The Big GT Spew Fest

A SOLID dose of food poisoning is no fun in any situation but when you’ve spent a day and a night heaving your guts up only to recover just enough to stagger out from your bed to listen to your mates bragging about all the 40kg GTs, tuna and huge coral trout that they’ve been catching while you lay dying, well, it sorta makes you feel like spewing all over again.

A recent whistle stop trip to New Caledonia resulted in me spending the first of only two days fishing comatose and weak as a rat after eating or drinking something that I shouldn’t have. The previous night was spent in a blur of projectile vomiting – if I could have twisted my head around 360 degrees I would have been a ring-in for the lead role in a remake of The Exorcist.

Luckily, the vomit attack ended as quickly as it started. Apart from a certain tenderness in my midriff, I was ready for action. Fisho staff photographer Shane Chalker (who in between taking pics managed to score the aforementioned 40 kilo monster GT) and good mate Riley Tolmay filled me in about the pristine coral reef systems, massive fish and amazing tropical water I’d missed out on the previous day. I was psyched.

Long story short, some significant delays meant we didn’t leave Noumea until midday. We were on the water by early afternoon and well into the swing of casting big poppers around coral bommies not long after that. We weren’t fishing with a guided operation. Rather we were with two local guys – Cedric and Oliver – both of whom were fanatical GT specialists with only slightly better English than my French. However, fishing is a universal language and it’s amazing how much info you can share by saying not much at all.

As often happens, things were quite slow. The location was amazing – I’ve rarely seen such fishy looking water. We were only a couple of hours north of Noumea, the capital of New Cal, yet there was no-one in sight, only endless miles of reef, lagoon, flats, bommies and drop-offs.

The boys kept plugging away, casting their monster poppers, and muttering continuously about the imminent arrival of “happy hour”.

Well, happy, or “appy” as Oliver and Cedric pronounced it, hour eventually arrived. We hooked up on a few small GTs and all of a sudden a switch was flicked and the water was alive with huge fish. I’ve rarely seen such sustained surface mayhem. You’re going to have to wait for the September issue of Fisho for the full details but let me say here and now it was (pardon the pun) a fully sick GT popping session! You’ll be spewing when you see the pics of the crazy fish we caught. Stay tuned!

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