Shortly after turning back towards the bank without a sign of fish out at the drop off I heard a shout behind me. “MARLIN!!”, someone screamed and I saw the dorsal fin coming up behind the closest lure. It hit it with its bill and pulled a tiny bit of line before releasing the artificial bait. JEEEEEZ!!!! After all that waiting it was gone and the angler hadn’t done anything to tease the fish back. There are many tricks that can increase the chance that you hook a marlin when it is close to your lures. I had left the wheel and with the rod in my hand I was demonstrating some of these techniques to Tony. With the rod in my hand the marlin hit the lure in a surprise return attack and was on. The reel, our smallest, filled with 1000 yards of 30 lb test line roared as the line peeled off at alarming speed. The marlin jumped shaking its head violently trying to jettison the strange fish it had bitten. As luck would have it for the smallish marlin the strange fish (our lure) did get thrown off. We had just failed two opportunities at bringing a marlin to the boat. Of course we were gonna release the fish but if ya didn’t get it to the side of the boat it didn’t count. We were frustrated, but Big John and Tony are some of the most optimistic and positive guys you could ever have as crew, and they both quickly restored morale and refueled our enthusiasm. “Let’s find another one.” Lines were back out and we were hunting again. Within 20 minutes I spotted a flock of Birds way north of the bank in a place we hadn’t seen them before. We headed over and the closer we got the more we realized how big the flock actually was. The little black fin tuna were going ballistic tearing up the surface of the water turning it into a manic blanket of white chaotic splashing.
As you can see, we were all elated:
We set out to catch a blue marlin and we had done it. We learned a great deal that day and saw how we had to change tactics and methods. We felt like we could be contenders and knew that we would.