I just returned from an adventure to the far north fishing out of Whangaroa, where my quest continued to try and catch a Marlin from the JAF Surtees 4.95, Critter Collector.
The mission started Sunday morning with Simon Barnett and I heading north and arriving at the boat ramp at Whangaroa just in time for a late afternoon troll. The car park was packed with keen anglers but we found a sneaky park and headed wide. We passed a lot of boats working the 130m behind Stephenson Island where there had been a hot bite the day before, we had decided to make our way wide to the outer knoll on the 500m line to see if there was anything lurking in the late evening
We were welcomed by hundreds of dolphins but nothing hanging with them so we worked the area for couple hours before making our way back to the ramp while thinking up a new game plan for Mondays mission.
Our plan was to try and secure some livebaits and work the area behind Stephensons Island. The 4:30am alarm rolled around and a fresh brew of coffee was swiftly inhaled before making our way to the ramp. It was a chilly morning with 10 knots of SE which made for a short sharp sea but the Surtees dealt to that no problems, Arriving the water was very green and cold, but we stuck to the plan and soaked some baits for a couple hours without a sniff.
At around 10am we decided to move and look for some warmer water out wide, we made our way toward the 200m line when I decided to have a sleep on the deck. Simon assured me he would wake me up with the reel clicker if a fish bit, he was not lying, we hit a nice patch of water and a solid stripe marlin glided into the gear and knocked down the short rigger, I woke up all in a daze with drool in my beard but the fish had gone, Ah that was our chance. I then grabbed the main line to put it back in the rigger when the fish came back up and smashed the lure again right out of my hands and started to jumping right next to the boat.
After a hectic couple minutes of clearing the gear we started to get some line back but we soon realized the fish had gone, once we go the lure back we noticed the leader was all beaten up so the fish must have been bill wrapped, we worked the area for a few more hours as we discussed what had happened when another fish popped its head up on the same lure but didn’t bite.
That was the end another mission to the far north trying to get the first Marlin off the Surtees, having a bite and raising a couple of fish definitely increased our confidence but until next time.
Words and Photo's from Aaron Styles.