Fish Stories - Monster Moiby: Lance Takamiya
posted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 at 11:11 AM
Caught this monster moi this morning! Here’s the fishing story that goes with it since I’m on vacation.
It was pitch black and I had forgotten to bring my glow lures. So I used a regular lure, with one glow bead. I lit up the glow bead with my head lamp and casted several times in different directions; using a fast retrieve to keep the lure from snagging the rocks. About the 5th cast, it hit. I was pretty sure it was a papio as it made a long run.
When it stopped, I could feel the line rubbing on the rocks. So I loosened the drag a bit and extended my arm as high as possible, holding the very end of the G Loomis 8-1/2 ft pole with the tip pointing towards the stars. It seemed to work as the 8 lb test line didn’t lock up on the rocks. Each time it made a run, I would tilt the pole down so the drag would release. When it stopped, I would extend the pole straight up, again, holding just the end of the pole.
I would pull back to retrieve some line but I could still feel the line rubbing on the rocks. The long runs and the constant rubbing on rocks sure felt like a papio but there was something different. A papio normally makes more dashing runs. This one gave steady long runs and I could feel the tail bumping the line as it ran, similar to how a mullet fights. Knowing this, I paid special attention to ease up during the runs and be patient when taking in line. After fighting the fish for quite some time, the line seemed to free up from the rocks, so I tried to boost it up with each wave. This works like a charm for the normal sized moi, but this one didn’t budge. It would pull drag when the wave surged out, but when the wave came in, it hardly moved. It gradually started to move into shallower water.
When I turned on my head lamp, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Not a papio, but a big fat moi with a red eye. I quickly grabbed the scoop net as it tried to make another run out with the outgoing wave. Then I saw a wave coming. As it engulfed the moi with white water I used the surge to pull it in closer. I lost sight of the monster. The line went slack, there was no weight on my pole. Was this going to be just another fishing tale? Not to be... There it was, lying in a pool nearby. As the surge began to pull it back out again, I quickly ran down the rocks to scoop it up. I was amazed with its girth as it filled the entire scoop net. No others would bite this morning, but I expected that. After this long fight it likely scared off the rest of the school. The moi weighed in a little over 4 pounds, not even close to the 7 or 8 pounders I heard old timers talk about... but this one is my personal best, and after moi fishing for quite some time, I know that catching one this size or larger may never happen again in my life time. This was a perfect early Christmas present as it was the first day of my vacation and the next day was our annual Christmas get together at Uncle Wayne Takara’s house. We fashioned a special steamer to fit the whole fish, brought it to Uncle Wayne’s and steamed the moi right there, Chinese style. It made an impressive and mouth watering dish!