Spyda's Blog

A Hawaiian Style Fishing Blog

Browsing Posts tagged Ewa Beach

Most would agree with “Little”, but, not many would consider “Toughest” as an accurate description of Danny Chamizo’s “Ewa Fenceline to Fencline” Tounament. You gotta think about it a bit though, there’s only about three and a half miles of shoreline, some of it inaccesable, in an area dominated by local resident fishermen. It’s like trying to out fish a Bass touring pro on a pond at his grandpappy’s farm where he learned to fish!! Most of the entrants are these local fishermen and women who fish right in this stretch of beach all the time! You can’t deny local knowledge, especially at Hau Bush were there are locals fishing pretty much everyday! Don’t get me wrong, there are lot of nice fish caught there, but, the place gets pounded!!

Options on the stretch are Ewa Beach park at the opposite end and the public access points between them. Other than that you need to live on the beach or know someone who does. There are a few rentals available, but, good luck snagging one during tournament week.

The tournament is strictly casting, no swimming, kayaking or ballooning your line out. The locals however, use an interesting and by rule, legal technique they call “walking it out”. In areas shallow enough anglers will walk their rod and reel out as far as they can before casting. You can add 50 yards or so to your cast! Of course casting while standing on the reef and getting blasted by waves you’re generally not going to get the same casting distance as you would, but, you can get your bait out further. One drawback to this technique though, recasting in the middle of a dark night can be challenging not only physically, but, mentally as well. You’re definately not going to check bait every 20 minutes! Also what do you do if your lead line breaks on the cast? Stand in the waves and re-rig or walk back in re-rig then walk back out again?

This years tournament took place last week with about 120+ entrants less than 20 fish were landed! Tough fishing for sure, there have been regular tournament fishermen who have had some success, but, they definately don’t dominate. This is why I feel beating the locals at their favorite pastime at their favorite spot makes this “The Toughest Little Fishing Tounament in the West”!!


My first experience fishing with girls was at a little stream near Kihei when we still lived on Maui. My sister Cheryl was trying to “cast” her bamboo pole and promptly hooked my other sister Kay in the left nostril! Being the proper little brother, I laughed and laughed ’cause I thought it was so hilarious! Don’t know if that little incident had anything to do with it, but, my sisters never did take a serious interest in fishing.

Years later I was lucky enough to be invited on a camping trip on the Big Island with Dean and some of his family. His cousin Charlie worked for the Forestry department so had access to pretty much anywhere on the island. We were camped at a remote beach out on the south western coastline. As part of his job, Charlie had hiked much of the coastline with his crew, so he knew the grounds well. The plan was to hike out north from camp about a quarter mile or so to fish for menpachi that night. When Charlie asked who wanted to go, among the hands raised were Deans mom and his auntie Nancy.

Now, Mom and Nancy are Big Island girls so they had done this sort of thing all their lives, still I was impressed as we all hiked out over the lava trail carrying fishing gear, buckets and lanterns. Turns out, Charlie knew his stuff and we filled several buckets with menpachi and aweoweo. Going back to camp, Charlie, Dean and I tried to carry most of the extra weight, but, despite that Mom and Nancy still hiked back with more than they took out. Not a peep of complaint from either, Fisherwomen.

A few days ago I had the pleasure of meeting and spending some time with fellow blogger and super poster “fishergirl” from the beautiful island of Kauai. With “fisher” appropriately at the fore front of the name and “girl” pointing out the unique and fresh perspective with which she tells her fishing tales I was looking forward to learning more about her and of course talk fishing!

I met the fishergirl and her husband in Kunia and after introductions and some small talk, she and I headed down the hill to Bruddah Bills where we spent the next few hours talking story and whipping the Ewa Beach shoreline behind his place. I had to leave for work so made plans to meet fishergirl the next morning take her out to some of my regular grounds the next day.

As we headed out Wednesday morning the beautiful weather and rising surf had us both feeling good about the conditions, things looked promising. First stop was at a beach that me and the boys had spent countless hours surfing, fishing, diving and in the old days, camping.

After setting our gear down under some trees it didn’t take long for her to get rigged up and off down the beach. I had a bruised toe that had I aggravated the day before walking in the sand at Bills, my fishing would be limited to dunking. With the help of a little palu I was able to catch a small hinalea and tossed it out on my baitcaster. I felt a little guilty just kicking back and cruising while fishergirl worked the shoreline, but, after hobbling around all night at work I didn’t want to risk it.

I gotta say, she hit it hard covering the entire stretch around the point and back. Despite working this stretch of beach hard the fish didn’t cooperate so, we decided to move on down the road a bit.

Although I’ve fished this area a lot over the years, there are places that I really haven’t stopped to look at for a long time. I found myself marveling at some grounds less than a quarter mile from one of our regular spots. I found it interesting that just being there with someone who had never seen these grounds before was changing my perspective!

We were looking at a nice section of sand and rock shoreline that had lots of interesting ledges and rocks that really made it look fishy! We had to give it a shot!

Told ya she gets right to it!!

Fishergirl was rigged up and off in a flash, leaving me to fight the shore break for a live bait to toss out. A little Awela took my shrimp bait and was promptly send back out on the end of a 3’o hook on my baitcast rig.

