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“REDUCING YOUR “DQ” (DOOFUS QUOTIENT)”

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REDUCING YOUR “DQ” (DOOFUS QUOTIENT)

Originally published the Week of Oct. 29, 2014 in Western Outdoor News

This is that time of year when fishing tournaments run rampant in Baja and other parts of Mexico. Why not? In many respects, this part of the season is the best time for the “glamour” fish like marlin, sailfish, tuna, wahoo and dorado.   It’s a great time to be on the water.

 

In fact, by the time you’re reading this, we’ll just be about a week out from the start of the 16th Annual Western Outdoor News/ Yamaha Los Cabos Tuna Jackpot Tournament. Having been an editor and staff member for WON since 2006, we really look forward to the event all year and seeing so many familiar faces and having a great time.

 

Western Outdoor News Editor and master of ceremonies, Pat McDonell hosts an incredible show for everyone. More than 100 teams from all over the country pile into town for the fishing party.

 

How can you go wrong with a tournament that has a motto, “Fish Hard Party Harder!” Check out all the details here. It’s Nov. 5th-8th: http://www.loscabostunajackpot.com/2014_coverage/preview.php

 

Having worked this tournament as well as many others over the years and participated as a crew-member or angler in other events, I’ve got some observations about how to enhance your tournament experience and reduce your “doofus” factor a few notches.

 

  • It’s all about attitude. Yes, this is a competition. Everyone wants to get that big check, but it’s supposed to be fun. Remember, you left the office, traffic jams and meetings back home. The sun is out. The margaritas are cold. You’re among friends. Enjoy the time.
  • One overly-competitive high-strung-wound-up-underwear-twisted-person on the team can ruin it for everyone on the boat and on shore. Don’t be that person. Remember, you’re not alone and you’re not the only fisherman. And there’s a lot of GOOD fishermen out there.
  • Respect where respect is due. Your captain and crew have probably forgotten more than you will ever know about fishing these waters. They fish more in one year than you will your entire fishing career. Remember, they are part of your team. Work together. Listen to their advice. They want to win as badly as you do!
  • Work out bonus and tip money ahead of time. Will they get a percentage of winnings? Extra money is a nice motivation.
  • If the rod goes off, work out a fair rotation with your amigos about who gets to grab the rod. Rock…paper…scissor…
  • Be careful of what you say on the open radio! The whole world is listening…and probably in several different languages!
  • If you lose or break gear, offer to replace it or pay for it. It’s only fair.
  • No matter how much you plan, the unexpected happens. It might be bait, luggage, food, some other jerk…Hey, roll with it. “Spit” happens, right? Some things are just not controllable. How you deal with it is the difference between an “adventure/ inconvenience” or a “crisis. “
  • Share! I’ve seen fishing team members roll out to the boat carrying everything from bottles of expensive wine to gourmet meats and cheeses and everything in between. And then they don’t offer a thing to the captain or crew who may or may not have anything more than a rolled up tortilla and a thermos jug of water.
  • If your “team” has hats and shirts whether it’s “ Team Joe’s Auto Parts” or “The Reel Screamers” or “Fred’s Flatulent Fishing Fanatics”, get gear for everyone! Everyone loves swag and your captain and crew will wear them proudly.
  • While you’re at it, don’t forget your “land crew” either. I highly recommend family, spouses and significant others at these events. Heck, consider them for fishing, but even if not, remember them too! They’re your support team!
  • These events are a social event, in many cases. Even moreso than a sporting event. Fishing is just the vehicle that gets everyone down to party! Chances are this event has evening soirees and banquets. Everyone plays. No one sits on the beach. So make sure you bring in your support team as well as your captain and crew. Great fun. Great bonding!
  • Don’t make YOUR negligence, someone else’s emergency. The tournament director and staff have their hands full. He does not know where you left your iPhone. The staff does not know the name of the bar you were at last night where you left your official tournament t-shirt. Likewise, it’s not THEIR fault you accepted a “double-dog-dare” and removed your shorts in the hotel Jacuzzi and got asked to leave.
  • Basically, don’t be a knucklehead or the guy everyone points at. Be on time. Read your materials. KNOW THE RULES. Play fair. Be a good sport.

 

Hope to see you in Cabo at the Tournament! You’ll see me working the scales with Pat and Big Mike. Come say hi and introduce yourself.   Giant tuna are showing up so I hope to hoist one up for you in front of the Corona girls!

That’s our story!

Jonathan signature

Jonathan

_______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter-international.com.  They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is riplipboy@tailhunter-international.com  or drop by the restaurant to say hi!

______________

Jonathan Roldan’s

Tailhunter International

 

TAILHUNTER FISHING FLEET #1 Rated on Trip Advisor

TAILHUNTER RESTAURANT BAR #1 Rated in La Paz on Trip Advisor

 

Now follow us on FACEBOOK TOO

 

Website: www.tailhunter-international.com

U.S. Office: 8030 La Mesa, Suite #178, La Mesa CA  91942

Mexico Office: 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

Phones:

from USA : 626-638-3383

from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863

.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:

http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Videos:

http://www.youtube.com/user/pangapirate

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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Nothing like being front-and-center in the middle of a huge Cabo San Lucas Tournament and the Western Outdoor News Tuna Jackpot is one of the funnest tournaments to be part of.

