A plan was hatched a week ago to head out wide of Tairua situated on the east coast of the Coromandel Peninsula, in search of a Marlin. Reports of game fish being caught in the general area had been few and far between, and the better water temps and blue water appeared to be heading off the coast beyond the reach of my small boat. The weather and fishing reports for the north of the country were way more favorable, but due to the distance to travel and the available time we had, plus the favorable conditions forecast for beyond the Alderman Islands, Tairua was locked in as the destination.
Alarms where set for Sunday morning, and ignored! we departed the Paku boat ramp at a rather leisurely hour of 0730 am. After negotiating the bar at the harbour entrance, spirits where some what dampened by the easterly swell running ashore. Were we going to get out wide? The swell was not forecast so maybe not. We proceeded to spend some time trying to locate some Jack Mackerel to drop over the pins northwest of the Alderman Islands for Kingfish on our way out wide. Well we could not find the Jack Mackerel so we slowly made our way out to the pins to try and tempt the Kingfish using jigs.
On arrival at the pins the bait was located on the sounder and jigs were dropped into it. After numerous drops and retrieves it became apparent that the Kingfish were not on the bite. By this stage the sea conditions had improved, so we set the gear and headed east at 7 knots.
For the record the lures run today were:
Short Corner : Bonze D Shackle
Long Corner : Bonze Undertaker
Short Rigger : Bonze Outlaw
Long Rigger : Bonze Get me some of that
Shotgun : Zuker Zucchini
The further we went the better the water temp got, and at the 350m mark there appeared to be a reasonable amount of bait showing on the Lowrance fish finder. So we worked that area for an hour or so before we continued east on our trolling course. Sea conditions were perfect as we arrived at the 500m mark and the water nice and blue. The sea temperature was now up to 21 degrees.
Weed and sea foam directed us to distinctive current lines in this area which we worked in and out of, hoping to find a Marlin, but everything seemed very quiet, with few signs of marine life.
So after an hour and a half or so of debating whether to head south or north, we headed south as the SST`s had shown better colour and temperature water the day before.
In around 320m of water we came across a launch who were hooked up to a Marlin, if only we were a bit earlier !! In the distance to the south we could see birds working, so proceeded in that general direction. On arrival, there were hundreds of Gannets and Dolphins feasting on the hapless bait fish. It was moving rather quickly so we gave chase until the Dolphins had the bait cornered, then pulled the lures around the fringes of the workup, hoping a Marlin was also among the action.
Our pursuit of this workup continued for a good 20kms and we ended up in 150m due east of the Aldermans!! Even though we swore there must be Marlin or Tuna among it, we failed to hook anything.
With the wind starting to build we regretfully pulled the lures in and made way for home. In the sloppy sea it was hard going and with plenty of spray, we were absolutely soaked.
We covered 150 kms on the water today using 77 litres of fuel. I am pretty happy about how everything panned out and enjoyed being out wide in the good weather. Hopefully next time the fish play ball!!