2004 PFIC/UPSAC Mud Marlin Derby, Berkeley Pier

Submitted logos for the 2004 Mud Marlin Derby

May 16, 2004 — To: PFIC Messsage Board — From: gyozadude — Subject:  MMGT2004 — Summary

 “Perhaps one of the most laid-back get togethers I’ve been to in a while…” Pierhead said to me on the way out last night at around 1am or so as we all headed back down the 3000+ feet to the foot of Berkeley Pier.

With RSVPs topping well over 100 prior to the event yesterday, the 3rd Annual Mud Marlin Get Together was looking like it would test the capacity of the last dozen lights. And while we had about 30% no-shows as predicted, we also had 31 sign-ins/walk-ins last minute, putting the official total registered in the MMGT at 101 in the Derby, and I counted at least two spouses on the list, plus children and family members adding another dozen and a half to top out at about 120 participants that arrived during the evening.

In anticipation, we decided to occupy the last 14 lampposts, adding two more additional sections over the planned dozen light posts we had predicted we’d need. And Derby anglers spread themselves out this year, rather than crowding just at the end, although a very conspicuous tent had already be set up to block the back wall by some young and eager anglers trying to get a jump on the action.

But there seemed like no annoyances, obstacles, or logistical barriers that our participant crowd could not overcome this year. Anglers spread themselves out well. They pulled up lines quickly. They brought food and drink, dropping it off at our make shift command center in loads to share for free. I’ve never fished with such a big crowd before, and I’ve never fished with such a cooperative bunch of folks either.

I strolled a section of the pier at night just after 1am and was amazed at how well folks had cleaned up around them, leaving few if any bits of evidence that we’d just set PFIC records with such a large turn out.

The Junior Division

And befitting of such a Derby, the winner won by single large bat ray. James Nolan, a lurker on the board (Twigger?) walked-in and demonstrated his patience and skill in landing a massive 70 lb., 46.5-inch bat ray, female, and thick. Some of the organizers of this Derby had wanted to pay tribute to the late Bat Ray master Stan Low who passed away suddenly last year at a very young age. And it was so befitting that it would a “Stan” sized ray that would win the Derby and the top trophy.

In all, we had 14 rays landed, numerous other sharks and other finfish caught, and surprisingly, a kingfish landed on 5/0 – 6/0 hook! But unlike previous years, these rays have become smarter. No longer did anglers enjoy as high of a landing rate as in the first MMD. A quick survey of even our veteran Mud Marlin Derby anglers like Salty Nick, Battman, Nufo, and others indicated that quite a few rays had been “Farmed” last night. In fact, that quick survey indicated that roughly 2 of every 3 solid hookups resulted in break-offs because the rays would head for the pilings. Gyozadude – Proud UPSAC Member   “Yes — I can roll potsticker skins”

Posted by gyozadude — Participants and Raffle — Help we got this year. And I must apologize for not remembering all the fine people that brought food, schlepped stuff, volunteered as staff, worked as Judges, Donated prizes for the raffle, supported the cause of Pier and Shore Anglers by buying tickets for the raffle, and all the great folks that met and talked with other folks, putting names to faces.

We had some special treats too. Ken, our skipper, and his Publisher showed up with cases and cases of his new book. Amazing. The first -Pier Fishing in California- was already an authoritative and excellent work at a little over 213 pages and listing for $16.95. But the 2nd edition, unveiled at this event topped all expectations at 516 pages and listing for $29.95. Adjusting for inflation since 1992, one has to wonder at the amazing value of such a reference textbook. Ken sold out nearly 3 cases of books to buyers and missed a few more sales while wondering down the pier to chat with Pier Rats.

Did I mention the help? From schlepping stuff the 3000 feet out to the command center, to the cleanup, to the cooking duties, to the messengering service to the food? And I must not forget some of the sponsors of prizes. We even got help from Mother Nature. Waking up yesterday at 7am, I glanced out our bedroom window and saw the treetops whipping back and forth. Bad news I thought and decided to pack extra clothing. But the extra clothing ended up not on my back, but actually doing it’s job as padding and non-slip surface between all the layers of gear of the 1/4 ton of materials we hauled out to the end. Yes, indeed the weather was beautiful, and mild by Berkeley standards.

