One of the benefits of giving oneself time to prepare for a long voyage is that one can read and think about everything one might need, and make the necessary preparations. Over the last couple of weeks I have been researching fishing.
Providing fresh fish on board is a real pleasure. The usual method from a yacht on passage in tropical waters is by ‘trolling’ – basically towing a lure which stays just under the surface and attracts the likes of tuna, dorado and wahoo and other pelagic fish up to it. My research led me to consider what types of rod, reel, line, gaff hook, rod holder and lures might best suit.
After asking around I settled on a 4 piece Shimano Exage AX STC 6’6″ travel boat rod and a Penn Squall 50 lever drag reel. Nothing hugely expensive but apparently sufficiently robust and value for money. Line-wise, there is now a bewildering choice of braid, super braid and monofilament. I went for some 100lb breaking strain super braid which is made from Dyneema – hugely strong, and only 0.28mm in diameter, as well as some more traditional 200lb monofilament. Along with all of this comes an assortment of traces, crimps, swivels, and joins, and I spent a fascinating couple of hours recently making up the lures, learning a lot in the process!
Talking of which – I now have a variety of lures which resemble squid-like fish and which attract by their colour and movement. They all conceal quite large hooks and the key thing is to ensure that there is a wire trace leading out of their mouths, as the fish that go for them can easily bite normal line. See the photos below. Coupled with a telescopic gaff hook, and a rod holder for a stanchion, I think I am ready to go – watch this space!