Vava'u pre Xmas (part one)

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    Posted: 03 Jan 2013 at 9:35am
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Joined: 17 Nov 2008
Location: Whk.
Status: Offline
Points: 853
Sorry about the late report but with Xmas etc you know how it is.
After hearing and reading about Vava'u and the fishing some people have enjoyed we decided it was our turn. Due to time constraints we had to go later than what I would have liked but we decided to throw the dice an go in cyclone season.
Contacted Hakula Lodge and Jeff got back to us imediatley with a phone call he just happened to be in NZ. After a chat about what we wanted/expected?? to catch he offered to put together a package for us. Ok usually we do our own bookings thru the internet and had got a fair way thru the process but hey a second opinion won't hurt. In the end we went with Jeff's package as price wise he was right on the button.
Our trip over was pretty much uneventfull. Was interesting watching all the people travelling home for Christmas. I had come up with an idea for travelling with the rod tubes in a snow ski bag from Katmandu. Fitted all the rods and snorkel gear in the one bag. But had to keep explaining we were not taking snow ski's to Tonga.
We were met at Vava'u buy Jeff and after a stop for groceries delivered to Mystic Sands or place of stay for the next ten days. Jeff had told us cyclon Evan was bearing down on us so we had to get some fishing in while we could so we would be fishing the next two days.
Day one we are picked up from the warfe at MS. On the way out to the open sea we had the usual saftey breifing but were told the weather will be a major player in our plans for the next few days. Jeff asked what our thoughts on taking fish are and we said no problems as long as the fish are taken to be used to which he laughed. In Tonga all fish gets eaten and the church had asked if it would be possible to get them some fish for a feast the coming weekend also Xmas is days away and fresh fish for the umu (hangi) was needed too.
We were met by warm deep blue seas and 20 knots wind offshore so we could work the lee. 
Keyy the decky deployed the lures and we turned left and headed south for the FAD. It soon became apparent we were in for a rough time and everyone found somewhere to jam themselves in and hang on.
An hour in and a rod goes off I had already said to my daughter to take the first strike so had started to help Keyy clear the other rods when Jeff calls from the fly bridge for me to get in the chair so who am I to argue he had caught a glimpse of the fish on the strike. I jump in the chair to see an awful lot of line missing and no sign of it slowing down. It is my first time in a chair and I thank the heavens it was the chair rod and 80lb outfit that went off as it is now quite rough. The fish then went deep and for the next two hours it was pump and grind roll and rock.
My wife and daughter had to endure a misearable couple of hours rolling around but hey I was in heaven. We gradually got line back with the drag way past strike and thumbing(jamming my fingers more than once) the spool. The double then the swivle was up Keyy got a wrap and for the first time he got a look at the fish and muttered a quite "sh#t" under his breath. He hung on for as long as he could but couldn't lift it to get the second wrap and in the end the boat was washed away from the fish. He then informs me in the most understated way "Its big" I have still not seen it damn.
This happened twice more. We were now 2 miles further out to sea and the wind was pretty much blowing 25 and gusting 35 in the sqaulls (have I mentioned the tropical sqaulls that were coming thru too). We needed a new plan so Jeff turned the boat in the same direction as the fish and told me to lock up best i could and we then got the fish used to following the boat which ment running head on into the sea for ten minutes. We all still have the bruises from that ride but eventually Jeff turned it and got it going in a direction we could stay with it.
Keyy got the next wrap and we surfed it up and he sunk the flying gaff in.
 I was out of the chair and on the gaff line and got my first look at the marlin Oh crap its big I was thinking. How do we get this on board??? It came on much eaiser than I expected along with a heap of water.
One very happy but shattered angler. Easly my best by about 140 kg.
Keyy the deckie who put it all on the line. THANKS Keyy
Yes and now the bragging photoes
Blue Marlin 339.5kg, fight time two an half hours, tackle 80lb Kilwell chair rod Tiagra 80w.
Boat Hakula, Skipper Jeff le Strange, Deckie Keyy.
Just off photo is the butchering crew. Half hour later all thats left is the tail, bill and a blood stain nothing is wasted thats for sure.
Hmm the photoes don't seem to do justice to how rough it was but you will just have to take it from me or you could talk to my long suffering wife she will tell you in no uncertian terms   LOL.
Part two to come. More Marlin.
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