Bribie – the old oyster jetty flats – 23 April 2014


It was a late start for me again on Wednesday – juggling work and fishing is hard.  But then most of my readers are probably well aware of that!

I arrived at the Bribie Bridge at about 9.00 am and waded out towards the flats to the south of the old oyster jetty. The sun was shining and there was a light south westerly wind. It is definitely getting cooler and the wind had some bite in it. The moon was 37% full and waning. It would be a 0.6m low tide at about 10.30 am.

I started fishing with a GULP 2” Shrimp soft plastic in the Peppered Prawn colour and this soon found a fish. It was a Flathead – just over 40 cm. I released it and went looking for more.  The water was clear but there were still a lot of black clumps of ‘snot’ weed floating around. There were sand crabs everywhere. Plenty of them seemed to be in romantic embraces.

As the tide slowed, I moved further south. In one of the sandy hollows, I caught another fish. This flathead had the brightest coloured tail I have ever seen. I released it and carried on wading south. I swapped to a GULP Jerkshad in the Peppered Prawn colour and as the tide started to run in, I caught another 45cm flathead.



I briefly tried fishing with a few small hard bodied lures, but they kept getting clogged with weed. I swapped back to a GULP Jerkshad in the Lime Tiger (orange and green colour) and at about 11.00 am I found a couple more small flathead that were probably just under 40 cm.

This had not been a bad fishing session – especially as the school holidays have just finished and this area has been fished pretty hard. All fish were released today.

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Bribie – the oyster jetty to the channel marker – 10 April 2014


I only had time to fish the afternoon run-in tide on Thursday. I arrived at the mainland side of the Bribie Island Bridge at about 12.30 pm. It was a hot, humid day.  It had rained again, in the morning and there was a light northerly wind. Low tide had passed at 12.20 pm. It was a hot still afternoon.

Clumps of weed everywhere

I waded south past the oyster jetty. The water was hardly moving but it was very dirty. As the tide started to run in, it became difficult to fish as the jighead caught on clumps of black, rotting weed. I swapped through a few different soft plastic lures and decided to stick with the GULP Jerkshad in the Cajun Chicken (black & pink) colour.

Just one keeper

It was hard work and I waded further south. As the tide picked up pace, I caught a 45 cm flathead, about 50 metres to the south of the jetty. It was now about 1.30 pm. I carried on towards the green channel marker and caught another 30 cm flathead at about 2.00 pm.


I swapped to the Mad Scientist Optishad paddletail soft plastic and I got a few bites on this but could not stay connected with anything. Just to the north of the big exposed sand bar I felt a bite. I hooked the fish but it was a slurping, spitting spiny puffer fish. This reminded me why I wear waders. I carefully retrieved my lure with the aid of my pliers.

Porcupine puffer

By about 2.30 pm the incoming tide was pushing me off the edge of the weed beds so I gave up and waded back to the car. It had been a tough session in the middle of the day.

Bribie – the old oyster jetty flats and the Seaside Museum drain – 2 April 2014


Wednesday was an almost exact re-run of Tuesday, – except I arrived slightly earlier in the run out tide. It was another bright, sunny day with a light northerly wind. The water is still fairly murky on the bottom of the tide.

I waded around the area to the south of the old oyster jetty and caught fish on the Powerbait Rippleshad in a black and gold sparkle colour, the GULP Jerkshad in Pink Shine, The GULP 2″ Shrimp in the Natural colour and the GULP 3″ Minnow in the Smelt colour. I fished everything on a 1/8th ounce, 1/0 jighead on 12lb fluorocarbon leader. I fished for about three hours and caught eight fish (all flathead), of which only two were over 40cm long.

At about 4.00 I waded back to the car and drove over the bridge to Bongaree to look at the creek drain in front of the Seaside Museum again. I fished along the drop off for an hour, gradually working my way to the south. I caught nothing.

Fishing in the middle of the day, northerly winds and not much bait around may all have been reasons for not finding many keepers. I released  all the fish, as the family will shoot me if I put another flathead on the table.


Bribie Island – Bongaree & the oyster jetty flats – 31 January 2014


I have been away for most of January. I was on a holiday that did not include any fishing – a complete waste of time and money, in my opinion. But the family seemed to enjoy it.