The raffle was another central gathering point for us. And I must apologize for not over communicating to some folks that it would happen at 7:30pm, while still daylight and hopefully before the looming derby deadline. But we had some very cool prizes chased down by fellow pier rats who volunteered to hit up their local shops for gear. We also had previous winners donate stuff, and pier rats give up new stuff, all for a good cause of supporting UPSAC. The Grand prize for the raffle, a custom Bat Ray rod and reel combo that I built, couldn’t have gone to a more grateful and gracious winner — GrayBeard — a volunteer to be judge that was so dutiful, he remained at his post as Judge for the midsection of our phalanx, and only received his prize well after it turned dark. And we won’t mention that Graybeard is a veteran of get-togethers both north and south and travels perhaps farther than most to get to any of these gatherings from Delano, CA.

Posted by gyozadude — Derby Official Winners List—The table below provides final tally results for the night. Weights provided are the net weight (total minus the weight of the hoopnet/landing device). Looks like for couples, the ladies OUTPERFORMED their male counterparts!

Rank — Name — Pier Rat Name — Total Wt. — Number — Wt.

1. James N — Twigger? — 70 lbs. — One bat ray, 70 lbs. — 2. Kathy R — Mrs. Battmann — 43 lbs. — Two bat rays, 16 and 27 lbs. — 3. Joe R — Sportguy33 — 29 lbs. — Two bat rays, 17 and 12 lbs. — 4. Jeff G., Sr. — Rockfish — 22 lbs. — One bat ray, 22 lbs. — 5. Josh S — Prometheus — 20 lbs. — One bat ray, 20 lbs. — 6. Helen L — Mrs. GrapeApe168 — 19 lbs. — One bat ray, 19 lbs. — 7. Tim M —Sturgeon King — 17.5 lbs. — One bat ray, 17.5 lbs. — 8. Jeff G. Jr. — Son of Rockfish — 16.5 lbs. — One bat ray, 16.5 lbs. — 9.  Kyle R — HalibutBP — 15.5 lbs. — One bat ray, 15.5 lbs. — 10. Dave V — Lurker — 10 lbs. — One bat ray, 10 lbs. — 11. Monte W — Eelmaster — 9.5 lbs. — One bat ray, 9.5 lbs. — 12. Kevin L — GrapeApe168 — 5 lbs. — One bat ray, 5 lbs.

Total rays landed and released 14; Total aggregate weight of rays 277 lbs.

Top father/son team: Rockfish and son, two bat rays, 38.5 lbs. (22 + 16.5 lbs.). Top spouse team (in both cases the wives outfished the hubbies): Battman + wife: 43 lbs. total (0 + 43 lbs.) — GrapeApe168 + wife: 24 lbs. total (5 + 19 lbs.)

Bat Ray (Angler names? — and I should know)

Prizes: 1st Place—Big trophy; 2nd Place—Small trophy; 3rd Place—Smaller trophy; 4th-8th Place—1/4 scoop of live bait coupon.

Bat Ray chronology: 1. 7:00pm — Joe R (Sportguy33), 17 lbs. 25.0 inches — 2. 7:10pm — Kevin L (GrapeApe168), 5.0 lbs. 21.0 inches — 3. 7:20pm — Tim M (Sturgeon King), 17.5 lbs. 27.0 inches — 4. 7:27pm — Jeff G. Jr. (Son of Rockfish), 16.6 lbs, 28.0 inches — 5. 7:34pm — Helen L (Mrs. GrapeApe168), 19.0 lbs. 28.0 inches — 6. 7:41pm — Dave V (Lurker), 10.0 lbs, 28.0 inches — 7. 8:00pm — Jeff G. Sr. (Rockfish), 22.0 lbs. 32.0 inches — 8. 8:10pm — Josh S (Prometheus), 20.0 lbs 29.0 inches — 9. 8:30pm — Monte W (Eelmaster), 9.5 lbs 22.5 inches — 10. 8:56pm — Joe R (Sportguy33), 12.0 lbs. 25.0 inches — 11. 9:00pm — Kathy R (Mrs. Battmann), 16.0 lbs. 25.0 inches — 12. 9:09pm — Kyle R (HalibutBP), 15.5 lbs. 29.0 inches — 13. 9:43pm — James N (Twigger), 70.0 lbs, 46.5 inches — 14. 10:00pm — Kathy R (Mrs. Battmann), 27.0 lbs. 30.0 inches.

Posted by gyozadude — Helplist —MMGT 2004 Staffing and Help List — Hope I’m not forgetting folks. And we want to know who dropped off the awesome sausages, both massive boxes of polish and smoke Louisiana sausage, the Italian, and Fried Chicken — Yum, Yum, Yum, Delicioso!

