I have just come back from three days at Port Stephens Game Fishing. No two days were the same and each presented its own challenges. However with perseverance, the rewards were there too.
On Friday I took Matty and his friends out on what was a less than comfortable day. In fact downright uncomfortable but we persevered and finally reached the shelf. There was good bait almost to the surface and a few boats working it. It didn’t take long to jig up enugh to get us going. I thought it was too rough to skip bait so I went with trolling live bait. We soon had our first hit and after nearly drowning the poor angler backing up, tagged a striped Marlin.
The baits were put out again and even before we had all the baits out we had another hit, this was looking good. The elation didn’t last long however, when we saw it was a Whaler around 2 metres long. The worst of it though was it was accompanied by about twenty others. That set the scene for the rest of the day and we ended up tagging four Marlin and two sharks, losing another four Marlin probably to sharks and being bitten off about ten times. It was a rough day and not just because of the seas.
Saturday was the exact opposite. It was dead calm. I opted to go to the ‘Car Park’ and was immediately sorry. We counted sixty five boats bombing the bait. The problem with such a large number of boats out there in a relatively small area is the lack of respect shown by some to boats that are hooked up and fighting. Some of the stories I heard make you wonder…
Anyway, we eventually caught enough bait and joined the crowd bombing the bait schools. The sea was like a mirror and the fish were certainly shy compared to the day before. We ended up with only one Striped Marlin and caught it after I’d given up bombing and started skipping baits.
Sunday was different again with a strong South-Westerly picking up through the day then backing to the South-East late in the day. Again I went out to the ‘Car Park’, the bait was there and the Marlin too, hard not to go back there. I was hoping the weather might have deterred people from going there. As it happened there were less boats but there were still a lot. Some out there were doing well but most were biding their time waiting for a bite.
I left the ‘Car Park’ and was setting the lures and having no deck hand I was helping out on when a Blue Marlin struck ripping the line out of my hand. The reel screamed in protest as a good sized Blue Marlin raced for the horizon. We did get it under control and tagged a 130 kgs. Blue. Over the next two hours we tagged another Blue around 150 kgs. and kept two Mahi Mahi of 10 an 12 kilo’s.
So, that was the week-end, three really diverse days. Next week it is tournament time. There are Stripes, Blacks and Blues as well as all the other Gamefish and that is Port Stephens Game Fishing, anything could and can happen…