I am writing this report on Monday, September 13, and at this stage there have been no reports of boats heading out wide over last weekend. The winds did drop on Sunday; however, they were not ideal, and I feel the rain put anglers off. Today, Monday, the sea conditions and weather have improved markedly. Anyone who can manage a day off is planning a trip to the reef or islands either today or tomorrow. I know I am, so hopefully by the time this goes to print the area will be awash with fishing tales from out wide.

September and October are the best time of the year to target big Spanish Mackerel around the close in islands. For best results, try drifting large live baits or trolling wolf herring. The building tides this weekend are ideal. I have caught many Spanish in the 20 to 35kg mark at this time of year.

Again, reports from the local estuaries are few and far between. There have been some nice Mangrove Jacks and Barra caught, however anglers have had to look for fishable water as water quality has been very poor.

On a more positive front, there have been good reports of Grunter in the creeks, especially those in the Hinchinbrook region. As we move into spring and the early summer months, Grunter catches normally improve, especially in the coastal rivers. There are also good numbers of Pikey Bream schooling around the snags in the estuaries. 

Those chasing Mud Crabs have been managing a feed, with most boats reporting 2 to 4 keepers for an overnight set. This is not record breaking by any means but, if you combine some fishing, it is well worth the effort.

As the temperatures rise, the freshwater fishing is improving quickly with some great reports of Sooty Grunter and Jungle Perch being caught in the coastal creeks. The freshwater reaches of the Tully and Johnstone Rivers are also fishing well for Barra, with anglers targeting the entrances of the feeder creeks into the main rivers.

Tinaroo Dam is also starting to fire with local, Ando Anders, doing very well with a metre plus Barra a couple of weeks ago. The lead up and just after the full moon is an ideal time to target these monsters, (but do not forget the impoundment fishing permit).

At this early stage of the week, the forecast is for a couple of days of calm seas before the winds come back up again. The good news is conditions are forecast to improve again over this weekend,  so hopefully boats will get a chance to travel out wide to the reefs and islands. The forecast is for 10 to 15 knots on Saturday morning and dropping further through the weekend.

Either side of the early morning or evening high tides will suit those wishing to chase Grunter in the coastal creeks or the Hinchinbrook area.

Alternatively, either side of the early afternoon low are the tides I would pick to chase a Barra or a Jack.

Providing the weather forecast is correct, these same tide changes will suit anglers wishing to fish for species such as Coral Trout or Mackerel.

It should be an exciting week in front of us and I plan to be on the water as much as possible.

Just a word of warning, the very low afternoon tide will have to be taken into consideration when planning a fishing trip this weekend. There will be access problems to ramps such as the Hull, Tully, Port Hinchinbrook, and Fishers Creek.

Good Fishing

Roly Newton

Tackle World Tully

More News