1. Ark and Josephine — for bringing lots of Pizza; 2. Battman and KattWoman — propane, chowmein, eggrolls, sauce; 3.BCooney and Family — providing son Shane as raffle picker; 4. GordoGrande — Video Production; 5. GrapeApe168 — Donated raffle prize — crab ring; 6. GrayBeard -—Judge, Grand prize winner; 7. Jerry Wong — Roadie, raffle staff, schlepper, cook’s assistant; 8. Ken Jones — Book Signing, raffle Staff; 9.         Matt2d — Donated raffle prizes: rod holders and bait buckets; 10. Pierhead — Picking our grand prize raffle winner; 11. PJRamirez — Donated two Pole Pack rod bags from his company and had biggest group of guests participant; 12. Raidersfan1 — Roadie, security staff, Schlepper, beverage supplies; 13. Red Fish -—Judging, Core MMGT Consultant; 14. Rita001 and Family — Provided skirt steak, dogs, fajitas, and skills of master chef Eric; 15. Rockfish Jr — Thanks Jeffrey Jr. for all the back/forth comms w/ your scooter; 16. Rockhopper — Judge, Camera man, Lanterns; 17. SongSlinger — Core MMGT Consultant; 18.  StripedSideChaser — Judge, Coffee Pot; 19. theCrw -—Core Organization of “Gentleman’s” Activities; 20. TomAurand — Core MMGT Consultant, 1st Place Trophy;  21. ???? — Delicious marinated pork loin that Eric cooked; 22. ???? — Delicious 2 boxes of smoke Lousiana Sausages and Polish Sausage; 23. ???? — Delicious pack of Italian Sausage; 24. ???? — Delicious two boxes of Fried Chicken; 25.  Everyone with Nets — Thanks for the hoopnet support; 26. Everyone — Thanks for the Raffle support for UPSAC

Bat Ray

Posted by gyozadude – Who are you? There’s still some gray areas yesterday when things happened and I can’t remember who the heck it was that helped.

1. Who’s cup-cake mini choc-chip cookies were those? Just awesome and innovative in design. 2. Who dumped off two boxes of fried chicken? Those evaporated in about 15 minutes and someone loved the drumsticks! 3. Who’s marinated pork loin was that? It didn’t last long4. Who’s Kielbasa and smoke sausages from Smart and Final? Those were awesome too. Not a sausage left at the end of the night. Was that you Alabama? And Was it Adrian or Will_fish who dropped of the Italian sausage? 5. How many folks forked out $20 for the raffle? Geez, I did a recount and based on unique entries, I’m averaging roughly 13 tickets per entry into the raffle. Guys, sorry not everyone could win, but the prizes went to a good cause. 6. Who is Mike Nicol? Was he with you MrJonesJr? Because I know you were present, signed-in and you bought tickets. I saw you, but you walked off before I could give you your rod. Contact me at my email address below for delivery. 7. Who lost the top half of a spinning rod, black, 5 ft, glass (for a 10 ft rod)? You hooked a tree on the way out to the parking lot. Gordo found the top half hanging there and thought it was ours and gave it to us. But it ain’t ours. Do other folks have a funny or cools Who’s Who incident? Please post and let us know!

Posted by will_fish — I dropped off the Italian sausage. Attsa Nica! and grazie to StripedSideChaser . Gdude you must’ve missed out on his AWSOME chili.

Posted by gyozadude  — Yes… I did miss out… he’d better bring some…to the next impromptu fishing excursion out there at BP. I had the chance to pick some up last night on my hike down there, but forgot to get some. And I saw the coffee percolator setup too. I went shopping today with the wife at Wallmart and stared at a couple of models on display in the camping section. Thanks for the Italian sausage. Folks near the front of our section chowed it down in minutes.

Posted by graybeard — The sausages and tortillas I brought. Really wanted hot links, but my store was out.

 Posted by gyozadude — You didn’t get some of my Costco hotlinks? I brought a bulk pack of them Louisiana hotlinks, and they were the first ones I grilled! Note the first post in this thread and embedded image. Those were the sliced sections of the links I brought. I guess you must not have had any (and they didn’t last long).

Posted by gordo grande — THE TOP HALF OF THE ROD BELONGS TO… (drumroll)….none other than the Pierfisherman himself, KEN JONES!!!!! (You’d thing that after all these years he’d be able to hold on to his gear) Gordo Grande  Support UPSAC!

KJ and Minnow Magnet at the sign-in table

Posted by battmann — Kattwoman brought to cookie’s along with the egg rolls and chow mein. Hope you all got a chance to enjoy.

Posted by Adrn —I dropped off the chicken. Glad it was consumed.-Adrian

Posted by gyozadude — Raffle Donations List — Just to re-iterate in case I forgot some folks instrumental in providing Raffle Donations.

