Committee members of the Grabine Freshwater Fishing Tournament were dismayed at the extreme weather for the 12th annual Grabine Classic, held at the Grabine Lakeside State Park.
Polar winds blasted in for the event and Wyangala Dam was at 98.8% full – and probably at 110% with the waves blowing in.
Angler numbers were expected to be low but the field reached an encouraging 1008, with even a few from Queensland and Victoria.
A few new ideas were tried this year, with an increase in size for weigh-ins and several catch-and-release stations sited around the lake due to the high water level.
Eddie Douglas from DPI Fisheries at Cronulla visited and liked the way the committee approached the tournament and some of the changes it had made.
Among the more interesting changes were the increased length of the fish presented for weigh-in, as well as having a limited number of each species numbered off to encourage all other catches to be entered as catch and release.
More prize categories were also added to this year’s prize divisions.
Catch-and-release weigh-ins were 35% of all weighed in fish with the major prize winners and weigh-ins as tabled below:-
Catch and release: Total cod 4, biggest 66cm, Craig Mason of Boorowa; total yellowbelly 37, average 40cm, biggest 45cm Mark George of Crookwell; silver perch total 3, best 38.5cm, Jack Weir of Goulburn.
Catch and keep: Total cod 2, best 7.525kg Glen Smith of Tahmoor; yellowbelly total 111 averaging 0.950kg, best 2.624kg Mark Van Fossen of Molong; silver perch total 13 averaging 0.930kg, best 1.045kg David Mikzarek of Canberra.
Carp total 342 averaging 1.220kg, best 4.453kg Wayne Kill of Colo Vale.
Again, no catfish or trout were recorded.
More than 40 valued at over $20,000 were distributed. Major boat and trailer prize, Geoff Brightwell of Greenthorpe; lure Board raffle (monies for restocking), Jack Loiterton of Cootamundra. Raffle first prize trailer and contents, Paul Duren of Albion Park; second prize barbecue and Patio Heater, Jim Hardie of Wallerawang; Wyangala Waters Bungalow Anthony Belling of Crookwell; Grabine Lakeside State Park Bungalow David McRae of Blayney; Grabine Camp Kitchen and Accommodation, Muddy Waters of Cargo.
The committee thanks major catch and release sponsors Southern Innovations of Goulburn, Lackanookie Fishing Club of Crookwell, Dick Elvins of Gwydir Gobblers Lemon Tree Passage and other major sponsors, Grabine Lakeside State Park, Carlton & United Breweries and Cowra Marine.
Special thanks to Dick Elvins and wife Karen who have helped over several years with the running of the Grabine Classic. – Wayne Cummins (Secretary)
Geoff Brightwell, of Greenthorpe, won the major boat and trailer prize at the Grabine Classic.Reads: 1140