This past week has seen some of the best weather consistently day after day for quite some time, and it appears to be gone until mid-next week when we should see the seas drop right off and the breeze abate to below 10 knots.
With the new moon happening on Tuesday night the lead up to that cycle was amazing right across the region with some huge red fish caught along with solid trout, and sweetlip. The pelagics have also been on the chew with the odd bill fish being captured and released but as for the rest of the species like long tail tuna, cobia,and Spanish mackerel they never see the salt again. It’s good to see the bill fish in the region at present and for all you big lure tossers out there I have no doubt these will try and pull your arms off.
As you can see Trent Hall had a bit of fun with the small black on the light gear and his mate Stu Morris showed off a nicetroutfromthatsessionbut checkouttheconditions.Wow. Well this is my last column I’m writing as I need to give someone else a burst at promoting this amazing hero experience in our region. For the past 23 or so years I have been writing this column eachweektonotonlypromote the region as far as fishing is concerned but to inspire you folks to get out and explore. We have arguably the best fishery on the east coast with an amazing offshore system along with the myriad inshore spotstonotonlygetlostinbut where you can capture a metre-long Barra or a solid finger-mark which will test out your knots, or a mud crab which would cost over $100 in Sydney. I’ve seen cast nets being tossed over a prawn boil up where the banana prawns are so thick they’re digging and stirring up the bottom is a deadest giveaway. Retrieving the cast net reveals possibly 3-5kg of prawns all table size.
We’ve seen cobia caught off the beach at the Boyne River mouth and old mate almost running out of line until another boatie says jump aboard mate, let’s chase it. I’ve listened to Johnny Mitchell tell me about a gold spot cod he spotted in knee deep water so big that a can of XXXX could stand upright in its gob. I was fortunate enough to have a guided tour of the harbour one day with Johnny as he showed me around this incredible port, pointing out wetlands, soft coral gardens, drop offs which were sheer rockfaces plummeting 20 or so metres to the bottom. We have fished spots where the current is so fierce that you would’ve considered it similar to the massive tidal runs in WA. I have met people like Jack Erskine, Rod Harrison, ET, Andrew Symonds, Gary Fitzgerald, Dave the barefoot fisherman Hodge, Kai Bush, Scotty Hillier, Dean Miller, and many others who have visited this region as fishing guests or hosting media programs etc. Being one of the founding members of the Boyne Tannum HookUp its been interesting watching it evolve and change over the years and next year we see it celebrate 25 years. Just amazing. Years ago, we held a Pro-Am comp up at Lake Awoonga where some of the biggest names in Australian fishing turned up, being Jack Erskine, Rod “Harro” Harrison, Gary Fitzgerald, Dave Hodge along with a very young and up and coming angler called Johnny Mitchell. There were also the young guns (and that’s what they called themselves) being Matt Branthwaite, Jacob “Duke” Jeffries, Bryce Knight, Shaun Walker and Dane Mesecall attempting to take on the big guns. These local lads have become part of the fishing scene as they grew up, but now some are in different parts of the country still with that passion for fishing. Looking to the week ahead, the sheltered water ways look the go at least until Tuesday. So after 1100 or so articles over the past 23 years, the so called “pen”, because now it’s a keyboard is being put down, and someone with a passion for fishing across our region can take over. No doubt you will see me around the traps in my trusty Gladstone Region Tours bus. I might even see you on there one day.