AND THE FINAL WINNING WEIGHT IS…..!!!!!!

A GATHERING OF TRIBES

Originally Published the Week of Nov. 7, 2012 in Western Outdoor News

This has got to be one of my favorite times of the year.  By the time you’re reading this, we’ll be in the middle of the 2012 Western Outdoor News Tuna Jackpot Tournament in Cabo San Lucas.  This is maybe the 10th year that we’ve worked at the tournament.

The Western Outdoor News Tuna Jackpot Tournament has a special place for me.  With more than 120 teams possibly this year, if it’s not the largest of the big Cabo San Lucas fishing tournaments, then it’s the “funnest” of the tournaments.

It’s hard to dislike a tournament with the motto of “ Fish Hard. Party Harder.”

It’s the “everyman’s tournament”.  Everyone plays. You don’t have to mortage the house or be a millionaire.   Everyone passes “GO!”  Everyone participates.

You’re more likely to run into your neighbor down the street or  Joe the Mechanic and his wife  from Riverville, Oregon.   Probably  Rob and Chuck two carpenters from  Moscow, Idaho or the retired couple from Riverside CA and their sons.

Basically, if it floats it fishes.  Three men in a tub?  Yea, they’re probably team number 63 from New Mexico.  I’ve seen pangas do as well as mega-sportfishers.  Folks with little or no experience and not much more than department-store-fishing gear have as much fun as professional teams.

Heck, last year, the tournament was won by a great guy from the mid-west who had NEVER fished in the ocean.   In fact, he beat the field using a single-speed off-the-shelf-reel and a rental rod!  You gotta love that.

It’s not that hard to win money in the various categories and, even if they don’t get a big check, they still go home with all kinds of gear, swag and giveways not to mention big smiles!

The really neat thing is that we see the same folks year-after-year.  It’s much like a gathering of tribes!  And everyone knows each other.  There’s only about 10 of our Western Outdoor New staff members and then there’s the great group of regular sponsors that just jump right in and  party and hang with everyone.

There are very few strangers and no one stays an outsider for long!

Everyone knows the “Redneck Hillbilly” fishing team and the “Borracho Lizards” and “Shut-Up-And-Fish” team.

I can always tell the cowboy team from Wyoming when they start yelling.  The “San Diego Blasters” have their own set of cheers and there’s another team that will take any opportunity to start singing “Sweet Home Alabama” by Lynrd Skynard at the top of their lungs.  Even tho’ they’re from Arizona.  Go figure.

In some ways, the actual fishing tournament seems to just be a vehicle by which we throw this huge 5-day party for 1000 people. It’s an excuse for a kick up their heels…or flip-flops! It’s like letting the  “Gypsies in the Palace!” Yea, lock the liquor cabinet and don’t expect the lawn to get mowed.

I sometimes think the tuna fishing is “something to do in the daytime” and that more people look forward to the huge fiestas we throw each night for the tournament with live music; great food;  gear giveaways; contests; and copious consumption of massive amounts of adult beverages…all under the fall skies of great Cabo San Lucas evenings.

But, yes, there’s still the matter of fishing!

Yea, we just happen to catch a “few” fish. Hehehehe…

This is the time of year when many of the “Big Mo’” cow tuna take up residence around Cabo San Lucas.  We’re talking the 100-300 pound beasts that prowl the sea where the land ends and can bust up tackle and anglers in quick succession.

At last year’s tournament, I could not remember a year when we weighed so many fish over 100 pounds.  And with each “oooh” and “ahhhh”  and click of camera shutters, the excitement builds as each fish is hoisted and charted and each team poses with the Corona Girls.  When you’re up at the scales, everyone is a winner.

And in the last few years, it often seems that the big fish isn’t locked up until the last hour of the last day.  That makes for some good sport fishing drama as some battle-weary team pulls up in the dark and the buzz starts that “They have a big fish!”

And there’s is  an electricity as the big fish is put into a cart and hauled to the weigh station.  And there’s a hush and the anticipation grows heavy.

And the silence as the fish it pulled up.  And…and…and…tension…the rope groans beneath the monster tuna.  And the  weight is announced.

Then a yell!  Cheers erupt!    Victorious fists pump the air!   High-fives! Back slapping! Cameras flash!

The tribes go wild.  It’s pandemonium on the docks.   It’s pretty special.  Wish you were here!

That’s our story

Jonathan

_____________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife, Jill, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter-international.com.  They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is riplipboy@tailhunter-international.com  or drop by the restaurant to say hi!

