New Brighton, South Golden Beach, Bribie – Bream – August 2017

In August the bream where still around in numbers at Bribie and I also started to explore the beaches near the mouth of the Brunswick River in New South Wales. I am planning a move in that direction, so I need to get to know where to fish.

Sticking with mainly Gulp soft plastics, I had success with various coloured 3 inch minnows on the bream at Bribie. Fishing in front of the drain that empties into the Pumicestone Passage, over the coffee rock ledge, in front of the seaside museum at Bongaree was very successful. A light, 10lb fluorocarbon leader and 1/8th or 1/12th ounce jigheads seemed to do the trick.

Down on the beach at New Brighton the same size plastics found dart, flathead and a few good bream.

 

Bribie – the old oyster jetty flats – 15 July 2015

Wednesday

By Wednesday I was back in Brisbane, but I had a few hours for a fish in the middle of the day, that would coincide with the run out tide at Bribie.

I drove up and arrived at about 11.00 am. I had swapped back to my NS Blackhole 6′ SGII 602L trout rod as I wanted to put in some bigger casts on the flats. My new short Loomis ultra-light rod is great in tight terrain, when there are lots of overhanging branches, but it is not necessary at Bribie.

I waded out under the bridge on the mainland side. Low tide would be at 2.54 pm. There was a very light cold south-westerly wind blowing. It was the day before the new moon. The water was very clear and running out fast.

After about 30 minutes of casting and wading to the south, I caught the first flathead of the day. I was using my usual 1/8th ounce, 1/0 hook jighead and a GULP Jerkshad soft plastic lure in the Satay Chicken colour. I had decided to use a 12lb leader to give myself a little more protection against the toothy winter species. I then quickly caught a few pike on the same plastic.

I was now a fair way to the south of the old oyster jetty. I swapped to GULP 4” Minnow soft plastic in the Pearl Watermelon colour and caught more big pike. I kept a couple of the bigger ones for my cat’s supper. One came in with a nice mouth shaped bite mark on its belly. There are few better live baits for mulloway, tailor or big flathead, than large double hooked pike.

I managed to move away from the pike patch and caught another legal sized flathead. The pattern of pike then flathead, continued as I moved out along the sand bar towards the green channel marker. I caught fish all the way along, on a number of different soft plastics including the GULP Smelt and Lime Tiger coloured 4” minnows and the GULP Cajun Chicken 5” jerkshads.

As I reached the slighty deeper water around the green channel marker something fast and furious grabbed the Smelt colour minnow and took off. It was a 40 cm tailor and it gave my light trout rod a good work out. I released it and set off back for the bridge.

I caught fish all the way back to the car. They were mainly Pike and I had a couple of bite offs that could have been the passing tailor. In between I caught approximately 8 more flathead, only three of which were under the legal size limit of 40cm.

I finished in the dirty water at the bottom of the tide at about 3.15 pm. Unfortunately I forgot the camera today so I have posted a few pics from my phone and a couple of the home fish filleting area.

Iluka – Shark Bay – 11 June 2015

Thursday

As is so often the case in Iluka – the weather was not easy to deal with. The week before it had looked good with light winds and no rain forecast. I woke up early on Thursday to a howling south-easterly wind and intermittent rain, so I rolled over and tried to go back to sleep. That did not really work so I got up, had breakfast and then thought about where to fish in a powerful south-easterly. The northern edge of the rock platform at Shark Bay, at low tide was the only option, so I set off.

The mullet fisherman were waiting at the corner of Shark Bay looking out for some late season schools. Apparently it has been a terrible season. With the big rain events last month flushing out all the fish. One keen fisherman was on his way back from the rocks with a 40 cm tailor in his bag. He had spun it up on an 85 g Raider metal slug, just after dawn.

I spun an 85 g Raider for about 25 casts but could not raise another tailor so I swapped to the light rod and tied on a 1/6th ounce, size 1 hook jighead and GULP Mantis Shrimp soft plastic in the Lime Tiger colour. I was using 16lb fluorocarbon leader. In this area there is a kelp covered drop off about 10 metres out from the edge of the rock platform at low tide. This is where the bream sit. I felt a couple of solid bites as I pulled the soft plastic over the ledge, but did not hook up.

