From fresh to saltwater
My own fishing story comes from the U.K. I was born in the east of England in a part of the country called the fens. The fens resembles very much the Netherlands because it was engineered and the land reclaimed by those old masters. Replete with windmills and drains galore (to take the water away) there was much fishing to be had. Coarse fishing was possible and when I was young the craze for pit fishing for carp had not taken hold. Halfway through my teens the pole started to gain favour as the presentation of bait became a match winner when on a cold winters day a single fish no matter what the weight could win ! I used to catch mostly Roach and Perch and a few Rudd. When my skills increased with my father I was lucky to get a few Tench to this day I will never forget the fight on semi lightweight gear and the fear of losing them in the weedy local river the Old Nene.
Time moved on and I got more into gaming and computers on my zx spectrum and fishing fell away from my interests. Fishing however was always there. There was the start of the carp craze but I was not able to afford the pits at this young age by myself. My father had to work too long and also couldn’t fish even when he ran his own fishing and shooting shop.
Just the other week I used my old float road to reminisce and it was great getting some small roach and a perch mainly on a carp lake. I was working out to get a few Crucians on light tackle. It had been up until mid summer maybe 15 plus years since I had fished and the reason why was a sea fishing trip in Antigua.
Even better than this I am teaching my girlfriend to fish starting off with carp. She was supremely spoilt with a 17lb mirror he first outing ! A great fish for that lake see !
Sea fishing had always eluded me — as a single backpacker I have been to some amazing destinations where I would have loved to fish. Living on 50USD a day is not the kind budget to charter a trolling boat for 6 hours. I did get a line in the water in Australia but it was a crowded boat -still fun. I caught a batfish and a lot of wreck. I haven’t backpacked in a long time either but with a young family I found a location I was to fish 25 years later; Antigua.
It was in a rental house with a garage I found a very toy like rod and reel and the most awful line you ever saw but the rig was ok — a popper of a clear bubble float and some kind of awful hook — think there was some kind of rubbery lure I used and caught what I believe was a very tiny permit or two in a few sessions from the beaches. I got many follows from needlefish while on the decking at the back of the house that was part of the Jolly Harbour marina. I was glad not to hook into one t be honest I had no gloves and they look less inviting to unhook than a lot of fish. It was nice to be fishing again but it wasn’t real fishing. Or not effective to get me close enough to the fish.
As lucky as I was lying on the beach rum punch in hand Tony comes by a local who likes to meet tourists and sells a few tours — I told him my issues of sea fishing when he started to mention it as I was batting away every suggestion he had of tours …But it will cost a $1000 just for the hire I said..
It is small chance sometimes and tony said to me that he would be able to deliver me to a proper fishing trolling boat with others if it works out and I can agree with the girlfriend — well long story short it did and for 4 -6 hours I was excited by the prospect of a good fish — you never know what can hit your lure out back of Antigua.
On the boat Obsession captained by Derek we set out, there were just Brits aboard and the crew. James came with his girlfriend — and the odd thing was he started to take (jump on) every single take small barracuda small tuna but he was not sharing !
Along with the others we saw we need to be more active on the rods. Steve went next — a Mahi Mahi — but he didn’t land it. My turn and I was fortunate enough to get the big one that day a 42lb wahoo. It took a lot of my strength sat in that chair even with a butt rest and the support of the crew (I didn’t really have much clue). We also just took the takes we didn’t set up the gear nor find the fish — I don’t know how that works. One day perhaps- what an epic days fishing in Antigua,
I was so elated by that catch it has started me fishing again and also it has led me to start a fishing section within my Antigua business. I think that matching lone fisherman together will help as Toni managed to do for me that day. The ultimate for me will be fishing holidays I think both sea and shore. I am looking forward very much to fly fishing the flats it looks amazing.
I hope you liked this article .When not in front of the computer working on web-design you can find me(calvin) by the lake or sipping a rum in Antigua. Reach out to me to say hello I really would love to know you had read and enjoyed this. If you are interested in fishing in Antigua for tips and advice ask me I can save you time. Just contact http://bestantigua.com and if you fish no matter where in the world check out world fishing adventures on facebook to show off your big one. Tight lines fellow fishermen.