FetchedBy Capt. Dave LearOctober 24, 2013, Cabo San Lucas, BCS, Mexico:The Bisbee’s Black & Blue is renowned for its twists and turns so Thursday’s late-afternoon antics should have been predictable. But this is the richest fishing contest in the world and anything can happen. And it did.Martha McNabb, fishing aboard her 61 Viking Retriever,
took a little over an hour to boat her blue marlin after it ate a purple and black Islander lure in Grid D-5 due south of the cape. It tipped the scales at 525 pounds and instantly became the tournament leader and top money winner so far. Based on Friday’s outcome, McNabb’s marlin is worth at least $1.13 million dollars overall.“It jumped a lot at first and then settled down,” McNabb explained at the weigh scales afterwards. “There were a lot of flyers around and then that fish hit. We had a very good day, actually. We released three stripers this morning and then hooked the blue. So after nothing in the Los Cabos Offshore and nothing yesterday, this was a very satisfying catch.” The fish was landed on 130-pound line and a customized Penn 130 two-speed reel and a bent-butt rod. It measured 109 inches from the lower jaw to the fork of the tail, with a 62-inch girth.“It was a crazy jumper at first and ripped off 100 yards, then another 50 yards of line,” added Retriever’s
skipper, Capt. Tony Araiza of Cabo San Lucas. “I’ve waited eight years for that fish. I’ve been dreaming about it.”But that wasn’t the only late-afternoon drama. As the call for “Lines Out” went over the radio, three boats were still fighting fish. Angelina
was the first to make it in, although Jose Perez’s marlin was just shy of the 300-pound minimum.Go Deep
was next and the Japanese team led by angler Takagi got on the board with another blue weighing 323 pounds. Takagi and his crew are one of five teams from Japan and one of the dozens of international teams represented this year.The wild night at the scales concluded when angler James Long, team captain Dave Stockwell and the crew from Oklahoma weighed in the first black marlin for 2013, a qualifier at 342 pounds. That fish was caught aboard the Marlin Queen.
There’s still one fishing day remaining and close to another million dollars at stake. Can Retriever
fetch another big fish? Or will a new leader of the pack emerge? It all begins at 8 a.m. Friday. And since this is the Black & Blue, anything can happen.