June 4 2006, the weather forecast was for small craft warnings and 30KPH+ winds. So do I do? -Go fishing!
This trip was with my neighbor, Iain Burnell, a keen Snapper fisherman, who was hoping the snapper had started to make their appearance on the Gold Coast. -Something they do as soon as the water temperature and currents drop off.
We left about 6:00am and headed directly to his favorite snapper spot. The wind was already blowing pretty good but the ocean hadn’t picked up yet. After a quick anchor set (pretty strange for us) by 7:00am we got some whole pilchards the water and immediately hooked up with a small snapper- very good start for the first drop! Next drop we caught a Dart followed by another little snapper…okay lots of action but not the correct size! About the same time I start wondering what we should be doing differently Iain’s rod doubles over and his line starts heading toward New Zealand – Now we are talking!!! After 10 minutes of fighting we have a ~50lb Spanish Mackerel under the boat, unfortunately one look at the boat it made one more run and Iain’s trace wasn’t up to those nasty teeth! Next drop we both hook up with two more Spanish mackerel this time both fish snapped our lines! At this point the wind was howling and we thinking about calling it a day when Iain asked “what’s that in the water?”
I didn’t see anything but threw some bait in the water to see it whatever it was to the boat. Low and behold it was a bunch of big yellow fin tuna circling behind the boat like a pack of dogs –YEE HAW! We both reeled our lines in and plunked our baits in the school and ….NOTHING! okay… I threw more bait in and again bam! All of it disappears! Thinking it was the fishing weight or swivel I grab my Bream Rod (light weight fresh water rod) tie on a big circle hook directly to the mainline and toss in another bait. Within two seconds a gull was diving towards the bait with me thinking “damn bird” but never finished the thought as a big Yellow Fin grabbed the bait and proceeded to show why hooking a tuna on a light fresh water rod was not a good idea….15 minutes later the fish was in the ice chest and I had taken the weight off the heavier snapper rod and was hoping to go for round two…but no luck despite the fact the tuna were still ther eand eating bait –without hooks<g>. Back to the light fresh rod and an immediate hook up – to an even bigger tuna –oh uh….This time after 20+ minutes both me and the fish were tired, Iain losing yet another big Spaniard and the ocean building it was definitely coming up so it was time to go home – not bad a day considering it still wasn’t 10:00am