Captains Log by Sean Lange
11 August 2011
Ravic, Jaric, Claudo and Shad
The burly tattooed gentlemen marched into Tofo Tofo Loja where we are shopping. I spot a fishing rod on the car, and spring into action – “What you catching Bru?”To which – “Anything that moves China!”, he replies.
So, we go fishing. The four ous from Joburg and us became family for a week, as we went in search of “anything that moves”. Starting in Tofo, the first rod only goes after 2 hours or so. It does that weird thing for a deep X-Rap. It kind of goes once, bounces back up, and then goes again. No real drama. Then once the boat is slowed all hell breaks loose. Wahoo! After the lame strike, this fish went ape. Huge splashes and high speed runs this way and that, until finally settling into the wahoo pattern. Luckily the crew were on top of things and cleared the lines, and when the smoke cleared – Renske had the rod! I dunno how she pulled it, but the four bewildered clients could only encourage her on!
Anyway at this stage we had decided on the daring break from Dodge City (Tofo) to Pomene, towing boat. Our convoy headed out a bit late on Sunday, and we awoke to Pomene at it’s best. Waves just peeling down the point, not another surfer for 100ks, and fish going beserk behind the backline. You can only surf this place so much, so an exhausted team assembled for an afternoon assault. Word around the fire that night was that skipjack tuna might just be the best eating fish of all. Gabriel the Frenchman stated this outright, and everyone concurred, me too, as I chuckled to myself reflecting that we never took a bonnie home ever, thinking it was dog meat or something sub standard. Truth is certainly stranger than fiction, I mean we used get 50c a kilo for yellowfin back in the 80’s, whilst getting R5 for couta and bottoms?
The sun set and rose again, leaving us all transfixed by the light show and entertainment the night skies performed in between. Waves perfect again, Jaric and Chad now full converts and learning to surf at one of the most perfect little waves in the world. We left the boat beautifully moored in one of the natural mini lagoons Pomene beach specially provides, so after coffee and brekkie, had our hatch full of live karapauw and screamed down to Sylvia Reef, where some bigger couta were reported by my sources. But there were none. We were however kept busy by a smaller couta caught by Claudo on Rapala again, and then the odd catch of a Natal Snoek, Queen Mackeral er whatever you want to call it – Snoek smashed the huge Redhead X-Rap, over all the daisy chains and tiny X-Raps we were swimming so beautifully. Truth vs Fiction again. We never got a bonnie small enough to swim, they were averaging about 6 or 8kg’s and too tasty for the crew, they just wanted to eat any bonnie they saw! But the live karapauw never yielded a fish, except for one strike on the very bottom, that never hooked up – came back full of teeth marks but still alive and kicking!
Fishing the Pomene Estuary is one of the highlights of my life here, and this afternoon was no different. Although we were bust up, or never hook up solidly most of the time, the flatheads appeased us with non stop action. Then when I drifted the boat into a huge underwater tree in the mouth, Claud went vas on the King. But it innihalated him. Straight around the tree and gone. We gave chase getting the line clear only to have it head straight back into the tree again. After a good few minutes Claudo was winnig the duel, when the hook mysteriously popped out. Check the photo taken at this exact moment!
All in all, it’s been a good run of fish and marine wildlife, and we now include trips to Pomene in our offerings. By sea. Give us a call on +258 84 500 15 50, or drop me a line on sean@the sardine.co.za