Today Dorothy and I are traveling to Miami to meet with a hand surgeon to see if there is any surgery that could solve my hand pain issues including removing the pinky from my hand completely. It is as pathetic as it is poetic that a man like myself, who has killed a grizzly bear at 8 yards with my longbow should have an entire life ruled by his pinky. It is what it is.
I would like to give gracious thanks to Max Fulmer who purchased my charity swordfish trip for $5,000. This money goes to the kids of the Boys & Girls Club.
As I indicated I am donating 2 trips so I would ask if there is anyone who would like to bid for a weekend swordfishing with Tred Barta. You may see the description of the trip in my post before this one. All bids will be considered. Remember this is all about getting great value and donating money to the kids at the same time.
I pray that the surgeons in Miami will see something that others have missed.
All of you who have followed me on Facebook or through my writings in Big Game Fishing Journal and Florida Sport Fishing know that I have been studying daytime swordfishing at a pretty aggressive rate over the last 3 years. Even some of the best are forced to publicly agree that I am getting pretty good at it.
My fishing tournament the Barta Billfish Tournament (www.bartabillfish.com) from July 13th to July 15th in Beaufort, North Carolina ran by tournament director Cynthia Barber (772)-888-3269, has now raised $875,000 on its way to $1,000,000.
In an effort to say thank you to all of you and raise money for the Boys and Girls Club of Coastal Carolina I am offering 2 trips which nobody else can offer except me and at some point in my life will not be available at all.
So I offer all of you the opportunity to bid on the following trip:
• 2 Days Fishing with Captain Tred Barta aboard Makaira, my 26’ Andros for daytime Swordfish. Myself, my boat, my mate and all equipment including breakfast, lunch and dinner will be provided. I will be the host offshore and my wife Dorothy will be your host while staying at our home. If the weather turns unacceptable on the second day of fishing we will fish inshore for mangrove snapper and other species. You will stay at our condominium on the ocean in Islamorada, Florida. A health club, pool and sauna are available on the property. This trip is available for 2 people.
Islamorada isn’t exactly known for its cheap accommodations nor are its restaurants any bargains either. So if you add up food, lodging and 2 days fishing, a trip such as this would cost most people about $5,000.
Although these trips would be an unmitigated bargain at $2,500, both Dorothy and I pray that they will bring more than this as 100% of the money goes to the kids. Let the bidding start!
Summertime is coming like a freight train. The seas are calm and the fishing is great. The winners of the bid may bring swordfish home for their own use however it may not be sold under any conditions. The bill will also be property of the lucky fisherman.
Any of you who would like to make a donation to the Barta Billfish Tournament (www.bartabillfish.com) I ask you to do so and any items that you feel would be a good auction donation would also be greatly appreciated.
The Swordfish is one of the most coveted trophies in saltwater. If it is on your bucket list now is a great time to fill your bucket.
I retain the right to refuse all offers if I do not believe they are sufficient.
First and foremost, I love my country. I voted for President Trump and I believe he is doing an excellent job for this great nation. I salute him for getting out of the mess known as the Paris Environmental Accord, but when it comes to saltwater issues greatly effecting the American public, President Trump gets an “F” for his missed opportunities.
I have written before in Newsmax and other outlets, but to refresh your memory, Obama used a 1916 loophole called the Antiquities Act. He roped off an area the size of Connecticut to abolish commercial fishing. He will allow recreational fishing, but it’s completely up to the whim of the commerce department. The Aquatic National Monument undermines the regional economy and will deprive countless families of their livelihood.
Now listen up everyone. This 5,000 square mile area is rich in lobster, crab, squid, swordfish, tuna, and other high-demand seafood. The Hudson Canyon, right off New York City, is still in nomination for further sanctuary inventory and is in initiation of the nomination process. If Trump does not move to suppress, cancel, or obliterate the current national park, commercial and recreational fishermen will see a devastation of their businesses and their sport.
Soon, new members will be nominated for the Regional Fisheries Management Advisory Council which presently is riddled with left-wing anti-fishing council members. Trump must intervene. Earl Comstock of the Commerce Department met with the Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA) and must do his job and get this message to President Trump!
Right now, the black sea bass population in New England is up 300 percent after a 6-year hiatus and rebuilding of their stock. At the same time, recreational fishermen are under strict regulations and may only catch five fish per day. Some of the best fishing is in November and December when tackle shops and marinas are barely hanging on. If a charter goes 15 miles offshore and drops anchor, in less than 5 minutes he will catch his 5 fish. The limit is grossly light because it’s based on old science. Summer flounder is another example, because extremely restrictive, bad legislation affects the charter industry. It’s based on 6-year-old data! The same problem exists with red snapper in the Gulf.
