Gone Fishing Report


THE rough weather conditions over last weekend confined fishing to the estuaries. There were a couple of days of good weather prior to last weekend and many boats took advantage of this and headed out wide. Unfortunately, despite the great tides, the fishing was generally tough, with many boats struggling. I managed a reasonable feed, consisting of Nannygai, Coral Trout, and Tuskers. However, it was only a couple of each. Despite the difficult fishing, it was a lovely day on the water. I did hear of a couple of very good catches from out wide of Nannygai, Rosy Job Fish, and Red Emperor. I think the majority of the action was at night-time.


I am writing this report on Tuesday morning, and I have just received a text with a photo of a nice Spanish Mackerel caught by Craig Hawkins on a ribbon fish from the Family Group of Islands. Craig mentioned that he left them biting.


There have also been reports of Spanish Mackerel and the odd Spotty Mackerel being caught on the rubble patches and shoals in the shipping channel.


Last weekend, the Townsville Game Fishing Club ran their annual Barra Bash in the Hinchinbrook Channel. The club was very pleased with their results, with over 200 Barra being released on the first day and heaps of Mangrove Jacks. The best Barra was a 106cm long and there was a P.B. for the tournament with a monster 52 cm Jack.


The Kurrimine tournament was also held over last weekend, but the weather conditions would have severely impacted them, with most entrants set up for reef fishing. At this stage, I have not received any fishing reports. This is a very well-run tournament and great publicity for the area, so hopefully there were some great estuary fish caught.


I spent a couple of hours late Sunday afternoon fishing the incoming tide in the Hull River with my brother Peter. In two hours of fishing, we managed to catch two Barra, two Jacks, and five Cod, all on small soft plastics. It was a very relaxing, stress free, couple of hours.


Mud Crab numbers also seemed to improve over the weekend, with most boats managing a crab or two.


The Grunter are moving in close, with some great fish being caught in the coastal creeks and the Hinchinbrook area. This is the time of year when a lot of species begin to form roe, for example Coral Trout, Spanish Mackerel and Grunter, so please try to moderate your catches.


The freshwater fishing has improved dramatically, with good numbers of both Sooty Grunter and Jungle Perch being caught last weekend. The upper reaches of the Tully and Johnstone Rivers have been fishing extremely well. Don`t forget the repellent as the March Flies are out in force!


At this stage I have not heard anything from Tinaroo Dam, however the next few weeks generally provide the best impoundment fishing for the year.


I write this report very early in the week and often the various websites get it wrong, such as last weekend for example. At this early stage, the various websites are predicting a small window of light winds for this weekend. If this is correct, we will have ideal conditions to head out wide for a fish. The Mission Beach Game Fishing Club is holding their annual tournament so let’s hope all goes well.


The very small run in the tide this weekend will cause some problems for anglers. The water height through the day will suit those wishing to chase Barra and Jacks up on the Hinchinbrook flats. It will also suit those wishing to fish for Mangrove Jacks in the creeks. There will be opportunities to fish for Fingermark in those deep holes around the islands or the drop offs in the Hinchinbrook channel. Often it can be difficult to entice fish to feed on days with very little run in the tide, however there are a lot of factors that influence fish behaviour and I certainly never rule out neap tide days. Some of my best days fishing have been on these tides.


Good Fishing

Roly Newton

Tackle World Tully

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