Caloundra – Gemini Towers sand flats – 27 August 2012


The forecast was for wind and that’s what we got. I decided to try the flats at Caloundra to avoid the worst of the blow. I arrived just after first light at about 5.45 am. I was struck by an icy blast as soon as I got out of the car. It was a north-westerly wind and probably blowing 10 to 15 knots already.

Cold and breezy on the sand flats

I rugged up and waded into the shallows in front of the Power Boat Club. The water was really cold and felt colder because of the westerly wind chill. I was fishing the run out tide. Low would be at 10.20 am. I started by fishing all around the weed beds with a GULP Jerkshad in the Cajun Chicken colour on a 1/6th 1/0 jighead.

Permanent fixtures

This did not produce anything so I switched to a GULP 4” Minnow in the Smelt colour. I kept fishing with this one and after about 30 minutes I felt a solid bite but did not connect. Next cast I hooked up. Mad head shakes and skittering runs – it was a Tailor. Now I was stuck – I caught sight of the fish it was a decent size – about 45cm, but I was a good 35 metre wade from the sand. I loosened the drag a little but the 10lb fluorocarbon leader was not going to hold and about 10 metres into my walk the leader snapped and the fish was gone.

I changed directions and started wading over the weed beds in front of the Gemini Towers resort. I was seriously cold now but the loss of the fish had annoyed me too much to allow me to give up, just yet.

It took a while

This area was a little more sheltered from the wind and the recent weather has hollowed out a nice area full of weed on the edge of the channel. I was casting over into the channel and pausing just at the weed edge. This eventually produced a 45 cm Flathead. I caught a few more, smaller Flathead, a bit further along. The wind was howling and I was too cold so at about 10.30 am, I gave up.

Hard work

Maundy Thursday – Caloundra – Golden Beach – 5 April 2012

Maundy Thursday

Rain, wind, swell, wind, swell – well at least the rain seems to have moved on, but the wind and swell look like they will be sticking around for the whole of Easter. Unfortunately that means that we keen fisherman are all herded in to the few sheltered stretches of estuary that exist along the coast. There are a lot of people looking to wet a line or put the boat, jetski, kayak, dinghy in the water over this weekend and the next one.

My tip for increasing you chances of catching something – start early. Fortunately not everyone is willing to get up in the middle of the night to catch a fish. Most people don’t consider a 4.00 am start relaxing! This means the water is less likely to have been disturbed before you get to it and also means you usually get to fish the calmest few hours of the day – around sunrise.

With all this in mind I set off for Caloundra at about 4.30 am on Thursday morning. It was full moon so it would be a big high tide at around 8.15am. When I arrived, the wind was already starting to rustle the trees and cast a ripple on the surface of the Pumicestone Passage. It has been a while since I have fished here. The water was considerably cooler but much clearer on the top of the tide.

DUO, the Japanese lure manufacturer has sent me some more lures to try out, including the Tetraworks Bivi in a few more colours. This a great lure that has caught a few Flathead for me and with the cooler weather on the horizon, I am sure it will also prove to be a great Bream lure.

It is a hollow body microvibe lure and the colour I was using today was almost black with some rainbow colouring. It is a sinking lure, 3.8 grams and 40mm long. I was back to fishing with my lightest spin rod and reel combo – the Loomis GL2 with a Shimano Stella 2500 reel. I had the reel loaded with 8lb braid and 10lb fluorocarbon leader.

DUO TETRAWORKS BIVI - Great lure in this darker colour

I started on the sand flats in front of the Caloundra Powerboat Club. The tide was still coming in. I cast all around the area of weed banks that line the edge of the various channels, where the boats are moored. It wasn’t long before I felt a nudge and then a solid hit. I was on to a fish. It took a bit of line and it was moving quite fast. It was a decent Bream – perhaps just under 30cm, but it was only just hooked. I started back towards the shore but just as I got a good look at it – it wriggled free and was gone.

Small Flathead - big soft plastic

I trudged back to the weed beds and carried on peppering the area with casts. About 10 mins later I had another solid knock – so I let the lure drop back down. When I lifted it I had a fish on. It was a small Flathead just under legal size. I took a few pictures and released it. A few cast later I hooked up with a bigger one – but again it wriggled free before I could walk it back to shore.

