Springtime Salie!


It was the morning of the 4th day of spring 2016; I had planned to go fishing offshore with David Nyce. I woke up to heavy rain and there had been a lightning storm the previous evening. As I sipped my coffee I contemplated calling the days fishing off, as my 13 year old son Tristan was going to be fishing with me and I didn’t want him uncomfortable.

Just then I got a message from David asking if I am still going in the rain .I told him I was still considering it and his reply to this was that he was at the club already.

So the decision was made, we were going fishing.  So off to DSBC I go, where it was still raining lightly, I launched my Yamaha FX1800ho jetski with racetech tubbies ( an awesome fishing platform ).

We had a simple and uneventful launch. just as I find the bait showing on my Garmin 527xs, David told me had sucked something into his intake grate and his ski was struggling.

He tried in vain to clear it and so we decided to beach and solve the problem.( at this moment I’m thinking to myself its going to be one of those days I should have stayed in bed ). Back on the beach we pulled David’s ski onto the trailer & found the culprit – a mass of sponge lodged in the intake grate.

We removed it and relaunched, all was 100 %  and so we proceeded to the bait marks.

All that I caught was small shad so we decided to move to another bait mark. This was when I saw some surface activity which was a large shoal of mackerel. We soon filled our live bait bottles & headed out to a deeper mark in search for a yellowfin tuna & maybe a Daga salmon or 2 .The fishing was slow and the current was fast. I was fishing with 1 live mackerel on the surface, 1 live mackerel down rigged with a 3 ounce sinker and 1 live mackerel on the bottom for a Daga.


On about the 5th drift over the mark my down rigged mackerel gets picked up. Thinking it’s a tuna I pick up the rod and free spool the fish to ensure it doesn’t  drop the bait .

I got Tristan to reel in the rod with the bottom trace on .Just then all hell breaks loose and the fish on my line started jumping and tail walking.

It was a huge sailfish which went under David’s ski and jumped behind him ,then the mackerel that was on the surface got taken by another huge sailfish & this one started jumping behind my ski .


I shouted to David and Tristan that I have doubled up and instructed Tristan to hurry up with the rod he was bringing in as he was going to have to fight one of the sailfish. But just then the first sailfish I hooked got tangled with David’s line and gets burnt off.

At least we still had the other one hooked so I grabbed this rod from the rod holder and started the epic battle this fish was strong and made us follow it about 1km out to sea jumping and tail walking  occasionally the battle lasted about 45 min until I got the bill in hand. I must say at this point that the Racetech tubbies on my ski made it so stable and that it was much easier to handle a fish of that size. On examination of the fish and trying to remove the hook I noticed that the fish had been badly hooked in the gills and was bleeding profusely. half of the gills had been ripped out of the socket and a large section of the outer gill plate had also been cut off by the line, so I made the decision not to release this fish as I felt it wouldn’t survive.

Back at Durban ski boat club I arranged to use the electronic gantry scale to weigh the fish, which I estimated to be in the region of 35kg. To my surprise the fish topped the scale at 41.05 kg and it had a fork length of 2.5m. What an awesome Sundays fishing that started out so dismal.


Fast forward 6 days and a few friends of mine are fishing the same spot on their jet skis and Clint Marshall catches and releases a sailfish of approx. 25kg and Eatro Bonnet catches a yellowfin tuna of 25.6 kg. If things continue like this I believe we will be in for a bumper summer fishing season