With the NZSFC SIMRAD Nationals just on the horizon, those entering are researching like frenzied sharks circling on any snippet of information, and hint of a tall story, or the one that did or didn’t get away. A “Clash” tune comes to mind, “Should I stay or should I go now, if I go there will be trouble, if I stay it will be double, you got to let me know, Should I stay or should I go? This indecision is really bugging me!”
A great report from the top of the South Island. A good Southern man Scott Heywood and three mates shot out of Westhaven inlet, south of Fairwell Spit to catch blue cod and crayfish, as you do down there. They went south once over the bar and steamed down to Kaharangi reef, where they caught a feed of cod then went into the light house for a dive. The water was west coast brown and 16 degrees and 15 metres deep. Scotty was putting on his tank and a Striped Marlin tailed past. They took off after it putting on a Marlin lure that he brought 6 years ago, after coming out with me, onto his grouper rod tld25 and towed it in front of it. The Marlin lit up, smoked the lure on its second shot and took off jumping around the sea, Fifty minutes later they traced it, gaff in and its now hanging in his Apple cool store in Motueka. I must say Scotty is an exceptional hunter gatherer, but this is extraordinary. He would be the only blue cod fisherman with a sharp hooked Marlin lure in his tackle box down there. Well done mate!!!
Manukau SFC; Team “Backlash” have got 5 Striped Marlin from five shots over five days fishing, Team “Dark Horse” have tagged and released seven to date for the season and counting. Last but no means least team “Omega 3” got a beauty weighing 147.8kg.
Waihau Bay; on the 02 February a new pin fish caught by Matt Spratt on the boat “Club Talk”. A nice Blue Marlin weighing 225.3kg, arrived in time to wet the interest of the locals for the Nationals. Same day 02/02 out from
Whitianga a 224 Blue Marlin was weighed in.
Whakatane; Te Kaha boat “Joint Venture” with angler Jim Tomblin came in with a very nice 300.8kg Black Marlin a first for the club there, and a first for NZ this season.
Anniversary weekend on the Barrier with the Warkworth Game Fish Club; “it doesn’t get any better than that” was a consistent comment at the WGFC 2016 One Base. There was stunning weather and unprecedented numbers of gamefish. Combine that with a massive prize pool and a bunch of great people and BOOM, that’s a One Base we’ll remember for a long time! The weeks leading into the comp were ideal, consistent northerly and easterly breezes. Loads of hook ups not far off the Barrier and the Mokes, including plenty of skippies. 112 anglers on 30 boats tagged and released 22 Marlin and 9 Marlin were weighed. No one can remember a ‘Barrier tournament cracking double marlin digits, let alone over 30! The 60% tag and release rate is to be commended. There was also a Spearfish, Yellowfin Tuna, and some sharks sporting new jewelry (tags). Free jumpers and Marlin just cruising on the surface were frequent sights, and the Marlin seemingly unfazed by the large amount of boat traffic. Friday was the stay away night, some boats put up with a slight wobble at the top of the Barrier. The few that overnighted at the Mokes got less sleep, but it was way better than what we were used to in this event. Saturday dawned like the day before. Yup, a pinch confirmed we were not dreaming! Another day in paradise chasing gamefish. Again there was a distinct bite time and the radio ran hot with hookups around 11.00am to 12.30 pm.
Tutukaka; Channel 4 reports from face book; the vessel “Slipknot II” went out this morning and had tagged and released 3 striped marlin before lunch on February the 3rd.
Kawhia; The end of January produced a 149.5kg striped marlin for Dion Higgie fishing from “Hawkeye”. Remember last issue where “Enchanter” had that battle with a giant Broadbill and lost after long hours. Well Tim Scott from Silverdale was out on “Enchanter” over the past week and witnessed round two of Broadbill mayhem. Six and half hours later they boated his estimated 300kg plus specimen. Being up at the Kings with the hot weather it was cut up and put on ice. Photos showed it was indeed a beast.
Waihau Bay; Matilda went two from two today on Feb 2 with a Blue Marlin estimated 250kg tagged. For the three days fishing they had 6 T/R Marlin, 5 Striped Marlin and the Blue Marlin. 100% tag ratio!
Waihau Bay; 04/02 – a nice Striped Marlin weighing 147.5 kg off the vessel “Pacific Hunter” to angler Chris Garland.
Waihau Bay; 05/02 – Nicole Thomas had a great day, with not one, but two Short Billed Spearfish. The first weighing 24.5kg and the other slightly smaller off the vessel “Lite Em Up”. A great effort, not many can say that they’ve caught two let alone one on the same day.
Drum roll please, 06/02 Tutukaka reporting the small boat “Indecision” went out with two people on board and came home at 4.30pm to weigh at Tutukaka a 363.8kg (800 pound) Black Marlin for angler Craig Johnson. The biggest Black Marlin to date for the season, and in contention to win “Fisherman of the Year” trophy for the heaviest gamefish caught.
Gladiator reported “we ambled our way north with the weather supposed to be easing, it did a little, got to the King bank and had tagged 4 Striped Marlin before lunch”. So where am I going to be fishing in the 2016 SIMRAD Nationals, in my office, checking all competition data coming in and going out. I last fished it in 1996 and did very well, so I know the anticipation and excitement this event brings. BRING IT ON!
Don’t forget the measurement section in the Nationals as well. Managed by the one and only Grant Blair, this becomes more popular year after year. For more information on the measured section click here.