A few years back I bought a 17' power boat
for pleasure and a bit of off shore fishing
. On my first fishing
trip out as a licensed skipper
I had a real eye opener of a day.
Just as we headed out, my starboard outboard
stopped. I lifted the outboard
to find a submerged rope
wrapped around it. About 15 minutes of grovelling half over the side and I had managed to free the rope
and pull the rest of it aboard, so that I could dispose of it ashore.
25 minutes later we had dropped the anchor
and had just started some bottom fishing, discussing how that rope had been left in the water
, when we spotted 2 whales heading directly towards us from shore. The manual says "in the event that whales are headed towards you, start your engines to let them know that you are there. Whales have no interest in you and they will change course".... RIGHT!!!
So I started the engines and the whales disappeared out of sight. I left the engines running for a while and then saw 2 whales heading North about 500mtrs away, so I presumed that these were the 2 whales and started praising the manual... and promptly switched the engines off.
Not even 30 seconds after switching off the engines, EVERYONE on the boat suddenly had HUGE fish
on the ends of their lines... or so they thought. The whales that we though had gone north were not the ones that were originally heading towards us!! These 2 (inquisitive youngsters) were under the boat and had tangled in our fishing lines and ALSO our anchor
line.... and we were being dragged!! Everyone cut their fishing lines and I rushed forward to cut the anchor rope and as I began to cut, they managed to get free and we stopped moving.... but not after they had dragged us about 400mtr according to my GPS
. This was scary.... especially as it was my first trip in command.
We were all chatting about it, having dropped lines again and I hook something that is really powerful. Being an old fisherman, I can generally tell by the way the fish
is fighting, more or less, what is on the end of the line. This time I had NO idea. It ran away from me at first and took about 200mtrs of line..... AND THEN.... it started coming back..... in a straight line.... straight at the boat. I was realing like hell trying to keep the line taught and was really doing a bad job as the "thing" was moving too fast.
It went under the rear of the boat and surfaced ahead. My son was going ballistic!! It was a HUGE Leatherback Turtle and he was totally shocked by the size of it. Luckily it spat out the hook and got away. One does not want to harm them.
What an eventful day, we thought... one of those that we would speak about in the future on many occasions.
on the way back to the ski boat club... a kingfish of just under 1mtr in length jumped into the boat!!! Where have you ever seen this happen before We nearly all jumped out of the boat because it was rather large and slapping itself all over the place. The thing is.... we started wondering why it had jumped out of the water
and into our boat and figured that something bigger must have been chasing it.... so we decided that we would rather take our chances with the kingfish on board. We could not contain it and after a minute or so, which seemed like about 7 days...managed to help it over the side to prevent it from causing damage to our equipment
on the boat.
Now that was an adrenaline rush!!! It brought new meaning to me about "Being Prepared for the Unexpected"! The guys at the club thought... and many still think we were pulling their leg... I only wish it had been caught on camera
. After that I went out prepared for almost EVERYTHING.... and a camera
.... but since that day... nothing as "exciting" has ever happened again.