I was therefore dead keen to get back amongst the fish. Unfortunately my return coincided with the weather turning pretty wild. There was the tropical cyclone crossing the coast further north and the wind had been blowing fairly solidly from the east or south east, all week. The change from persistent northerlies also meant the temperature had dropped a bit.

Conditions at Bribie Island did not look great on Friday. There would be a 10 to 15 knot easterly wind and there would be a very low 0.2m tide at 3.17 am. First light would be at about 4.55 am, but it was new moon. The tide would be running in fast, at dawn, but I would be able to reach my favourite spots for about an hour.

I set off from Brisbane at 4.00 am and arrived at Bongaree, outside the Seaside Museum, just before 5.00 am. The place is currently a building site. The council has finally decided to properly rebuild the seawall on either side of the museum drain. They have completed the work on the north side and are currently working on the south side. The stepped sea wall will probably change the way the currents and sandbanks form, at the mouth of the drain. This should give us some new and interesting fishing opportunities.

At 5.00 am all was quiet. The tide had turned in and I arrived during the first of many light showers that continued through the morning. I started fishing with a GULP 5” Jerkshad soft plastic in the Watermelon Pearl colour on a 1/8thounce, 1/0 jighead. I tied it on to some new Gamma 10lb fluorocarbon leader. I popped in to see Nigel from  a few weeks ago and he suggested I give it a try. It seems like a great leader and almost as important it comes in a great little dispenser. It feels like it is probably tougher than the rated 10lb – I was hoping to give it a good work out and find out.

It was gloomy and I edged my way towards the drop off that runs along this section of beach. The sand banks are always moving around in this location, so I usually poke the ground in front of me with my rod. I have seen more than one keen angler wade boldly over the edge and filled my own waders, a few times.

I found the edge and cast over it. I got a couple of hits on the first cast. A few casts later, I caught a tiny moses perch and then another. I caught about 6 of these on various plastics and also found a ‘Happy Moment’. I moved up and down the ledge for about an hour.

I tried swapping to a small MARIA MS 1 D45 SP hard bodied lure. This is a 3.4g, 45mm, suspending deep diving minnow. It is very light but will get down to about 1 metre, very quickly. As with many of the lures still made in Japan, it is beautifully crafted. I was using an olive green colour. The moses perch and whiting kept attacking it but I did not hook any. I covered the same ground that I had with the soft plastics but did not catch anything.

The incoming tide had pushed me a long way back from the edge and another, heavier shower had started up so I decided to swap locations. I crossed back over the bridge and waded out to the south, under the bridge. The water was already up around the mangrove roots along the shore and coming in fast. It was now just before 7.30 a.m. I waded along the edge of the mangroves, past the old oyster jetty to the drain, which runs around the corner from Sandstone Point. The easterly wind was now picking up and the water was getting choppy.

I was back using the soft plastic lures and had tried a GULP 2” Shrimp in the New Penny colour with no luck. I swapped up to a heavier, 1/6th ounce, 1/0 jighead as the wind, swell and current made it too difficult to fish a 1/8th ounce. I also swapped over to a GULP 4” Minnow in the grey/ black and white Smelt colour.


The tide was getting higher and so was the wind and there were not really many places to cast from. I was about to give up when I felt a touch on a slow retrieve. I cast back in approximately the same location and let the lure sink, until I was sure it was on the bottom. I waited about 15 seconds then hopped it off the floor and I felt a solid bite. I dropped the rod tip again and then paused. Then I struck. The rod tip bent over and a little line peeled away and then the tip started wriggling. I finally had a fish.

The current helped the fish and it took a bit of line. I looked for a gap in the mangroves, behind me. The tide had come up and there were not many options. I let the fish play itself out in the open water and then slowly pulled it towards the shore. The big tide and wind had created a floating carpet of loose weed, about a metre deep at the foot of the mangroves. I managed to skid the fish over the top of it and find some firm ground.

It was a fine example of the dusky flathead species, about 50 cm long. It had been hard won and would make a perfect lunch. It was good to be back in business.

Bribie Island – the Seaside Museum drain and Buckleys Hole – 17 July 2013


New look site – hope you like it.

