Marlin fishing

<see our GLOBAL SPORT FISHING GUIDES for each species here>


I know this is a website about Tuna Fishing, however, there is a very real chance that you will hook up on a Marlin while you out there. They are not common in the waters off San Diego, but during the summer months we see them on the surface relatively often. If we do, we make a B-LINE at FLANK speed directly for it and throw out the marlin rigs or the biggest piece of live bait we have. Also, on the way out and the way home we are trolling a giant Marlin lure at 12 knots behind the boat, just in case we get lucky!

Check out the Marline video on The Vendetta if you want proof, they were looking for Tuna, when all of a sudden, Marlin. What a fantastic fighting fish. I personally have fought one, and when you are holding the rod and reel, & the fish is airborne, you wont forget.

Hooking a Marlin while fishing off the coast of San Diego or Mexico would be one of the most memorable events in an anglers career. Marlin are incredibly fast swimmers, strong and with great stamina, and will probably be the biggest fish you have ever hooked. Swimming at up to 50 miles per hour, the Striped Marlin is among the top three fastest fish in the world. You would be very surprised out how fast you can run out of line with a Blue Marlin hookup... no matter what the test of the line, it has great speed, and weight and strength to back it up.

Once you get one on the line you will find out just how hard this fish can fight. Assuming you hold on long enough to get it to the surface you will witness airborne tactics designed to throw your hook, as the fish will angrily shake its head while in the air. It is the fight of your life.

We make memories
that you can keep!

On September 4th this giant blue Marlin was caught on the middle banks outside of San Diego, Ca. The fish was caught on the troll at 12 knots with a Marlin lure being towed behind the boat. It was a blind strike, no visual, no meter mark. The ensuing battle lasted more than 2 hours with the vessel Atun finally coming out on top.

Captain Clinton Dunn

Deckhand Mark Terry

36 Miles due west of Point Loma

How we Fish for Marlin

Fishing for Marlin With Artificial Lures

We often travel for many hours at a speed of about 12 knots. At that time we are running large, heavy, fast running Marlin lures. The sole reason we run these larger lures, is in the hopes that we will visually spot or sonar mark the fish and guide our lure to him. This tactic seems to be the most productive, although many would argue the point.

Fishing for Marlin with Live Bait

You should use live bait only when the fishing where fish congregate, such as underwater ridges, banks, and shelves. Live bait can be a good alternative to artificial lures if you’re within visual range and you have the confidence to cast accurately to land within visual range of the fish when it hits the water. If you hit your mark, you will be hooked up. The Marlin has excellent vision and even if you get close, the fish will make a strait line for your bait, and allow you to see his fin as he swims the final distance to his target.

Use the Best Quality Tackle

Our vessels provide ONLY the best quality, highly maintained, Marlin-ready gear. New line, new drag, correct rigging, proper lures, and the knowledge to use them effectively, to PUT YOUR MARLIN on the deck!

The Blue Marlin tends to dive deeper and tire quicker than other Marlin. However, it is a powerful and aggressive fighter that can run hard and long, leaping high in the air in amazing displays of acrobatics.

Females can weigh up to four times the amount of males, which rarely exceed 300 lb. Some experts consider Blue Marlin living in the Pacific and the Atlantic oceans to be two distinct species, although this point of view is contended. It does seem to be the case that Marlin in the Pacific ocean tend to be larger than those in the Atlantic, though.

How to Recognize Blue Marlin

The telltale signs of a Blue Marlin are as follows:

The Blue Marlin, scientifically known as Makaira nigricans, is highly coveted in the sport fishing community for its exceptional fighting abilities. This majestic fish predominantly hunts during the day, preying on a diet of fish, octopuses, and squids. Anglers commonly catch Blue Marlins by trolling with artificial lures or using dead bait such as bonito or mackerel. These practices have established the Blue Marlin as a prized target in the world of sport fishing.


Here are some key details about the Black Marlin: The Black Marlin, scientifically known as Istiompax indica, can grow as large or even larger than the blue marlin. Male Black Marlin can reach lengths of up to 4.65 meters and weigh as much as 750 kilograms (1500lb), while females are typically larger. Black Marlin belongs to a category of fish called billfish, which also encompasses various types of marlin, swordfish, and spearfish.

‘Stripes’ are found in the Pacific and Indian oceans, usually in colder waters than Black or Blue Marlin. They migrate by season, moving towards the equator in the winter and away from it in the warm season.

Famous for their fighting ability, Striped Marlin have a reputation of spending more time in the air than in the water once they’ve been hooked. They are known for long runs and tail walks, as well as ‘greyhounding’ across the surface in a series of leaps and bounds.

How to Recognize a Striped Marlin:

The signature traits of a Striped Marlin are as follows:


The White Marlin, scientifically known as Kajikia albida, is a formidable predator found in warmer offshore waters. This species is known for its powerful fighting abilities and predominantly feeds during the daytime on a diet consisting of fish, octopuses, and squids. Anglers often use artificial lures or dead bait such as bonito and mackerel to catch White Marlin while trolling in the ocean.


marlin sport fishing spots