Solo Swordfish from a 20' Flatsboat - Louisiana

 Hey folks, I dont post on here much anymore since I've been living overseas but I wanted to share this recent capture as it has been a goal of mine for awhile now and is a pretty monumental achievment.

I've been learning everything I could about Swordfishing since in the states with a plan to return to Perth with the confidence in technique to target them succesfully. Unfortunately however I have had limited opportunities to go as everytime I hop on someone elses boat out of Venice Louisiana they just want to chase yellowfin tuna. I own a 20' PangaMarine skiff (think southwind UB570) which I use for flyfishing for bulll reds here and so have been waiting for a good weather window to go and test my technique and spots. Luckily the wait gave me plenty of time to learn everything I could before hitting the water.

In late september my brother flew over and we had 2 good days of weather to head offshore (~1200' water depth) and try the daytime swordfish game. The second spot we tried (flagged as likely from studting a bathy chart) and we got wacked, when we got the bait back to surface it was clear it was a sword given the leader abrasion and slash through the rigged squid. Over the next two days we had 3 hits on bait and even one wack on the lead sinker (looks like someone hit it with an axe) but just couldnt convert it into a hookup.

Over the next few weeks i spoke to a few swordfish diehards to better learn how to get the hookup after a fish finds your bait (not an easy task!). Mid October a 2 day weather window opened up but I couldnt find anyone willing to go midweek so I took off on my lonesome into the deep blue yonder on a little boat.

1st drop and I was getting wacked straight away. Played cat and mouse with him for 15-20 minutes but couldnt get the hookup and eventually he moved on. Squid and leader was a mess when I got it back to surface. 

I setup again and dropped another fresh rigged squid down. Pretty soon I was seeing action again and tried enticing him for what seemed like forever until suddenly I came tight. He came to surface fairly easily and to be honest I didnt think it was a sword. When he saw the boat however and warmed up he went ballistic. After 2 awesome jumps and about an hour he went a huge dive down to 200+metres, just as he was slowing down the hooks pulled. I was devastated to have finally hooked my first sword (est. 250#) and lost him and was certain that was my one opportunity gone. You can see the footage of that fight here -

After getting my sh%t togethor I reset and dropped down again. After 20 minutes I was hooked up again. Easy fight up once again until he saw the boat and took off across the surface and launched. Realized then he was a pretty good sword and I had no idea just how hard the fight would be.. Long story short, 3.5 hours later I got him boatside and had a shot with the gaff, a little scary and not easy by myself.

I eventually got him subdued and it then occured to me I was never going to get him in the boat by myself. After tying him to the side and towing him for a few miles I eventually came across another boat that helped me get him in.

Unfortunately the place I was staying didnt have scales to handle it. A few of the charter captains that saw it estimated around 350lbs. Short length / girth calculation pegged it a 360lb. The Louisiana state record is 320 so would have smashed it if I had weighed the bugger....... not bad solo from a 20' boat :-)

Still editing the footage of this second fish but I will get it up asap.

Good weather coming Monday so hoping to give it another crack. I'm returning home to Perth in january so will be spending as much time as I can trying to work out daytime / nighttime in Perth Canyon... I've definitely been bitten by the swordfish bug! Cant wait to get back in the Indian Ocean!!!


Cheers all




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Fisher Kid's picture

Posts: 352

Date Joined: 16/10/12

 ripper effort mate. good to

Thu, 2015-10-29 23:44

 ripper effort mate. good to see guys going out of the norms to find new fish. old man and the sea right here, lucky u didnt have to fight off sharks while towing him in aha. good luck in oerth on swords be an awesome sight to see a prrth canyon sword in the future!


Fishing and catching are two different things. But i want to learn how to catch.

Posts: 27

Date Joined: 31/08/06

I must admit I was alittle

Fri, 2015-10-30 08:21

I must admit I was alittle concerned bleeding him while he weas tied up next to the boat.

Colt_Striker's picture

Posts: 590

Date Joined: 26/07/09

Oh yeah top fish & looks like

Fri, 2015-10-30 02:46

Oh yeah top fish & looks like a top spot. More reason to go to Louisiana on the new LNG facility.

Posts: 27

Date Joined: 31/08/06

 Which LNG facility?

