Darwin Fishing Trip

Our boat for the day
(Click on the image above to see pics of Cullen Bay and two enlarged images of the fishing trip. The rest were on the phone!)

It's been a long time since I've been fishing in tropical waters. The last time would of been in Wewak, Papua New Guinea in 1983. Consequently, it was with great excitement that I approached the Cullen Bay Ferry Terminal in Darwin to board one of Arafura Blue Charter's boats for a half day trip. I was hoping to get into some Jewfish or Spanish Mackerel out on the reefs.

After a bit of a mishap, the result of waiting at the wrong boat, along with six other blokes, we finally got going and headed out to sea.  Our first stop would of been about an hour out to sea and you couldn't see land in any direction. Time to get the lines wet.  I attached some blue bait and some squid and dropped it over the side.  It was rapidly carried to the bottom down at 35 metres with somewhat of a large sinker and all of us on the boat awaited the fish to bite.

I'm not sure if it was this occasion or the next but disaster certainly struck.  I got onto something quite large and Ash the skipper is saying that it's a big "Jewie". So here's me winding up the line as fast as I can go and he tells me to put it under my arm as it would be easier.  Just as I do so the fish takes a dive for the bottom, the tip of the rod goes down, the butt of the rod goes up and on the way flips my iPhone 7 out of my pocket and into the deep.  There was nothing to do but keep winding the line. Stopping now wasn't going to bring the phone back. It was busily descending to the murky depths of the ocean.

I finally get the fish to the top to find it isn't a Jewfish at all but a large Catfish. Useless eating I am told and Ash promptly flips him off the hook and sends him back from whence he came.  Very disappointing.  Still there was next time and that turned out to be another Catfish!  Nothing for the table here so we all pulled up our lines and moved to another spot.

At the next spot I pulled in two Golden Trevally which I was also told were terrible eating fish. Both these were dispatched back to the deep as well.  I remember up in PNG we did used to eat these but they certainly weren't a prized table fish.  We moved on again and I caught two small school shark about 400mm in length. Everyone was catching the same so we moved to another spot.

That was my catch for the day, but some of the other blokes were luckier and there were two nice Jewfish landed.

Turned out to be a very expensive day for me having to replace my phone. Still, there's no point getting angry about it. That won't bring the phone back.

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