Friday the 16th of October, 2009. My fourth night time fishing trip in the creeks of The River Gambia. As usual, started from my hotel in Senegambia and reached Denton bridge by 22:10 Hrs. After the normal “Hi .. How r u man?” (by now many people in Denton bridge area know me well) and the usual catch up with the military police deployed near the bridge area, went to the jetty no. 1 (just before the African Angler jetty). It was pitch black everywhere, no moonlight and a running high tide.
Boat ride for about 20 minutes, using a 40 BHP Yamaha engine and armed with 4 rods, equal number of reels, and the usual tackle.. and yes lots of dead Bonga fish (to be used as bait). Reached the second creek on the way to Lamin Lodge. Anchored close to the mangroves, and started casting.
The first 1 hour was uneventful, almost had 8 cigarettes in this one hour span, some coke and one Shawarma. The skipper of the boat Lamin ( a very common name in The Gambia, in fact the first boy child is the family is known as Lamin) suggested we move further in… New place, some action, 2 hours and a few small catfishes… Moved further inside by about 50 meters. By now the tide was changing and the boat was turning, had to cast a few times before the first decent pull. But wait, whatever it was at the end of the line, it was not moving.. After a lot of cajoling, it decided to move a bit. The rod bend was decent enough to keep me pumped up.. 15 minutes, and I managed to pull up something.. A torchlight was flashed to welcome the guest and it turned out to be a decent sized sting ray. Lamin went inside the boat’s cabin to search for a plier. I assumed it was to pull the hook out, but I was wrong. The plier was used to break of the tail of the ray and it was returned back to the water.
By now the tide was running out fast and we decided to move back towards the main channel. 4 rods casted, fixed in rod holders and a few more cigarettes consumed. Suddenly one of the rods just bent like an arc. Grabbed the rod and the heard the familiar sound of screaming reel. Whatever it was, it was covering ground real fast, and it did not follow any lanes, just went on from left to right and right to left, ducked a few times under the boat, 20 minutes of running and then it showed it’s white silvery belly. Before I could understand what it was, it started it’s second run. Heard Lamin’s shout “It’s a captain fish”, was shit scared as I had heard captain fish has got sharp teeth and are known for snapping lines. Thankfully the second run was for about 10 odd minutes before it started tiring out. 5 more minutes and it had it’s gleaming eyes staring at us, head up.. landing net in the water and the fish landed safely on the boat. Took some time to look at the 3 and a half feet beauty. Opened it’s mouth and looked inside at the teeth, expecting it where we normally know teeth should be, however this one had teeth somewhere deep inside it’s throat. Razor sharp and definitely more than the number of teeth we have
Some pictures of the fish which was brought back to the hotel for a photography session and was then handed over to the smiling owner/skipper of the boat. I heard I lasted them for 1 day, a remarkable thing since their family is of 11 people, but then the fish weighed 10.5 Kgs.
A few snaps and happy waiting till the next night fishing trip…
http://img3.imageshack.us/img3/8617/mea ... infish.jpg