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Team Tuna 5-0

Launching out of the Umzimkulu River on Saturday – on the hunt for dorado, led my Dad (Brian Lange) and myself past the quiet water line (not a strike or sign of the westerly loving Dollies), out to 55m for a few bottomfish. A Ferdie Kingfish and a few slinger later, the current got up to max speed…despatching us off to Protea Reef for a tuna or two. Ha ha!

The first strike came in three at once…after a minute my hook came out (drag too tight on the strike), the second was bitten off (must have been a couta or wahoo, possible small shark) and the third also shook it’s hook.

Back for another drift, a shoal of tuna broke the surface – threw the plug – taken as it hit the water…a few minutes later and the small fish right next to the boat…I pulled the hooks out – out of practise! These tuna are mean!

Back up to the Northern pinnacle for a last drift…before dark… a few hundred metres away we see some huge yellowfin jumping clear of the water, sailing through the air in arcs. Chumming and spraying water, we get their attention – my rod screams…really screams!!! This time I did it right and soon the fight was on. Or so I thought. With only two of us on the boat, clearing lines was a mission…not that it affected my fish…which just kept going and going against a 5kg drag. After 200m or more line was gone, I reduced to about 3kg’s…the fish just kept going and going. Another 100m of line gone and the TLD 25 was smoking. Down to 2kg’s drag. Then the fish stopped for a few seconds and I won a metre or two, but it then took off again at very high speed. The 60lb line could not cope any longer – bang it was gone. The line had parted, and on analysis was found to be frayed and damaged. The fish most likely swam off the edge of the inside pinnacle and the line scraped the rocks or something!

So, a nice welcome back to Protea Reef for me! Need practise for that place!

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