Unfortunately my rib stayed home for the weekend.
With a poor forecast, I had pretty much given up any idea of getting offshore.
With that in mind, my 15 yo daughter nagged me into a night dive in the harbour on Saturday night. When we got in the water just on dark, all was good with calm, mild weather. Within a few mins I had found a few sea horses and even an angler fish. I did also spook something big that was feeding on a large marlin head but never got a good clear look.
After a while we could hear what sounded like a boat with the engines revving hard - then flashes of light lit our surroundings. Within minutes the water turned brown and we couldn't see even our hands in front of us. We managed to find our way and made a very slow trip home on heavily flooded roads.
The storm raged through the night doing damage to many homes (as well as freaking out my dog!!). To top it off we had an earth quake through the night - not that you would have noticed as our house was already shaking from the thunder.
After sitting around the house writing off another morning on this forum, I got a call from a mate keen to take his bigger boat offshore. My daughter was keen to get among the stick faces.
Wasn't long before we had some mackerel in the live-bait tank and my daughter dropped one over the side. This bait barely went 20m before the line was flying from the spool with the bail arm open.
With the bail flicked closed the weight of the fish set the circle hook tight into the corner of its mouth. Unlike any other marlin we have ever encountered, it didn't do more than just swim off making us think we had a shark and it would soon be over. Wrong.
Just a steady constant pull soon had around 200m off the reel, the big saragosa 25000 was on around 10-12kg of arm-bustimg drag for my daughter.
It wasn't until around 20 mins into the fight that it decided to do a few jumps. This is where the excitement came in, now knowing she had her first stickface. This was the most stubborn deep fighting marlin my mate had ever seen, in his 100+ billfish.
Though it wasn't a huge fish it took her close to an hour to get it boat-side for tagging. The wind and sea conditions didn't help, for her first of these normally quite quick tag and release fish.
At the end of the day she now has around 15 blisters on her hand and is still wound up like an excited puppy. She's also having quite some fun posting it on Facebook right now.
She's also planning the next bigger one.