Arniston report

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Arniston report

Post by landshark » Wed Jan 28, 2015 10:27 am

On Saturday while blanking terribly at Cape Point I received a call from a spearo buddy that they are planning a trip to Arniston - Skipskop. I immediately said that I'm in and on arrival back at Millers we got in contact again and spearfishing plans where concocted. 8-)

The following morning at just past two am we set of to Arniston. Arrived there around sun rise to assess the slip. Anyone that has launched there will know that even a small swell will make launching there rather interesting, but things looked good and the call was made to put the boat in the water.

For the uninitiated the process is as follows:
• Reverse the trailer right to the water's edge.
• Put some rocks behind the wheels and unhook the trailer from the vehicle.
• Attach a long rope - about 4/3 the length of the slip - the tow bar and trailer.
• Slowly take up the slack in the rope by driving the tow vehicle to the top of the slip.
• Remove the rocks and start timing the wave sets. As indicator, at Arniston you will be able to see the swell stand up at the rocks off the back of bay head.
• Once there is a lull, things move quickly. The trailer is allowed to roll into the water, the boat is pushed off and turned around, all pretty much in one movement.
• The skipper then rides out to beyond the breakers while the rest of the crew hitches the trailer and parks the car.
• Lastly the skipper comes back to collect the crew who by this time should have swam out a safe distance.

It also helps to have a very experienced crew helping and without much hassles the boat was floating on the water and we set of to Skipskop.

Arrived at the reef to find whole armada of commercials, a good 15 to 20 boats, already anchored an pulling tail. Another spearo boat is also there and already have a marker buoy down and kindly allows us to also dive on it.

I volunteer first buggy slot and while the other guys kit up I slowly idle to the top of the drift. First dive of the first drift and one of the spearos report a shark. Either a White or a very big Raggie so every ones heads look like they are on swivels and I keep the boat very close to the guys. Next drift and two of the three guys land their first Yellowtail.

Although the comms kept the school of fish pretty much right under them with bait, our drift line was quite close to them and every drift yields at least one fish, being it a Tail or some bank fish.

I'm in next but frustratingly can't find any fish. Drift after drift and nothing. :evil: One of the other guys shot a Tail and I dive down to see if any other fish where around but the only thing I found is a Raggie making a beeline for his fish. I intercept it and give good poke with my spear which he shakes off then turns to make another run at the fish. This time I make sure he understands that this fish is not for him and I watch as a very pissed of Raggie skulks away from the fish. :twisted: I then turn around to see a good sized Tail coming in to investigate the one on the spear and I line up my shot. Pull the trigger and look down at my gun expecting to see dyneema peeling off the reel. HUH!? nothing! I must have stoned it... look up... NO FISH! Impossible!! I cannot believe I missed that shot!!! :oops: Super frustrated I surface and as my water time is coming to an end I know I will have to make a plan. :evil: :evil: :evil:

Next dive I go down and at the end of the dive I see a Tail at the edge of visibility. I try to swim a little closer but it angles away. It's time for me to surface so I take an impossible shot. It seems there are some limitations to Tommy's Roller gun after all, as impossible shots, well... still stay impossible and I surface without a fish. :(

Next dive I don't even look around and dive straight to the bottom and start hugging the reef. I hang around for quite some time then see a Santer, I pull the trigger and finally put a fish on the boat.

Next drift and I put a solid shot into a Tail and it's in the boat. :D Good, things are looking up but it's the end of my session and I have to buggy again.

It's around 10am and by now quite a few of the comms have left and the diving seems easier with fish being landed at regular intervals. On the next drift I drop the guys and see they are immediately onto some good fish. Next thing I hear a one of the spearos call me, but not in the normal I have a fish tone. Something is wrong. I get to him and see he shot a Tail but there's a lot of blood in the water. I figure he must have shot the fish in a artery but when he hands me the fish I see it's not the fish bleeding but the spearo and it's not blood dripping but a stream of blood squirting out of this wrist. :shock: :shock: :shock:

What happened was, while trying to subdue the fish on the surface the fish twisted in his arms and managed to lodge the spear tip very deep into his wrist rupturing a vein... so OH CRAP!! WHAT NOW!? :shock: :o

What followed was a pretty hectic couple of minutes... Between trying to bandage his wrist, picking up the other spearos who both had fish on, untangling a float line which was stuck in the outboards, trying to keep from not drifting into the comms which at that stage was less than 20 m from our boat and keeping away from the other spearos on other boats and their floats and lines, it's safe to say I had my hands full. Thank goodness the spearo with the hole in his wrist was super calm and still made the remark there we should continue diving... :mrgreen:

Once we got everything on the boat sorted we made the call to head back and arrived at Arniston harbour about 40 mins later. The boat retrieval is pretty much the reverse of the launch except the boat is now pulled onto the slip and then winched onto the trailer.

All and all a pretty eventful trip. A mix-match of size where shot, everything from small malkoppies right up to 10kg class fish. I did see one comm gaff what looked like a pretty big (18kg+) Tail, so it's good to know the Tail are now up there in good numbers which means I will be visiting Arniston again in the very near future. :D :D :D
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Re: Arniston report

Post by JohanV » Wed Jan 28, 2015 11:36 am


Please do not pull those tricks on my boat. I'll just faint and leave you to bleed...
Unless it shoots straight, it is like Zohkos. Pretty perhaps, but not of much use.

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Re: Arniston report

Post by snack » Wed Jan 28, 2015 2:47 pm

Thanks for the report and the launching details. Going to skipskop is on this years to do list.

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Best catch: Yellowtail

Re: Arniston report

Post by Mini Marlin » Wed Jan 28, 2015 3:55 pm

great post and glad you okes got some fish..

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