The long-awaited lockdown ‘level 2’ is almost upon us. Under Level 2, use of power-driven vessels is permitted, which means fishers and boaties up and down the country will be getting set to get out on the water.
For many of us, getting our boats out again after lockdown will be similar to getting them out again after winter for Labour Weekend, when a number of recreational fishers take the cover off and blow out the cobwebs.
Here are some things to consider before dropping your boat in the drink at Level 2:
Check the weather (and the bite times!)
Some of our favourite weather websites are:
www.metservice.com, www.windy.com and www.swellmap.co.nz
Don’t forget to check the bite times too: https://www.fishing.net.nz/fishing-advice/bite-times/
Remember the ‘road rules’
Pass other vessels port to port, and give way to vessels approaching from your right. Drive on the ‘right-hand side’ when entering and exiting channels and marinas.
Check in with Coastguard
Coastguard units around the country are getting their vessels back on the water in a larger capacity as we boaties/fishos also look to take to the water.
Refresh your memory by checking the VHF channels for your area and remember to put in a trip report when leaving and returning from your trip. While you’re at it, a quick read over the procedure for conducting a MAYDAY or PAN PAN call is also a good idea to refresh your memory.
If you want to go even further, check the expiry dates on your flares (any old ones can be disposed of by your local Coastguard unit), test your EPIRB or PLB (using the test button, don’t just set it off!), check your fire extinguisher, and check the supplies in your first aid kit.
If you’re not a member, you can sign up here: https://membership.boatiesbestmate.nz/join/region
Now more than ever it’s important that we put our dollars back into our economy and where better to spend them than on fishing gear! Regardless of whether you’re looking for sabikis, bait, or a new game set up (we see you bluefin tuna…), put your dollars back into your local tackle stores - they’ll love you for it!
Show us your catch!
We love seeing what you’ve been up to - send us your fishing and diving shots to enter our monthly photo competitions. Email your photos and a brief description of what’s going on in the shot to [email protected].
13 May 2020