Things looked pretty good for Wednesday – there was a bit of rain forecast but the wind would be light, turning into a northerly. The moon would be about 65% full and low tide would 0.5m at 9.43am. These are ideal conditions to fish at Bribie Island. Arriving before dawn, I could fish the second half of the run out tide.

I arrived on the island side of the bridge at about 5.30 am. The water was running out pretty fast. I put on my waders and clambered down the rock wall to the south of the bridge. The bridge lights often bring the smaller fish or prawns into this area but there was no evidence of their presence. The water was clear, but there was a fair amount of weed floating around. I tried dark and light, big and small soft plastics but did not get a bite. Just after first light at about 6.00 am I decided to move south.

I drove down to the car park in front of the Seaside Museum. Conditions were perfect – I could see where the fresh water drain was pouring over the ledge into the channel and I positioned myself just south of this point.

I was fishing with my light spin rod and running 8lb fluorocarbon leader down to a 1/8th ounce, 1/0 hook, jighead. I started with a GULP 4” Minnow in the Smelt colour. I cast over the ledge, let it sink and bounced it back along the bottom, parallel with the shore. After about three casts, there was a solid bite, then line started peeling. It was slow at first but then it took off, as it realised it was hooked. It took about 10 metres, paused and then took another 10. It was a heavy fish. It turned and swam back towards the ledge. I tried to apply some pressure and lift it over but it put its head down and swam under an overhang. I tightened the drag a little and then slowly dropped the rod tip. As the line slackened, the fish swam out. I put the pressure on again but it went straight back under. I could feel the line rubbing on something and then pffffft – it was gone. When I wound in the line, the jighead and plastic were gone.

I swapped through a few soft plastics and hard bodies as the tide ran out. A small school of Tailor passed through and I lost a couple tails from my lures. I dropped down to a GULP 3” Minnow in the Pearl Watermelon colour on the same size jighead. On the first cast this soft plastic was hit as it sank. There was a quick initial run, towards me. I tightened the drag and started wading backwards. I did not want the fish to swim back over the ledge. I pulled a little too hard and caught site of a good sized Bream swimming away.

I carried on peppering the area with casts. I made sure I gave the soft plastic plenty of time to sink to the bottom. On a couple of casts I felt a faint bite, as I lifted the lure off the bottom. At about 7.35 am I cast out and paused. When I lifted the rod I felt some resistance. Suddenly line was peeling again. This time it was heading out into the channel. I moved closer to the ledge and gradually recovered some line. It was another slow powerful fish. It gradually tired and as I pulled it over the ledge, I could see it was a Jewfish. It made few more runs but I soon had it safely on the sand. It was about 55cm long. Unfortunately it had completely swallowed the jighead, so I left it in, cut the leader and released it, after a few pictures. I could not find anymore, so I moved on.

I waded to the south, casting along the edge of the drop off. Things were uneventful for about 45 minutes. I was now standing in front of the tidal lagoon at Buckley’s Hole. Suddenly, something grabbed the soft plastic as it dropped into the water. It took off and then let go. I continued retrieving the lure, quickly and just before it reached me, the fish grabbed it again. It jumped around and made plenty of lunges and short runs. It was a small Tailor. As it came over the ledge, it had two other fish following it. It was only about 30cm long but nicely hooked. I picked it up and took a few pictures before releasing it.

Things went quiet so I slowly waded back along the shore line to where I had started. It was now almost low tide and the water was getting dirtier and weedier. I was still using the GULP 3” Minnow soft plastic. At about 9.00 am I was ready to give up. As I speeded up my retrieve to pull the lure clear of the ledge, a fish grabbed it and pulled away. It went straight back over the ledge and headed for the bottom. It took a bit of line but soon calmed down and after a minute or two, I had a nice 36cm Bream to finish the session.

As I drove home the heavens opened again.

Bribie Island – Museum drain & oyster jetty flats – 8 July 2013


Monday was dry and sunny, with not much wind forecast. I could not get out early but I was determined to fish. I drove up to Bribie Island. As I drove over the bridge I could see the wind rustling in the trees – but at least there were no clouds around.

