2009/11/19 In the High Season of Seabass
Past 2 weeks have been crazy in Tokyo Bay where fully grown seabass in sizes beyond 70 or 80cm are caught in series. I wanted to renew my personal record at 75cm, so I finished the work and headed to Yokohama to get on Pallas FGS.
Cast, Swing, and Big Fish
(Photo by Pallas FGS)
In cast and swing presentation, I caught this seabass at just 70cm. When I picked him up from landing net, my fly came off so easily which means that hook didn’t penetrate deep into his mouth, but it was staying on the edge of its mouth on tight tension of the line.
3 Misses and… Bang
As I continued to cast and swing. I felt strikes in numbers, but none successfully hooked the big fish. Some strikes were almost like hook sliding in fish’s mouth like ttttttt, out. Other strikes were like clickclick which are just indication that fish are small. Sliding out is the sign of big fish whose weight you feel on the tip of your line, but hook didn’t set in his mouth.
Then… I had the moment of truth in which I felt very heavy tension on my line with tttt, zip strike which means that hook was set some place in his mouth. Strike came very closed to the structure from which I must pull the fish away. I blocked the fish successfully, then I tried to bring him into tag of war, but….
I tripped on the fly line I retrieved which I should have put inside my stripping basket… With that loss of touch on fly line, fly came off his mouth and bye bye big fish. He showed his big face, but left with big splash in the dark. He was surely bigger fish than the the 70cm one I caught.
So, big game requires big practice and understanding. To be honest, I used to think catching big bass is a piece of cake when I landed my 75cm in luck. But in reality, it is hard to catch one as you intend to do. This time, I lost my big fish due to lack of line management which I should not repeat again. Ever!
Pure lesson I learnt this night was:
Know when fish strikes, make decision when to set hook, and don’t regret.