I swapped to 3“Minnow soft plastic in the Smelt colour and kept casting. In exactly the same spot a small bream grabbed it and I had my first fish of the day. It was now about 9.45 am and I was soaked and cold.

The wind had dropped a little so I moved south across the rock platform to fish on the southern edge. This area is full of kelp covered rocks but there are some deep, sandy bottomed holes and I have caught good bream here in the past.

I swapped plastics to a GULP Swimmow in the dark green Emerald Shine colour. This was getting hit on the first cast but it took a while to actually connect with a fish. At about 11.00 am after slowing everything down I connected with another bream. This was a good one – well over 35 cm long. I continued with the Swimmow soft plastic for another 20 mins and was rewarded with another, about the same size.

I swapped back down to a 3“Minnow soft plastic in the Smelt colour and  this produced another big bream, at about 11.30 am.  The rain started again and I decided to give up. It had been a tough session but there had been constant action and I had caught three excellent fish –  the largest of which later measured 38 cm.

Bribie Island – Jan to March 2015 – Catch Up – 24 March 2015

I am ashamed to admit that January to March 2015 has been a fishing black hole as far as the Landangler Blog is concerned. I apologise to those of you who check back here regularly for a fishing fix.

Once more the irrational requirements of modern society – funding for food, clothing and shelter – have diverted me from the most noble of pursuits. I have fished a few sessions at Bribie since returning from 1770 in December, but I have largely been overseas working.

As usual, when you increase the time between fishing sessions it gets much harder. You lose track of which tides work best and where and when the fish are feeding.  You lose your touch with the rod and start to forget what a snag feels like and what a fish feels like. Fishing is often a process of elimination. If you fish in one general location for three or four sessions in a row, in a short time frame, you get a far more accurate idea of what works and what does not. So the moral of this story is fish as often as you can!

In late December 2014 I had a couple of session on the flats beside the old oyster jetty at Bribie and caught a few flathead on each occasion. There were always flathead lies under the bridge after the big night time high tides and because there had not been much rain, up to that point, the water was fairly clear. The GULP 4” Minnow in the New Penny colour proved successful as did the 4” Minnow in the Pearl Watermelon colour. I rigged both on 1/8th ounce, 1/0 jigheads with a 10lb fluorocarbon leader and I was using my light spinning rod and reel combination.

My next session was a beautiful morning in early February. Conditions were good with an early morning run out tide and a light south easterly wind, but I fished the same area for dismal results. There was no evidence of bait around and no lies under the bridge lights. I fished from pre-dawn to low tide with all sorts of soft plastics and hard bodies. The only thing I caught was a tiny foul hooked whiting. At low tide it was very clear that the consistent summer wind pattern of early morning south easterly followed by afternoon northerly had flattened out the terrain quite considerably. This could also be a result of the cleared area where the new resort is being built creating a wind tunnel.

My next session was early March on Red Beach at Skirmish Point, on the southern tip of Bribie Island. I fished the last of the low tide on a beautiful hot morning. I did not start until after 9.00 am and stuck with a light leader and 1/8th ounce, size 1 jighead. I was using the ‘dart slayer’ soft plastic – the GULP 3” Minnow in the Lime Tiger colour. This plastic seems to really work well off the beach. After a few casts I hooked, then dropped, a small flathead. I found the point where the current flows from either side of the island meet and started casting in to it. I could see plenty of small garfish schools and every now and then something would send the schools of smaller bait flying in all directions. The soft plastic lure was getting bumped and snapped at and I soon caught a small dart and then a bigger dart. The next taker was a tiny chopper tailor. They continued to nibble but I did not get any more and left when the tide turned.

In late March I returned to the same spot at about the same time of day with almost identical results. My cousin was visiting from the UK and I was keen to put him onto a fish or two. A great gutter had formed along the beach at Skirmish Point. At its mouth there was constant activity with garfish and other small bait schooling up. There was virtually no breeze, but the tide was coming in this time. I caught a small dart and half an hour later I was delighted to see cousin Joe land a feisty bigger dart. That was it for the day.