I decided to swap to a soft plastic and put on a GULP 4” Minnow in the Pearl Watermelon colour. This worked but again the fish was too small. I carried on until around 9.15 am but by then the wind was howling again so I gave up.

Caloundra - Pelicans

Caloundra – Bulcock Beach, Golden Beach and Diamond Head – 7 February 2012


Caloundra was my destination. I drove up from Brisbane, leaving just before 4.00 am and arriving at the northern end of the Pumicestone Passage, just before 5.00am. The moon was full and it would be a very big high tide – 1.9m, just before 8.00am.

The tide was running in strongly and the sea was fairly choppy – there was a lot more breeze than the forecast 10 knots west south-west. It was too wild to fish the mouth of the Passage so I walked Bulcock Beach, flicking a soft plastic lure along the edge. About half way along the beach, I felt a solid bite – but did not connect. I was using the 4” Gulp Pearl Watermelon Minnow on a 1/8th 1/0 jighead and still using the 8lb leader. I cast out in the same spot and this time the fish hit the lure on the drop. After a brief fight I pulled it on to the sand – a 40cm Grunter Bream – snorting away. I looked for more but could not find any, so at about 6.00 am, I moved on.

I drove down to the sand bank in front of the Power Boat Club at Golden Beach. The tide was really moving now and the water was really stirred up. There was a very obvious line were the clearer, incoming saltier water met the brown-stained fresher water. The big tides have also started to spread the loose sea grass around, making fishing with the hard bodied lures trickier. I flicked around with a small bibless vibe lure but it kept getting clogged, so I swapped back to a GULP 3” Minnow soft plastic in the Smelt colour. I fished for about an hour without a bite and covered a lot of ground. Eventually I caught a 36cm Flathead on the edge of a weed bed. As I was wading back out, the bait scattered and a good-sized Queenfish lept clear of the water. I cast all around the area but it did not come back. This was turning into hard work, so I decided to move again.

I drove down to Diamond Head and waded out onto the sand flats just to the north of the creek mouth. I swapped to a GULP 2” Shrimp soft plastic in the Peppered Prawn colour. I cast at the weed beds, using a slow ‘lift and drop’ retrieve. I felt a few bumps and nudges on the first few casts, in each location. I kept moving and after a few minutes I connected with a fish. It hit the lure hard, but it was a Bream – about 25cm long. I caught 3 more, around this size, over the next 30 minutes, then it all went very quiet.

I carried on until about 10.00 am and then gave up. The rain has obviously brought the Bream out to feed, but the big tides and dirty water are still making the fishing difficult.

Caloundra – Kings Beach Rocks – 3 November 2011


I decided to do a bit more exploring at Caloundra. I only had time for a short session so I decided to have a look at the rocks at the northern end of Kings Beach. I arrived just on low tide at about 10.00 am. There was a light southerly breeze, just enough to keep cool but not enough to make the fishing difficult.

I parked in Anzac Park and took a path down to the rocks. This whole shoreline looks very fishy. Where the rocks meet the sand there are numerous overhangs and small bays. The hard thing is timing. If the tide is too high it will be hard to get your lure / bait into the right spot – just beyond the rocks, where the sandy bottom starts. If the tide is too low the fish won’t be there anymore. I was lucky, I was fishing the couple of hours after low tide, which was pretty much ideal.

I decided to fish a 1/8th ounce, 1/0 jighead, so that I would not get snagged too often. I rigged it on my Loomis GL2 light spin rod with a 12lb fluorocarbon leader. I chose a GULP 3” Lime Tiger Minnow soft plastic to start with. Inevitably, I lost a few jigheads in the first 15 minutes, as I worked out where the submerged rocks where.

After casting and moving, casting and moving – a few times, a fish grabbed the lure, just as it came over the rock ledge. I let it have some line then pulled it over the ledge with a wave. It was a nice Bream – about 30cm. I released it and carried non along the shore.

I thought I might find some Flathead, but as time went by and the tide started running in, it was clear the fish had gone to sleep. I enjoyed walking along the rocks and examining the terrain and made a note to return to this spot at dawn or dusk, soon.