I watched fishergirl work her way down the shoreline. Very focused, spray a few casts, move on down, constantly scanning the water looking for signs, the moment of clear water to get a glimpse of the reef, perhaps some structure that might hold baitfish a predator would be hunting for. All business.

Soon, she had disappeared around the bend out of sight. I switched my focus to the surrounding beach. Don’t know it’s a carry over from my youth or something, but, I like looking at rocks. Yea, ha ha, laugh if you want! I’ve built a Japanese garden in my yard and have learned a little about form and placement, so, I’m always looking for interesting shapes in natural settings. I was sitting there messing with my camera when my bell rang and a little rip of the ratchet suddenly electrified the air!

My “Frankenstein” rod (Kimura Fenwick top with an unknown bottom half I bought at a garage sale) and the Daiwa XSHA with 40 overpowered the small yellow spot and it was soon at my feet. I looked for fishergirl, but, she was nowhere in sight, so, I ran over to my tackle box to get my tagging kit. After a couple of quick pics, measure and tag I took the fish back to the water to revive it a bit, it was strong and didn’t take long to start kicking hard and fighting me to get away. So off it went!


I caught another bait and threw it out and waited for fishergirl to get back. I was feeling like the bad host catching when I hadn’t gotten her on a fish yet. Shoots! Did I just take her fish? She certainly deserved it since she worked  10 times harder then I had. Oh well….

When she got back I was bummed to hear she had no luck, but, like a true fishing friend, she was happier than I was when I told her about the 19″ Yellow spot!

Although we stopped to look at a couple more spots, this would be the end of fishing for the day. After lunch in Haleiwa we headed back over the hill to meet Mr. fishergirl and reluctantly give him back his wife! All kidding aside it was a great day spent with a great new fishing friend!

I’ll have to say this, I know a lot of guys who moan about not catching much, but, don’t work anywhere near as hard as fishergirl does. They need to get with the program and start to fish like a girl, uh I mean a fishergirl that is!!

The last time I fished in a tournament was back in the late 80’s on the Big Island. I thought at the time that it would be the last ever. Well, doing this blog and moderating on the forum has re-kindled the spark somewhat and I found myself spending the last weekend in August competing in the Ewa Beach Fenceline to Fenceline tournament that has been put on by Danny Chamizo the last three years.

The tournament is a grass-roots effort spearheaded by Danny to bring some notoriety to Ewa Beach, in particular Onelua Beach park which is more commonly known as Hau Bush. There’s been talk of closing the park which has long been a center of activity for those in the Ewa Beach community. Perhaps development money has put the pressure on some politicians. Locals understand some of the concerns like squatters (who have mostly been chased out) and cronics that tend to huddle up out there, but, wonder why the knee jerk reaction is to close the park instead of cleaning it up and making long overdue repairs and improvements. Makes more sense yea?

The Shoreline fishing tournament scene has evolved quite a bit over the years and has stepped out of the shadow of the off-shore boat fishing tournaments. There was a time when mention of a fishing tournament automatically meant trolling and boats. The shoreline tournaments can now hold their own within the local  fishing  community. A fact well evidenced by the support these tournaments are getting from the local businesses and the community in general. Another sign is the number of major tackle manufacturers who are now selling purpose built fishing rods for the local shore fishing angler. To be more specific, Ulua rods are now being sold by Daiwa, Shimano, Boone, Tica and Roddy Hunter! Add to that brands like Nitro and Hawaiian Angler that local tackle distributors are having made for this market overseas. No doubt the local shore fishing scene has exploded in the last ten to fifteen years.

Anyway, back to fishing. Bruddah Bill from ifishhawaii.com was kind enough to offer his back yard as a possible spot to fish the tournament. After Jeff picked up a couple nice Oio (which he released) on a scouting trip there, things looked good so we gladly accepted Bills generous offer.

Unfortunately for me I had just come off a two week vacation a week before the tournament week end, so, I would only be able to fish the early Saturday and Sunday morning tides after work.

I got to Bills sometime after midnight Saturday morning. Bill, Jeff and Norman had all their rods out and were just chillin. Nothing to report, quiet so far. Luckily some guys who weren’t in the tournament had vacated the area to right of Jeffs poles so there was room for me to get my rods out.

Norman workin da Dawn Patrol....

After working the poles the last 5 hours I was settling down to watch the sunrise when I noticed something in the water down past my last rod. As the sun rose and the light got brighter I could see two floaters about 30 yards apart, lay net…………………………………………

The net stays out there all weekend. Oh well.. All four of us end the tournament with no fish! We pack up and head to the weigh-in, to see what everyone else caught.

There are some pretty nice fish weighed in!  This is a relatively small tournament that is limited to 3.5 miles of shoreline so we’re all impressed! Danny put together a great event! He does it all! He puts himself on call the entire weekend for catch verification, puts up a lot of the prizes and does all the legwork for the rest.

Awesome event! I can only hope that the Ewa Beach community appreciates his efforts and answers the call when their voices need to be heard!

Mahalo to Danny, Bill, Jeff and Norman for a great weekend supporting a great cause!!