Cousin Dangler

Hooked up on a Skirmish Point dart

 

That’s a quick round up of the story so far this year. I hope to be posting more regularly now – sharks permitting.

Bribie – the old oyster jetty flats – 21 December 2013

Saturday

Saturday morning was clear, but hot and humid. I set off for the Bribie sand flats at about 3.30am and was wading out in the pre-dawn light, just after 4.30 am. Low tide was due at 4.58 am. Then it would be another big run in tide – getting up to 2.3 metres.

Pre-dawn there was virtually no breeze but the wind had been a fairly persistent northerly the day before and was forecast to pick up again later. On the still water, at the bottom of the tide there were clumps of seagrass everywhere. The big tides have been lifting it up and spreading it all around. This always makes the fishing tricky. As soon as your lure lands it starts collecting seagrass.

At 4.45 am, I caught my first flathead of the day on a Gulp Orange Tiger 5” Jerkshad soft plastic. Just to the north of the old oyster jetty on the mainland side of the Pumicestone Passage. It must have been lurking in a sandy depression. I could not find any more in this location, so I waded further south, while I waited for the tide to start running in.

The weed got worse as the tidal flow picked up. I was restricted to casting into patches of weed free water, which meant I could not really put my lures where I wanted them to be.

After an hour of frustrating fishing I thought I was attached to another clump of weed, but suddenly it started wriggling. It was another flathead about 50cm long. It had felt much bigger.  I swapped to a smaller GULP 2” Shrimp soft plastic and after another 30 mins I caught another slightly smaller flathead.

I continued to battle the weed but decided to wade back to the bridge. The tide was running in fast and I disturbed a few small flathead in the shallows. The northerly winds had brought the usual herd of blue jellyfish the stingrays were everywhere.

At about 8.00 am I reached the bridge. I fought the weed for a few more casts and then gave up for the day.

Iluka – Middle Bluff and Shark Bay – 11 February 2013

Monday

The wind started a little cool from the south west but was forecast to move round to the east and north east. The tide would be too full to fish the dawn at Woody Head, so I decided to give Middle Bluff a try again. I arrived in the pre-dawn light, just before 6.00 am and immediately set to work with the heavy rig. I started with 3/8th oz, 3/0 jighead and a Gulp Jerkshad in the Pumpkinseed colour. The bommie, beside which the jewfish lurk, was covered in wash and the sweep took a few of my lures in quick succession. I had done too much of this the day before, so I changed tactics.

The sun was up and I moved right to the north end of Middle Bluff. I switched to the light rod with 16lb leader and put on a 1/6th oz, 3/0 jighead. I started with a GULP Crazylegs Jerkshad, in the Lime Tiger colour. I could just about cast the lure out, over the edge of the fringing reef and leave it there for a few seconds. Then I would have to quickly retrieve it with a wave, that was breaking over the reef. After a couple of casts, I lost the tail of the soft plastic, so I put on another. Each time I retrieved, small baitfish leapt ahead of the lure, as it approached the reef edge. After about three casts, a fish grabbed the lure right at the edge of the reef. I let it have some line and looked for a wave to bring it over the reef.

I had not caught much in the few days previously and I was a bit too eager. As the next wave washed over the edge, I pulled a bit too hard and the hook came out. I did not get a good look at it, but I would say it was more likely to have been a tailor or trevally, than jewfish.

I threw a lot of lures at this spot over the next hour, with both the light and heavy rod. After about twenty minutes one of my GULP 2” Smelt Minnows was bitten off right next to the edge, but that was it, I did not hook anything else. By about 10 am the water was surging over the rocks too often and I had to move off. The fish were definitely there, but they had again proved hard to get at.

By late afternoon the north-easterly breeze had picked up. I decided to try fishing at Shark Bay, to the north of Woody Head. This is another spot that is only really accessible around low tide. The rock platform at the southern end of the bay is exposed for a few hours either side of low. There is a large patch of reef just north of the main platform and the channel between is often a good target area.