Fri, 2015-10-30 08:21

 Which LNG facility?

jng's picture

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Date Joined: 03/08/07

 top effort, and great write

Fri, 2015-10-30 06:04

 top effort, and great write up

uncle's picture

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Date Joined: 10/02/07

Yeah that is

Fri, 2015-10-30 06:19

 Awesome well done


all aggressive fish love bigjohnsjigs

Rob H's picture

Posts: 5028

Date Joined: 18/01/12

that's a good effort

Fri, 2015-10-30 07:13

that's a good effort piscator, well done!
They are a beautiful fish.
From that size onwards the females really thicken up in the body to become tree trunks.


 Give a man a mask, and he'll show you his true face...



The older you get the more you realize that no one has a f++king clue what they're doing.

Everyone's just winging it.


Posts: 27

Date Joined: 31/08/06

 Yes they are amazingly thick

Fri, 2015-10-30 08:22

 Yes they are amazingly thick back in the tail.. Solid log of muscle... I've never caught a fish I enjoyed slapping so much! :-p

gillyL's picture

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Date Joined: 26/04/14

 Awesome stuff 

Fri, 2015-10-30 07:39

 Awesome stuff 


lucky i love to fish because i cant catch any.



crasny1's picture

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Date Joined: 16/10/08

Not bad,

Fri, 2015-10-30 08:00

Not bad at all!


"I would like to die on Mars. Just not on impact!!" _ Elon Musk

Posts: 27

Date Joined: 31/08/06

 Thanks everyone, just

Fri, 2015-10-30 08:23

 Thanks everyone, just confirmed Im heading back out there on sunday/monday for round 2... Been awhie since I've been this excited.

kirky79's picture

Posts: 1230

Date Joined: 13/01/12

That is great

Fri, 2015-10-30 08:45

 What an awesome effort solo! They are a great looking fish. Good luck on the next trip too. 

Posts: 28

Date Joined: 01/08/14

Ripper fish

Fri, 2015-10-30 08:50

 Very admirable accomplishment piscator.


I would be very interested to learn a few of the key lessons you have acquired in your experience to date!


Well done.

Lamby's picture

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Date Joined: 04/08/09

That's bloody epic

Fri, 2015-10-30 09:22

That's bloody epic

Timmo's picture

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Date Joined: 01/03/10


Fri, 2015-10-30 11:48

Awesome work Mr Jones.

Posts: 27

Date Joined: 31/08/06

 Thanks Mr V..... we need to

Fri, 2015-10-30 22:26

 Thanks Mr V..... we need to get out there when I get back to Perth.... 

Timmo's picture

Posts: 242

Date Joined: 01/03/10

For Sure

Sat, 2015-10-31 11:37

Been very jealous of your fishing adventures and just seeing some quality and different species been caught.

quest's picture

Posts: 240

Date Joined: 03/08/15

Good work landing it on your

Fri, 2015-10-30 11:59

Good work landing it on your own. Well done.

Alan James's picture

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Date Joined: 30/06/09

Congrats again Chris

Fri, 2015-10-30 13:39

 I hadn't seen the vid before and look forward to Part 2.  You can just feel the tension and emotion pouring out.  Top effort.



Posts: 2295

Date Joined: 03/05/06

Great report

Fri, 2015-10-30 14:11

That's a great report, you must have been stoked.

Hutch's picture

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Fri, 2015-10-30 14:59



My Videos:


sexton's picture

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Fri, 2015-10-30 16:34


dkonig82's picture

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Date Joined: 06/07/10

 Epic capture mate - very

Fri, 2015-10-30 16:49

 Epic capture mate - very well done!


When asked by a non-fisherman 'how many fishing rods do you really need?' the correct answer is either:

n+1 (where n is the number of fishing rods you currently own); or

n-1 (where n is the number of fishing rods which would cause your significant other to dump you. 

Posts: 1

Date Joined: 29/10/18

Daytime Swordfishing

Wed, 2018-10-31 20:51

 Awesome story. Been thinking about heading down that way to try and look into the daytime swordfishery. We catch plenty of fish during the day where I'm from (fishing as deep as 1500-2000 feet) during the day. We also contend with up to 4 knots of current so I'm sure our technique would be applicable anywhere else in the world. Let me know if any of you would be interested in giving swordfishing a shot if I ever head down that way. Here's a link to how we swordfish locally. Will be doing a better write up with all the details soon.

little johnny's picture

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Fri, 2018-11-02 17:25

Top stuff.