The next morning Dada arrived bright and early to pick us up from our camping spot. We could hear him off in the distance while we lay wrapped up in our sleeping bags, so Liam ran down to meet him on the beach.
Our mission for the day was to head out into the deeper ocean to seek out some infamous Blue Cod.
We stopped in at Picton on our way up the Sounds to fill up our fuel tank, meeting one of the Cook Strait ferries on our way in.
On our way out of Picton we passed HUGE swarms of jellyfish, the photo doesn't do it justice, the water was just thick with them! And we kept passing group after group of them, it was amazing!
Our first Blue Cod caught! Very exciting! There are very strict rules around catching Blue Cod, you can only fish for them for a limited time of the year, and only catch two per person and they must be between 30 and 35cm long.
Liam's Blue Cod he caught...
And this whopper! wow! Almost 50cm long! He was lovingly returned to the sea and happily swam off into the depths.
Liam patting a shark :)
We had a beautiful afternoon sitting in the sun fishing. As they reeled them in Dada filleted them and then passed them through the window to me so I could cook them up. Now that's what I call fresh! The Blue Cod was so delicious!
With our tummys full and the sun getting lower in the sky, it was time to head back in. Both the kids had a turn steering the boat (with help from Dada on the inside).
But it was pretty cold so we huddled down inside the boat most of the way back until....
...these joined us!!!!! What an amazing way to end the day!
We could see huge schools of them up ahead of us, they were everywhere, all around us, I think they were herding schools of fish. So we slowed down to carefully make our way through and past them. Then about 6 or so of them decided to join us and travelled along with us for ages and ages. The kids and I sat up the front of the boat, it was freezing cold but we huddled together and the kids shrieked with laughter as they sped along beside us, jumping out of the water and scooting along in front of the boat, it was so amazing, you could see them eyeing us up, they looked like they were having such a fun time.
And the most hilarious thing, that had the kids in hysterics was that one seal was travelling with them. I don't know if this is normal, but it was just so funny seeing it pop out of the water, it didn't seem to be able to hold its breath as long as the dolphins so we saw quite a lot of it, each time it jumped out more hysterical laughter would erupt.
It seemed like they would travel with us the whole way back, they didn't seem to be tiring, but the kids finally became too cold so I lifted them back down inside the boat, and interestingly as soon as the kids were out of site the dolphins and our seal friend disappeared.