During the middle of November there were lots of bait schools offshore but not much in the way of large predators. This made the coastal fishing a bit hit and miss.
Josh Lyons and his crew managed to hit the jackpot by finding a bunch of tuna, GT and sharks busting the bait big time – after we’d headed north about 20 minutes earlier finding very little happening. Geoff managed to land a beast of a GT around the 50lb mark during a couple of hours of tackle-busting mayhem that had some very aggressive sharks beating the trevally and tuna to the lures and even bigger sharks eating hooked fish. Earlier in the day, crews in both boats had a ball landing a swag of big queenfish on lures and floating baits, along with some good fingermark off the bottom. Some big sharks become involved at various stages, making sure the tackle boxes went home lighter.
Trolling the shallow reefs proved particularly fruitful a couple of times with some excellent coral trout, cod, fingermark, mackerel and barracuda coming to the boat. One afternoon session saw at least 40 fish to 5kg landed in my boat in a couple of hours. Some of the crew had some great soft plastic fishing over the shallow reefs, landing a swag of species including some big trout and fingermark.
The lads managed some excellent mangrove jack, barramundi and fingermark in the rivers, with Glen landing the best jack, a 47cm beauty taken on a vintage C-Lure. A couple of nice grunter were also taken on lures along with the ever present barra.
The final charter for the year started (in my boat) with a triple hook-up – a cod, a jack and a barra up one of the Embley River side creeks – and ended with a double – a queenfish and a barra up the Hey River! In between, there was plenty of action both in the rivers and offshore.
The lure casting up the rivers proved to be most fruitful during the morning lows and early flood, with plenty of big jacks, estuary cod, barra, barracuda and threadfin salmon on the chew. Some livebait fishing also provided plenty of action with more jacks, fingermark, cod, barra, salmon and grunter turning up. A great session in Nominade Creek on big grunter was one of the highlights, with the best fish going 58cm.
In between the double and triple hook-ups of these magnificent fish came quite a number of high-jumping queenies and hard pulling ‘rocket’ catfish that weighed up to 7kg.
Trolling the shallow reefs also proved popular, with plenty of coral trout, cod and barracuda interspersed with a few ‘unstoppables’ to lighten up the tackle boxes.
A great session down the coast saw a couple of nice Spaniards and tuna landed along with a 6kg fingermark. Trolling and jigging the shipping channel also raised some nice fish including 12kg of big brassy trevally for Darren. Clinton had two very large groper fighting over a hooked queenfish right at the side of the boat at one stage. In short, a top week to end our 2004 season.
Charters for next year are booking fast so give us a call as soon as possible to reserve a couple of days’ guiding in paradise.Reads: 552