In 1999, my second year of working at McKinley Children's Center there was a fishing trip that we took. We loaded up 4-5 vehicles with kids and staff and headed out to Long Beach where the L.A. Rod and Reel Club was sponsoring an all day fishing excursion for foster kids and underpriviledged kids and the lucky staff who got to bring them. After loading up the boats we headed out. We were a good distance from shore as I could no longer see land...along the way we stopped to pick up some bait which was smaller fish that they had netted up for us. What made the trip great is that we got to fish as well as the kids and the Rod and Reel members were mostly helping the kids so I was able to do my thing without having to worry about the kids. As this was my first time fishing in the great Pacific I was looking forward to this.
After baiting my hook and dropping my line I waited a few minutes...after a few minutes I caught a pretty good sized Sand Bass...it put up a decent fight...but I was able to reel him in. The kid next to me Albert was getting kind of frustrated because everybody around him including me had caught something. So I set my pole down and decided to help him out. So I told him that he hadnt released his line as far as it could go. So I recast his line and let it sink as far as it could go. As it was going I was explaining to him to be patient and he would catch something...just then I felt a very strong tug that just about pulled the pole from my arm. "HOLY FUCKING SHIT" I thought "What the fuck was that??"...the guy next to me exclaimed..."You got a big one"!!! "I thought no shit Sherlock what was your first clue? My arm pulling from its socket??" So he was telling me how to reel him in. But as he was telling me the fish started putting up a good fight....he was on the line and then wrapped himself to the back of the boat and in the process took some of the other fishing lines that were cast with him. Everybody was watching in amazement and waiting to see if I could catch him. I turned the reel and pulled....repeated the action....the guy was cheering me on and Albert was watching wide eyed and amazed. After about 10 minutes of this I was getting tired...and this whatever it was....wa sputting up a hell of a fight...all of a sudden we saw it jump from the water and back in...."Holy God!!! What the fuck was that I thought?" The rod and reel guy said thats a bigbarracuda!!...he runs and grabs a net and tells me to keep doing what Im doing. When the fish gets close enough he reaches out and gets it into the net. About 15-20 minutes after the struggle began....I caught the bastard. Man it was ugly....with razor sharp needle like teeth. As Im breathing hard, my arms are sore and Im ready to go sit down I hear Albert yell...I got one I got one....referring to fish I had just fought with. I just looked at him and thought...."I did all the work you little bastard".
You want to see what the fish looks like goto my photo album I have a pic of it there.