President Trump, you are my president. I give you an “A+” for protecting our country, expanding our economy, and being a leader of the free world, but you must address the flaws in the Magnuson-Steven’s Act. You must strike down the Aquatic National Monuments off the New England coast which is seriously crippling the American fishing industry.
President Trump, I want to see you carry the vote of the fishermen in the 2020 elections. Invite me to the White House, give me 10 minutes of your time and I assure you, you will understand how important this is to the livelihood of the American fisherman. The recreational and commercial fishing industry beg you to do something. It is an unequivocal crime that Earl Comstock of the Commerce Department and Ryan Zinke of the Department of the Interior have not conveyed to President Trump the pleas, the letters, and phone calls not only from myself, but millions of fishermen.
President Trump, help us, we are the American people. You promised to “Make America Great Again.” Why have you not struck down the executive order of Obama for the Aquatic National Monuments? The time for reversing this ridiculous executive order is now!
The day before yesterday Nick Stancyzk caught a blackfin tuna daytime deep dropping for swordfish. The blackfin tuna was caught at 1,000 feet.
I did not know that blackfin tuna went down to 1,000 feet. Did you? Or did anyone else?
The swordfish that I caught over the Memorial Day weekend revealed a small blackfin tuna completely intact in its stomach. I estimate the tuna was eaten about 4 hours prior to me catching the swordfish.
Perhaps this will lead to some new research on baits. Blackfin belly, bonita belly and skipjack belly are already some of my favorite baits.
The Florida Everglades and its surrounding areas are under attack by Southeast Asian pythons. By comparison, in Southeast Asia, the python is listed as a “critically endangered species” due to the skin trade. In the U.S., a beautiful jacket will cost over $12,000 with a pair of snake boots going for $3,500.
This invasive, non-native species is wreaking havoc on the local population of alligator, raccoon, coots, heron, squirrels, rabbits, and wrens — just to name a few. Make no mistake this is an eco-disaster. Recent estimates by the National Park Services have put python numbers as high as 100,000. At full maturity, a Burmese python routinely reaches lengths of 12 or more feet with those 20 feet in length weighing 250 pounds. This is not unheard of.
The devastation caused by the python is no joke. Many mammals native to the marshes of the Everglades — like foxes and rabbits — seem to have disappeared. These pythons eat and eat well.
Last year, 1,000 outdoorsman participated in a program to help control the population. The result was a combined total of 106 snakes caught in one month. Recently, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission hired two snake hunters from the Irula tribe in India. Despite advances in hunting techniques and technology, the Irula duo, armed with crowbars and machetes, bagged 27 pythons in one month; including a 16ft-long (5m) female in an abandoned missile base in Key Largo.
That means the two Irula tribesmen, in there 50’s, out hunted the outdoorsmen by a score of 135 to 1. It’s amazing how human culture, generations of knowledge and experience can out-play advanced hunting techniques when it comes to hunting down snakes and snake eggs.
So, what is coming to your door soon? Well, if you live in the name land of the Florida Keys, pythons are starting to wipe out the indigenous wood rats of Key Largo which are in peril. In fact, the Florida Keys have already been under attack by many invasive species.
The Argentine Tegus (large lizards) are gorging themselves on sea turtle eggs. Nile Monitor lizards from Africa love to eat frogs, alligator, and crocodile eggs. Russian Zebra Mussels are damaging our waterways while Asian Carp are attacking the Great Lakes.
Some people believe the Asian Carp will be the only freshwater fish left in America in a few decades as they destroy all other species.
I’ve spent a lifetime in the outdoors. The Burmese python problem is a catastrophe. There are no countermeasures; there is no effective way of eliminating the species from its current habitat. The great snake was not supposed to be here, yet it is. Like the big question posed in the late Bob Marley’s “Bad Boys,” “What you gonna do, what you gonna do, what you gonna do when they come for you?”
Despite the fact that those closest to me find fault in much of what I do, don’t appreciate what I stand for and often can’t fathom how I can help other people.
If you know someone who is in need, someone who is depressed, someone who feels beaten and down in the dumps, please get me there phone number and I will call them.
I have often professed that the best way to help yourself is to help someone else.
I look forward to helping those in need. I offer to do so simply because I can.
I wish that everyone thought as I do. Perhaps the world would be a better place.
