Be prepared for the unexpected... 15th of November 2013

We have been experiencing some lovely weather over the last few weeks in NZ and that is enough encouragement for me to go enjoy Jetskifishing. This trip had the company of one of my customers Darren Williams who has become a good friend after being introduced to our sport earlier in the year when visiting my shop. As he has been building plenty of hours experience now out on the jet-ski, I decided it was time to for him to hit the water and come along with me on an exciting adventure to the area between Little Barrier and Great Barrier Island.

We launched at the well maintained Omaha ramp on first light but with the days getting longer this means it is now 5am!

The ride from Omaha to Horn Rock was a comfortable thirty minutes with the glass conditions that had been served for us on this trip! Living up to our expectations, on arrival the area was literally boiling with fish life. The water visibility was so amazingly clear, allowing us to admire the fish swimming beneath. It wasn’t long before Darren was enjoying some softbait action!

Darren and I were both enjoying the mornings fishing and we decided we will nip over to Great Barrier Island being that the weather was perfect. We both knew our heading and I set off, looking forward to fishing some new territory. After a few minutes ride, I was checking behind to see if Darren was on course and could no longer spot him… I stopped and checked to see if I could raise him on the phone. Having limited cell coverage, I decided to ride back via my track on my Raymarine GPS and found him exactly at our previous stop. His ski wouldn’t start and had taken on some water, so much so it was causing the starter motor to have too much moisture to operate. Fortunately with level heads there was no panic. We couldn’t see any obvious signs of where the water was coming on-board, so water needed to be bailed. We notified Coastguard to let them know we may possibly need assistance and in the meantime with some Kiwi ingenuity bailed the ski with an empty “Gulp Packet”. Believe it or not, it worked and 30 minutes later with the water level eventually below the starter motor wiring!

Patiently waiting for all too dry out and one hour later the ski fired in to life! Darren played it safe and headed back to land. After Darren making it back to land and a quick service at JFK’s Jet-skis it was good news…It was something as simple as the bilge system hosing not sitting in the right location for quite some time, but now after being repositioned, is now back to being a sweet runner. A learning curve which we all learn from and the second example this month with how quickly things can go wrong, read further below from one of our Australian Jetskifishos after heading out on his Yamaha FXHO for a quick fishing session. To finish off our action packed morning, I stayed out for another hour to catch a feed. The work-ups had been insane all in viewing distance from our mishap, was some serious fishing pain watching all out of drifting reach. As you will see from my vid, the day was one we dream about and I fortunately got a taste of the action.

As much as I enjoy sharing my fishing adventures, we have to keep it real and safety is paramount! The following experience is from one of our Jetskifisho’s from Perth in Australia, an experienced Jetskifisho and fortunately the outcome wasn’t fatal with his Yamaha FX HO nearly sinking!


The engine cut about 2 mins after I posted my FaceBook status, hull completely filled with water and tipped me off due to the instability. I spent the next 3 hours in the water, paddling backwards against the wind and chop dragging the water filled ski in one hand with me. Let off two orange smoke flares when I first went in, as there was a boat about a kilometre away but they failed to see them. I decided to save my two glowing hand flares for when it got darker and have a better chance of them getting spotted. I let off my first hand flare just as the sun disappeared, as I knew there would have been people taking photos of the sunset from Long Point and looking out to the ocean in my direction. A boat anchored at the tyre wreck quite a few miles away saw the glow and upped anchor. I turned around to see the boat a couple hundred metres away and let off another flare to pin point my location as light was fading. The boys picked me up and tied the ski up and just as we started to motor off a shark fin sliced through the water 60m out the back heading right for where I was, must have been homing in on my splashing. The boys spun the boat around to have a look and the shark surfaced a couple more times before it disappeared as we got closer. Very grateful and lucky to be alive in all honesty. My mind was wigging out most of the time, the thoughts and little things that start going through your mind is something I really can’t explain. I'm proud of myself for not giving up, keeping calm and making some head-smart decisions regarding the flares. I’m definitely feeling it today though I’m just happy to be on dry land for now. Thanks again guys.
November 16 at 12:33pm
There are four hoses that enter just under the motor, one of the clamps failed and due to the water pressure running through the hose it popped off the connection and pumped water into the hull.


Beau in Perth


If we can all learn something from these experiences and always be prepared for the unexpected on the water. Come see me at the Jetskifishing Store for my free advice and tips with what I use for my adventures.

Andrew Hill
Andrew Hill