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By Steve Breazeale
Aaron Kitakis does not always fish while floating around offshore on a longboard. In fact, at the urging of a friend, September 24 was the first time the San Clemente resident attempted to do so. But as the sun went down on the San Onofre beaches, on one of his last casts of the day, a 24-pound halibut landed on Kitakis’ line just past the surf break at Dogpatch.
Kitakis says he wrestled with the fish for close to 15 minutes before a nearby paddleboarder came by to lend a hand. Once he got the fish close to the surface, the paddleboarder held his fishing gear while Kitakis reached in and grabbed the large halibut.
The paddleboarder towed him close to shore and Kitakis dragged the fish in. Kitakis measured the fish and said that it was 41 inches in length.
“I have caught a lot of big fish of that magnitude but this was probably one of my best catches,” Kitakis said. “I have never seen a halibut that big caught on a surfboard and nobody there had either … The whole story is unbelievable, I still can’t fathom it.”