Friday, October 28, 2011

A blimmin MAGIC photo

This from the Hunt & Fish forum, its a shot and a half.


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Fly Fishers Inc

Fly Fishers Inc is published and ready for reading. I haven't gone through it yet ... will it more of the same? .....

Monday, October 24, 2011

My proudest moment

I'm not fibbing, today the Justin Bieber Fan Club made her dad the proudest man alive. Her 5th birthday was yesterday, and she scooped a rod & reel and a life jacket from her mum & dad. And then pestered me to take her fishing. After breakfast we made sandwiches and a drink, packed some birthday cake, got the boat ready and then off we went. We put the boat in at Castor Bay and I left JB Fan Club sitting aboard while I went & parked the car. She looked quite content and when I got back 5 minutes later was waiting patiently. We headed across to Rangi to put the fish finder to use...

....not much doing, so after a few changes of position we drifted out over the worm beds. Along with 50 other boats.

Finally in 30 odd metres we began to find sign so baits were deployed along with the drogue.

What happened next tickled me pink. JB FC's rod began to buck and she squealed that she could feel a bite. She fought that fish like the AB's fought the French, finally up popped a beautiful snapper.

I don't know who was more excited. The cell phone was pulled out to inform mummy. The whooping could be heard right across to East Coast Bays. I have never felt so proud. Sorry Richie & the boys, but this was better than any rugby match.

She topped off her effort with another snap & a kahawai.

What a day. What a weekend.

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Next Saturday is the celebration of JB Fan Club's birthday. Then, Dre and I are heading up north to catch up with Simon for a reunion of sorts - well over 20 years since Andre & Simon last caught up when we worked together. Our common purpose is to hunt big snaps at the very best time of the year to do so - end of spring, on the new moon and hence the biggest tides. Si "sort of knows what he's doing" - he catches more large snapper in a year than most anglers catch in a career and his living room is decorated with the world record snapper on 8kg line weight. Its'a massive 14.35kg. We've planned our spots and rigs and we're even taking some lighter stuff for fishing over sand. My 4kg rig will be no match for a big guy in tiger country but in deep water over sand....

Really looking forward to this trip.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Black marlin on fly - solo!!!!

This takes skill - drive the boat, tease the fish, put boat out of gear, make the cast, play the fish, tag the fish... this is just plain sick

Ben "notso" Bright of Bright Outdoors shows what its all about. Just added that to my bucket list....

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Big Angry Fish!

I had arranged with Nik to take dad on a trip for his 70th birthday. Nik had promised 'some changes' in his life, but hadn't really elaborated. Given that The Gulf is currently firing with fish in the 30 - 40m depth range, and big work ups of anchovies, kahawai, gannets, whales and sharks, Nik made the call that Coromandel would be our destination. Sweet, its been ages since I went there. Got away from work on Friday arvo, delayed for 35 minutes at Kopu Bridge... arrived Coro at 4 on the dot. Well, the sight that greeted me... no sign of Saltflyer, but instead this rig stood out.

Fully sponsored, Nik & Milan are now filming a TV series which will appear next year in prime time. 4 years of planning and hard work have culminated in them being able to do this - hats off lads. With the skills these guys have it will be top notch action. Didn't have time to unpack, we needed to launch the "Blue Cockroach" quickly as the tide was receding. We got out at Te Kouma, on an outgoing tide in the face of a stinky SW breeze. The plan was to find some snaps for our dinner.

We were doing something a bit different to how I'd fished before, using "Pirate" jigs on medium braid (7kg). I threw back my first snap; that almost came back to bite us as we struggled to hit a fish after that. Finally under a setting sun I snuck another aboard to keep Nik's snap company - dinner achieved! We pulled the boat out at the Long Bay Motorcamp where we were staying - easy as. That was Friday - fresh snapper for dinner washed down with Heineken. Nice.

Technoviking is my hero

Saturday dawned a bit calmer, the wind coming from NW. We got out about 8, and headed North to look for workups. We headed North.... and further and further... finally after a couple of hours we saw the first gannets working. What followed was more or less consistent fishing and for the next few hours we were hooked into good solid snaps.