I would like to thank all of you for helping me when I am at my worst.
Look forward to the calls.
All of you who know me know I share the best of times and the worst of times. How do I prove to those who believe in me that you live every day with the most that God gave you? How do I prove this by example? Sometimes the Lord doesn’t let us know until the situation arises. This Memorial Day Weekend I had Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday off. It also brought in the calmest, most perfect weather the Florida Keys has seen in almost 10 weeks. Dorothy and I had made many different social plans over the weekend and I would fish 2 days out of the weekend. One day offshore and the next day a light inshore day while I was recovering.
The first day on a mirror like ocean I drifted for swordfish on a placid sea all day long without a single bite. I was discouraged as was my dear friend Captain Laurence Walker and a new friend of mine Captain Gary Nichlos. Besides being a boat captain, Gary now in his early 80’s was an aircraft mechanic on many aircraft including C130 transport. I could see in Gary’s eyes the excitement he had by being offshore again. He is great company.
When we arrived back at the marina I was very tired. Dorothy was there to meet me and give me the encouragement I needed. She got me home quickly, had dinner made for me and put me in bed. At the dinner table she saw me looking at the forecast. She had already looked at it. To my absolute astonishment she said to me “I know you want to go tomorrow. Do you think you are strong enough?” After considering it for a millisecond Dorothy packed our lunch and Captain Laurence, myself and Dorothy cleared the headpin for the 40 mile jaunt.
Day #2: There was zero wind, the ocean like a mirror. It was hot. It was a tough day. Not one bite, not one tickle from any fish. We made 5 drifts. Dorothy stood with me like the great woman I knew she was. We returned to the marina empty handed. We were putting in 11 hour days. Dorothy and I usually attend Island Christian Church on Sundays at 10 o’clock. We would wake up at quarter to nine and be ready. Dorothy got me to bed on day 2 at 6:45 PM. She had an already prepared dinner which I ate in bed. Something was wrong here. Could anyone be this nice and this supportive over a holiday weekend even though I was a newlywed?
Without me knowing it the alarm went off at 5 AM. I awoke to the most beautiful words I ever heard. “Tred, I’ll pray for both of us today. Go fishing.”
Day #3: Today would be just Captain Laurence and I. The day was long. We fished a new area and after 10 hours of using every trick in the book we again were skunked. Captains and mates at the dock were talking. People who follow me were in disbelief that I had the strength to pull this off. My closest friends couldn’t believe that Dorothy would allow me to try this but she did.
On the fourth day it became clear to me what this entire weekend was about. It wasn’t about catching a swordfish. It was about me proving to myself and to others that life is what you make it. That one can never win without losing. This was an opportunity for me to show so many who are afflicted to never ever, ever give up.
It seemed like day 4 would be impossible. I don’t know when Dorothy realized how important my mission was but somehow she did. I train a lot of mates the hard way, the Barta way. I am rude, I am obtuse, I push them hard and I try to break them. I am ruthless with regards to teaching that the devil is in the details. I always teach that all you need is 5 minutes in the right place with the right conditions and if you are prepared, failure can change to success in a moment. The evening of Day 3 I told Laurence that he had graduated from the Barta School of Swordfishing. That there was nothing else I could teach him and that I had given it my all.
The alarm went off on day 4; Dorothy had written me a note wishing me to catch the big one. She put down in her morning correspondence “Have fun and praying this is the day you hook the big one. Psalm 118:24.” Along with me today as my guest was Pastor Wayne Porter who always has time for other people but rarely enough time for himself. Almost everyone in town knows him as someone who is always there to support people in need. Wayne explained very simply to me that Psalm 118:24 is “The Lord makes everyday a wonderful day so that we may rejoice in it.”
The weather was not perfect and in 1,800 feet, 46.3 nautical miles from the marina a 15 knot south easterly wind churned up the ocean to a 3 to 5 foot sea. I kept nodding off to sleep, was forced to take more methadone than I should and probably defied every doctor’s order that was ever given to me. I struggled trying to understand whether I was being irresponsible, ignorant and stupid or in my own way was trying to be courageous and trying to spread my message. At 4:15, less than 5 minutes from heading for the barn and being skunked for 4 days in a row, the rod tipped down once and then went silent. Captain Laurence pulled up about 60 feet looking for another bite and the rod tipped, bent over pretty good, the fish was still there. As we retrieved vast amounts of line, no fish was hooked up. I had no more strength in me. I was overtired and overheating, I wasn’t in trouble but I was close to it.
