Ranfurly Banks!

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    Posted: 20 Sep 2022 at 10:06pm
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Last year we booked a trip in May to the Ranfurly Banks with Coastal Fishing Charters - skipper Arron Sargent aboard Strictly Fishing, an 8.8m Senator with two Honda 225's on the blunt part. It was awesome and my body ached for days afterwards. 

This year we did it again but a storm meant we had to choose another date, three guys couldn't make that and our crew ended up being myself, Wayno, Marcel (Mars), Arron, Pete (Sanchez) all current or ex fishing.netters and Arron's mate Jamie. We all knew each other apart from Sanchez but yeah he fitted in just fine!

The plan was to meet up with Wayno & Sanchez at Whakatane Game Fishing Club, and we all made it on time - quite an achievement for the Team Smudge component at least. Arron, Jamie, Marcel and myself in one ute, Wayno and Pete in another.

Anyway, the trip down in our vehicle was entertaining. Mars trying to tell us how he likes landbased fishing, well I mean have you ever seen a fish hiding under a rock in the middle of a paddock? Of course not. Anyway after about an hour of nonstop talking about how great he was we figured Mars wasn't the right name for him so he got renamed The Duke. As in Duke Ellington because he could blow his own trumpet too.  

Arron, well he became Pubes, because that’s his nickname anyway, I’m still Smudge and Jamie became Rumbold, because that’s his name also. We’re not a particularly imaginative lot. Wayne, well Wayno and Pete became compost (peat, gettit?) 

As it was Maori Language week we practiced Te Reo to keep us amused and I think we nailed the pronunciations. It helped that Arron has skills there but we managed to invent some pretty good translations to be fair.

Anyway by the time we finished laughing and having a quiet beer at the game fishing club the kitchen had closed so off to the chippie next door for a marvellous feed on the wharf. It’s a big drive from Waiuku to Hicks Bay so Pete had a big day ahead of him setting off from Te Atatu. We left at 7ish and arrived at 6 – just in time to get settled in to the Hicks Bay Motor Lodge and order an amazing meal there. It was great.

Not too many beers for us because we were getting up at 6.00am and the weather was looking as if it was deteriorating, luckily that didn’t really happen but we took no beers on the boat, saving those shenanigans for the after match.

We spent an hour or so after our korero at the beach where Arron (the skipper, not Arron Pubes) went through the safety brief catching livies. Mars was happy to tell us he caught the most. In fact he was so happy he reminded us every few minutes.

An hour and a bit of motoring from there we were on a kingfish pin. The boat had good gear such as Accurate Boss reels and acid wrap rods. We decided Marcel and Arron should be up first as they were most experienced and capable on the big fish and straight away Mars hooked a monster. One run though and the 80lb braid parted at one of the guides, a brand new rod but clearly it had a cracked insert in the guide. Bugger but we consoled ourselves that at least it was Mars' fish that got away. Anyway that rod got retired and from there on in it was white knuckle arm aching stuff! Only two sharks tried to ruin our day but we all got solid kings and hapuku, Pete getting the fish of the day with a solid bass.

We got back to camp sore, tired and happy and after sending an SOS to the kitchen and a little bribe money they stayed open to cook us a lovely meal despite being 15 minutes after the kitchen closed.

Highlights: Mars vs Team Smudge bickering (friendly) the whole time, PB’s for Sanchez and Rumbold, Arron having to step in for me to help unsnag the last drop of the day to be rewarded in the end with a nice little puka, Arron Sargent for his expert advice and banter, Owen the deckie for recognising us as the best crew he’d been with on the boat (it was his first day), the great food at the Motel, drinks and stories afterwards and Wayno for getting staggeringly drunk – he’s a good bastard that dirty hamster!

An enjoyable trip and a must do. You need to book almost a year in advance but well worth it.





Best gurnard fisherman in my street
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Sep 2022 at 10:17pm
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Best gurnard fisherman in my street
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Sep 2022 at 10:19pm
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I'm sure Kitno will post some compromising pics of my that one of the louts on our trip shared with him Big smile
Best gurnard fisherman in my street
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Tonto2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Sep 2022 at 1:13pm
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What a great trip, well done all
slowly going where everyone else has already been
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Skoti Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2022 at 8:03pm
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Some happy campers in that lot !
Any salami or baked beans stories to share ?
COVID is no joke !
One former patient was so brain damaged after , he thought he won an election he lost by 7 million votes .
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