Arrrggghh me hearties, them Pirate Jigs are deadly

Feelin the love

Dad with a good fish

We fished on and made pigs of ourselves... been a while since I killed a limit of snapper to be honest. We got to 27 spiked and iced fish and then got the biggest work up of the day...

From where this guy emerged...

That was the last fish of a great day, and he went back to do his bit for the snapper polpulation. It was 2.30 and we were fished out, so decided to head back in, pack up and get on the road home. This type of jigging really opened my eyes - years ago I got hooked up when the metal jigging craze first took off. That craze gradually tapered off and of the past 8 or so years soft plastics have been the rage. The pirate type jig is an elegant extension of the old reapers, lethals etc, and reminded me how efficient a style of fishing it is. No smelly bait, no chewed up soft plastics, easy to control, snapper love them.... but I walked into a shop today and was horrified at the price of the Shimano ones....

Thanks Nik for a great trip, and happy 70th dad.

Watch out for.....
April 2012

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What Trout Want

While digging around the 'net as you do, I found this article by Bob Wyatt. Bob's a thinking man's angler and I'm lucky enough to have a signed copy of his "Trout Hunting" that I won in a fund raising auction.

Now, if you believe in Anthropomorphism then stop reading now. (As in the rainbow jack felt his heart break as his life long mate was dragged from the pool on a cruel hook...). But if you want an insight into why trout gobble stuff, fill your boots.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Trout opening

Oct 1 is opening of the trout season. As usual it was windy, and most likely wet in other areas too. Harking back to last opening just reminded me of how crap trout opening weather normally is. Unlike duck opening where we get hot days, blue skies and sun burn. NZ in spring is wet, no secret there. Í'll leave my trout opening a wee while yet, until I see some sun at least.... got a txt from TT saying that Tarawera had its usual large flotilla. Didn't mention anything about fish though.

.... Just in from TT

Some fine fish from Lucas & TT Snr's.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

"If not for the courage of her fearless crew, The Minnow would be lost (The Minnow would be lost)"

"Battle not with monsters lest ye become a monster; and if you gaze into the abyss the abyss gazes into you."
Got that Tim? No more catching monsters. As for the abyss, well at 5.30 am I sat watching a large low tide combined with a torried NE pounding sharp waves into the Takapuna ramp. Bloody abyss.

Had been a good start to the weekend, with me, Dre, Jeff and Tristan going to the SA Vs. Samoa match. What I can tell you from the TV replay is that none of the atmosphere or tension in the ground comes across the airwaves. It was a stunning second half. Bus transport was superbly organised, the crowd was big and jovial and I thought the match was great.

So hauling ass out of bed knowing that a 25-30Kt NE was howling in was a bit of a call. Sitting at Taka ramp I figured this was going to be a real mission. Called Dre and we made the call to drive to Torpedo Bay inside the harbour and launch there. Tim turned up and off we went. Good call too, even though the ramp was only ankle deep we launched easily and made the turn left... out of the harbour towards Rangi. To the theme song from Gilligan's Isle we set sail and bashed over the the lee of Rangi. It was relatively smooth and we anchored in 7m, deployed burley and got baits in the water. The bite wasn't hot by any means, but when Tim snagged this beast things started looking up...

Nice Big hands and long arms Tim!!!!

 At about 4kg that was a nice fish for the area. Really nice, and soon he followed up with another sweet fish.

We fished on and caught some good sized fish in the 40-50cm range, and I lost something that screamed me into the rocks.... stink.

Andre was happy..

Oh shit yeah, I'm so happy...
Tim was happy...

This is my happy face

I was happy too! happiness is Rangi Channel in a storm and with only two other boats in sight. Now the happy photos above really dont depict the wind all that well so you'll have to take my word for it. As the tide built (huge tides at he moment) the bite died, so we returned to the harbour to try another couple of spots. Soon Andre's rod tip bounced and...

A Carrot!!!!!! Now I for one have never seen a gurnard where we were fishing... so when he turned up another larger specimen we were stoked.

If I hold my breath I may grow wings

We got back to Torpedo Bay ramp at 9.45, grabbed a coffee and went on our way. Thanks lads, a good mission.