Adventure Lakshadweep Archipelago/India 2016
Virgin waters of the Indian Ocean
We didn´t really know what to expect from our upcoming trip to India. The reports in the weeks before were promising and showed that there was definitely potential for some good fishing, especially in terms of popping and jigging. The way itself is actually quite convenient, we started from Frankfurt with a short stop in Abu Dhabi and then a few hours to Cochin. There we stayed one night in a nice hotel near the airport where you have a good chance to get used to the climate and get to know your other fishing mates for the week. In our case it was Daniel and Tony from Sweden. The next day we had a flight in the morning to Agatti and from there the real trip begins.
The first and second day we fished the area around some islands close to Agatti unfortunately without big success both on spin and fly. Only a couple of small to medium sized GTs and a couple of other species.
The rest of the week we set the focus on the northern part of the Lakshadweep Islands. The mothership travels by night and ankers in an adequate area from where we fished with our smaller fishing boats. The expectations where high, there was a lot of talking about big tunas and good GT fishing in virgin waters. The GT fishing was again quite slow on the third day but the tunas were very happy and available in big numbers. We could already see them from far away jumping in schools and hooked up to some really nice ones. In the end we could land them up to 40-50 kg on topwater popping and stickbait fishing. Very visual and amazing takes on the surface followed by hard runs into the deep blue. Openwater-Popping at its finest.
The last two days we travelled far up north. A very nice area with a lot of good structure so we finally hoped for some good GT fishing. Already in the morning of the first day we could land a good number of GTs with sizes increasing during the day. In the end the last two days where also the most successful ones in terms of GT fishing. Patrik could land a nice one with around 120 cm, Daniel with a really good fish around 125 cm and the others all could land fishes between 105-120 cm.
We could also hook up/had contact with Wahoos, Dogtooth Tuna, Napoleons, etc. We did see quite a few Napoleon Wrassie but unfortunately not lucky enough to catch one. Especially in the coral flats you see them often. Our German group member Tony could hook up to a very nice Wahoo directly in front of the boat (this guy just waited under the boat until he smashed his lure). Good days with decent fish numbers and lots of fun for everybody.
Fly Fishing was very difficult the whole week. Stephan could land a very nice bonefish around 10 lb and the rest of the group had to be happy with smaller sized fishes. It is still an add-on compared to popping and jigging with a scouting character and the DIY approach requires some experience with saltwater fly fishing.
The whole operation is still at the beginning and in a type of development phase with processes being optimized. You need to bring this attitude when coming to India especially in dealing with the local staff. This is a destination for the adventurer!