When fish bite, you will hear the line scream from the drag on the reel. This will immediately get the crew in motion. The mate will grab the pole and set the hook on the fish with a solid tug (unless circle hooks are being used). They will then hand you the pole and you are one on one with the fish on the line. You may choose to stand and fight or have a seat in the fighting chair. The mate will help you out if you are inexperienced and might say things like “reel” and “pull”. If you plan to fight standing up, ask the crew for a belt or harness, all boats have them on board. It is very hard to tell sometimes what type of fish or size is on the line, the mate might make adjustments to the reel settings to help you land the fish. If you are on with a huge fish (which happens) and you just can’t or don’t want to keep fighting, the crew will be happy to take over or you can hand the pole to another angler. (Please note: In case of record fish, this may disqualify the catch from any IGFA records). Landing a fish is not easy, and fish do get away, it happens. Enjoy the fight, take your time and know that the crew is there to help.
Someone once asked: Our fish got off the line, why was there was no leader?
Most of our crews use fluorocarbon leaders designed for offshore fishing, they are similar to regular fishing line (translucent) and meant to produce more strikes as opposed to steel leaders that are easier to spot. Tackle is very expensive and some type of leader is always used.
Frequently asked question: Can I set my own hook?
Of course! Just let the crew know that you would like to set your own hooks. The crews set hooks to give you the best chance to land the fish, improper setting of the hook is the #1 reason for losing fish. Even with an experienced mate, fish are lost during or before a fight.