Friday, 23 December 2011

One of the other perils of rock fishing - FEAR

Many a keen fisherman will sympathise with The Daily Examiner’s editor over this salty experience he shared with the world last Tuesday:
“FISHING is supposed to be a relaxing activity, one where you can forget about the stresses of life, simply absorb the surroundings and be taken to another place.
It normally is for me, but not so on Sunday.
A friend and I headed to Woody Head to do a spot of bream fishing off the rocks. With not much happening on the fishing front, I decided to try another spot, but in the process managed to slip and put a small cut on the back of my leg on some oysters. There was a steady trickle of blood for the rest of the morning as the salty water stopped the wound from drying out.
As the tide rose we moved again, this time well away from the surf zone but where there was a collection of serious rocks and hazards. I lost a good deal of bait as I made my way out. I placed myself on a rock that had about half a square metre of surface above the water line and cast out. Small waves gently rose above the rock and up my calf muscles, keeping the wound wet and a drop or two of blood entering the water.
After about five minutes on the rock I looked down to see a wobbegong shark more than a metre long swimming beneath my feet, within a minute there was another, then another, then another.
I'm not sure I saw them all, but there were at least four, probably five, sharks milling around my feet.
They were so keen on what I was doing, they kept putting their heads onto the rock from which I was fishing.
This was disturbing.
I thought that in time they would pass. They didn't.
My only passage back to the mainland was by wading through the rock-filled water that was sometimes chest deep.
It wasn't a pleasant thought.
I know they are protected, but I stomped on the heads of a couple as they came onto the rocks and hit another couple with the butt of my rod. They would swim away for a few metres, then return.
I eventually decided to try to scare as many away as possible and take my chances through the rocks. I did and grabbed a few more bumps and grazes on the rocks on the way back, but thankfully the sharks left me alone.
I've seen what they can do to people when they latch onto someone.
My daughter told me last week one of the things on her bucket list was to swim with sharks. I'm going to cross that one off mine.”

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