_______________

Jonathan Roldan’s

Tailhunter International

 

TAILHUNTER FISHING FLEET #1 Rated on Trip Advisor

TAILHUNTER RESTAURANT BAR #1 Rated in La Paz on Trip Advisor

 

Now follow us on FACEBOOK TOO


 
Website: www.tailhunter-international.com
U.S. Office: 3319 White Cloud Drive, Suite A, Hacienda Hts. CA 91745
Mexico Office: 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico
Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863

.
Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:
http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Videos:
http://www.youtube.com/user/pangapirate


“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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Five hours...214 pounds on 60 pound test line...one leg...alot of heart!

Big check aside, there was a larger story behind the win at the Western Outdoor News Tuna Jackpot Tournament in Cabo San Lucas

SOMEDAY IS ALREADY HERE

Originally Published in Western Outdoor News the Week of Nov. 17, 2011

If you’re in the travel / fishing business like we are, you get alot of ” We’ll get out your way someday!”  or “One of these days, we have to try doing something like that!”

 

You smile.  You nod.  That’s great. Sure thing. 

 

This past week, my wife, Jill and I spent a great time working with the wacky crazy fun crew of Western Outdoor News at the 13th Annual Los Cabos Tuna Jackpot.  Imagine throwing a five -day  party for about 600 of your best friends. 

 

It’s alot of work, but far outweighed by the smiles and fun.   With over 100 teams from around world participating, how can you go wrong with a tournament that has the motto, “FISH HARD!  PARTY HARDER!”

 

Ringmaster and WON Editor Pat McDonell pulls out all the stops as tournament director to make sure everyone has a good time.  The best thing is that you see so many of the same faces every year.  Many participants tell us this is sometimes the ONLY fishing they do all year and look forward to ONLY fishing in this event…because it’s such a kick.

 

This year, Jill worked the papers and stats helping to  keep the tournament central booth manned and everyone straight.  I thought I had the “easy” job of working the weigh scale with Pat. 

 

Not so.  There were alot of fish to weigh!  It was pretty crazy.  Drama right to the end.  As it turned out, it was historic!   More fish were weighed than ever.  There were so many fish over 100 pounds, let alone the bigger slugs.  (23 fish over 100 pounds and 3 over 200 pounds).   I was pretty much covered with fish goo by the end of the day. 

 

And there was the winner…214 pounds of tuna muscle.  And it was worth almost 37 grand in prize money.  Yay! 

 

It’s quite a story.

 

Oroville Henseler fought this thug fish for almost FIVE hours.  He was a FIRST TIME angler.  When we saw his rod and reel, it almost looked like a rental rod.  No fancy upgrades.  No two-speed gears.  No aircraft precision.  It was a simple out-of-the-box Penn 6/0 reel.  His rod…I dunno…a no-name-brand from what I can tell.  Better suited for 20-pound dorado than 200- pound gorilla tuna.  Granted, he had 150-pound Seagaur leader, but his mainline… only 60 -pound mono! 

He refused to pass off the rod for all five hours.  He wouldn’t hear of it.  Imagine dangling a 200-pound refrigerator over the side of a building on a string and hanging onto it…for five grueling hours in the Baja sun on a rolling boat.  That’s manning-up on a fish!

 

But that’s not the story…the real story.  The winning story.

 

See, Oroville Henseler came all the way out from Springtown, Pennsylvania.  Yes, THAT  hotbed of ocean-fishing.  Oroville had never fished in a big-time tournament.  Heck, he hadn’t even been ocean fishing before. 

 

Six months ago, he never imagined himself standing on the winner stage with a big fat check in one hand and his wife, Cindy, holding his other hand and holding back tears of her own.

 

You see, about 6 months ago, Oroville Henseler from Springtown was more concerned with staying alive and maybe walking again.  He had lost his leg in an industrial accident when his shoelace got entangled in a machine.  Surgery was unable to save his leg. 

 

Fitted with a prosthetic leg, he had one of those life-changing experiences you hear about.

 

As the story is told, just two weeks before the tournament, he decided to go.  A big -time tournament was on his new “bucket list” and he said no more “what if…” moments in his life.  He plopped down the credit card and stepped up. 

 

As he stood up there in the lights accepting  the roaring congratulations and applause from more than 600 people, politicians and dignitaries at the awards banquet at the Cabo marina, he was choked up.  I could see his eyes tearing up. His metal bionic leg sticking out from a pair of jeans shorts.   A Kodak moment of moments.  

 

Winning.  It’s not about the money. It’s about saying “No more somedays.” There might not be time for “someday.”  Someday is already here.

 

That’s our story!

Jonathan

 

______________________________________________________

 

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife, Jill, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter-international.com.  They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is riplipboy@tailhunter-international.com  or drop by the restaurant to say hi!    

 

 

Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter International

 

TAILHUNTER FISHING FLEET #1 Rated on Trip Advisor

TAILHUNTER RESTAURANT BAR #1 Rated in La Paz on Trip Advisor

 

Now follow us on FACEBOOK TOO

 
Website: www.tailhunter-international.com
U.S. Office: 3319 White Cloud Drive, Suite A, Hacienda Hts. CA 91745
Mexico Office: 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico
Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863

.
Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:
http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Videos:
http://www.youtube.com/user/pangapirate


“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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