Mr. Lucky

Ken Jones

Administrator
Staff member
#1
For a while when I was a teenager I lived in Costa Mesa and would read the Los Angeles Times. One of my favorite writers was Lupi Saldana who wrote the fishing column. Here's one of his columns. It's interesting, but as I read it I also thought of all the improvements in tackle we've made in the last 55 years and the differences he might make if writing this column today. Are all these things needed given new tackle and accessories? However, the overall recommendation as to being an organized angler who knows and keeps everything in tip top shape is still true. And, I still always take a shower with my rods when I return home.

A Guy Called ‘Lucky’ — He’s the Angler Who Always Catches Fish

“Lucky,” That’s what his fishing buddies call him. He earned this handle because he always seems to be “lucky” enough to be where the fishing action is and “lucky” enough to land more than his share of jackpot fish.
Closer inspection, however, shows that Mr. Lucky—and there is an angler like him in every crowd—isn’t really all luck. He knows what he’s doing and he has the equipment to get the job done.
First, Mr. Lucky has his tackle in tip top condition when he steps aboard a deep sea boat. His reels are clean and well oiled so he’ll get smooth casts and the reel will not freeze when he’s fighting a big fish. The reel brakes are working smoothly. He knows a jerky brake will cause him to lose fish.
Then there are the rods. Mr. Lucky generally brings two rods aboard—a light one for working bait and a heavier one for throwing iron, or jigs, or trolling feathers. He has made sure the rod guides are clean and ungrooved, because a bad guide will fray the line.
The line on the reels—and particularly the first 20 yards or so that often get under the boat or on rocks—have been checked for frayed spots. And the lines have been carefully selected for the job at hand—yellowtail or albacore. He is starting with 20-pound test line for bait fishing, but he has spools of 12 and 15 ready if the fish get touchy. He matches the line with no. 4 to 8 hooks. On the “jig” and trolling reel he has 50-pound line.
Keeping his tackle ship-shape has taken Mr. Lucky only a few minutes, because he never allows it to sit around and get corroded and rusty after a day on the water.
Mr. Lucky starts taking care of his tackle the moment the skipper lifts the hooks and heads for home. Inasmuch as plastic spools will crack if the nylon line is wound too tightly—and this happens after you’ve fought a heavy fish—Mr. Lucky steps to the stern, let’s the line peel off the boat’s wake and then winds it on easy.
Then he takes a dry rag and wipes off the rods, reels, lures and pliers and puts them away neatly in the tackle box.
The finishing touches, of course, are applied when Mr. Lucky gets home. In a matter of minutes he washes the rods and reels in fresh water, which does an even better job of getting rid of salt if a little bleach is added.
The rods are wiped off with a dry rag and then hung carefully in their place in the garage. The reels, being the easy to take apart kind, are quickly dried off, oiled and put away in the tackle box.
A quick glance at Mr. Lucky’s tackle box tells you he’s a savvy fisherman. The tackle is clean and neat and arranged so it can be taken out with a minimum of trouble.
Mr. Lucky’s tackle box, for example, has a selection of corrugated cardboard for the jigs. The jig hooks are inserted in the corrugations and besides keeping them hanging in their place, the cardboard does not dull the hook points. The albacore feather jigs are kept in toothbrush plastic containers. This keeps the feathers intact and allows him to select the color he wants at a glance. His swivels are kept in an empty plastic pillbox.
Mr. Lucky is very particular about hooks. He cleans any hook he puts back into the box after it is used and he refused to use a rusty hook, because he knows it might break while fighting a hefty fish. He also sharpens every hook he uses with a small piece of emery paper.
And, of course, Mr. Lucky knows what he’s doing with his tackle. For bait fishing, for example, he prefers to hook his anchovies through the collar. And when fishing yellows with anchovies, he strikes the instant the yellow hits, but with sardines he lets the fish run a little before setting the hook.
For jigging, he casts out and starts reeling in the jig immediately. His reeling is smooth and even, not jerky. His secret is in finding the speed at which yellows will hit the jig. So he experiments until he finds the right speed.
And in fighting any fish, Mr. Lucky uses a light drag and keeps his thumb off the line.
—Lupi Saldana, Los Angeles Times, July 8, 1966
 

pinfish

Well-known member
#2
that's me today. i fished under some guys today who were at a spot early this morning with lines soaking way out. Tossed my lures only 20 feet underneath their lines. Caught stripers 10 feet away. Moved to another spot. A guy was plugging way out perpendicular to the rocks. I was 30 yards left of him. Threw my lure parallel to the rocks towards him. Caught two more stripers right in front of him.
 
#3
that's me today. i fished under some guys today who were at a spot early this morning with lines soaking way out. Tossed my lures only 20 feet underneath their lines. Caught stripers 10 feet away. Moved to another spot. A guy was plugging way out perpendicular to the rocks. I was 30 yards left of him. Threw my lure parallel to the rocks towards him. Caught two more stripers right in front of him.
Hahaha, I've seen too many guys like you. Reminds me of someone (BIG O) last year who pulled up a 30" hali in less than 30 minutes of fishing. Some guys have all the "luck."