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Catching fish on a rough day.

Written by Tim on August 8th, 2016.      0 comments

This winter has been exceedingly frustrating from a kayak fishing point of view - lots of wind and rain, with fantastic calm periods that always fall in the middle of the week. I was desperate to get out for a fish so I decided a mission down the coast was in order. Late on Saturday I put out a call to the boys and Morm responded with enthusiasm, but was a little sceptical about the forecast and early start. "We'll be right". I replied. "I'll drive so you can see the whole way, and we can tuck into the rocks at Omaio and hide away from the wind."

Sunday dawned wet, windy, and cold. Exactly what the forecasted had predicted, but it wasn't enough to deter us keen kayakers. After a 2.5 hour drive down the coast, we were launching at 7.30. The bay was completely flat (as predicted) but beyond the headland we could see the whitecaps rolling past (as predicted). Launching in the shelter of the rocks, we were quickly out to the headland and found a spot to anchor up. My preferred location in 15m of water was a little too exposed so we found ourselves about 100m from the rocks and in 12m of water. Even in this close to land we still got buffeted by the wind, and on several occasions I had to hunker down as a 30+knot gust ripped through.

With burly pumping, a chunks of pillies wafting down, I knew it wouldn't bee too long before fish arrived. It was about 30 minutes after anchoring that the first snapper (about 30cm long) took my straylinned pilchard and quickly found it's way into my chillpod. "Well, they're hear." I yelled across to Morm, who was anchored about 5m away. This was while he was wrestling with a bottom snag so he wasn't too impressed! A short time later I picked up my second rod to check the bait. On the second wind up, the weight came on and I was hooked up to a freight train. It appeared this fish had eaten my bait but in the cold conditions he hadn't gone anywhere and it was only my retrieval that set the hook. After a solid battle up came a stunning snapper of around 3.5kg. This is a nice fish on any day, especially in the middle of winter, so I was stoked...Morm wasn't as he was stuck on the bottom again haha. 

Over the next hour another two fish came up, and another good one was lost next to the yak (which was gutting). The second fish was around 2.5kg so I was reasonably happy with the results so far. Morm had also caught a couple of kahawai so it was good to see him on the board. Unfortunately the wind had swung a bit more west and was hooking more into the bay. Around this time I hooked up to a beast and he soon took me into the reef. I was stuck there and had no chance of getting him in. Eventually I pulled the hooks and we decided to call it a day. This was when I realised my anchor was well and truely stuck. No amount of paddling and pulling could release it, and after several near capsizes I decided to cut my losses and leave it if you're in the area and fancy a challenge look for a milk bottle connected to an anchor rope haha.

We finished the day at the Te Kaha hotel chatting to some locals who were already drunk at 11am haha... they're an interesting breed on the coast!  

Location: Omaio (2.5 hours from Tauranga)
​Fishing spot: 12m deep out at the western end of the bay
​Fishing Method: straylinned whole pilchards on a 2-hook rig with 1/4oz ball sinker
Extras's: lots of oily burley (I used salmon) and pichard chunks 

Tim Taylor with his snapper caught from his kayak
fish caught from a kayak


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