For the travelling angler, the weather is something that we all have to put up with and its what you make of it that can change a disaster into a great holiday. Never give up and do not let the weather put you off trying as hard as you can when the opportunity arises. Our partners, Tropical Sea Angling, guided by Johan Mikkelsen have just returned from the wonderful Rodrigues Island and they experienced some pretty awful weather but never gave up and still managed some awesome fishing. I will now hand you over to John for him to tell his story:
Rodrigues Island – Extreme weather conditions!
It’s hardly true! Another week where I (Johan Mikkelsen) with a group of guests in bad weather that limits our fishing. Can say the entire Indian Ocean has been having extremely bad weather lately which is very unusual during this time of year. The last two trips, both the weather and fishing have been great until the day I arrive with my group. When we got on the plane home, the dam weather will be great again… Well, next time it turns!
Below is our latest report from Rodrigues Island.
We had planned to fish a full day around the island of Rodrigues, to begin with, and then head out to the famous West Hawkins Bank with their longest 89-hour ride. Well arrived at Rodrigues, however, we get the sad announcement that the first fishing day will be cancelled due to the rough weather. A bad start to our journey. Instead, we spend the day at the fine hotel that is down by the sea and hope the weather forecasts will change.
However, looks like it is persistent bad weather so even our intended Hawkins bank expedition is cancelled and instead we fish on the lee side of the island during day 2 where we finally got to fish as we were suffering fishing withdrawal. We landed a bunch of coral trout’s which were big, some wahoo and yellowfin tuna when we decided to troll. We spend the night in the boat on the lee side of the island and then continue fishing at dawn the next day. The conditions were tough, average wave height of about 3 m with stable 10-13 m / s. The second fishing day we managed a little better on the troll when all participants managed to land Yellowfin tuna around the 40 kg class! Something that had been high on their list and felt good to land them because of the tough conditions.
The colours are amazing
His main target smashed
Lots of Coral Trout
Guide Johan taking the strain
That is a beast, well done
The weather forecast had now worsened again and we are told that another day is cancelled and that it was not even certain that we would get out again. With heavy swells, we are now back at the hotel again thinking about what you can do to pass the time here on the island, it was hardcore fishing we wanted to do! We all spoke about local smaller boats and travel leader Johan pulled all his contacts to try to find something that could work. Finally, he gets a local captain who runs inshore fishing after, among other things, GT. We didn’t even hesitate and booked him immediately. The boat was only 19 ft and was only meant for 2 fishing, we pushed 3 people in and ran a 5-hour pass. Of course, we were also very limited due to weather, but we could still fish in the ribs where there were a little better conditions. It didn’t take many stops until Johan hooked into a nice GT that brutally attacked his popper a few meters from the boat. In the same crank, Peter had one that was sadly missed. Now we would realise that the GTs are here!
We fish on without any more contacts and move to a new area. Now it was Patrik’s turn to get a slam and not long after, Peter too. Then the surface behind Patrik’s popper exploded again where an estimated 30 kg+ GT goes up and misses the bait. We scream with excitement that it was BIG! A few swear words were shouted and we then realised that we may have just missed today’s GT bite! This was certainly not something we had expected when we went out into this little boat under these bad conditions. Unfortunately, no more GT landed this day but we went back to the hotel and instead could enjoy a cold beer talking about today’s fishing and hoped our captain would return with better weather reports.
Finally, we get the announcement that there will be 2 more days of fishing! We could exhale because there is nothing worse than sitting on land when you want to just be out on the sea fishing!
Because of the current conditions, we focused the third fishing day on trolling, however, it turns out that there was no activity at all this day. It felt like the stormy sea was empty of fish. We hoped that the evening jigging would deliver more. But this also became a defeat, there was not much fish caught and we then decided to finish fishing and get ready for last day’s fishing instead.
We talked to the captain and he explained that unfortunately, we could not reach his hot spots around the island due to the bad weather. We also couldn’t fish at the right depth due to the strong swell. In other words, we struggled in really bad conditions. It was a mentally frustrating day. But we tried to shake this off and instead focus on the last fishing day.
The weather had now become slightly better and today the captain invested in getting us to his hot spots despite the rough sea. It took a long time before we were in place. Finally, we heard the speed decrease on the engines and he calls – Jigging!
We quickly take our rods and start jigging to the full! Already on the first drift, we hooked a fish and it made an awesome rush! Soon after the first bite, three stood with curved rods! Finally! Finally!
All the anglers were playing fish
There were several dogtooth tunas, coral trouts, jacks and other smaller fish landed. We were finally fishing right! Magnus was undoubtedly the hottest with one Dogtooth tuna after the other! He fished with a 300 gr Maxel jig model “Wraith” that made him quickly come down to the fish and that dominated the fishing right now. Not long after he hooks in something really big! A brutal rush followed, of course, we thought we finally hooked in a better dogtooth tuna but up comes a GT of an estimated 25 kg! Magnus’s first GT and you can only lift your hat and congratulate on an awesome fish!
Doggies all round
Even Doggies of this size pull hard
Yet another huge Yellowfin
Unfortunately, this amazing feeding frenzy died off pretty quickly and we couldn’t find the same action again. A couple of sporadic fish landed as well as a 70lb class shark that Peter fought up after a brutal fight.
The Shark took a liking to his jig
We then had to interrupt the fishing pretty early as we had a long trip back. There was a couple of wahoos caught but then we had to give up for this time.
We were disappointed with the result and that we never got out to the intended West Hawkins Bank. But everyone did their utmost to save our journey and we are deeply grateful for this! Now we just feel like going back for revenge at this exciting destination that receives world-class fishing!
Tough going Johan but well done for keeping the morale up of your group. It is hard and very demoralising when we are faced with such tough conditions but as anglers, we are always at the hands of the weather gods. We will keep our fingers crossed for your next trip.
As Johan mentioned in his report, this is for odd conditions for this time of year but just goes to show how the weather is changing all around the world, you can go to the best parts of the world with some of the best fishing but still get affected.
If you would like to enquire about this destination feel free to contact us on 01603 407596 or click the ENQUIRY button fill out the form and we will contact you.