A storm brought the island to a halt for a couple of days but we were glad the cyclone missed us. The timing was perfect for our Polish guests to land in Port Blair. A happy group of friends, who had fished together in different parts of the world, with their last experience being the mighty sturgeon. We welcomed Greg, Martin, Chris and Wodek with a hearty South Indian meal, talked about the fish they hoped to encounter in the Andamans and then proceeded to set up their gear.
At the start of our trip we decided to head up north and have a go at some of our favourite jigging and popping spots. Geared up with Racepoint rods and Shimano Saragosas, the excitement began. It took only a little while for the anglers to get a hang of what they were supposed to do, before the GT started hitting the poppers. With everyone landing their fair share of GT while popping, we turned into some jigging areas and pulled fair fish from below. Among them was a nice Yellowfin Tuna landed by Chris. We witnessed a beautiful sunset over Neil Island before returning to Port Blair.
The anglers were on the boat at 6 am the next morning and headed south to another of our favourite spots. Greg was into a decent GT almost immediately after witnessing an explosive take on the surface. The fish fought hard and he did well to keep the pressure on and eventually land it. Kowal did well to pull in a shark while jigging and then a grouper apart from his 3 GT while popping. Martin and Chris added to the mixed bag with their Yellowfin Tuna. Greg’s GT was the largest fish for the day coming in at over 25 kilos.
Day three was to be the best day of their trip with constant action wherever we decided to fish. The excitement peaked with a multiple hook up of three GTs for Kowal, Chris and Greg and a shark at the end of Martin’s line to add to the frenzy while they were popping. The banter lasted a while till all fish were dropped back into the sea after a brief photo op with their friends from across the globe and yes, we did manage to get the shark on board as well to pose with this excited group of anglers. I am not too sure what the Polish word is for shark but I think I heard it being yelled more than a dozen times during the fight. It was difficult to click pics while laughing uncontrollably but eventually I did manage. We were all in splits with Martin’s reaction when he realized he had hooked a shark. Between the four anglers they managed to land 24 fish and were treated to some great scenery just off one of the most beautiful islands in the Andamans.
The next two days saw the winds pick up just a wee bit but but nothing too uncomfortable to fish in, though Invisible Bank was surely off the map this time. The fish were still there for the taking further south so that’s where we headed. The group was more keen to jig but with bait schools on the surface, the temptation was too much to pass by and soon the anglers were grabbing their Racepoints and heading for their popping stations. Strangely a couple of big GT followed the poppers right up to the boat but would not attack. Yet at times the popper would barely hit the surface and get hammered. Kowal would always chant “AGAAA” before he cast and this ensured no one had hooks embedded in their scalp! I see our boat boys have learned this word now.
Having landed more than 20 fish on day 4, the group wanted to try something a little different on their final day of the trip so we suggested some bait fishing as well. We prepared ourselves with squid and small mackerel and set out early morning. With lots of fish showing up on the sounder we expected some good action. However, the strong currents prevented the bait from reaching the shoals below and we had to once again resort to jigging to start catching fish. We did manage to present our bait in shallower jigging spots though and caught some grouper and snapper. In between, we cast poppers and Chris hooked another decent GT that tried heading for the rocks; but by now the angler had turned pro. A steady fight was underway and the boat gently backed away into more open water. A couple of minutes later we had some nice pics of the fish and sent him back home. A nice specimen, close to the 30kilo mark, that left a nice smile on Chris’s face. By now the clouds had started to build thick and it was threatening to come down hard. We quickly headed out to our final fishing spot in pouring rain and finished off our final session while the rain continued. A few smaller GT, one snapper, a couple of missed strikes and another fishing trip with good friends had come to an end. Thanks for the memories and the good humour guys.
Rods: Racepoint 100 to 250,Shimano T curve and Jig W Rex
Reels: Shimano Saragosas 10000, 1400, 1800 and 20000
Lures: Craft bait, Ripple fisher and Cubera poppers and Stickbaits
Giant Trevally, Yellowfin Tuna, Dogtooth Tuna, Bluefin Trevally, Red Snapper, Grouper, Coral trout, Black tipped Reef Shark, Bonito, Rainbow Runner and Mackerel.