North­ern pike was a fighter

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - SPORT - Bjarke Bendt­sen

THE big rain will see mud­crabs push­ing out of the es­tu­ar­ies and along the coastal flats, look­ing for more salin­ity than in the rivers. Along with them a lot of bait­fish has been pushed out of the rivers, as well as jelly prawns. It all means the fo­cus is in­shore right now, and not on the blus­tery con­di­tions on the outer reef. I come from Den­mark, from a small is­land in the Baltic Sea. I do a lot of fish­ing back home. We catch sea trout, cod, her­ring. I don’t have a boat so it’s al­ways off jet­ties and so on. I’m on a work­ing hol­i­day. My best fish ever was a north­ern pike.

They get quite big, up to 1.5 me­tres, and about 20 kg — that’s big for up there.

The one I caught was 1m 9 cm and weighed 9 kg, so it was pretty big. That was in 2010.

It was a nor­mal sum­mer af­ter­noon. It’s in their breed­ing sea­son and they are quite hun­gry around then.

I went fish­ing with a mate, from off a jetty in the lo­cal har­bour near where I live. I was us­ing a big plas­tic lure but not fish­ing for any­thing in par­tic­u­lar.

I’d been fish­ing for about an hour when I got this bite.

I was pretty sure what it was. I had caught pike be­fore, but also won­dered if it was a big snag of sea­weed.

The line was re­ally bent over and I just started pulling, and then ev­ery­thing went crazy. It was very ex­cit­ing,

It ran ev­ery­where and lasted about 20 min­utes be­fore I could get it in. By then the fish was very tired. I was re­ally pumped. I took a few pic­tures and then put it back. I un­hooked it very care­fully be­cause they have a lot of teeth.

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