June 15th

Tuna fishing

We wake up early, as John has arranged for a local to show us where the big tuna are that have reportedly been seen in the area in the last few days. The local, Mattia, brings two huge rods with very big reels. I am skeptical as we set out. A few hours into trolling and scanning the ocean, we see signs of sea life and fish feeding, as we did on the way from Maratea to Agropoli, but no strikes on the lures. Next thing, one whole rod breaks off including the safety line and an expensive rod and reel has disappeared into the water. Mattia tells us it is a giant tuna. Again, I am skeptical. Did not see anything.

We troll for several more hours and then start to head back to Agropoli. About three hours out from Agropoli, after having been out for almost 7 or more hours, we see these large creatures leaping in the air. I am convinced they are large dolphins. As we get close, realize I am completely wrong and these are in fact giant blue fin tuna. They can grow to 1300 pounds or more in size. I was so excited, I forgot to take photos and when I did try and film it, most of the footage was of space and air, as I was far too excited at seeing these giant creatures leap in the air so close to us and did not want to miss the moment. Sometimes, there were three or four in the air at the same time. Let’s just say we were in awe. We stayed with them for about an hour or so, trailing our lures through them.

Luckily, they did not take the lure. Quite honestly, I am not sure what we would have done had we actually hooked on of these beautiful sea monsters and I really did not want one caught, so was glad they ignored our lures. I was so happy to see them swim away. The photos and video I took do not do them justice, as you cannot perceive how big they are.

It is a fairly uncommon sight to see these very large ones, and I believe that several of the ones we saw were over 500 pounds – definitely taller and much bigger than us.

Eleven plus hours later, we arrived back in Agropoli with a serious fish story that I am sure most will not believe. Even Mattia, the local who came out with us is having a hard time convincing his friends what he saw, as he explained when John bumped into him tonight.fi 100fi 100xfi 101fi 102fi 103fi 104fi 105fi 106fi 107fi 108fi 109fi 110