Sunday, May 9, 2010

Don't Use Pakula Hooks

Yesterday was my third marlin trip of the year.  We took off early (7am) and started fishing at 8am.  We picked up a mahi-mahi and wahoo on a double hook-up around 9am, then had a marlin hit at 11:10am.  It was my turn so I got on the rod.  There was a problem with the drag (resistance) setting on the hook-up and the fish took out almost all the line before we resolved it.  This meant I had a ton of line to reel back in, which I did in 30 minutes.

I got the fish within 10m of the boat, but he was still very alive and wasn't ready to be speared.  I loosened the drag a little to accommodate his strength and avoid a break if he decided to go crazy.  For ten minutes we went back-and-forth, me reeling him within 7m, then him running 20m, until finally the hook just popped out of his mouth and he swam away.

It doesn't take me to tell you that this was a terrible turn of events.  Much worse than losing a fish on the initial hook-up.  We had this one close to the boat, all the spears were prepared, we knew how big he was, and we had 40 minutes invested.  Take a look at the reason the hook came out:

[overlayed on the same size 'unbent' hook]

These hooks are Pakula hooks, purchased by me last year.  Pakula is a big name marlin lure company and we all trusted that their hooks would hold up.  :(

We picked up another big mahi at 1pm, but then had no hits for the last four hours.

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