47th Annual One Base

Click Here for the Fish Tally                  Click Here for the Prize Lists

Five days of lovely fishing for the One Base; weather had been good, the sea calm, plenty of small striped marlin out there to tag and release, it all looked very good for our 49 boats and 159 anglers.

Day 1 was sponsored by our good mates at Kilwell Sports, and the radio was busy all day with hook-ups, drops, taggings and boatings so there was plenty of fish action going on, and for the day’s tally we had 6 billfish: 1 spearfish for Sally Barton, 2 striped marlin were landed, and 3 tagged and released. Unfortunately, some fish were disqualified due to tackle requirements so the biggest qualifying marlin for the day was landed by Tony Sellars on The Run Off who caught his 93kg fish off the Bay of Islands with a Mrs Palmer lure. Rex Guest on Ngia, Terry Lamb on Opportunity II and Joe Foster on Albacora all tagged their fish with weights of 70 – 80kg. Mahimahi made an appearance, with two landed, one of 12.05kg for Daniel Baunton on Incommunicado, and one of 8.6kg for Jason Farmilo on El Pescador. We even had some tuna landed, but they weren’t yellowfin. Instead, we had 3 albacore, the biggest of 8.45kg caught by Sue Dahl on Sieda. There were also very unusually these days, 2 qualifying skipjack tuna, with Daniel on Incommunicado landing a stonking big fish of 10.05kg. A few kingfish were landed and tagged and released, with a crew of anglers from Ashley Sport Fishing Club on Nautilus targeting them. Mike Tull landed the heaviest two fish, of 13.4kg and 12.4kg from the Ruahine Shoal. In fact, all the kingfish that day were landed by the Nautilus crew, with one more fish weighed in, and 3 tagged and released. There was a selection of Hookset fillet knives, PrecisionPak fish bags, rods and reels and diamond JewelStik steels for the daily prizes, but also some lucky draws for the prizes not won. The Nautilus crew took out the kingfish section, nobody fished for snapper but most of the other prizes went to successful anglers, so it was a promising start to the contest, with crews and skippers all checking their traces and leader lengths so they didn’t get caught out at the weigh-station in the following days.

Day 2 was also sponsored by Kilwell, and the fish action was almost as busy as the first day, with 6 striped marlin tagged and released and none weighed in for the all-important Calcutta money. The Bay of Islands boat Resolution managed to tag 2 of the striped marlin; 1 each for Murray Hansen and Brad Fergus, and both on 15kg line as well. We also had 3 tagged for our home boats; one for Rex Guest on Ngia, one to Hamish MacDonald on Ali-G, and one for Finn Cook on Ambition, all ranging in weights from 60kg to 110kg. Warkworth boat Violator, which has taken part in every One Base also managed to tag a stripy for Ron Inkster. For the tuna section there were more albacore with the heaviest of the day caught by Ian Witters on Distinction, weighing 13kg and caught at the 505. Crew mate Tony Jenkins also weighed in an albacore of 12.7kg. Yellowfin did make an appearance as there seemed to be plenty of them about in deeper waters. Alton Shanks on Astraea weighed in one of 51.6kg caught in 450m at the Cavalli Canyons, on a lure. Shaun Howard on Rusty Hooks managed to snag a kingfish of 16.8kg from 160m at the back of Stephenson Island, and the crew on The Run Off decided to fish for a snapper and Tony Sellars found one of 9.1kg at Whangaroa. There were a few lucky draws again on the evening at prize giving but all in all, day 2 was a good day as well.

Day 3 was our stay away night and our boats went far and wide up and down the coast in search of the “big fish”. Resolution stayed close to home and brought in the heaviest striped marlin for the day, of 112.2kg, caught by Murray Hansen, again on 15kg with a skipjack bait in 130m out the back of Stephenson Island. Three striped marlin were also tagged, one each for Denise Larmer on Liberator, Donna Blakeman on The Immigrant and Trae Binns on Wave Rider. A lot of teams stayed away for the night besides there being a good selection of daily prizes sponsored by IceyTek and BBQ BOI, so a lot of prizes were lucky drawn and given out. After 3 days of fishing the team points for the billfish section showed Resolution way ahead of the pack with 1548 points and Ngia on 800 points and then lots of boats with 400 points for one tagged marlin. There was nothing in the shark section and the Nautilus crew were way ahead with 203 points in the tuna/kingfish section. Astraea were in 2nd place with 139 points, and 3rd was Distinction with 88 points.

