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Fishing frenzies of yesteryear


In this month’s column, Gary Maas heads back to the Fifties and Sixties.

Durban ski boats had record catches of barracuda. The fish were taken between Vetch’s Pier and the old West Street groin.

On one day, Jerry Maas had 118 fish by 11.30am and went back for a second load in the afternoon.

The fish were collected on the beach by Irvine & Johnstone trucks. The price was 15p a pound; today, cuda sells for between R85 and R100 a kilo. Now that’s inflation for you.

More fish tales from Gary Maas

AUGUST 1958 (Tight Lines, The Mercury)
“The ‘74’ are going mad,” was the radio telephone message sent to Durban by Mr Bud Micklewright, owner of the commercial vessel, the Southern Maid, which left the harbour for a day’s sport. He was right.

When the craft returned to Durban, it was carrying about 700kg of fish, mainly “74”, which were biting very well off Isipingo Beach.

An angler shows off a recently caught 50kg copper steenbrass. Picture: Supplied

JANUARY 17, 1960 (Tight Lines, The Mercury)
Fourteen anglers on the Southern Maid had a good haul off Umdloti on January 16, 1960, catching 115 baracouta, averaging 8kg each.

Also in the catch were many red bream, a 15kg yellowfin tuna and a lazy gray shark.

Those were the days!! Tight lines and send your stories.

By Gary Maas – 082 413 5003

Pic, top: Pixabay


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