• Published:July 15, 2014
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Landing a daytime swordfish on spinning gear? It can be done! Armed with a Shimano Stella 20000 spooled with 30-pound line, the crew of the Booby Trap, along with Carter Andrews and his film crew set out to catch the first targeted daytime swordfish on spinning gear.

The anglers made their first drop roughly 100 miles off Surfside Beach, Texas, fishing on the Booby Trap, a 52-foot Viking. The Booby Trap Fishing Team, consisting of Capt. Brett Holden, Capt. Travis Joyce, Capt. Jeff Wilson and Capt. Matt Reed, along with Carter Andrews, Tim Schick and Wes Miller of "The Obsession of Carter Andrews" TV show set their baits to depths of 1,600 to 1,800 feet with both a Shimano Stella 20000 and a Talica 50. They found the swords! Action on both outfits was steady, ending with 13 different swordfish bites.

Carter caught the first sword on the Talica 50 in stand-up gear. The fish was quickly released and the next bite was the one the crew had been waiting for. The spinning rod took a dip, then another, and Carter set the hook as the rod loaded with the weight of the swordfish. The fight was on!

The small sword doubled over the Shimano combo but the gear did not back down. Thirty minutes later the first-ever daytime swordfish on a spinning rod broke the water alongside the Booby Trap. The hook was removed and the swordfish was lifted for a quick picture just before being released. High-fives and a just little loud celebration ensued before the crew put the lines right back in to finish off the day with some fantastic grouper and tilefish action.

The next morning Capt. Brett Holden and Carter Andrews decided to try and target a bigger sword on the Stella spinning reel. The Booby Trap crew rigged up and headed 25 miles east, abandoning their productive spot from the day before. It was a hard decision to leave an insane bite, but the team had its sights on a bigger swordfish. The first drop ended with a goose egg. The bait was brought up with a new Reel Crankie designed just for this trip. The crew moved one mile east. The next drop would produce the fish of a lifetime for Carter Andrews -- but it wouldn't come on the Stella.

The crew decided to bump-troll the Talica 50 and try to locate the swords before dropping the Stella again. After a three-minute troll the crew figured out the swords were holding a little higher in the water column than the day before. These swordfish were feeding on squid 300 feet down in a depth of 1,650 feet. The Talica 50 and Carter were now poised for another test. The rod bounced and Brett yelled "Drop it!" The rod bounced again as Jeff bumped the boat forward and the rod took another dip. Brett, Travis and Matt all looked at each other and just smiled.

"Get ready because this is a nice swordfish you are teasing!" Brett said. Carter free-spooled the bait back and perfectly fed it to the hungry sword. As he began to push the drag up, the rod came tight and Carter found himself strapped to another mighty swordfish. One hour and 45 minutes later Carter caught a 275-pound daytime swordfish on standup gear with his Talica 50.

Unfortunately as the big sword became up it had become tail wrapped during the long battle and was nearly expired. The crew intended to release the big fish for the TV show, but they determined this one was not going to make it. The crew pulled the swordfish through the transom door. After taking several photos of Carter's big daytime swordfish, it was iced down and eventually sectioned off into lots of good steaks for the crew and friends at the dock. After some more celebrating, the crew geared up to set for another drop, this time with the Stella 20000 on deck.

Carter set the deluxe spinning reel in the rod holder and sent a Baitmasters squid down to the bottom in 1,600-plus feet before cranking it up into the target zone. Within a minute the rod tip took a dip  -- and then another. Carter dropped the bait back to the sword and quickly came tight on his second daytime swordfish on spinning gear. The drag immediately started screaming as line dumped off the reel. With cameras rolling, Carter shouted out with his trademark "Yeah baby!"

After another long battle, a nice 125-pound daytime swordfish raced to the surface. The crew aboard Booby Trap had landed their second daytime swordfish of the trip on spinning gear. Brett wired the fish and pulled it beside the boat for the release. After a quick release the fish swam off in good condition.

"All in all this was an incredible trip and great move for the entire fishery," said Capt. Brett Holden.

To learn more about the Booby Trap team and the Texas Swordfish Seminar Everyday Heroes Benefit, visit Boobytrapfishingteam.com or find them on Facebook.