Smooth Sailing
  |  First Published: November 2005

The water has warmed and Bundaberg is going off. The spit off Fraser Island is loaded with sailfish and small black marlin and the reefs are fishing well, although they are off-limits for two weeks of the month due to closures by GBRMPA.


Last month we fished in the All Ports Tournament run by the QGFA, in which clubs compete on their own grounds to tag the most fish. Our first day was disastrous: we hooked around ten sailfish, but tagged none.

Day two started a little better when my 6-year-old son hooked his first billfish – a black marlin of around 20kg. Tommy led the fish to the boat where it was tagged and released, scoring the first points of the weekend.

Later in the day David Borland hooked his first sailfish in a chaotic scene as four fish hit the lines at the same time. With four fish on we could see another six at the back of the boat chasing the teasers. One fish got off and David managed to catch one at the side of the boat, which when hooked put on a spectacular aerial display, racing away for over 300m. We tagged three out of the four fish and were pretty happy.

Overall, we saw more than 20 fish and tagged five during two days of fun fishing.


With higher water temperatures in the river systems, the estuaries have fired up. Big mangrove jack have been caught in the Burnett River, as well as Baffle and Littabella creeks.

David Magner and his family have been catching some good size flathead in the Baffle on soft plastics. Fish over 80cm are not uncommon this time of year. He has also been chasing small tuna in the Elliot River system and had best results with a high-speed retrieval.

It’s a great time to lure fish the rock bars in Baffle Creek because you can catch jacks, big bream and lizards, trumpeter and queen fish.

Tournament News

Some major sponsors are supporting the Hervey Bay Boat Club Game Fishing Tournament, which takes place on November 18-20. This means great prizes for everyone, particularly juniors. Shimano have donated bags for all junior entries and a major junior prize of a rod and reel package.

WIN TV and the Hervey Bay Boat Club always support the tournament, and I would like to thank Paul and Helen from Wellsys Tackle. They provide tackle to Australian game fishers, especially in remote areas, with the fastest delivery services I have ever seen.

We hope to see lots of new anglers this year at the tournament and please bring your family along to take part in this fun weekend.

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