The sea was fairly flat here. I decided to start with the light rod. I tied on 12lb leader and a 1/6th oz, 2/0 jighead and loaded a GULP 2” Minnow in the Banana Prawn colour. I cast north and waited for the lure to sink. As it did so,…….bang, it was hit on the drop. The Shimano Catana Coastline bent over and took the lunges. After a few runs I reeled in another good size bream.

A few casts later I pulled in a tiny Moses Perch and then I started to lose tails to some rapid hit and run attacks. I decided to put a bigger lure on and loaded a GULP Crazylegs Jerkshad. On the first retrieve it was slammed. I knew it was a tailor from the mad head shakes. I wound in steadily and soon had it by my feet. It was about 40 cm long. Over the next hour I had several more plastics mangled, but could not hook up. At one point I saw a couple of long toms following the lure in. At about 7.00 pm, exhausted, I gave up for the day.

Bribie Island – The Museum Drain – 4 March 2012

Sunday

I am still working, and slowly getting used to just fishing at the weekend. It’s not much fun is it? Still I can’t complain – I have nearly finished my work project and will be back fishing, full time, in a few weeks.

This morning I drove up to Bribie Island for an early start. It would be a 2.1m high tide at about 6.30 am. I arrived a bit before 5.00 am and started fishing under the bridge on the Island side of the Passage. The tide was running in strongly and was approaching high. The session started with a soaking from an early morning shower. I fished around under the bridge with a soft plastic minnow and had a few bites but could not hook anything. The tide had lifted the weed and, as usual it was floating around in the eddies and clogging up the lure. After 20 minutes, I decided to move on.

I drove down to the drain in front of the new museum. I walked down the rockwall and out, along the sand bank, that runs along the southern edge of the drain. As dawn broke there was a bout of surface feeding, just at the mouth of the fresh water drain. I put on a GULP 3” Minnow in the Banana Prawn colour on a 1/8th 1/0 jighead and positioned myself just to the north of the drain, about 10 metres from the shoreline. I then cast back towards the drain mouth. When there is a 2m high tide the drain mouth is covered by about 1.2m of water. The predators move up in to this area on the rising tide, very quickly, to feed on the fish, crabs, worms and grubs that are washed out through the mouth of the drain. Once the sun was up I could clearly see where the tea- tree stained, run off meets the sea water coming up the Passage. This is a good area to concentrate on. I cast up, under the bridge over the drain and slowly bumped the lure along the bottom. I lost a couple of tails to small fish and changed for a new plastic, each time.

The surface attacks continued, something was feeding on the bait schools that were siting just out of the current, close to the shore. A few more casts and I felt a bite. I struck a bit too soon and pulled the lure out of the fish’s mouth. I dropped the rod tip again and paused for a count of five, then struck. This time it was on and it took off. Fortunately it swam away from the clump of mangroves. I played it out and when it seemed tired enough I pulled it slowly up the rock wall for a few photos. It was a Flathead just over 50cm long. I let it go and went looking for more.


A few more casts in the same spot and I had another fish on. It was a smaller Flathead this time – just over 45cm. I measured, photographed and released it. I cast around closer to the bank and felt a few bites, close to the bridge structure. Then the line went tight on a smaller fish. It was a Moses Perch and I suspect these were what had been causing the commotion on the surface earlier.

I only had a few hours so I had to stop at about 7.00 am. The water was fairly clear and although the midges were buzzing around everywhere, conditions were pretty much perfect. I am looking forward to getting back out again soon.

Bribie Island – Buckley’s Hole – 30 January 2012

Monday

The rain stopped – briefly, on Sunday night. It stopped long enough for me to convince myself Monday morning might be worth a fish. So I jumped in the car and drove up to Bribie Island on Monday at about 8.30 am. I drove through several heavy showers but fortunately, when I arrived at Bongaree, the sun was just peeking through the clouds.

The tide was running in and would by high around noon. There was no breeze. The water was a brownish colour but not too murky. There was also not much weed floating around. I suspect it has all been washed out into the bay.

