We usually try and talk clients out of keeping the really big halibut, but it's pretty exciting fighting a huge fish and when that fish is next to the boat it's really hard for anyone to say, "no, let it go". This summer we have had more bigger fish since we have started charter fishing. Who knows why there is more this year then last. I think it's because we haven't seen any commercial skates laid out where we fish this year, but I'm sure it could be a number of other reasons too. I also remind myself that I see 100 and 100+ pounders all the time being lifted up into the processor by the commercial fisherman, and we are not even close to taking that many. We are also one of the few charters who do not shoot the big fish when they are next to the boat, seems pretty dangerous to have a loaded gun on board with clients. So, Frank harpoons the big ones, and once we get them back to the boat we tie the tail and head to the boat until we can bring them into the boat without it beating everyone up.
Once in the boat it won't fit in the floor well, so Frank ties it up as best he can to keep it in one spot until we get back to the dock.
Getting this out of the boat was not an easy project either. Frank slipped on some fish slim and almost went in the water. But with 3 guys they managed to get it into a cart and pushed up to the pickup. The Harbor Master complained that they were going to break the cart, I guess we were supposed to cut it in half and use 2 carts!
Load it in the back of the Toyota and transport it to the processor. He brought out his fork lift to weigh it on, and get some pictures.
That's a happy family with the 265 pounder. Franks sister Leah, husband Steve with his parents, who just happen to be in their 80's.
Dave the processor, filleting the monster. Each fillet weighed around 40lbs each. Franks sister, Leah and her husband will be taking home a lot of fish.