57 pound cobia caught by my friend Nakhle Hado, february 2006.

- I swam for fifteen minutes before I reached Aligator head. It is a well known dive site in front of Port Antonio. It has a nice reef formation. The locals only use scuba to visit the site since it is deeper than 60ft.

I was sitting in the sand at the end of a canal. The cobia came very close before it saw me. It turned towards me and went to the right side of a rock. I quickly turned as it disappeared and went around the rock myself. It passed in front of me and I took a shot at pretty close range, right behing the gillplate. I merely had to lift my gun. The shaft came out behind the eye. The cobia was shot at 22m.

I had time to unlock the reel beforehand and now it was going wzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. The cobia went into a cave at 25.7m. It came out 30 second later for another run. Since I saw that the spear was stuck in its side I blocked the reel. It pulled me down and it would have felt like water skiing had I not been underwater. I pulled myself to the surface and kept working it from there. It was 7:30. I was alone 15 minutes from shore and I had not extra gun.

The 5-6ft chop was not helping. After 15 minutes I was still trying to figure how I was going to kill that fish and how long it would take to die by itself. The cobia was fighting very hard and loosing a lot of blood.

The cobia towed me over a deep drop that goes to about 140ft, then another one over 200ft and into the open sea where I had a real chance of attracting some large sharks.

At one point the fish surfaced and started circling me like a shark. It was at about 30ft when I first tried to catch the fish. I merely managed to cut my left palm right through the gloves.

It came shallower. I tried my standard submitting catch. As I got closer it spun around and gave a nasty look. The eye contact told me the fish was not happy. So I backed off. I was about 6ft from it when it took off like a rocket and hit me in my chest. Crossing my hands to protect myself I watched it going down.

I figured that I couldn't catch in open water so I gave it line to make sure it was far. It went back deep near the cave. I decided to go after my shaft directly while the fish was in the cave. It meant that I had to let go my gun. It's a Marox gun, well thatís what my brother nicknamed the 110cm homemade gun that floats with its spear in. It was made with an aluminium tube and it has a single 19mm rubber band.

So I let go the gun and went for the cobia, passing my line still attached to my floating gun. I was hoping that the reel would remain loose in case the cobia decided to flee. I went into the hole to get the spear but the line is tangled in circles around the reef and I have to go back up.

I couldnít see the fish, only the line. I started to pull on the line. I feel tension. I pull until it is 50ft away. I started to see it. I pulled again until it was about 25ft away.

To my relief it headed for the beach. As we reach a protected bay I steered to rock took off my fins, pulled the knife and I started to bring the fish hand over hand until it was in 3ft of water.

As it came close I jumped on it and held it while trashed in the shallows. It was a great feeling. I finished the fish as soon as possible and admired my catch.

The worse part was putting the line back on my reel. I called it a day. Except for 2 very experienced Jamaicans no other fishermen knew what it was. I don't know if it's a first in Jamaica. The cobia weighted 57 pounds.

Nakhle Hado


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