taking home 2nd Place Overall was Team Sea Genie. Congrats to angler Michael Stewart and Capt. Gene Van Der Hoek!
Below: Team Sea Genie - 2nd Place Overall
And taking home the victory with 1st Place Overall was Team Strong Persuader, with angler Cliff Arrington and Capt. Shane O’Brien who scored the tournament’s largest blue marlin weighing 681 lbs. and winning $111,000! Congrats to Captain, Angler, and Crew!
Below: Team Strong Persuader - 1st Place Overall
Thanks again to Capt. Marlin Parker who welcomed PELAGIC to join in this great event. Kona is one of our favorite places on Earth and we look forward to returning again next year for the 16th Annual Marlin Magic Lures Tournament presented by PELAGIC. Aloha!
Below: PelagicGIRL, Marissa Everhart, salutes the setting sun with some Aloha spirit