SYNOPSIS: It's north of Auckland...an easy one hour flight by float plane--and when you go?
SYNOPSIS: It's north of Auckland...an easy one hour flight by float plane--and when you go north in New Zealand, it gets warmer... and the Bay of Islands is sub-tropical. It's a country that has always been seafaring since its early beginnings.
This is a barque that used to ply the water in the old days....and the old whale pot is a relic of the era when the bay was a centre for the whaling industry.
Now it's a lodestone for deep sea fishermen who like to try their skill against the big game fish.
A cruise on the bay through the beautiful string of islands illustrates why it is a deep sea fishermen's paradise. The temperature of the water is quite warm, usually over 70 degrees. It's a great feeding ground for the big ones.
As you get closer to Cape Brett, considered the choice spot, a fisherman content with the small fry, holds up his catch.
Another big feeder, the gannett, takes off with a swoop of his wings which measure five-feet across.
On bird rock, gannets rule the roost...they control the top...the terns are in charge of the middle area and the sea gull??? are low man on the totem pole.
Now you approach the feeding grounds...thousands of sea gulls move in for the feast, too, covering the water like snow.
The water is alive with hundreds of thousands of school fish...favourite food for the great game fish--the blue and black marlin, sail fish, king fish. The fish dive under when the skipper guns the motor of the cruiser. But seconds later, when he slows it down, they appear again.
At Russell, home base for deep sea fishing boats, the skipper of the Bay of Islands Swordfish Club raises the flag which lets everyone in the area know that a big one, a blue marlin, is coming in.
When the "Lady Doreen" chugs in...there is an expectant throng to meet it.
The catch is pulled up to the pier by winch....
She goes on the scale....438-pounds. Not the biggest by a long shot...but big enough.
The triumphant fisherman gets his picture taken, his catch recorded in the traditional way.
It will be entered at the Club headquarters along with the other big ones.
But not many will compare to this one--believed to be the second biggest blue ever caught--one-thousand, 117 pounds.
But hope always reigns in the heart of the fishermen who try their luck almost every day at New Zealand's Bay of Islands. Who knows....what they will bring back...with the proper skill...and luck.