TheTight Line Vol 8 Part 2 - page 42-43

Hairy Moments:
Despite my lighter than average gear
being surprisingly suitable in PNG,
this by no means suggests there were
not hairy moments. As previously
stated, black bass love structure and
it is the first place they retreat to once
hooked. This is really important when
considering braid and leader brands
as supple should probably be traded
in for something relatively abrasion
resistant. Two of my better fish have
given me heart in mouth moments
by making it back into the snags
where a game of tug and war ensued.
Only a combination of abrasion
resistant leader, and sheer luck in the
snags, which being palm fronds, are
seemingly more forgiving than trees
or rocks, saw these battles go my way.
Henry’s 36.5lb was another perfect
example of luck with the fishmaking a
hasty rush for a fallen pandanus palm.
The smooth surface of this tree gave
him the opportunity to fight it back
out and secure this unlikely victory.
Once again it was not the power
of my gear that had the potential to
let me down. Please do not for one
minute think this article suggests that
20lb is all you need for a PNG black
bass trip. My largest fish was less than
25lb and it was a close call. Black
bass allegedly grow to over 40lb and
that would be a whole different battle!
What was planned to be a once in
a lifetime trip has somehow made its
way onto the ‘must do again at the
soonest possible convenience’ list.
With two trips in the bag we have
already scheduled trips for 2016 and
2017, including some exploratory
missions to rivers that have quite
literally never seen modern angling.
With all sincerity, if you have
a love for snag bashing, brutal
strikes, visual excitement and exotic
fantasy-like destinations, then a trip
to New Britain PNG needs to be
penned onto your fishing bucket list.
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