1. StripeSideChaser — hitting up local shops for -and- getting tackle; 2. Adrn — for donating rods; 3. GrapeApe168 — hoopnet/crab ring; 4, PJRamirez — rod holder bag; 5. Matt2d — rod racks and bait buckets; 6. Jim Holloway — livebait coupons for 1/4 scoops at Berkeley Live Bait. 100% of proceeds went to UPSAC to help finance the interests of pier and shore anglers in CA. I’d like to applaud their generosity in these regards. Gyozadude – Proud UPSAC Member  “Yes – I can roll potsticker skins”

Posted by  Nufo — Well I must give a big thanks to Gyozadude for taking over all the responsibilities and organizing everything. You did a great job! I don’t think I could have handled it as well this year with my new career under way. I had enough anxiety the past two years so this year with 100+ people would have did me in. It was a great night out on the pier hanging out with old friends and meeting new ones as well. I had a great relaxing time. I did manage to get skunked though.

As for the derby, I did put together a little late night derby (biggest fish any type) from midnight till 2am. Scooter fish had it locked down with a 1.6 lb smoothhound, till Redfish Hooked up with the sure winner at 1:50. This 30lb(ish) Ray gave Red a run for his money. We thought for sure that Red was going to lose it but his fishing skills prevailed and at 2:02 he had him on the deck and collected his winnings. I tried to talk him in to buying us all breakfast with his winnings but alas he had to head home. At 2:30 or so we headed over to Emeryville to finish off the night with a little more fishing while I waited for my Salmon Charter (more on this later). I managed to catch my first ever shovelnose guitarfish.  See you all next year, Nufo

Posted by  pierhead — the most laid-back event ever! I got lucky…. due to some last minute schedule shuffling and Gordo Grande’s generous assistance I was able to make to this year’s MMGT and was finally able to meet many of the BP regulars that I have been reading about for the last 2 months … what a treat

Ross and I arrived in Oakland mid-afternoon and checked into a Motel 6 on the Embarcadero with it’s own vest pocket pier (San Antonio Fishing Pier). Ken joined us shortly and we made our way up to Berkeley arriving around 4pm. I had attended the first Mud Marlin event so I was looking forward to renewing my acquaintance with the Pier.

The first thing we noticed was the number of anglers unloading their gear in the parking lot … it looked like a small invading army and they were all from PFIC! Such an array of pier carts and heavy duty tackle … these people were seriously into mud marlin fishing!

The pier cart of — gyozadude 

I was especially interested in the various methods by which they proposed to retrieve their catches … I saw any number of large hoop nets attached to long (10-15″) sectional handles. Any doubts I had about their utility were resolved after I watched the first few bat rays being landed. Those rays were in the 20+ pound class and were brought up without any apparent difficult which convinced me that I had found the answer to the problem I had last week in landing halibut from the Rincon rockwall … those nets could have handled even the biggest of the fish I lost.

The second impression concerned the recent architectural changes at the foot of the pier … with the superstructure above the restrooms removed the pier looked like it had been abandoned and was in the process of being disassembled … the rest room building itself resembled a cargo container that had been overlooked and left behind. Not at all attractive and certainly conveyed the feeling that the City no longer cared about the pier. That, combined with the deplorable condition of the notorious windbreaks, was very discouraging … if it hadn’t been for the enthusiasm of the assembled anglers it would have been very depressing indeed. Seems to me that a little paint and elbow grease could make a drastic difference … perhaps something could be done on our part to help the city recognize what a valuable recreational resource they have in BP.

This year I finally bit the bullet and left all my tackle at home … I was much more interested in just getting out and meeting all the fine folks who took time to show up. Past experiences convinced me that I am constitutionally incapable of fishing and getting to know my fellow anglers at the same time :) Still it was even more difficult than I had imagined and by the end of the night I realized that I hadn’t taken even one picture yet nor had made any notes in the legal pad that I brought along for that purpose … but I came away with many new friends and wonderful memories of far-ranging conversations … the two hours I spent with Monte (Eelmaster) stands out in particular.

And I finally had a chance to meet Fishoff, I See Fin Prints, Minnow Magnet and RR who have figured in so many of the recent posts … Ken has assured me that the situation with the ‘BP kids’ has been resolved and shortly we should begin to hear from them in their own words instead of indirectly through the posts of others … it’s about time and I am looking forward to their contributions. Hopefully we have all learned from that experience :) As Red Fish so eloquently reminded us … “There’s enough room on the pier for everyone.” I agree.

