Marlin Fishing - Kevin Hibbard

July 30, 2021
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The author shares their experience with talented fishermen, particularly Kevin Hibbard, who is known for his ability to teach and share their knowledge. They emphasize the importance of working with subject matter experts, and when filming marlin fishing in Hawaii, Hibbard was chosen due to his expertise in trolling lures for big fish.

When I first started marlin fishing, I was fortunate to be able to fish with some extraordinarily talented fishermen. The two captains that inspired me the most were multi-disciplined fishermen well versed in catching all sorts of fish. Light tackle or heavy, it didn't matter. These cats could catch fish. Both men began their fishing careers as commercial fishermen. They lived or died based on their ability to catch fish and they excelled at it. Their understanding of the seas and how to find fish translated well to recreational fishing. Another keen aspect possessed by these fine gentlemen and one I look for in any fishing guide or captain was the ability to teach and share their fishing knowledge. Each guy wanted to see me succeed and grow my fishing skills. Giving of their experience and wisdom was always at the forefront.

It is paramount at In The Spread and in my own personal fishing endeavors to work with subject matter experts. I am never satisfied with how much I know. You shouldn't be either. My desire is to fish with and introduce to you folks that have operational and knowledge capital built from experience, know how about better ways of getting certain things done, with that capital having been developed over decades.

So, when I settled upon the decision to film some marling fishing, there was only one real option. I was not interested in FAD fishing. I wanted to spend my time with someone that was a master of trolling lures for big fish. Hawaii fit the bill. The island provides the most bang for the buck in the Northern Hemisphere. There are a lot of great marlin fishing captains in Hawaii, so I had to distill my list down to the one fisherman that was best suited to teach, articulate and share their vast wealth of knowledge. I reached out to a few close contacts, guys that are marlin fishing ninjas, about who to go with and one name kept coming up. That name was Kevin Hibbard, captain of the 2nd Offense.

Kevin Hibbard is an unassuming fisherman. He has traveled all over the world, making lengthy stops to fine tune his marlin fishing skills in places like the Great Barrier Reef, New Zealand, the Azores, Cape Verde, Cabo San Lucas and Costa Rica. For the better part of his life, Kona, Hawaii has been his home and the bastion of his fishing education. There may be no finer collection of accomplished fishermen in the world than what you find in the Hawaiian Islands. Kevin has fished with, worked for and learned from many of the great marlin fishing masters. He knows the fishery, he knows the fish and he knows the tools of big fish. Kevin Hibbard is driven to help others achieve success. For all these reasons, Kevin was the marlin fishing skipper that I decided to go with.

Often times, the very best fishing captains started out as either commercial fishermen or mates/wireman and that is exactly what Kevin did. The guy has been all over the world handling untold numbers of big fish. He has wired them and he has driven on them. When you have such a well versed and highly practiced person so willing to share what they know, you are presented with a rather unique opportunity. Never being satisfied with how much you know affords assimilation with new ideas and perspectives. For the fishing side of me, nothing is more rewarding than spending a few days on the water with a real operator.

What a pleasure it was to spend time marlin fishing with Kevin Hibbard, aboard the 2nd Offense. Man, I had a great time. Kevin couldn't have been nicer or harder working. C0mbine that with the open book nature of his personality and I was privy to a fluid exchange of information on all things marlin fishing. I love working with folks where a topic is presented and they just start in as though they are teaching a class. It's like cracking the valve on a fire hydrant. You just give a nudge and information starts flowing. I so look forward to getting back to Hawaii and doing more marlin fishing with Kevin Hibbard.

How well a captain keeps his boat is a sign of how much respect they have for their friends and clients. Nobody wants to step onto a cluttered boat. On the 2nd Offense, every bit of tackle, food, drink and any other item you could imagine is stored away as neat as can be. What a well run boat. I cannot recommend marlin fishing with Kevin Hibbard enough. If you have the chance to get out on the water with him, you will walk away a richer person.

During my time with Kevin, we focused in on a few specific areas of discussion for our In The Spread marlin fishing videos collection. The topics we covered range from locating fish, the dynamics of how currents move fish, structure fishing, ideal atmospheric and water conditions, lures and spreads, tackle and the differences between trolling and boat driving on a fish. Kevin Hibbard takes a simple approach to his fishing. You can see this in how he runs his operation. Taping into his store of operational and knowledge capital, Capt. Kevin Hibbard offers you a masters class on how to simplify your marlin fishing. If you want to catch more fish, what you will find in the videos we made with him, can only make your fishing life more productive. Never stop learning on your journey to fish smarter.

Seth Horne In The Spread,
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