Barra willing to play
  |  First Published: April 2004

THERE HAVE been a few nice ones hooked up this way lately, following the ‘croc saga’. The TV cameras and reporters have gone, along with the rogue croc – he’s been carted off further north by the QPWS rangers.

There are plenty of prawns still to be had, most coming from the beach from Meunga Creek to the Pie Cart. There seem to plenty of mud crabs about too, the majority of them full of meat.

Towards the end of the month the fishing has been full-on with some nice barra being boated. Some fish worthy of mention are Mark Goodin’s 95cm beauty hooked and released near Hecate Point on a gold ‘Brad Smith’ lure (not a lure we see a lot of up here but they work), and the white barra caught by Vernon Leo off the rocks at Point Hinchinbrook (courtesy of Tully Times). This area is fishing pretty well with some nice barra to 90cm hooked on large live mullet. Plenty of other species are caught there on livebaits and dead baits, with some good queenfish taking live sardines.

Mulley’s Rock has been working well, with plenty of barra and jacks taking livebaits. Pelagics also can be had on poppers.

The creeks have been a bit off and on but when you pick one that’s working it’s full-on action, with barra, jacks, big cod and even the odd grunter readily taking lures. If you’re targeting grunter, I’m told it’s best to use strip mullet for bait as the smaller fish are a bit pesky on the prawns.


My pick of the tides are 3rd through to the 8th, and the 13th through to the 21st. They all have good lows but hey – if you have a chance to fish the fabulous Hinchinbrook Channel, come any time! These times are if you are making a trip up and have the luxury of working your fishing in with good tides. We certainly catch fish on other days but you might as well try to optimise your trip. Probably the only tides to stay away from are the neaping tides; fishing is usually slow then but we always manage to catch a fish somewhere.

Fish the flats on the incoming tides; usually about half a tide is enough to get you up close enough to the snags and roots. Keep fishing the channel, chasing snags and roots, until you run out of water. Then sneak up your favourite creek fishing the exposed drains and snags. A point to remember is that nearly all of the creeks on the mainland (from Meunga to Damper creeks) are only accessible at half tides, requiring a minimum of 1.5m.

That’s it for this month. The best lures for us have been an orange and silver Leads, a yellow and black Reidy’s and a variety of Flatratz with some pink on them. Most of our barra have come off the flats.

Safe boating and I’ll see you on the water. Remember: fish for the future – practice catch and release!

1) Here’s something you don’t see every day! This white barra was caught by Vernon Leo off the rocks at Point Hinchinbrook (photo courtesy of Tully Times).

2) Mark Goodin’s first ever barra – a 95cm beauty caught and released near Hecate Point.

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