Fisherman RAINER DIAS
Location Lakshadweep Islands, India
Date 19th January 2004
Species Indo-pacific blue marlin
Weight: An estimated 400 lbs.
Reel: Shimano TLD 20
Rod: Shimano Backbone Series 15 kg
Line: Berkley Fire line 60 lb.
Leader: Jinkai 150 lb Fluorocarbon.
It happened like this…
11:00 hrs Our lines were out as we headed back from an overnight fishing trip to an uninhabited island in Lakshadweep. Most of us were half asleep when suddenly over the racket of the open exhaust diesel engine, I heard the boatman yell “olemina…olemina…. OLEMINA”!! My first sailfish…I excitedly tell myself. I jump up and grab my rod only to realize that I am almost down to the backing. Five minutes of utter pandemonium follow, trying to turn around the wieldy local fishing skiff that on “good days” does a maximum of 6 knots! I despair that we are not in the best position to chase down one of the fastest fish in the ocean.
11:09 hrs Suddenly, in a powerful burst of sea spay this magnificent fish shoots out of the water and does a tail-walk in the direction of the boat. In a flash of iridescent blues he then disappears under the surface right below our boat.
11:10 hrs Suddenly I have miles of slack line! I am seized with disappointment at the idea of losing this fight before it has even begun. “We lost him!” I shout to the others, as I reel in another 40 yards or so of slack.
11:11 hrs Still reeling in the excess line, I am quite unexpectedly aware that something is not as it seems. Just then the reels fires up again and I know that the monster fish is still on my line. But this time, the fish just goes straight down.
Deep, deep down and to his death.
11:30 hrs At this point, it feels like I had snagged a rock. For the next half an hour, every time I gained a few yards of line, I would lose it with the next swell.
12:30 hrs My back was breaking…cramping…. sweat pouring from my body, toiling under the noonday sun. Someone was pouring water over me. I almost gave up!
13:00 hrs Stubbornly, I held on with every fiber of my being as my thoughts began to drift. It was well into my fight when I remembered an article I read long ago where they advised not to fight a big fish from right above. It seemed my noble adversary would stretch my physical and mental capacity to their limits.
13:45 hrs We backed the boat away…. and it worked! Keeping the line at a slant, we managed to slowly work the dead weight of the fish towards the surface. Just minutes later we were astonished to see that we’d pulled up to the side of the boat, every fisherman’s dream catch! It was not an Olemina (Malayalam of sailfish), but a magnificent Indo-Pacific Blue Marlin!
Later…. This approximately 400lb Indo-Pacific Blue Marlin happened to be the first one known to be caught on rod and reel in Lakshadweep. He was just over 11ft from tip to tail. What an unforgettably magnificent catch!
Lakshadweep Times news article about this Catch