The 2012 Moama RSL Fishing Classic was run from Friday 23 March through to Sunday 25 March, 2012.
With the local waterways battling the effects of rain for the second year running, the organisers were a little concerned about numbers for the event dropping, however the competition still saw 400 registered anglers take on the native fish in the majestic Murray River.
The locals really jump in and support the event with Moama RSL staff members on hand at the boat ramp each morning with all the rules and regulations, as well as a fresh cooked bacon roll and coffee.
The fishing is based on two days: the first is Saturday and the fishing times are 7am to 4pm; followed on Sunday from 7am to 11am. So you have a day and a half to catch yourself a fish or two.
Start time on day one arrived and we went down the ramp at 5 Mile to watch the boats launch and head off. There were old and new boats in all shapes and sizes; it was a real eye opener but these native anglers set their boats up and fish hard with everything attached on their boats having a purpose!
There is 22km of fishable river and staggered all up the river are marshals who were in their own boat, on their own time supporting this event. Once you catch a fish you hail down a marshal and they record, by measurement, and release your native fish or take away the carp.
There were families fishing from the banks, in boats, up trees, everywhere. Wherever they could fish from they did. It was amazing to see how many people just love to fish!
Moama RSL really put on a great event. They actually make it hard to go fishing, with great food and fun always at the RSL. A few fishers spent a lot of time in the warm function room as there was always something happening like raffles, not to mention a cold beer.
The river was the big winner for the event and the native fish were as tough as expected. There were 46 native fish caught and released and almost 450 carp removed from the river this year. This was a testament to the carp’s breeding ability and their eagerness to snaffle almost any bait in the water.
Once fishing had finished on the Sunday it was presentation time! It’s easy to win a prize! Catch a fish and you’re in the draw. It’s all lucky dip to win, so most of the 400 anglers were on deck for the prizes to be drawn!
As the event wrapped up everyone enjoyed a beer or two and a BBQ lunch and fishing tales were told about the event.
Moama RSL chief executive officer Ashley Menzies said overall he was pleased with the weekend, despite there being fewer competitors this year.
‘‘The numbers were down on last year, probably due to the height of the river,’’ he said.
‘‘But it was great to see our regular anglers catch a few.’’
Mr Menzies said he was also pleased with the number of carp caught.
‘‘We’re certainly pleased to see that amount of carp taken from the river. It’s good for the health of the river,’’ he said.
Fishing Monthly was invited along to cover the event and spend time running a casting alley to teach some of the fundamentals to juniors (and a few seniors!) to ensure they got off on the right fishy foot. It is always a privilege to see first hand what an amazing waterway and surrounds they really have up on the NSW/VIC border. The Fishing Monthly team was hosted by Moama RSL and their hospitality was amazing, so I would like to extend my thanks to all the staff who helped over the event.
With this waterway only a few hours from Melbourne, it’s a perfect getaway for anglers and non-anglers. Remember there are so many things for the family to do in Echuca and Moama so pack them all up and get up to the Moama RSL Fishing Classic.
Until next year, happy fishing. – Stephen Booth
|Junior Lucky Draw||Martyn Currey|
|Junior Lucky Draw||Bailey McGibbon|
|Junior Lucky Draw||Zayne Rowe|
|Junior Lucky Draw||Josh Rudge|
|Junior Lucky Draw||Brock Pearce|
|Junior Carp Lucky Prize||Oscar Mounsey|
|Senior Lucky Draw||Simon Burke|
|Senior Lucky Draw||Brian Fenwick|
|Senior Lucky Draw||Mark Naughto|
|Senior Lucky Draw||Craig Halden|
|Senior Native Fish Boat Giveaway||Liam Singe|
|Senior Carp Lucky Prize||Mark Blandthorn|
|Early Bird Bonus Draw: Kincrome Tool Kit valued at $495||Stephen McNamara|
|Best Team Representation: Prize Big Eski||Simon Burke|
|Classic Major Prize Legal Native: BMT Package valued at $10,731||Jason Maw|
|Foyer Raffle Draw: BMT Package valued at $19,950||Darryl McDonald|
|Friday Night Lucky Angler Tag Draw: Jarvis Walker Watersnake valued at $755||Leigh Steers|
|Saturday Night Big Boat Giveaway: BMT Package valued at $6,251||Mark Blandthorn|
|Total Registered Anglers||400|
|Total fish caught||477|
|Legal native fish||46|