Day 4 and the stay away boats were fishing home and a lot of boats were still ploughing the field out the back of Stephenson Island. There were plenty of hook ups during the day so it was a good tally at the end of the day, with 6 striped marlin tagged and released and 5 weighed in. Three of the marlin were underweight but 2 fish qualified. The heaviest weighed 108.8kg for Hans van Duyn on Seawitch, which they found in 130m at the back of Stephenson Island, which had been the marlin hotspot for weeks and was still producing. The other stripy which weighed 101.2kg was boated by Dean Ritchie on KC who caught his fish in the same hot spot, with a bait. The tagged stripys ranged in estimated weight from 65kg to 90kg and were caught by 6 different boats, with Resolution clocking up another catch. There were some snapper to weigh, a result of continuous fishing last night and in the morning before trolling started. We weighed in 5 fish, the heaviest of which was 8.2kg for Kenny McIntyre on Senator up at North Cape in 80m, with skipjack cut bait. Day 4 was another Kilwell Sports day, and lucky anglers got lucky draws for some of the prizes. By the end of the day the team on Resolution were even further ahead in the billfish section with 1948 points as opposed to 2nd place Ngia still with 800 points and 3rd place to Wave Rider also with 800 points, and Nautilus still led the tuna/kingfish section, with Astraea creeping up towards them.

The final day, day 5, was sponsored by Kilwell Sports again and was a very busy day again, full of hook ups and drops and catches throughout the day. Seven striped marlin were tagged and released with teams from Warkworth and our club trying hard to catch up on Resolution’s tally. Grant Hamilton on Elusive managed to land a lovely mahimahi of 11.8kg which he found by live baiting in 130m between Flat Island and the Cavalli Islands. Nautilus returned to kingfish fishing and Neil Mackintosh found a good fish of 18.75kg in 65m by Stephenson Island. There were quite a few prizes lucky drawn that evening as well, and then it was time to dish out the trophies and overall prizes.

For the whole contest our teams tallied up 33 striped marlin, 5 mahimahi, 3 tagged shark, 6 snapper, 8 albacore, 3 skippies, 2 yellowfin and 6 kingfish. This season our marlin ranged in weights from 60kg to 113kg and high-lighted the ongoing trend for the season of lots of small striped marlin out there, which unusually, were also reported by our smokers to have roe in many of them. As became evident after day 3, the team on Resolution won the Coruba Trophy for the billfish section. The Immigrant won the Marlin Hotel Trophy for the shark section, and Nautilus won the Whangaroa Club Trophy for the tuna/kingfish section. Resolution also won the Snooks & Lola Fuller Trophy for their 4 striped marlin, and Murray on Resolution won the White Swan Tavern Trophy for the heaviest fish caught on 15kg line, the angler most points prize with a rotisserie from BBQ BOI, the Pacific Harbour Lodge Trophy for the angler with the heaviest marlin, the Kilwell Classic Trophy for the angler with the heaviest striped marlin, and of course the Calcutta money for the heaviest stripy. Resolution did so well that along with the other Bay of Islands boats Opportunity II, Seawitch and Incommunicado, the average score for the teams was still high enough to win Bay of Islands Swordfish Club the Waiataiti Trophy.

Kent Fraser on The Phoenix won the early bird prize of cash and a set of Kilwell lures and our exciting elimination draw for the Air NZ mystery travel prize was whittled down to Terry Lay and Shaun Howard, and Shaun won, and Terry won a stay at the Whangaroa Motel. All in all, it was a very ‘busy with fish’ contest and it went well, the weather was good too, so it was a good 5 days of competition. Of course, the club gives thanks to all our skippers and anglers that took part, all the staff that make it happen, and our great sponsors Kilwell Sports. Icey-Tek, BBQ BOI, Bay of Islands Marina, Whangaroa Lodge Motel, Liquorland, Ota Point Smokehouse, Wild Gear and Air NZ.