I started with a GULP 3” soft plastic Minnow in the Lime tiger colour on a 1/8th 1/0 jighead. I assumed the fish would be fussy, so I started with an 8lb fluorocarbon leader. I waded around on the sand spit in front of the saltwater tidal lagoon, casting over the flats. On about my fifth cast something took off on a blistering run with the plastic. I tightened the drag a little and turned its head, but there were no head shakes – just a dead weight gradually coming towards me. It was a ray and after a few pulls it snapped the 8lb leader. I tied on a new leader and felt a few more nibbles but could not hook anything. I switched to a bibless vibe hard bodied lure – a silver Berkley Frenzy, but this didn’t produce any fish.

I swapped back to a GULP 4” Minnow soft plastic, in the Peppered Prawn colour. I noticed some gulls swooping a few hundred metres to the south. They gradually flew closer and were obviously following something. I kept casting but increased the speed of my retrieve. I felt a solid bite and lost the tail of the plastic to the fish. I quickly re-rigged and this time the lure was grabbed, as soon as it hit the water. There was a brief tug and then, snap – the lure was bitten off.

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I moved further south, casting in all directions. I fished for a couple of hours with only a few small bites. Then the birds appeared again and I cast into their path. I felt a bite and struck hard. This time I had the fish hooked but it jumped free, before I could pull it up the beach. It was a small Tailor, no more than 25cm long. I cast out again in the same spot and started a faster retrieve. A few cranks into it and I felt the attack and then the hook up. This time I got it to the sand – another tiny Tailor.

It was encouraging to catch a few fish but I could not find dinner. It should not take long for the water to clear if the rain holds off. I will be back out here again soon.

Caloundra – Golden Beach – 10 November 2011

Thursday

Northerly winds again and forecast to be blowing 25 knots by lunchtime. Fortunately the winds would be light from dawn through until about 10.00 am. I chose to fish at Caloundra again.

Pelican Waters Bridge


Still and hot in the Pumicestone Passage


I arrived about 4.00 am – just before first light and decided to put in a few casts under the bridge at the entrance to the Pelican Waters development. There were plenty of herring and other bait fish jumping around. Low tide had been just after 1.00 am so it was now about halfway through the run in phase. The moon was full. I have been fishing with a 2/4 kg 7’6” Nitro spin rod for the last few sessions – just in case I find a good Trevally, Tuna or Queenfish amongst the Flathead. It does not quite have the sensitivity/ flexibility of the Loomis GL2 (my usual estuary rod) but it can apply a little more pressure, if I hook up with a bigger fish. I rigged up with a GULP 4” Minnow soft plastic in the Pumpkinseed colour and cast it all around the bridge pylons. Finally as the sun was coming up I hooked up with a 28cm Flathead.

The first good Flathead of the day - Caloundra

I released it and decided to cross back over the bridge to fish the weed beds in front of the Power Boat Club. I waded out along the sand bank that was now partially covered with water. There were rays everywhere, scattering in all directions as they felt my feet, coming towards them. I waded quietly down to the southern end of the sand bank and then turned around and cast over the weed beds into the incoming tide. I jumped the soft plastic along the bottom, back towards me. I was now using a GULP 5 “Jerkshad in the Lime Tiger colour. After a few casts I hooked a fish but, as I pulled it towards me, the line went slack and it was gone. I cast back in the same spot and a few casts later I felt the solid thud of another bite. This time I paused and slowly counted all the way to ten, before I struck. This one was properly hooked. I dragged it back to the sand and photographed it. It was about 55cm long. It was just after 6.00 am.

TETRAWORKS YURAMEKI sinking pencil lure


The water was still and the sun was already hot. I decided to fish with another of the Japanese DUO hard bodied lures I had been sent to try out. The DUO TETRAWORKS YURAMEKI is a small sinking pencil lure, 48mm long, weighing 6.3g. Once again, it is nicely weighted and beautifully finished to produce a clever, wriggling tail action. It casts like a bullet and so it’s ideal for covering large areas, when you are prospecting for fish on the sand banks. I knew there were Flathead around and it did not take long – less than five minutes later I felt the bite and hooked up. The Flathead broke the surface and started shaking its head furiously but the treble hooks were lodged. I took the fish back to shore. It was a 46cm Flathead and it swam away unharmed, after I removed the trebles with some pliers. The DUO lure had produced the goods again – two fish from two try outs – pretty impressive.