Monday was the new moon and I had arrived just after high tide at about 9.30 am. This was the smaller high tide of the day. I wanted to survey the area around the Seaside Museum drain and fish the run out tide. The mouth of the tidal lagoon that was emptying near the museum drain, has now almost closed up and a lot of sand has moved around.

I waded out to the south of the drain and cast around. I was using the GULP 4” Minnow soft plastic in the Pearl Watermelon on a 1/8th 1/0 jighead and fishing with 8lb fluorocarbon leader. A Dolphin soon appeared and put on a fairly impressive leaping show. It was a great sight but I doubt it did much for the fishing.

After about 45 minutes with no bites and a steadily building south-westerly wind, I decided to give up on this spot. I stopped for a cup of coffee to consider my options. I then drove back over the bridge to the mainland and parked up. The flats on this side of the Pumicestone Passage are a little more sheltered in a strong south-westerly wind.

I did not have much time left so I waded south, past the old oyster jetty and along the exposed sand spit, towards the green channel marker. I planned to wade back towards the bridge casting along the edge of the weed beds.

The tide was now running out very quickly and lifting big clumps of the ‘snot’ weed off the sea grass. I kept catching them which was really annoying, but even more annoying – my drag on the Stella 2500, was only clicking intermittently. At first, I thought the line might be slipping on the spool but I checked and it wasn’t. The clicker seemed to make a noise if I jerked a bit of line off quickly but not if I pulled it off in a slow, smooth motion.

I started fishing with a Gulp 3” Minnow in the Lime Tiger colour. My first customer was decent Pike who grabbed the plastic after about 20 minutes of casting around. The drag was working but not making any noise. It’s surprising how disconcerting this can be. Although you can feel the fish taking line, the noise that the drag usually produces really helps you gauge where you are in the fight.

After a while I swapped to the Zman range of soft plastics and tied on a Minnowz paddle tail in the Houdini colour. After 20 minutes this had not found the fish so I swapped to a GULP 5” Jerkshad in the Cajun Chicken colour (black and pink). After a few casts, I connected with a fish. I knew it was on but the intermittent drag was confusing me.Almost as a reflex, I reached down to tighten the drag and as I pulled the rod tip up, the 8lb leader snapped.

I re-rigged with the same set up and checked the drag was set right. I cast around in the same spot for about 15 minutes before I had another bite. This time I hooked the fish nicely and left the drag alone. It was a flathead, just under 40cm long. I released it.

It was now about 12.30 pm and we were approaching low tide. It was a bright sunny afternoon but the wind was getting stronger and stronger. I slowly waded back to the car, stopping occasionally to cast at the sandy patches on the weedy bottom. I soon felt another bite, but did not hook up. I stayed in the same place and three casts later, I had another 40cm flathead.

By 1.30pm I was just north of the old oyster jetty. I felt a grab at the soft plastic and suddenly there was an angry, head-shaking flathead coming towards me, across the surface. I wound in quickly and the hook stayed in its mouth. After a minute or two, the fish was beaten. It was the best one of the day, well over 50cm.

I had found a few fish but it had been hard work. I was delighted that the rain had moved on, now we just need the wind to calm down.

Bribie – Oyster jetty flats – 24 April 2013


The tide was all wrong but the fish were around, so I decided on Bribie again. We would have a 2.2m high tide at 8.05 am. This would mean the tide would be just over half way in, at first light.

I arrived just before sunrise and wandered south along the shoreline, on the mainland side of the bridge. I passed the oyster jetty, casting soft plastics on the flats on either side. I felt a few tugs in the area just south of the oyster jetty, but I could not hook up with anything. I was fishing with a GULP Jerkshad in the Lime Tiger colour, on a 1/8th 1/0 jighead. I was using 10lb fluorocarbon leader.

I find the last of the run-in tide the hardest to fish, land-based, at Bribie. You can no longer reach the various drop offs on either side of the Pumicestone Passage. The fish move up quickly but suddenly there is no obvious structure for them to hide in; they spread out over the open expanse of flats and it is difficult to know where to concentrate your efforts.

As I thought about where to fish a huge flock of cormorants came into land. I have never seen a group as big as this before. They settled on the water for a few minutes then took off again.

