Sometimes the solo mission can be a daunting prospect. Launching and retrieving the boat seemingly becomes 50 times more difficult (especially in the infamous Coffs Harbour boat ramp surge) and it’s just not as fun without those you fish with regularly.
On the other hand the solo session can be the perfect time to operate a little selfishly. You can do exactly what you’d like to do (like chase Spaniards) and do it to the beat of your own drum. You can also bond with your boat and equipment, ironing out any of the ‘disagreements’ you’ve had in the past, hahaha!
4:30am alarm… farrrrrrrrrrk the boys (3yr old and a 9mth old) have woken us up at least 50 times (lol -this may be a slight exaggeration)…
5:00am hit the boat ramp and it is PACKED… slot in to the queue and wait patiently…
5:15am hit a local reef with a stick bait on dawn, everything looks good, every cast is made with nervous anticipation… No luck.
5:45am hit local bait ground, 30 boats operating at a fever pitch to get their bait and get fishing. Load up the bait tank with 30+ slimes and motor!
6:30am first bait has it’s jewellery on (wire mackerel rig) and is deployed…
6:31am spotty hits the deck Yewwwwwww!!!
6:35am slimey number two is dressed to impress and deployed accordingly…
6:40am spotty two hits the deck 2x Yewwwwww!!!
In between all of this action the boys from Team Rangasfishing have managed a fish or two, Spaniards I believe.
7:00am on the troll with two baits out this time (things had slowed down so a second bait could be deployed)… Get cut off by another boat, lad yells obscenities, wave and head to another honey hole away from the said noise.
8:00am working an area that usually produces in tandem with a local pro, not stirkes, start to consider options… Add sea water to ice box to slurry the beautiful spotties already covered in ice.
8:15am decide to head wider than ever before in search of unfished (that morning) ground… Sound some fish “hmmmm looks promising”, add more water to the slurry andddddd the downrigger goes OFF!!! YEWWWWWW…
8:16am winding in downrigger bomb whilst fighting fish, Captain Black Beard Snapper Slayer (custom rod) goes OFF!!! YEWWWWWW… Holy farrrrk, now what??? Pick the biggest fish (guess that is) and holster the other… “Yeah that’ll work….” now stay calm.
8:25am spot Spaniard number one and insert gaff accordingly… Harder than it looks with one hand!
8:27am remove rod two from holster, fish still ON! Fight time…
8:35am spot Spaniard two and repeat 8:25am.
8:37am solo double fist spanno dance with ‘YEWWWWWWWW’s’ all-round.
8:39am smaller spanno’s teeth connect with right thumb… We have a BLEEDER!!!
9:30am at home with my awesome wife and kids, coffee and a filleting knife YEWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!
By The Gills
By the Gills is a fishing apparel supplier established in 2015. We supply anglers with practical fishing attire along with stylish street wear, with a key emphasis on quality.
Designed by fisho’s for fisho’s the company strives to provide impeccable service and prompt delivery.
Name: Sam 'Poppy' Gilchrist. Born: Singleton NSW 1983. NRL Team: Newcastle Knights. Favourite Species: Pagrus Auratus - Snapper. Blurb; A lover of all things ocean. Whether it be wetting a line, holding my breath diving or paddling into a few waves the sea is my passion! Along...