This Flathead fell for a DUO TETRAWORKS YURAMEKI hard bodied lure

It was very warm but the northerly breeze was starting to pick up. I decided to move down to Golden Beach and fish the edge of the channel that runs out from Diamond Head. There is a big drop off here and I did not want to lose the TETRAWORKS YURAMEKI lure – I only have one and there are too many snags in this area. So I switched back to a GULP Crazylegs Jerkshad soft plastic lure in the New Penny colour on a 1/8th oz 1/0 jighead. I worked the edge of the channel all the way out to the green channel marker. Finally, just as I reached the drop off into the main channel, I got a bite. I paused, and then I struck. I had securely hooked another fish – I brought it in close and released it – a 35cm Flathead.

By now the wind was too strong to cast and there were white caps on the waves, so I waded back to the shore and gave up for the day.

Brooms Head – Plover Island & Bonito – OOPS! Slimey Mackerel – 23 September 2011

Friday

Crystal clear water at Plover Island


It was to be my last fishing day for a while. I decided to try fishing the rocks at the front of Plover Island, at the mouth of the Sandon River, about 10kms south of Brooms Head in Northern New South Wales. At low tide you can walk across to the sand spit to the Island. The northern side has a number of rocky platforms to fish from. I arrived at about 9.30 am, just before low tide and climbed across a rocky causeway to some really fishy looking water on the northern side.

Plover Island causeway


I started with a GULP 2” Shrimp in the Pepper Prawn colour on a 1/8th 1 jighead. I got a couple of hits on the first cast and on the second, I caught a small Butter Bream. I caught a few more of these and then pulled up a 25cm Tarwhine. I fish this spot again at either dawn or dusk. I moved around to another rocky outcrop and caught a few good sized Pike. I made a mental note to come back and fish this spot again at either dawn or dusk, one day.
For the afternoon session I was back at the Brooms Head lagoon. It would be high tide at about 5.00 pm and decided to clamber along the rock ridge at the eastern end of the Brooms Head lagoon.

Plover Island Tarwhine

I rigged up with the favorite soft plastic of the week –the GULP 3” Pearl Watermelon Minnow. It was fairly choppy – with a strong south easterly blowing. Was using a 1/8thoz, 1/0 jighead, my light 7’6” spinning rod and a 16lb fluorocarbon leader. The bottom in this area is covered in rocks and kelp, with a few sandy holes in between. If you fish with heavy sinkers/ jigheads – you are doomed.

I pulled up a couple small speckled, green coloured fish that are common in amongst the rocks – not sure what they are – but they seem to like the soft plastics. Then I caught a strange red finned Wrasse of some kind. Then I found a few Pike – they always seem to hit the lure really close into the rocks, just as you are about to pull it clear of the water.

Big toothed green fish

Then I noticed a big shimmering area on the surface of the water about 50 metres away that was moving towards me – I waited for it to get in range and then cast the soft plastic straight into the middle of it. I got a couple of bumps but no hook ups. I cast out again and retrieved the lure quickly, so that it was swimming just below the surface. I could now see it was a good sized school of Bonito. I cast out again and this time I raced the lure back through the school and hooked up. I land a small Bonito and released it. For the next half an hour I had a great time catching and releasing Bonito, every time the school came in range. It was a decent size school and it circled the area for about 45 minutes before being chased further out by the Dolphins.

Slimey Mackerel school enters the lagoon

Slimey Mackerel on the surface

Slimey Mackerel

And that was my last session at Brooms Head. The variety of fish had been fantastic, even if there had been no real trophy fish. We had managed to catch dinner most days and I was quite happy with the diet of fresh Flathead and sea Bream. The weather gods had been very kind and I plan to be back again at the same time next year.

Iluka – Woody Head – 11 April 2011

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Monday – pm

After a good start earlier in the day, I could not resist an afternoon fish. We were staying in a cabin at Woody Head – so I was ideally placed to fish off the rocks, on the afternoon low tide. I walked out on the rock ledges, directly in front of the camp site, at about 5.00 pm. Low tide would be at about 7.30 pm.

