The two (make that 5) that got away! 1100 Sat 18th Dec 13:36.69N 17:03.94W
Sat 18 Dec 2010 11:57
shouted 'Fish on!' as one fishing line was caught, the other line whizzed
too faster than you would think possible! Whilst I kept one line busy, Andy started reeling in the other. Nicky grabbed the gaff and as the 1m long dorado was being gaffed, the weight of the fish broke
the gaff in half! The dorado, seeing its chance to escape, leapt in the air on deck
and unfortunately dived back into the ocean. Andy then took over my line.
Another 1m dorado!! Having only half a gaff was going to be a problem, plus
rolly seas made everything more challenging. Andy managed to gaff the
dorado (estimated 10kg) whilst hanging procariously from the stern. Now we
have Andy hugging the huge dorado, whilst trying to get back onto the deck.
Unfortunately the fish won and escaped. Both fish were tempted by Andy's
new home-made lures. Andy made a replacement gaff out of an old duogen drive shaft, then another fish was just too big for our line, then another 2 fish as dusk fell, but again they were too powerful for our lightish line. Lesson learned - Atlantic fish need heavier lines than Med! They were THIS big (honest!)
We passed the shipping lanes at 3am just as the moon set in a yellow haze. 4 huge ships, only one the Takashita Frost on a collision course, the others nearly. Andy radioed but Japanese and Chinese ships seldom answer - however to their credit this one did and although muttering that 'we would not be too close' it quickly became apparent that it was and she altered course 30 degrees to port, just before Andy put his plan B into action. The rules of collision avoidance dictate which ship takes avoiding action, (if both change course they can create a collision) and in this case it was Takashita Frost who had us on her starboard side who had to take action.
We are now 30 miles from Gambia in lowering cloud, doing 6 knots and aim to be anchored before sunset. Nicky is busy sewing mosquito nets to fit our cockpit and hatches.