Venice Offshore Fishing - A 40th Birthday to Remember
By Karen Caldwell
After browsing the internet for offshore fishing guides and making a few phone calls only to get answering machines, I finally got a voice on the other end of the line when I called Reel Louisiana Adventures and Susan Gros. We talked for a bit on what type of fishing my husband and I wanted to do, what type of fishing experience we had and a general overview of what we wanted out of the trip. I made mention that I would be celebrating my 40th birthday on the trip and that very day the ANTICIPATION began.
The trip was booked in April to go out the end of June. Every couple of weeks I would check Susan's web-site to see what kind of pictures and stories were being posted. After reading two months worth of stories and seeing some pretty awesome pictures the ANTICIPATION kept growing. Gosh I hope the weather is good....Gosh I hope the captain can hook us up on some tuna.
Starting the beginning of June the weather reports was basically one word....WINDY. Now the ANTICIPATION of whether we were going to be able to go offshore started to grow and sit heavy. The week and a half before the sechduled trip Susan brought news that the wind finally stopped blowing and the tuna & dolphin fishing was off the hook. The pictures from her web-site were enough to nearly make me burst with ANTICIPATION of our trip. The Friday before we left I checked NOAA weather and the forecast for Monday was a 50% chance of rain. Now the ANTICIPATION of....oh no not another offshore trip being cancelled because of the weather started.
We arrived in Venice the day before we were scheduled to go out and my husband and I anxiously waited at the Venice Marina for Capt. Hunter Cabellaro and Susan to make it in from their scheduled trip. As the charters started coming in and the fish were being unloaded the ANTICIPATION was about to reach the frenzy level. Finally the Tail Whipped made it into the dock and first there was one dolphin, then another, then another.......then a tuna, then another, then another. I had to get up off of my chair I was so excited by what I was seeing. Another one of Susan's captains made it in and again....dolphin, dolphin (one was actually a 57# dolphin) then tuna, tuna, tuna. Needless to say that by this time the ANTICIPATION of our trip was overflowing. Our thought was, if we can catch 1/2 of what we see today that would be great.
After Capt. Hunter had the days group taken care of my husband and I made it downstairs to introduce ourselves to Susan and Capt. Hunter. I must say that Capt. Hunter is a young guy and there my ANTICIPATION of whether this young fellow has the "time on the water" to know where to go and what to use started kicking in. Susan checked the weather and it appeared that it would be okay. It was decided that we would head out around 6:00 a.m. the next morning.
I hardly slept a wink due to my ANTICIPATION of what our day of fishing would bring. We met up at the dock and Susan had an "OVER THE HILL" pin and birthday card for me. When she asked me what my birthday wish was I answered "A TUNA!". Later in the day Susan even pulled out cupcakes for the birthday celebration.
After a wonderful ride out to the fishing area the first two lines that were put in the water ended up with Bonita. "Warming up the muscles" is what Susan said. Well it wasn't much long after that the first big catch of the day was a dolphin. After fighting it for a few minutes we got it in the boat and the ANTICIPATION was at it's fullest. After a few more minutes the line started screaming and it was my time to land my FIRST tuna. In the midst of my fight my husband had one on also. Capt. Hunter & Susan did an excellent job of orchestrating the two of us so that we would not get tangled up. After much coaching and A LOT of patience from Susan, Capt. Hunter gaffed my tuna. The ANTICIPATION turned into a grin that went from ear to ear.
The day went on and it was decided to head north and see if we could pick up a couple more dolphin and maybe even a marlin. Another dolphin or two was landed and when Capt. Hunter set out the lines Susan said to make it count since that would be the last time before we headed in. Next thing we know both my husband and I were reeling in tuna. Once they both were landed there was high fives and smiles all around.
After settling down in the E-Sea Rider chairs for the trip back a well deserved nap was in store. Once back at the dock the ANTICIPATION was turned into reality as Capt. Hunter put up the fish for our picture. The birthday wish of one tuna turned into 7 tuna and 7 dolphin.
I will trust Capt. Hunter Cabellaro with many more offshore adventures and I cannot tell Susan "THANK YOU" enough for actually being by the phone to answer my call in April AND for making my 40th birthday one to remember.
If you are thinking about an offshore trip I HIGHLY recommend that you contact Susan Gros for a REEL LOUISIANA ADVENTURE!
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About The Author: Captain Susan Gros
Company: Reel Louisiana Adventures
Area Reporting: Venice, Louisiana
Bio: Multi IGFA World Record holder Susan Gros hails from Destin, FL and has been fishing since the age of 6. In 2000, she formed her company Reel Louisiana Adventures to match traveling anglers with the perfect captain for the style of fishing they choose to pursue -- from cobalt bluewater for yellowfin tuna, wahoo and marlin to skinny water redfish on fly. Her motto is "No surprises at the dock." Susan is an active member of Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association. Her photos and feature stories appear in Louisiana Sportsman Magazine as well as other local and national publications.