Trip Report - Las Vegas and Billfish - Long Odds?

After my initiation with Damo on Lastchance over the Dampier Classic i needed to head out and try for myself, i bugged him to no end on what to do and how to do it and learnt heaps of little tips and tricks, needless to say more rod holders are being fitted and outriggers installed if only for the wank factor but the benefits when Billfishing are awesome and i now know several different ways to rig a bait, set a spread and find the fish. I needed to put this into practice so we are already at long odds, i knew roughly where the bait was but no co-ordinants that's what the sounder is for. Lets make this fun and invite 3 guys who have never seen a billfish in real life let alone tangled with one, sweeeeet!!! screw it we are on a roll and lets throw into the mix a shitty weather forecast that changed in a few days after i checked it, no worries i'm feeling good.

First job find some livies and i had a hell of a battle holding onto a school in front of an ore carrier as the boys got some absolute horses come into the tank, excellent but it's gonna be fun drifting them in the shit wind and sharp chop we had, no worries i thought we'd start with the pushers anyway and find that bait, we spotted a heap of birds working to our north and so we headed that way. The whales were having a ball playing away but in those conditions it made it really hard to see them with the clears down i was driving a little blind. There was one other boat foolishly out there with us (turned out to be Dodgy and Co) and as we passed them they hooked up, i then saw the bait ball and spirits lifted greatly in these shit conditions.

Only about 50m away, i didn't have the big lens on which sucks

splashdown, the slap noise is bloody loud!

We had one strike early on that didn't stick, not to worry we could see blacks free swimming in the waves so it was only a matter of time, i ruled out the live bait option as it was too rough at the time and then a Mackie jumped on and had a bit of fun with a pusher, no damage to the lure and back out it went, the bait had moves SE and i decided to head to where i thought the bait ball was last weekend and we then past where we found the bait first off and then the rod screamed into life.  just like my previous report a similar thing happened, i had my new Fin Nor Santiago 25  2 Speed with 700m of 15kg out, my Okuma Titus 50 -2 speed with 600m of 24kg on shotgun and then my Shimano Tyrnos 30 and cheap Shimano 10-15kg rod on short corner. It was the Tyrnos that went off, no probs that had 15kg line and about 500m of it but i really wanted the fish on either the big girl for the sake of the newbies or the bling reel as it then justifies the expense, nope, i lucked out there...

Tristan grabbed the rod and i began shouting instructions to the rest of the guys to clear the decks and teaser, Tristan to keep the rod low and to keep his thumb off the reel spool, there was plenty of line there and then how this will work.

Tristan on the job working hard

The fight took a little while as she had taken a lot of line early in the fight as we sorted our shit out so slowly we got line back, soon we had colour and i jumped from the helm to the deck to assist and order the others to arm the camera and the steering and keep us heading to sea. The little fella had one more burst in him and he performed nicely for the camera ripping another 50m of line off as he headed east.

angry little fish!

We played him back in and i instructed Tristan on what to do, he did as he was asked and once i had that leader he backed the drag down and i slowly leadered him to the boat and grabbed that bill! He was hooked good and it took some time to remove in the water but once clear i got Tristan in position and got the boat sorted and we pulled him aboard for a few pics before we swam him off strong.

Leader in hand

not happy

a stoked angler and skipper

out in the sun

Tristans biggest fish before that was probably a cod of 50cm or so and he had wanted to catch a big fish before he headed to Tassie for work. So Las Vegas and her crew played the odds well and returned back with its first Marlin, the bug has bit hard now and i want more, i now have quite a few eager deckies now willing to chase them too which is always good, off we go again this Saturday! 


Las Vegas - Rolling the dice and trying your luck. 1M+ Barra summer target. 100kg Black Marlin winter target

Adam Gallash's picture

Posts: 14978

Date Joined: 29/11/05


Wed, 2011-08-10 11:52

Nice work Bruccccccccce.  Love the greyhounding shot, zzzzziiing. :)


Site Admin - Just ask if you need assistance

crasny1's picture

Posts: 6685

Date Joined: 16/10/08

Great one Brucesta

Wed, 2011-08-10 12:04

No more BBing for you. Now I just have to convince the boss that this doesnt hurt the marlies/sails to C&R them.



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

Brucesta's picture

Posts: 1721

Date Joined: 29/05/09

oh i will still be bottom

Wed, 2011-08-10 12:06

oh i will still be bottom bashing mate, my mum raided my freezer hard on her visit and i need more fish and squid


Las Vegas - Rolling the dice and trying your luck. 1M+ Barra summer target. 100kg Black Marlin winter target

Lucky Tim's picture

Posts: 2536

Date Joined: 28/11/07

great work fellas, another

Wed, 2011-08-10 15:54

great work fellas, another angler hooked on bills now. Good onya's also for pushing through some fairly shitty conditions.

mitch's picture

Posts: 1285

Date Joined: 14/08/05

great stuff .billy fever ya

Wed, 2011-08-10 16:25

great stuff .billy fever ya gotta love it

mullows's picture

Posts: 738

Date Joined: 25/12/08

Top work

Wed, 2011-08-10 16:56

Top work Brucesta!!!





The Older I get the better I was :-)

PilbaraBrad's picture

Posts: 3628

Date Joined: 16/05/07

top stuff bruce, really

Wed, 2011-08-10 23:23

top stuff bruce, really inspiring mate well done!

big john's picture

Posts: 7771

Date Joined: 20/07/06


Thu, 2011-08-11 09:48

Great effort guys, nothing better than cracking the code and getting your first.

Ps. Did you get my PM the other week re tipping?


WA based manufacturer and supplier of premium leadhead jigs, bucktail jigs and saltwater soft plastic jig heads.

Jigs available NOR at Shorecatch and SOR at Oceanside Tackle & Marine!

Rick's picture

Posts: 842

Date Joined: 22/12/06

Great Report

Thu, 2011-08-11 10:02

Well done mate, nice when you get it all to work in trying conditions.



PGFC Member


POC's picture

Posts: 231

Date Joined: 05/01/09

Well done

Fri, 2011-08-12 06:07

Great read looked a little lumpy but paid of.