Stop the bus, the fishing has been going mad. Inshore and offshore has been fishing very well, with good news for the gamefishing boys: the little black marlin have arrived early and in numbers.
It’s the best start to a light tackle season since the late 1980s, back when I was decking on the game boats from Cape Bowling Green. It’s funny how things become cyclic and perhaps rely on certain currents.
Mick Edwards onboard Moonshine tagged five in one afternoon just wide of Hinchinbrook and had plenty up around the boat. Most of the marlin are fairly small at present around 10-15kg mark but in a few months they should be all around the 25-30kg, when fishing with light tackle becomes a real challenge.
They have also shown up in most coastal waters from Cairns to Townsville and beyond. Most the fish off here are only a stone throw off Hinchinbrook Island and as soon as I get some time off we are planning a trip out in the barra boats to have some fun.
Early season Spaniards have also shown up inshore with some great captures from the back of Dunk Island and the deep passage in the Family group of islands. Drifting pillies in around areas of current off deep points should see some fish eager to eat especially on the making tides up to the moons. Alternatively try trolling gar behind wogheads at around 5-6 knots. The headlands around the back of Gould Island should also start producing fish as well right through winter.
Inshore has been firing too. I have lost count of how many threadfin salmon my clients have caught in the past month, with a few days producing more than 20 fish on plastics. Some fish have been around 130cm long and are a great buzz when jigging with plastics. Everyone wants to know my secrets, but all I can say is you have to look for a certain kind off bait on the bottom and know how to interpret what feeding threadfin look like on the sonar.
I expect the threadys to remain on the bite especially on the tides up to the full moon for the next several months.
Berkley Gulps have also been responsible for some outstanding barra captures. While filming with Jason Kennedy’s Fishin’ Trip we recently accounted for several barra over the 1m mark and lost another around 120cm. It should be a great story when it airs later in the year.
Many of the lure casters in Hinchinbrook have also been reporting some reasonable fishing and an increase in the number of jacks being caught. Lure casting the drains and snags with shallow hardbodied lures should account for a few fish especially on the falling tides.
June should bring on much the same fishing but the reef will improve out of sight. The coral trout and red-throat emperor will move a little shallower and should bite well on the larger tides. Pillies and squid are the most common baits used, but you should experiment with soft plastics as you may be surprised at how much fun it is.
The large Bozo mullet plastics are very popular on trout and don’t fall to pieces. Bozo mullets are also a great alternative for using on billfish instead of rigging the traditional baits of swimming mullet.
Also a warning that there are still many large logs floating around the channel from our late floods, and remnants of cyclone Yasi continue to make their way to the estuaries. Some of the bass boats that are getting around have been doing up to 60 knots and I’m sure one will fall victim one day soon.
With the cooler water coming on there have also been many large crocodile sightings. Best thing is to leave them alone and let them sunbake.
If you would like to come up for a charter you can contact us via our website at www.hookedonhinchinbrook.com and keep up with our latest fishing action on Facebook.Reads: 816