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May 09, 2011

Rick Gaffney

Give me a firm place to stand and I will move the earth," said the Greek scientist Archimedes over 2,000 years ago. The same philosophy applies to a firm place to sit - on a fighting chair, which may not move the earth but can move fish big enough to feel like it. The growing interest in stand-up game fishing over the last decade may be leaving fewer anglers aware of how to use the fighting chairs that still figure prominently in the cockpits of virtually all modern offshore sport-fishing machines.
Hawaiian charter-boat crews and sport fishermen traditionally have considered most of the game fish caught in their waters to be food fish as well. The demand for fresh seafood in island restaurants and hotels grew with the tourist industry, and the charter fleet has long contributed to satisfying that demand, although the catch-and-release ethic has definitely permeated the sport-fishing industry in recent years. One of the reasons that Hawaii's charter rates are as low as they are: Some of the catches are often sold to help offset operating expenses.