The Girls' Day Out event is on this weekend. I've never been to one of these and to be honest I have no real desire to... The type of girl's day out I enjoy is the one we had over our New Year holiday...
We had a great time over on the Barrier at the beginning of the year. At one point Tom was Over at our part ime neighbours - the family that own/have shares in a couple of sections next to us. Louise mentioned to Tom that she's always wanted to go out on a fishing charter but never had because it was difficult to get onto on as a single person. We decided to organise a trip out for Louise, Andrea an myself and leave the boys at home one day. I rang Craig of Tryphena Charters to set something up.
We've been out with Craig quite a few times now and knew he'd be the man for the job. He's keen on his fishing and always so enthusiastic when he takes you out. He's also very generous with advice and tips on technique and tackle... top man! We always had a good time out with Craig and never fail to come home with some good stories and a fair whack of fish.
We arranged to meet him at Tryphena wharf at 2pm in a couple of days... we were all set!
On the day we were going to go Tom, Libby & I went down to the cafe to treat ourselves to breakfast. When we got back there was a text message waiting for us from Craig... "I have a plan - can you come earlier?" ... this was intriguing! When I called him to see what was up he said he wanted to take us out for kingfish! OH.MY.GOD!!! I'd never caught a kingfish before! I ran through the bush to see if Andrea and Louise were home and check if they were cool with leaving earlier. Louise have her foot in a cast after slipping down the hill and injuring her archilles but said she was still up for it. I think Tom was a smidgin (only a little smidgin) envious at the prospect of us catching kingys... he had never caught one at that point either!
We drove over the hill to meet Craig and he motored out towards our fishing spot for the day. He'd given us a rundown on the dos and don'ts and we fired our jigs over the side. Before long Andrea yelled out... she was into a kingy! I don't think the others really knew what they were in for so when Andrea's line started peeling out she hung onto the rod for dear life! Craig started coaching her on when to wind back line and when to let it run... after a while she reckoned it was too hard... Craig told her "You hooked it... you have to get it back to the boat before we can unhook it!" She clung to the rod, knuckles white from the effort. After a few more minutes she said she didn't think she could hold on much longer so I took over for her. Eventually we landed the fish - he was beautiful!! Not a monster but most certainly a good sized fish! Andrea looked stunned when she saw the size of it... it turned out to be the biggest fish of the day.
Craig manouvered back over the spot again and once more the jigs went over the side for the next drift. He threw a popper out the back to show us the kingys chasing it back to the boat. The rest of the afternoon was a bit of a blurr, I couldn't tell you who caught the next fish or how many fish we even caught. Not all of them were lagal size and of those that were, most went back for another day. Every drift over the pin, except one, we hooked up a fish and once or twice all 3 of us hooked up at once!
After her first fish Andrea had a better idea of what to expect and landed all the rest of her hookups herself. Louise had it sussed, she had her cast jammed into the side of the boat she was able to lean on it for extra leverage. We had a ball! There was only one rod end between the three of us so whoever hooked up used it... or whoever had the biggest fish on at the time. Craig later admitted that he did have a gimble on board but his attitude was "the fish feels pain, you feel pain, it's a fairer contest".
Our bodies ached from the effort and eventually, after about 6 or 7 shots at "one last drift", we decided enough was enough! We had 4 fish in the boat and it had been exciting day!
When we got back to the ridge everyone was waiting. I though Andrea's husband was going to faint when he saw the size of of them! The kids were buzzing with excitement and everyone traipsed over to ours where another neighbout (from below our section) did the honours and carved them up!
I went to bed exhausted and aching, and dreamt all night about jigs flashing through the water! The following morning the bruises on my legs, groin and stomach had started to show through and my arms still felt like they were going to fall off... but it didn't matter, I couldn't stop grinning every time I thought about our day on the water with the kings, our awesome girls'day out!