Port Fitzroy was once again host to the annual Warkworth Game Fish Club’s Grumpy’s One Base tournament held over Auckland Anniversary weekend. This year, the Biggest Snapper & Kingfish were measured and put back to live another day. All boats were supplied with a plastic measure, which the fish was laid on and then photographed. The winning snapper was estimated over 9kg in weight. Only two striped marlin were weighed and five tagged and released. This was very low catch numbers, considering that over 50 boats competed. The hard luck prize went to the team on the boat Outsider, who happened to have landed a superb specimen of a mahi-mahi on a Frontiera Soft head lure, which topped the scales at just over 10kg. Racing to get to the weigh station on time, the boys missed the 4pm cut off by just 15 minutes, costing them what would have been a great prize.
The most memorable moment of the competition happened right at the end of the prizegiving. This year saw the founders of the Grumpy’s all coming together and fishing off the same boat (they used to all have their own boats) as a final farewell to the tournament.
One of them, drawn out of a hat, was called up to collect a plate and take part in an elimination draw, with only 10 lucky participants, for a massive travel prize worth over $7000 for two people. He, totally bewildered, did not take his plate. As the draw was about to start it was noticed by the organisers that he did not have a numbered plate yet. He got given the only plate left which happened to be the number 7. As each plate number got drawn out, participants dropped their heads and walked away sheepishly disgusted to no longer be eligible for this great prize. In the end only two lucky men were left. Either participant was going to get a nice prize, but the top prize finally went to Graham Maker – the founding member of the Grumpy’s tournament. What a nice farewell send-off.
Finally, the warm waters have been pushed inshore and it is all go for those trolling for game fish. Good marlin have been caught around the Poor Knights Islands as well as further north. It is time to get those lures smoking!
Anthony Roberts, Tackle & Outdoors