The sun didn’t rise, it exploded in full color signaling a change in the weather and tuna fortunes as Rampage deckhand Ben Overmares points a typical Westport albie toward the hold. Terry W. Sheely Photo
THE FURY AND THE RAMPAGE
ALBACORE ADVENTURE AND TOUGH TUNA LOVE IN A SUMME
OF ROCK AND ROLL ACTION
By Terry W. Sheely
It was a summer of albacore extravagance and I missed the best of it.
All last summer I was inundated with albacore hyperbole and exclamation points.
Refrigerated fish holds packed top to bottom and wedged solid with flash-iced tuna. Multi-day 10-man trips cut short because boats ran out of refrigerated places to stash another day’s catch. Twelve-hour high-speed, 6-man express charters loaded with albies and back to port in half that time.
Tuna swarmed the Northwest ocean surface starting in late July, a seething carpet miles and miles wide. One weary skipper told me that in August after filling his hold with prime albacore he would typically run across tuna for more than an hour while headed in. Back to the dock, off load, refuel, take on another 120 pounds of live anchovy baits, load another crew of anxious anglers and head back out for another albacore blitz.
Tuna nirvana on cruise control.
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