Friday, October 28, 2011

La Zona Reports for October

Friend Steve Cihat led a group of 4 to the Uruguay River in seach of monster golden dorado. Steve fished during October 14-17. The fishing was absolutely fantasic as Steve landed his personal best, a monster 50lbs dorado which was caught on a Rapala Shad Rap. He also caught a 46lbs while another in his group landed a 48lbs. The water levels were slightly high so the topwater action was off.
During October 21-24, friends Dr. Gary Clark and David Fields took their turn for giant golden dorado. This was Dr. Clark's 2nd trip while a first time adventure for David. The water levels were again high with much rain the last 2 days. However fishing was excellent with Dr. Clark landing his personal best at 40lbs on his homemade doradokiller spinner bait! David topped off at 37lbs.
Both groups are planning at least 1 trip next season.
As you might know, La Zona is indeed the "Home of the Monster Dorado". This should definately be on every fisherman's "wish list". I can vouch for this fisery as I have visited it 5 times and will make a return trip in April, 2012.
For booking information on this "dream trip", contact
Steve Yatomi
Book soon as this trip is in much demand and fills rapidly!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The following is from my peacock bass friend on hook strength testing. For golden dorado I have had great success with the Owner ST-66 which was not tested.

I tested 13 hooks in total.

Owner ST-76TN 5X 3/0 (0.305 Oz.)

Owner ST-66TN 4X 3/0 (0.245 Oz.)
Owner ST-66TN 4X 2/0 (0.170 Oz.)
Owner ST-66TN 4X 1/0 (0.115 Oz.)
Owner ST-66TN 4X 2 (0.080 Oz.)

VMC 8527PS 6X 4/0 (0.185 Oz.)
VMC 8527PS 6X 3/0 (0.140 Oz.)
VMC 8527PS 6X 2/0 (0.125 Oz.)
VMC 8527PS 6X 1/0 (0.095 Oz.)

Daiichi Bleeding Bait 7X 4/0 (0.185 Oz.)
Daiichi Bleeding Bait 7X 3/0 (0.140 Oz.)
Daiichi Bleeding Bait 7X 2/0 (0.125 Oz.)
Daiichi Bleeding Bait 7X 1/0 (0.095 Oz.)

Testing Method:

I kept things simple ... I tested all hooks at my max testing weight of 110 pounds of pull (except for the 1/0 sizes which were done at 90lbs) on a non-reinforced hook on the treble. What I mean by non-reinforced is each treble may have one or two of its hooks that is welded on and not part of the steel that is used to make the eye. I assume this to be the weakest hook and tested that.

Of note, the Owner Hooks are not of comparable sizes to most manufactures, they must use a different standard than the VMCs or the Diiachis. I assume them to be conservative and rated them at least one to two sizes larger than stated. You can also see this by their weights listed above.


See for yourself in the photo linked below:

The two 3/0 Owner hooks are beasts, but I really think they should not be considered for even the woodchopper front hook, due to their weights. The ST-76TN in 3/0 size did not even deform at all at 110lbs, while the ST-66TN had a slight visual deformation, but it was not permanent. BTW, they don't make the ST-76TN in sizes smaller than their 3/0 size.

I do like the Owner ST-66TN 2/0 treble. It had only a moderate deformation at full pressure, and only a slight permanent bend. It is a tiny bit shorter than both the VMC and Daiichi 4/0 trebles, but hook size seems a bit bigger than the VMC and Daiichi 3/0s (So i might call it a 3.5/0). It is light and strong ... good hook in the comparable 4/0 or 3/0 range and can be considered for the front hook on a full size woodchopper. Only con is it is the most expensive treble of its size you will likely find.

That's all the love I'll give for Owners. The 1/0 and 1 sizes failed miserably w/ heavy to extreme permanent bends.

Both the VMCs and the Diiachis are EXACTLY the same weights ... EXACTLY the same dimensions ... and have the EXACT same cone cuts on their tips ... If I was just judging by how they look under very close examination, I would say they are 100% the same hook ... just one was painted red. I tried to find some evidence that they could in reality be the same hook, where one brand was licensing it to the other, or they are related companies, but I didn't see anything obvious on that. Maybe they just use the same type of equipment .. who knows.

However, there was some slight differences in results. The 4/0 sizes came in about the same, but they rest of the smaller sizes were in VMCs favor ... but only by a bit (you can see that in the photo linked above).

Final Recommendation:
If price is not an issue and you need a large and light front lure hook, go with the Owner ST-76TN in size 2/0, otherwise go with the VMCs in any size. You could chose the Diiachi 4/0 for a front hook if you think the red color can help in attracting strikes, but otherwise VMCs are better and cheaper.

