Funny old thing, fishing. We weren’t sure we’d do any on this trip, never having fished before, but we inherited a rod and reel with the boat and Martin passed it fit for duty. He promptly proved it by catching a decent-sized wahoo.
So when we arrived in Gran Canaria off we went to a fishing shop where we bought a new rod & reel, some spare line and a selection of lures, mostly pink plastic squids. We also popped into the off-licence for a cheap bottle of vodka, a splash of which which sends them to fish heaven almost instantly.
So each morning, assuming the seas are not too rough, the rain not continuous and enough crew awake to be able to deal with a catch, we set two lures two or three boat-lengths behind the boat. We then go back to our normal activities e.g. navigating, boat repair, boat maintenance, sleeping, radio net calls, cooking, reading, writing blog posts, FaceTiming family etc.
A few indeterminate hours or days later, we are startled into action by the sound of one of the lines running out as a fish takes the lure. At this stage, five things can happen:
- The fish immediately rejects the lure and disappears.
- The fish bites the line and takes the lure to the deep.
- We are too slow to get to the reel, the line runs all the way out, breaks, and the fish gets the lure and 150 ft of line.
- We battle the fish to the side of the boat whereupon it thrashes up and jumps the hook.
- We successfully gaff and land the fish. Note this only has a 20% probability…
Assuming we land the fish, we then give it a dash of vodka, bleed it (increases flavour), gut it and fillet it. Sounds easy but probably takes 40 min or so.
Yesterday we heard the lines running out and both lures had been taken! The fish on the starboard line took option 1 and vanished but we managed to land the other one, which was a magnificent tuna.
Oh, I’ve missed a sixth possibility after a bite: the fish becomes bait for a bigger fish. Nice work, Tim!