In this area the only obvious structure is the slight drain that runs round the corner from Sandstone Point. Even this seems to be gradually silting up at the moment. This is where I decided to focus my efforts. The water was flowing round the corner from the south. I stood beside the mangroves and cast to the south, in the direction of the long, now submerged, sandbar.

It was now about 7.00 am. After a couple of casts, a fish grabbed the plastic, made a short run then it let it go. This also happened on the next cast and I saw the familiar snout of a long tom, following my lure in. I cast a little more towards the south east and when I took up the slack I had a fish on the line. I set the hook and it took off with the current. I soon had it under control and waded back to a gap in the mangroves. It was a good flathead, about 50cm long. I let it go.

I waded back to the same spot and cast out again. I continued fishing this area as the tide came up. I swapped to GULP Jerkshad in the Curry Chicken colour. After a few casts the line pulled tight again and I had another flathead, about the same size. It was about 7.30 am. In the next twenty minutes I dropped two more fish and caught one smaller one.

Things went quiet around the tide change so I decided to wait out the slack water over breakfast and coffee. I waded back to the car and went off for breakfast. The wind was picking up from the south-east, but it was a beautiful morning.

By 10.00 am I had waded back to almost the same spot that I had been fishing earlier. The water level was much lower but I put in a few casts anyway. After about 10 casts, I caught another 45+ cm flathead, on a GULP Jerkshad, in the Satay Chicken colour.

The tide was now running out strongly and the big sand bar, down by the green channel marker, was clearly in view. With the wind behind me, I could reach the edge of the main channel and the sea grass beds, with some long casts. I started to make my way towards the green channel marker, casting as I went. I hooked a stingray which towed me around for a while and then broke me off. I also connected with an spiky puffer fish which grunted, spat jets of water at me and fluttered round in circles for a while before cut the line and got rid of it.

I re-rigged with a GULP Jerkshad in the Cajun Chicken colour. The water was now really running and lifting more and more sediment as the tide got lower. This did not seem to bother the fish. I averaged one every 15 minutes or so, for about the next three hours. The colour of plastic did not seem to matter. Most were around the 40 to 45 cm size, but there were several more 50+ cm models amongst them.

At about 1.30 pm, I had to tear myself away – always hard to do when you are catching fish. I had caught more than 15 flathead through the morning and it does not get much better than that!

Bribie – The oyster jetty flats – 14 March 2013


The wind had finally blown the rain away. It had turned round to a south-westerly and was quite cool on Thursday morning. It had been forecast to drop right off but was still pretty persistent in the trees as I drove up to the Pumicestone Passage. I arrived at the small car park, on the mainland side of the Bribie Bridge at about 4.30 am. The sky was clear for a change.
The tide was still running out but had slowed right down. Low tide would be at 4.52 am. I waded out under the bridge lights to find Colin (a local Bribie fishing expert) in position again – there are some big advantages to living 5 minutes away.

He was fishing to the north of the bridge so I took the south side. The water was murky and still and there was no sign of any bait. At this time, there is usually a fair amount jumping around, but there was not much water under the bridge lights and it was now almost still. The water was very dirty – as you would expect it to be on the bottom of the tide. I realised that I have not seen a dolphin in the area for a few weeks which may mean there is no bait for them to chase, but it could also be that the water is still a little too fresh for their liking.

I tried a white coloured GULP Jerkshad and then a more natural coloured smaller, 3” Smelt Minnow soft plastic. I rigged both on 1/8th, 1/0 jigheads and I was fishing with 10lb fluorocarbon leader down to 6lb Fireline in the luminous green colour. There are now a number of different colours available in Fireline but this green colour is the easiest to see in low light. I got snagged a couple of times and re-rigged with various soft plastics.

I did not get a touch from any fish but for the first time in weeks, I was treated to a magnificent sunrise. This is a great time of the day to be out and about. I waded south and fished along the edge of where I thought the weed beds would be. It was hard to see where I should put the lure with the sun low on the horizon and the water so murky. The tide started to run in and gradually picked up pace. As it did so it lifted bits of loose weed and debris so I could not swap to fishing with small hard bodies. I thought these might have a more success in the shallow dirty water.

