Josh and I returned to the Hauraki Gulf with the intention of giving the resident Kahawai and Kingfish a hard time… well, a couple of them at least!
I continued with my mission to use the fly while Josh focussed on hooking a Kingfish on any method that worked. He kept his options open with an assortment of baits including frozen bait, fresh fish, softbaits and lures.
The morning began with an extraordinary encounter – a large pod of dolphins hammered a huge school of baitfish while Gannets whirled and dived from above. Fishing took a back seat while we enjoyed the show. We kept our distance but all of a sudden the dolphins turned and headed directly toward the boat. They may have passed by the boat quickly but their memory will stay with me for a long time.
On to the fishing. While the fly was successful and tempted a nice sized Kahawai it was a fresh piper the won the day. Josh flicked the bait into the path of a hunting Kingie and induced an aggressive take. The biggest issue was the gear… in the rush to get a bait in front of the fish Josh had quickly grabbed an older set up not intended for these hard fighting fish. The kingie was played and landed while being serenaded in the background by a creaking reel! We also had to tail the fish because I’d forgotten to pack the net.