I think the reason there are so many barracuda in the Ala Wai Canal is because the water is polluted and everyone is afraid to eat the fish. Most fishermen in Hawaii ask, "If you can't eat it, why catch it?"
Clayton Yee, (Nervous Water Fly Shop) and I decided to have a little fun testing out some of his new barracuda flys. (with all the recent rain, Lake Wilson is muddy, making the peacock bass fishing very difficult).
We launched my little 15 foot bass boat near the Hawaii Yacht Club and headed to the Diamond Head/Mauka end of the Ala Wai.
The tide was just starting to rise and the barracuda should be aggressive. We could easily see them in the clear water as they waited motionless by the roots of the mangrove trees ready to rush out and ambush their next meal.
Clay chose a chartreuse foam popping bug and I tied on a yellow one. We used 12 pound test mono leaders...... On my last visit I lost several lures and flys to those big sharp teeth. There must be a way to rig a short wire leader to a popping bug.
Sometimes 3 or 4 barracuda would just follow the fly all the way to the boat. At other times they would charge in from 10 feet away and smash the fly. Clay hooked a nice 2 pounder and after a short fight the leader cut. We could see the fish swimming away with the big popping bug hanging from the side of its mouth. Then the popper came free and as it floated to the surface another cuda hit it. That one spit it out and on the surface two more cuda struck at the free floating popping bug..... they were that aggressive.
Needless to say, we had a very exciting, fun filled afternoon. We could have probably landed a lot more fish if we had used streamer flys with the wire leaders, but it is so much more exciting to see a surface strike. And since the barracuda were being so cooperative, why change?