Just after 7.00 am, I was half way between the end of the old oyster jetty and the green channel marker, in about waist deep water. Having tried a few brightly coloured plastics and few natural coloured plastics, I had swapped to a GULP Jerkshad in the Cajun Chicken colour. This is a black colour with a bright pink underside. The tide was running in so quickly that I had put on a heavier 1/6th oz, 1/0 jighead. This also helped me figure out quickly where the edge of the weed bed was. I carried on casting up, into the incoming tide and bouncing the lure along the bottom, with lots of long pauses. At about 7.20 am I felt a pretty solid hit and saw some bait fish go flying. I cast back in the same spot about 6 or seven times – nothing. On cast number eight, there was a surge and splash and the fish took the lure, almost on the surface. It was a small flathead – under 40cm. I was relieved to find it. I took a few pictures and released it.

I continued south and stuck with the same soft plastic. Perhaps the dark silhouette was the only thing that was working in the sediment filled water. It was a big tide and now it was a little short of half way in to the run in and the water was getting too deep to stay close to the edge of the weed. Just short of the green channel marker, there is an exposed sand bank and just to the north-west, there is a drain where water from the bay floods in. This must be why the fish congregate here. Without looking, I knew I had reached it because the water temperature dropped a few degrees and I instantly felt the change, through my waders. I turned back towards the oyster jetty and kept moving. After about another 15 minutes I found another flathead of about the same size. It did not put up much of a fight. I photographed and released it.

I waded slowly back to the bridge, casting as I went, but I did not catch any more fish. I arrived at the bridge at about 8.45 am and the wind had picked up again. A tough session – the fish may be reluctant, but they are there.

Bribie – under the bridge – 28 February 2013


Midweek, the rain was easing off, but we have had so much that the estuaries and Moreton Bay are a muddy mess. Thursday morning looked like it might be worth a fish.

Full moon had passed on Tuesday and I expect the jewfish would be cruising around in the dirty water. Unfortunately, it would be a low tide around dawn. This would mean the water would be at its dirtiest at the optimum fishing time.

I decided to return to where I had caught fish last week – the flats around the old oyster jetty, just south of the Bribie Island bridge, on the mainland side of the Pumicestone Passage. I know I fish here a lot but it has been one of the most consistent fish producing spots for me over the years.

As I left Brisbane just after 4.00 am, it was drizzling. Then as I got on to the highway it really started chucking it down. Fortunately it was just a passing shower and I arrived at Bribie at about 5.00 am, just after low tide. I rigged up, pulled on the waders and wandered out under the bridge, in the dark.

The tide was a low low – about 0.4 m, because of the moon phase. The water’s edge was a long way from the mangroves. It was cloudy but the black sky was just beginning to turn grey in an attempt to signal dawn. The water was like milky tea in the shallows, but there was a bit of bait jumping around and the occasional prawn skittering across the surface.

When the water is as dirty as this I have no idea which colour soft plastic to go with. A hard bodied lure with a rattle or vibe would probably be best, but this area is very rocky, so that would have to wait. I decided to try a GULP jerkshad in the white colour on a 1/8 th oz, 1/0 jighead. It was tied on with 10 lb fluorocarbon leader.

On the first cast I felt a bump and saw a bit of movement behind the lure, in the water. I cast back in the same location and on the first hop, I had a fish. I could not figure out what it was. It was quite heavy and slow but made a few quite powerful quick runs – maybe it was a soapie jewfish or a ray. There are a number of oyster covered boulders in this spot so I took my time. It tired pretty quickly and I dragged it safely on to the mud. I was fairly surprised to see a stonker Luderick at my feet.

As most fisho’s will know Luderick are a largely vegetarian fish who prefer to eat green string and other weeds. They will also sometimes take live yabbies. They have tiny mouths and are usually targeted using weed, tiny hooks and very light leaders, under floats. This one was very hungry or perhaps, very confused by all the rain. It was a good fish and it later weighed in at a little over 1.5 kg.

I cast around this area in the shallows with a variety of soft plastics – big and small. I felt a few more touches as the sun poked over the horizon, but I did not hook up. I waded further south, casting as I went. There were more attacks, probably from the small moses perch or bream that hang around here. I passed under the jetty as the tide started to run in.

