The first month of the new year has now already passed and the weather was as inconsistent here as we know it in January: often shifting day by day or even quicker between calm, sunny spells and rain fronts bringing downpours and strong winds. So especially along the first week it was all about fishing the decent windows of mostly just a few hours instead of long trips. Greg`s various guests on Amberjack did exactly that to some really decent popping catches.
Along those days I spent some time looking after prolific German freshwater angler Freddy who with a no fear approach made some quality catches in the surf on La Digue and Praslin respectively.
Next to all that he was eager to also catch his very first GT if possible and along a trip with Mervin on Lady C the mission was accomplished in the shape of this really fat fish within 30mins.
Add two more that dropped the hook, a handful of misses and a massive Hammerhead Shark chasing a poor Eagle Ray for minutes around the boat plus this Bluefin Trevally realeased and you have all the ingredients for a really cool half day out.
For the following few days the weather was no good but around the 10th it improved again and catches came. On the trolling side the smaller gamefish were cooperative as usually like here on Amberjack once more.
But also trips to the Drop Off were possible again for a short period and Brandon reported on some really good jigging.
Then the weather started to deteriorate once more but at least for a couple of days popping in the vicinity of the islands remained not only possible but also still productive. A few more good fish from Greg and guests like this one speak for themselves.
Also Mervin did another of such trips this time with repeaters Jürgen and Sebastian and what was their first day of a week`s fishing kicked off in style on the 16th.
Next day despite rather rough conditions they headed out to the Drop for some jigging and Tuna popping but had a rather tough time while still getting some fish. The following two days they had to spend on shore as the weather turned really impossible with very heavy rainfalls and winds of up to 30 knots. But on the 20th they went again to encounter the same difficult fishing in still rough seas and the Sharks were a constant nuisance on top stealing nearly all of the Tuna. On the 21st though when I decided to join them conditions including the drift were just perfect. Instantly around a dozen Amberjacks in decent sizes came by jigging and as their bite slowed late morning we headed out for Tuna casting. These were still around in big numbers but the fish on average are smaller than a few weeks ago. Also somewhat less aggressive which might sound weird with 30 or so caught out of probably more than 100 strikes. Biggest ones were like the one shown by Mervin and Jürgen but these are also still plentiful. Just sitting deeper and hardly willing to come up as we found out by some jigging catches.
The following day they went for their last trip of this visit to experience the bite kind of similar but all in all less hot and generally since then the fishing here had slowed. On the 24th again with Mervin and Swiss returner Peter I was chewing my tongue for most of the day. Instead of the predicted 5 knots of wind we found a solid 15 knots and on top the current pumping at 2-2.5 knots. Only jigging in the real shallows of 30-40m saved the day along the last two hours with some 20 fish and a handful of presentable ones in the mix. Controlled jigging of the usual depths was nearly impossible and had produced only a single but at least large Jobfish along 3hrs in the morning while another 3hrs of Tuna hunting around noon resulted in just that small one that on top fell off just after the shot. What a drastic change of conditions and activity since we had been there the previous Friday.
Also the GTs seemed to have exhausted themselves for the time being. Pete from the UK and his four friends going around the islands on a cat had booked a half day popping for those with same time Mervin and Sandro on his Frenzy. I went with the latter, Pete, and Anders from Denmark who tried with the fly rod but only one GT came on a regular popper and cut off in the rocks while Anders got a couple of Jobfish on his flies.
On Lady C meanwhile Mervin and his group managed to raise a couple Geets but also no luck getting one. And on the 27th with Mervin and again Peter it was just a single GT raised to a miss and else about no activity whatsoever. Even the Jobfish or the lousy Sharks did not show up.Since the wind and rains have returned so nothing more to add for this time I`m afraid.
For the preceeding reports check the archive.