The transfer of Patriot Sportfishing’s ownership lease has been as seamless as a baton pass by an Olympic track championship foursome.
Steve and Cathe Moore ended nearly 15 years as owner-operators of the sportfishing lease on Sunday, transferring ownership to Wade and Glenna Gavin. An interview with the Gavins is planned for next week’s column.
Patriot Sportfishing continues as the name of the business that has operated off of Harford Pier since the summer of 1999, when the Moores bought out Gene Meister.
The Moores were first granted a lease to operate off Avila Pier in November 1997.
Skip and Kay Sato founded the sportfishing business (Port San Luis Sportfishing) on Feb. 3, 1973. They were the operators for nine years and four months selling to Bob and Gloria Honley on June 18, 1982.
Originally, Jim Sebbia of Rancho Cucamonga, a high school classmate of Moore at Huntington Beach Edison High, was a co-owner of Patriot. They were best men at each other’s wedding. Over the years Moore bought out his partner, and they remain close friends.
Moore purchased the 55-foot boat Patriot in September, 1995. He spent six months refurbishing the vessel. A galley and a 40-scoop bait tank were added. The transmission was rebuilt and a hydraulic winch to raise and lower the anchor and state-of-the-art fish-finding equipment were installed.
The Patriot, which has been in service since May, 1982, originally was part of George Valenzuela’s San Simeon Sportfishing operation.
Moore, a Los Osos resident since 1987, operated charter sportfishing boats from 1980 to 1984 out of San Diego. From 1989 to 1995 he captained a commercial salmon troller focusing on hook-and-line fishing out of landings from Santa Barbara to Bodega Bay.
A freak accident to the Pacific Horizon on July 10, 2012 reduced Patriot to one boat as the height of the sportfishing season approached.
“The accident was through no fault of skipper Sal Rocha,” Moore said. “When my son Cale and I took the boat to the Ventura Boat Yard, we were advised by an official there that probably what was hit was a submerged object that had fallen off a container ship. This happens more often than you could imagine, we were told.”
The location of the damage to the Pacific Horizon would have cost $300,000 to repair.
Moore said Rocha is an excellent skipper, and “At no time were the passengers aboard in any danger.”
Patriot lost its marine insurance on Dec. 16, but because the Gavins picked up the insurance, Patriot was able to continue fishing through the end of the year.
Moore expressed his appreciation to his clientele, “who continued to support the business through all of this.
“My wife and family felt blessed by skippers Sal Rocha, Dustin Selck, Wayne Blicha, Mike Price and Jay Gavin (no relation to the new owners),” Moore said.
“Longtime office manager Roger York was a wonderful face of our business for a number of years until his retirement a little over a year ago. Dedicated office personnel Debi Wood, Tina Barnes and Kurt Miller will continue to represent Patriot for the new owner.”
Moore, 58, said he loves commercial fishing and will continue that phase of his life along with sons Nate, 25, and Cale, 28, who have their captain’s licenses. They will operate from Monterey to Westport, WA.
“Now my wife Cathe can retire from her involvement with Patriot,” Moore said, “and resume being a great artist and a grandmother to our son Ryan’s one son and Jesse, the father of a son and a daughter.”
There were 22 frozen team participants and a few winners Monday at the Annual Hangover Bass tournament that ushers in the new year at Lake Nacimiento.
Things looked anything but promising for Al Rush and Marc Hazuka when they pulled into Dip Creek about 1 o'clock. They had come up empty after nearly five hours of fishing.
With Rush casting Shaky Head Jigs and Hazuka using spinnerbaits, the duo caught a 7.55-pound five-fish limit that paid $400.
Big fish honors went to the father and son team of Del and Darrin Bishop. Their big fish (3.37 pounds) was worth $200. They also earned an additional $300 as the runners-up with a 7.14-pound limit.
Third place was claimed by Roger Haas and partner Kevin Rayner. Their 6.68-pound limit bag was worth $200.
Rush, the San Luis Obispo County Bass Ambushers Club tournament director, said the 2013 Ambushers’ tournament season will begin Saturday at Lake Nacimiento.
Santa Maria's Curtis Ridenor, who caught a 24-pound lingcod on a trip July 26, is the winner of $1,000 as the overall champion in Patriot's 8th Annual Lingcod Contest.
The November-December fourth round place winners were: 1. Sean McCombs, Taft, 21-14 ling, $300; 2. Louie McCombs, Taft, 16-10 ling, $200; 3. (tie) Josh Knapp, Arroyo Grande, and Won Kuk Park, Los Angeles, both 16-0 lings, $50 each.
The final rockcod fishing trips of 2012 were held Dec. 30 and Dec. 31 .Both jackpot winners, Mike Guana, Santa Maria, and Audrey Hodges, San Luis Obispo, caught 9-0 lings.
The catch on those trips by 63 anglers was: seven lings, 108 red rockcod, 177 assorted rockfish, 107 bolina, and three cabezon.
Crab and Sandab fishing trips are scheduled Friday and Saturday from 6 to noon. The fare is: $60. For reservations, more information call: 595-7200.
Winners of the Papa's Jigs Tournament aboard the Princess on Dec. 28 were: George Suchard, San Luis Obispo, 11-0 ling and Jason Mavok, Palos Verdes, 10-0 ling. Twenty-nine tournament anglers caught: 32 lingcod, 54 red rockcod, and 120 assorted rockfish.
Last week's jackpot winners included: Mike Brown, Santa Maria, 16-0 ling; Bille Homme, Bakersfield, 15-0 ling; Mike Gaertzin, Wasco, 13-0 ling; Jerry Spencer, 11-0 ling; Lane Pughe, San Diego, 9-0 ling; Jon Nutting, Las Vegas, 8-0 ling; and Terry Blezina, Arizona, 6-0 ling.
The catch by 192 anglers last week included: 89 lingcod, 592 red rockcod, 312 assorted rockfish, three cabezon and two Humboldt squid.
For Whale Watching trip schedules and reservations call: 772-1222.
Port San Luis Boatyard
During the final week of fishing in 2012 ( Dec. 24 to Dec. 31) 27 boats were launched. Three quarter limits were posted the four days boats were dispatched. Caught were: 66 lingcod and one white seabass. No fish were weighed hence no Whopper of the Week.
Rockcod fishing is closed until May 1. The 2013 Salmon season opens April 1.