I did sneak in a test of the VMC in size 1, and it did surprisingly well with a 90lb force.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Split Rings

A peacock bass friend of mine recently preformed numerous tests to find the strongest split rings and hooks. With his permission I will give a recap of his findings on the strongest split rings.
The rings tested were
1. Owner Hyperwire Size 6
2. Joe Butcher Outdoors Super Strength Size 5
3. SPRO Power Size 5
4. Lure Parts On-Line 3x Super rings size 5

The results are as follows:
Owner Hyperwire Size 6 held up to 60lbs
Joe Butcher Outdoors Super Strength Size 5 held up to 70lbs
SPRO Power Size 5 held up to 80lbs
Lure Part On-Line 3x Super Size 5 held up to 100lbs

I sent my friend a few of my Size 6 Wolverine triple coiled rings to compare to the Lure Parts On-Line 3x rings size 6.
The Wolverine rings held up to his testing max of 120lbs while the Lure Parts On-line started to come apart around 110lbs.

I have used the Wolverine triple coiled rings for years catching monster golden dorado. I highly recommend anyone targeting "tough" fishing fish to switch over to the best rings in the world, Wolverine triple coiled rings!

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Friend and longtime redfish fisherman, Gary Clark led a group of three to tremendous non-stop bull redfish while fishing out of Venice, LA. Gary fished with Capt. Keith Kennedy who runs Born To Fish Charters.

Clark's group landed 41 big bull reds up to 30 pounds with all the reds being over 20 pounds. Many doubles and triples were reported by Gary.

To get into this amazing fishery where big bull reds are caught everyday, contact

Capt. Keith Kennedy at (504) 908-3108

Saturday, October 15, 2011


Recently, I was able to get a box of "The Fisherman" magazine from 1955 and 1956. The magazine was published monthly by Fisherman Press out of Oxford, Ohio. The issues I have sold for 35cents!

The magazines are full of very interesting stories such as "How to select a spinning reel", " Spinning will make you an expert", and many more stories on breakthrough fishing tackle.

The magazine also features many interesting ads such as Kiekhaefer Mercury Motors, U.S. Line Co., Freeland Metal Boats, AlumaCraft Boats, Mepps, Jitterbugs, Pflueger, Penn, Shakespeare Spin-Wondereel plus hundreds of others which are out of business. Back in 1955 the Shakespeare Spin-Wondereel sold for $17.95 while a Pflueger Supreme went for $35.

If you had money, a Johnson Sea-Horse 10hp went for $321 while a Javelin 30hp (electric start) went for a whopping $582

These were the days before modern depthfinders, GPS units, electric trolling motors, lake maps, braided lines,laser sharp hooks, boga grips, big bass boats were around. It is amazing these "early" day fishermen were able to catch anything. Today, I figure most would be lost without their depthfinder, graphite rods, casting reels, braided line, or GPS unit.

I found it fascinating reading the breakthrough articles which paved the way to our modern fishing.

I have a gigantic collection of "IN-Fishermen" and "Fishing Facts" magazine which are still great informative reading even today.

I suggest putting away some of your current fishing magazine and am sure you grandson's and their sons/daughters will be amazed at our out of date techniques and wonder how we caught any fish!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Francois Helias of recently field tested some new giant snakehead lures made by Kermett Adams of Francois reports great success on this topwater buzz lure. The lure is a smaller version of the buzz lure Kermett designed for monster La Zona dorado.

Snakeheads are abundant in waters of Thailand, South Florida, and other Asia countries. They are fierce topwater eaters and can put up a flight with the best freshwater battlers.

Check out the sites from Francois and Kermett for more info on snakeheads.

Also Kermett makes top of the line wooden lures for peacock bass and golden dorado!

Saturday, October 8, 2011


Had the opportunity to fish Yellow Lake during September 28th to October 6. Yellow Lake is located in Burnett County which is located in the Northwestern corner of Wisconsin. Yellow Lake has a surface area of 22870 acres and has a maximum depth of 31ft. The lake connects into Little Yellow Lake. Rivers flow into and out of the Yellow Lakes.

Yellow Lake is known for big walleyes, hugh sturgeon, monster muskies, and abundance of panfish. During my trip walleyes would be the main target.

I first fished Yellow Lake in 1969 and have fished there every year since. My parents originally owed a summer cabin later moving to a full time house. Current my folks have moved and I now stay at a friends house.

Walleye fishing was excellent during my stay. Limits (3) were the norm each time out with a monster 29in which was released being the largest.

The lake was in full turnover mode which brings the big walleyes into the deep water mud flats in search of prey-perch.

Wisconsin allows each angler to use 3 rods. I used 1 leadcore line rod which was spooled with 18lbs test. I fished in approx 26 ft and used small Hot-N-Tot lures just off the bottom while trolling. On my other 2 rods, I used them on downriggers using Cotton Cordell small deep minnows put the lures down 15ft and approx 75 ft behind the downrigger balls. Boat speed is really important as I try to motor between 1.8 to 2.2 mph. This type of deep water mud flat action normally last around 3 weeks before the lake turnover is complete and the waters really cool down.

During my stay the weather was unusually warm for fall with temps hitting in the 80 degree mark. The water temperature was a warm 62 deg.