It became apparent that several guys this season decided to extend there fuel budgets and put some serious time out there all being rewarded for some long hours. One guy that springs to mind is Tom from ‘Mad Max ‘ he has had an absolute stunner of a season not only in the Mercury Bay but following the hot bites all over the Upper North Island so full credit must go to him. The Aldie rise seemed to be the focus for many a boat as temps were holding in the low twenties and with that it held consistent water quality and great bait sign. We found that almost daily we were hooking marlin whilst targeting kingfish on both the 70 and pa five. They seemed to be around the 60 mtr mark so they weren’t always near the surface interestingly. Owen managed to get one to stick and his clients were treated to a fantastic thrill. The odds are heavily stacked against you whilst fishing on jig gear but with a bit of luck and skill every now and then you get to pull it off.
Mahimahi proved to be abundent on the 250 mtr line and mostly congregating around clumps of floating debri. The tuna made there presence known throughout March also and I’m sure anyone who has a passion for gamefishing will be stoked with this seasons re-appearence of our elusive yellow barrels. The marlin slowed off a little late into March with alot of lost fish due to a poor hook up. I think often with large amounts of bait and healthy fish numbers they often become picky and play with the lure rushing up bill slapping the gear from behind verses hurdling in from the side or underneath swipping and turning 90 degrees and running. Generally these are the fish that stick. Broadbill have been on the improve with a fair few fish coming from out wide. Knowledge of the daytime fishery around the Mayor knolls and behind Great Barrier is now very public and its great to see so many trailer boats giving these gladiators a try. March, April and May are the pick of the months as the Broadbill are feeding on the pup bluenose so if you can find large quantities of these then generally thats a likely place to try for a sword. These fish are often found near the bottom during the day between 250 and 500 mtrs in depth.
Well March has fired well, mostly south of the Mercs, as reports coming from Cuvier were very eratic. I guess typically the fish have beeen in great condition with the average around 14 to 16kg but we have had copious amounts of fish in the high twenties coming onboard all 3 boats getting a picture taken and then being spiraled back down headfirst into the depths they came from. Epic adventures as a company has a huge respect for our fishery and we are very selective about the fish we take and the quantities we allow to be taken. We are very conscious to be constantly looking for new ground and securing the best for our clients. This area is an absolute treasure and research is starting to tell us our kingfish stocks are very strong.
There has been great snapper fishing out on the outer reefs and the live baits have been getting hammered somedays by snapper before our greenbacks even get a chance to see the bait. Inshore there seems to be loads of snapper. The 50mtr line off hahei has had very healthy stocks that were pretty consistent.
Looking forward to April I’m picking the water temps will be on the decline but dont be fooled the gamefish will still be around for the few keen guys still left with a fuel budget to chase them. You may find a live bait drifted or slow trolled over the pins etc to be a better option. Concentrate on where you know there’s some bait. The kingies will be very strong around areas like the 70, the pa five and the g spot. Im expecting there to be some absolute hogs to grace our boats so keep an eye out for that. I’m also expecting further south will be equally as good and I’m keen to explore those outer pins onboard Epic. The emphasis will shift a little as it cools and some lovely hapuka will be caught very regulary too. So if you don’t have access to our coastline and aren’t as yet booked on one of our vessels then get in quick as spots are filling fast. You can book online and we will see you out there.