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Age is no barrier

Recently at the Informer we caught sight of one of those stories it’s hard to ignore. This is one of those intergenerational, father-and-son stories that we just had to reel in.

Six year old Cooper Thomsen recently landed what could well be a world record catch, landing a 37.65 Kg fish on a 15 Kg line. ‘He reeled in a big one.’

Father, Rodney Thomsen, tells the story best. According to Rodney, his son Cooper was up and ready to roll at 4:30am, the plan being to head out to the Aldie Knoll, about 57Km from Tairua. Once aboard his Dad’s boat “Adventurer” however, Cooper was soon fast asleep again.

Approaching the knoll around 8.00am, and after only about 10 minutes trolling, the boat had two lines hooked up. Young Cooper had awoken to begin his fishing and had the first line. The second line fell away fairly quickly, but young Cooper clearly had a fight on his hands. He strapped on his gimbal and harness, but it soon proved to be a team effort, with Rodney having to hold on to the youngster’s harness to secure him aboard “Adventurer.”

In Dad’s words, “Almost before he knew it, the fish had pulled out most of Cooper’s line, but he managed to reel the bulk of it back in within about 45 minutes. The fish wasn’t ready to give in however, and neither was Cooper. In fact his enthusiasm didn’t really start to flag until he’d been on the line for about two and a half hours, by which time he was really feeling the pressure.

Fuelled by lollies and drink, he kept going. It wasn’t until the fight was four hours in, that they finally caught sight of their fish, and that buoyed father and son’s spirits alike. It was yet another hour before the fish was alongside the boat, and they could finally grab the leader and get a gaff on their catch, ending the five-hour battle. About 1.00pm they finally landed Cooper’s fish. Rodney concludes, “Cooper had a smile from ear to ear, and was pleased to be able to get out of the gimbal and harness! He was done though, and slept all the way back to Tairua. The next day he had a pretty cool story to tell at school, with bruises on his back and legs to show for it. In spite of the hours of effort, and with the bruises to remind him of the experience, he’s already talking about, ‘going back out and catching a bigger one!’” Dad smiled.

Pictured: Cooper with his Dad and his mighty catch.


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