What you do on the battlefield, what you do when you have a personal crisis in your life? Do you quit, do you whine, do you give up? Or do you take the attitude that as long as there is one breath left in you, you keep on trucking.
With no fish hooked up we dropped back all the way to the bottom, some 250 feet. We waited for a miracle. And then a miracle did happen. By bringing the line slowly up, the rod bowed over with 20 pounds of drag and after 4 days of failure, with 5 minutes left we were hooked up. Everyone did their jobs to perfection and at boat side, with two witnesses to confirm my story, the great fish tried to take my life. Slamming against the hull of the boat, almost going in the boat the bill of the swordfish missed my throat by about 6 inches. I have always said I never wanted to die by being hit by a milk truck. What a great way to die, impaled by a swordfish….cool.
We finally subdued the fish and brought him on board and its beauty graced all of us. This is a story not necessarily about success, nor is it about catching a swordfish. It is a story about faith in yourself, it is a story about not giving up, it is a story that should inspire others who are handicapped and for those who believe as I do that if you walk with Him you never walk alone. Let me just say this. We had a crew of three plus One.
I would like to thank all of the Captains and staff at World Wide Marina in Islamorada who without their help it would be impossible to go fishing. I would also like to thank Captain Stanczyk on the “Broad Minded” and Captain Billy Chapman and his crew for helping me be the best I can be.
Enjoy the pictures. Thank you for letting me share.
PS – If you do not believe in the grand divinity of life, this particular swordfish meat was pink, as one in a million swordfish are. Unequivocally and nonnegotiably a pink meated swordfish is the best eating in the world.
I’ve decided to take a precedent from my recent baptism and use this message with you to help someone else. All of you know me by reputation, not only as an offshore captain but also author and friend.
I enclose to you the resume of Captain Laurence Walker. He is a very dear friend of mine and it is absolutely ridiculous, almost beyond comprehension that he is out of a job.
Besides being a world class fish captain, he is a mechanic and hands on in every aspect of yacht management to training; all this man really wants to do is fish or get a big boat positioned where he can fish. His resume is flawless.
As a Christian and friend I give him my full endorsement, not only on the moral side but on the talent side of the equation. He is great with people, he is great with kids and the man would save any operator $1,000 upon $1,000’s of dollars in maintenance a year.
So everybody let me tell you why he doesn’t have a job. He is 61 years old and is in the physical shape of a 45 year old. He is clean cut, well dressed and well spoken. Most jobs today he is discriminated against because of his age. Perhaps he is too polite and not hip enough. Can you imagine what our world is coming too?
If anyone could pass his resume around to anyone who might be interested I would be most appreciative. He’ll be fishing with me all weekend and staying with me at my home.
So everybody this weekend try to help somebody else like I did.
Whoopee, shazam, Scooby dooby doo. I have Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday off. The weather looks good towards the end of the week and the big operative word is Swordfish.
My good friend Captain Lawrence Walker (Cowboy) is coming down for my days off and will help Dorothy and myself fishing this weekend.
My Baptism not only went well but to me represents a significant change on how I will live the rest of my life. No one wants to be preached to if they don’t ask for it so I’ll merely say “One who walks with Him never walks alone.”
Dorothy and I have been married for 1 month. Aside from being a great friend and a great wife, she is also a fabulous cook. We are going through the growing pains of 2 people living together for the first time.
What is Memorial Day????? It is a holiday to remember those who have given their lives in service in all branches of The US Armed Services. How easily it is to talk about picnics, swordfishing and days off from work but not remember those who have fallen for our right to be free in this country, to have different political views and yet live according to the rules of our land.
At 9:00 in the morning on Memorial Day Dorothy and I will be praying together for our fallen service men and women. If you want to join us and you believe in prayer you should feel our presence no matter where you are.
On the 31st it looks like my final destiny will begin to be revealed to me. Will I be given the time to fully live up to my potential in helping other people or should this be a time to put an exclamation mark and a period to what I have accomplished so far. We will be scheduling an appointment for endoscopy biopsy in which one very, very small needle penetrating through the stomach wall and into a tumor outside of the stomach will determine my destiny.
I have always said “In life if you are not prepared to lose, you will never win.” It is supposed to refer to the fight that we all have in us. I have always said to myself when people ask for help, I say “watch the movie Rudy 3 times and come back and see me.”
Never give up, never say never.
Everyone have a spectacular weekend with family and friends and let’s all pray at 9:00 AM EST for our fallen veterans.
God Bless America, God Bless President Trump and God Bless All Men and Women who have served, will serve and are serving our great country.