The hardest thing about wading in such dirty water is that you cannot see any contours on the bottom. I am always looking for the edge of weed beds or the small humps and channels that are dotted around this area. In these conditions you are just casting at where you think they are. Sometimes the surface movement of the water will help you but really, you just have to keep prospecting with long casts and slow retrieves.

The tide was now running in strongly but there was not much debris or weed floating by. I swapped to my DUO Ryuki Spearhead 45s. It’s a small sinking hard body that has been catching plenty of fish for me lately. I particularly like this gold/ green coloured one. It is looking a bit battered as it is rapidly becoming my favourite – that usually means its days are numbered! I was now casting over the sea grass so I had to keep the lure moving. I could only pause momentarily, to allow the fish to strike, every few seconds. The lure kept catching clumps of sea-grass on the bottom, but that just proved I was at the right depth – just off the bottom. At about 6.45 am the skies had clouded over again and it looked like it would rain yet again. I persisted with the hard body and thought I had a few knocks. I was about to swap back to a soft plastic when I felt some resistance and saw a splash. I lifted the rod tip and the lure caught in the mouth of a small flathead – just under 40 cm long.

I released the fish and decided to swap back to a soft plastic lure. I tied on a GULP jerkshad in the orange tiger colour. A paddle tail soft plastic might have been better in these conditions but I did not have one with me. I continued south, wading against the incoming tide, towards the green channel marker. I was soaked by another shower. The water was running in fast but it was no cleaner. I was casting towards the middle of the Passage and bouncing the soft plastic along the bottom until I felt it hit the edge of the weed beds. At about 7.10 am I felt a fish snatch the plastic and take off on a short run before dropping it. I stayed put and spent the next five minutes peppering the same area with casts. As I paused on one of the retrieves I felt a small hit, then a proper bite. I dropped the rod tip, then struck. It was another flathead. When it emerged from the cloudy water I could see it was only about 35cm long.

I was wet through and there was clearly more rain on the way. I trudged back to the car, dreaming of crystal clear waters and sunny skies. If you are prepared to get wet and fish blind there are things to catch – but it is not much fun at the moment.

Bribie Island – Bongaree – 8 January 2013


High tide at Bribie Island would be at 6.20 am. Conditions were still but the fires were getting going on the north side of the island and there was a strong charcoal smell and a hazy sky. I started at about 5.00 am.

I waded around on the sand flats beside the drain in front of the Seaside Museum and tried fishing with just about everything I had in my lure box.

The water was fairly clear and there was plenty of bait around. I cast over the broken ground with soft plastics and hard bodied lures, but I could not raise a bite.

At about 7.40 am I caught a 30 cm Flathead on a GULP Lime Tiger Jerkshad. I fished on for another hour but caught nothing.

The fishing in this area is definitely challenging at the moment!

Bribie Island – the Seaside Museum Drain – 22 June 2012


Bugger the tax return – back up to Bribie. I arrived at about 8.30 am. High tide would be at about 11.00 am, so I was fishing the run in tide. There was not enough water over the flats around Sandstone Point, so I decided to try fishing on the Bribie Island side of the Pumicestone Passage at Bongaree.

I started in front of the Seaside Museum. I waded along the sand bank at the mouth of the drain and cast over the edge of the drop off that runs along here. There was plenty of bait around and every now and then it would scatter, as a predator came up from below. These bust ups would happen at the edge of the drop off. Probably the passing schools of chopper Tailor or the resident Pike.

The tide was not ideal. There was too much water and I could not really make out where the drop off started. I got snagged plenty of times on the edge. I moved further north, towards the jetty but could not find anything here. I tried big and small soft plastics, hard bodies and even a tiny popper – but I could not find a fish.

Friday's wading route

Friday’s wading route

I drove down to Woorim and round to Skirmish Point for a reconnaissance. There should be some Tailor hanging around here by now. And I have also heard about a few Tuna captures. I walked out to the beach and wandered up and down, prospecting with a big soft plastic and spooked plenty of bait. I will have to come back just before dawn one day.

After a good run, I could not find the fish today. Tide? Location?, Wind? Lures? – too many variables in fishing – that’s what keeps it interesting!