And a special thanks to Gyozadude for all of his efforts to insure the success of the gathering … he and Eric (and others) contributed to an extravagant buffet that sustained body and soul through the long night … though personally I am glad that I stayed away from the chile … the hot links that I overindulged in were more than enough to remind me that ‘discretion is the better part of valor’ :)

Early in the evening I ran into a non-PFIC family fishing by themselves towards the restrooms. I stopped and asked them how they were enjoying the evening. The father, Nolan, perhaps thinking that I was just another tourist, began to wax eloquently on the joys of pier fishing with his family and how much it meant to them. Since he was beginning to sound like one of our Autobiographies I stopped him and pointed out that he was not alone in his feelings … that in fact there were over 100 people on the pier that night that shared his enthusiasm. He responded … ‘You mean we are not alone?” It didn’t take long for me to bring him up to date on PFIC and he promised to log on as soon as he got home. Looking forward to his first post!

And that’s what it is all about … Thanks everyone and see you next year! Pierhead
Proud Supporter of UPSAC

Posted by sportyguy33  — What a blast! What a great way it was to spend a evening fishing with a bunch of Berkeley Pier’s finest fisherman as well as a couple soon to be Legends John and Kyle. It was nice to see a couple of my fishing buddies, Mel and GrapeApe, as well as the Bay Area’s other contingent of expert pier fisherman—Redfish, Alabama, RockHopper, TheCrw and SurfCaster. Also it was a pleasure being able to meet and chat with both 2d, Gordo Grande and StripesideChaser who BTW sure knows how to whip up a heck of a pot of Chile. The Derby couldn’t have started out better for me, being the first to hook into and land a Mud Marlin sure does wonders for those nerves. As fisherman/women we all know how being skunked around all your fishing buddies can be hard on your ego. In between catching my two Mud Marlins I also landed four small sharks and lost three other good size fish. My Uncle, who I brought along to participate in all the fun, lost three really big ones due to leader malfunction. Gyozodude, you’re a good man taking over for Nufo to keep this great event alive for all us “Norcal Pier Rats.” Fish On— Sportyguy33

Posted by Red Fish — Sportyguy, you are a top-notch angler… along with “Twigger.” Twigger reminds me of a young Roland Martin. He was even gracious enough to share his secret mud marlin bait .

Posted by RaidersFan1 — G-Dude..  Great job in organization! Being my first major event since joining the site this was an awesome display of organizing skill and people pulling together.  Looking forward to the next event perhaps in Goleta!  RaidersFan1Support UPSAC

Posted by tomaurand — WOW, sorry, I missed the event. sounds like a great one. James, You definetley deserved the trophy as a 70-pounder truly is a Stan sized ray…. G-dude, words cannot say enough for your efforts. I only wish I could have done more to support all you have done for such an event. Can’t wait till next year,  Tom   Proud Supporter of UPSAC.

Posted by lucy — Damn, wish I could have gone! Glad everybody had a good time and it all turned out so well. Excellent job all around by those who organized and helped out. Congratulations, all!

Posted by gyozadude — You could have ridden w/ PopoTheWonderDog! One of the most notable new names on the msgboard has to be Reed, aka Popothewonderdog. Interesting fellow and good to talk with. And he lives in the City. I also came up and over the Bay Bridge last night after the MMGT. We had the remnants of what looked like a moronic 3-car major injury accident on the left hand side, and then bridge maintenance closing the right lane, leaving just two lanes moving in the middle. Glass fragments were strewn across the bridge. But still we got through the mess after only a 10 minute pause. I guess another reason to stay away from “Gentlemen’s” beverages if you gotta drive. In any event, you may have had several options for rides home. Next time, let some of us know beforehand’ it’s not far out of our ways.

Posted by lucy — Couldn’t have gone anyway Unfortunately, I had made other plans and wasn’t available to go to the MMGT.

Posted by baconmojo — Striper. Shortly after arriving, I witnessed a striper hooked by ‘og’. He played with the good sized (?) fish for awhile before it free’d itself, just shy of the crab ring someone was holding beneath it. This was before the actual start of the derby. I was hoping to get a ray on the deck, but got a skunk. Didn’t get to meet as many rats as I had hoped.. Was a great time.

Posted by thecrw — Congratulations to …. (drum roll please)  to Jeff Sr. aka Rockfish for taking the Gentlemen’s Wager with a winning ray of 22 lbs. He landed it early round 8pm and thought he lost as he heard an unfounded rumor that the 70lbs ray took the prize, good for him that the biggest bat ray wasn’t in our wager. For the rest of us down at the end, we knew that even a medium size ray could claim the pot, so we were still gung ho til the very end. The total pot came to $260 from 13 pier rats at $20 a piece. btw ~ this is Jeff’s 2nd time for taking the money prize in the last three Mud Marlins. Jeff, can we have a few words…~Elric aka TheCrw


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