The ancient Polynesians have been fishing the coastal waters of Samoa for many centuries. Traditionally out of homemade canoes with bone hooks and hand lines. Yet it is only in recent years that sportfishing has started in Samoa, and I have come to find out that it is most certainly an unspoiled Blue Marlin hot spot worthy of attention.
Independent Samoa is located in the Southwestern Pacific and is one of the largest islands in the Polynesian chain. Its located about 600 miles north east of Fiji, and is made up of 2 main islands, Savaii and Upolu. Our 37 Merritt is based out of Salani Surf and Fishing lodge on Upolu’s south side, where we run charters mainly focusing on Blue Marlin.
I have been fishing professionally here in Samoa for 8 years, the first few years were spent logging bite locations, current directions, water temps and fish size trends. This logging was the only way to figure out the bite and the seasons here. Not having anyone to go off of made the early years a lot of trial and error. It was basically all pioneer days out here for the Blue Marlin fishery. However over time trends and seasons began to materialise in my logs.
You can catch Blue Marlin here all year round, but from what I have gathered our best season in Samoa is, (Nov-April) The Big Blues are here spawning then. In those months we can Avg 5-6 bites a day but we have had up to 10. Most fish are med size However 1 in 3 will be a real one (500++) We caught a 1025lb Blue in the month of November, so there are Grander class fish here. I even believe there are fish here beyond the 1000 mark, having had many a conversation with old time commercial fisherman in Samoa, its hard not to get excited about their story’s of Blue Marlin too big to pull up on their longline vessels, of fish so big they pop breakers on their electronic winches, these are Blues way over 1000+ lbs.
The local boats here have countless story’s of having 50 and 80 wides stripped clear of all their line in just under a minute. They all have had many encounters with XL sized blues, however most are lost due to tackle. None of the other boats pull heavy tackle, being that their primary target is Mahi Mahi, Ahi and wahoo 130’s are considered overkill and leaders over 300lbs are unheard of.
On Leilani, our 37 Merritt we are looking for these bigger fish and only pull 130’s, unless were pitch baiting light tackle. I believe Samoa has the potential to produce several shots a year at grander class Blues for serious anglers willing to put in the time on the water. Samoa is most definitely a heavy tackle fishery just waiting to be exposed to the masses. Last Feb on leilani, we pulled the hook after 2 hrs on another potential grander blue, which made our 1025lb fish look small in comparison. So if your looking to pioneer a new big fish Blue Marlin destination, then come on down to the treasured Islands of the south Pacific.
Capt Chris Donato