A major and exciting part of my grandfather’s upcoming aviation history biography is the big game sportfishing that he did at the Cabo Blanco Fishing Club in Peru in the 1950s and 60s.
This was a legendary time in sportfishing, and Col. C. J. Tippett, known as Tip, was at the heart of it as he served on the Board as an honorary member. He was the club manager, and he fished alongside some of the biggest names in billfishing history.
On March 2, 1959, Tip landed a 240 pound Bluefin Tuna on rod and reel, which was not a world record, or even a club record… but it was a delicious source for the Club’s gourmet dinner menu. This was not his first and only Bluefin Tuna catch, he brought in so many fish that his granddaughers now feel compelled to contribute to the IGFA’s effort toward the Billfish Conservation Act.
It was a Monday, so Tip must have been pulling a long weekend away from his day job in one of the highest civil aviation posts of the era, working for the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
The Bluefin Tuna is a predatory fish and eats smaller fish, as well as squid. Tip’s usual bait was bonito, caught on hand lines by the boat crew or Tip’s daughter, Sue, when she joined her Dad at the Club. The bluefin tuna was not only huge, as tall as Tip and twice as wide, it was also a rocket. The fish can move incredibly fast through the water and puts up a stunning fight when hooked.
Back in Tip’s day, conservation was not yet part of the big game fishing world, but many of the millionaire members of the Cabo Blanco Fishing Club went on to lead conservation efforts. The fish that Tip caught in the 1950s and 60s would sell today for thousands of dollars each.
The book, as well as magazine articles about his story, are coming out soon… and I’ve got a mailing list building for people who want to be notified when the stories come out.
I never, ever, use that mailing list for any emails other than my own, and you can sign up here.
The stories of the Club in Tip’s memoir have me hooked tight.