Marlin Madness Vanuatu

August 21, 2016 by Russ Housby

Trip Info

The Catch
Marlin (Blue)
Tuna (Skipjack)

It has been a great weekend on Nambas Fishing Charters. We had a multi day trip with a great group of guys from Australia. For most of the group it was their first time big game fishing so the days started out with a quick briefing and instruction from the Captain. You can see the anticipation on the anglers faces as they sit in the game chair and get their hands on the big Shimano 130 rods for the first time.
The conditions were a little windy and rough but the boat handles the conditions beautifully and everyone was comfortable and enjoying themselves….despite a few hangovers from the night before!
On the first day we headed to one of the local FADs to see what we could find…. We trolled around and decided head a bit further off the FAD, after all we were after a Marlin. The first angler up was John and not long after a nice lunch he got his chance at his first Marlin. The fish took a Superplunger on the long corner and promptly took off, although this fish decided it didn’t want to take to the air much. John did an awesome job fighting the fish and we soon had a 350lb fish to the side of the boat for a clean release, and he was clearly over the moon with his catch. A good day was had by all and the group were sharing in the excitement of their first Marlin release.
The next day it was the turn of angler Mike who clearly told me he was not really bothered about fishing and was really only there to get tips for improving his own boating skills. Well that soon changed….
We headed out and caught some live baits, they were quickly rigged and in the water. Within minutes we were hooked up and plenty of line was coming off the reel. Unfortunately we soon saw this was a shark and we promptly got relieved of our bait as the shark bit us off, although Mike was pleased to have a trial run with the gear.
We soon spotted birds working and took off in pursuit with the big marlin lures back out. As we reached the birds we were treated to an awesome Skipjack show. Every wave was full of bright purple skipjacks cruising alongside us at an effortless 8 knots. We made the call to stick with the Skipjacks as you can’t ignore a teaser that good….there had to be a Marlin after them at some point!! It was worth the wait and after a couple of miles trolling a nice Blue Marlin erupted on the short corner, line started screaming off the reel and we were quickly into the fight. The fish gave an impressive aerial display and was jumping all over the place. Mike did a fantastic job quickly getting the hang of the technique and staying calm despite having legs like jelly from the excitement. After 20 minutes we had a beautiful 400lb Blue Marlin at the side of the boat for plenty of photos. It turns out this was a lucky Marlin as she had a longline hook in the corner of her mouth. We quickly released her and got rid of the extra hook and leader in the process. It was a great day and the whole group were sharing in the excitement and a well earned cold beer, no-one more so than Mike who is already planning his next fishing trip to Vanuatu….it really is an addictive sport!

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