There was a strong north easterly breeze and a few small rain squalls were coming over. I started around 5.00 pm with a 3/8oz 3/0 hook jighead and a GULP Crazylegs Jerkshad in the Lime Tiger colour. I was using a 30lb fluorocarbon leader again.
It is always difficult to avoid losing tackle in this location. The fish tend to bite just at the edge of the rock ledges and very close in. If you pull your lure to safety to fast, you will miss them. If you leave it too long, you get snagged. After a couple of casts I was stuck firm in the rocks, so I snapped off the jighead and plastic and re-rigged with the same set up.

I sent out five or six casts in a semi – circle, from my position on the edge of the rocks. Every now and then I would carefully retreat in the face of a big wave but only my feet were getting wet. The rocks are incredibly slippery so you need good rock fishing boots and you need to move slowly – running away from a wave is a recipe for disaster as you will almost certainly fall over. It is better to duck down and hang on if you see a big one coming – you may get wet, but hopefully you will not break your neck! Remember rock fishing is a dangerous activity, stay safe and if in doubt – don’t go out.

I moved along the rocks and just on 5.15 pm I hooked a fish. I let it run until I could see a good wave that would bring it up the rocks. I then tightened the drag and lifted the fish clear. The wave pushed it up and broke over the ledge. It was a school Jewfish/ Mulloway, just under 50cm. I unhooked it and cast out into the same spot. Before the lure had hit the bottom it was grabbed again. This time it was a much faster and more powerful fish. It headed out to see and then turned and ran along the edge of the rock ledge. I tightened the drag to slow it down as I could see it was going to try and bury itself in the rocks. The leader got stuck between the sea squirts that line the rocks, but a big wave lifted it clear and up came the fish. I was soaked but I had a good sized (45cm +) Trevally at my feet.

These two would be dinner and as another rain squall came over I decided to head back to the cabin for a warm shower. It had been another great land based session fishing with soft plastics from the rocks.

Bribie Island – Bridge and Oyster Jetty – 5 March 2011

Saturday

After a stinking hot week – but some pretty good fishing Flathead fishing, the rain was back. A south-easterly change and big wind and seas were forecast but it did not look as if it would get up until around lunchtime, so I decided on a quick early morning Saturday session. I headed for Bribie Island and was out under the bridge lights, on the island side by 4.15am.

A word on waders – I use the A S Horne waders which have a tough Blundstone gum boot. With postage, they are around A$ 120/30 but they are definitely worth the price premium. Before I bought them I went through 7 sets of cheap ones; Wilson, Mojiko, Shakespeare, and various other BCF/ Anaconda offerings, in just under two years. I was constantly patching up holes on these cheap ones. I have now had my A S Horne waders for 2 years and they have no leaks, despite lots of run ins with oyster covered rocks. They are pretty hot at this time of year but with so many jelly fish, Wobbegongs and various other creepy crawlies in the water – I am prepared to suffer the heat.

At 4.15 am this morning it was cool and wet. The tide had just started to run in and the rain had made the water even more murky than usual. I decided to started with a GULP 5” Jerkshad in the Satay Chicken colour – yellow on top and pumpkinseed underneath. I was standing in 30cm of water casting in close to the pylons. After a few retrieves I was on to a fish. I brought him to the shore – a Flathead just on 40cm. The family decided they will go on hunger strike if I bring another Flathead to the table – so it was released. I got a few more hits from what I think where Pike, but as the sun came up an hour later I had not landed anymore fish.

I moved across to the Oyster Jetty on the other side of the Passage. It was now around 5.45am and the tide was running in strongly. I waded out beside the jetty to a point about ¾ of the way along and started putting casts out in a semicircle. I was casting into the run in tide and hopping the plastic along the weedy bottom. After two or three casts I was on to something. After a few short runs, I could see it was a small Flathead, again around 40 cm long. I did not want to wade back to the bank with it so I grabbed it with a cloth and released it.

I could not find any more in that area so I moved further south. I fished the drain, just before you turn the corner for Sandstone Point, but apart from a few Long Toms, I did not get another bite. The wind was now beginning to howl and it was spitting rain again so I waded back to the car and headed home.