Blue water fishos are seeing the first of the seasonal species change over.
Snapper have moved onto the close reefs with beaut reds to five kilos taking almost anything tossed at them.
One crew fished in 16 metres off Deep Creek and bagged out on snapper, put a few good pearlies in the tub and landed one cobia of seven kilos and lost another at the gaff which they reckon was better than 10kg. The cobia took half pillies off the bottom on snapper rigs.
The boys said they burlied hard to attract the fish to them, rather than chase all over the ocean.
Leatherjackets are starting to show on the wide reefs. We
landed one out in 65 metres and lost several other rigs to these toothy critters. Wire is a must.
The club held the May comp at the weekend and with the big seas, no offshore species were weighed in. Paul Bryant was the only money man with a bream caught on 4lb line tossing lures.
A few of the club members have returned from Stanage Bay, just north of Rockhampton, with tales of monster crabs, red emperor, sweetlips, coral trout, big mouth nannygai and red throats. The lads were traveling some 80 to 100km offshore, which is almost halfway to the Swains Reefs for the bragging rights.
I have done the trip twice and am going again next year. Stanage Bay is a serious fishing destination with the distant offshore islands reachable by trailer boats of six metres or more.
Boats of 4.6 to six metres can easily fish the inner islands, just 18km offshore and pick up the same species.
My boat is just under six metres and we were fishing Hexham and Otterbourne reefs, some 40km offshore. If the weather blows up dirty, the islands offer plenty of protection with some picturesque beaches for an overnighter.
The alternative is to fish the protected Thirsty Sound for crabs, king and threadfin salmon, jewies, barra, spiky bream and grunter.
All up costs, which included fuel, bait, accommodation, food and grog, are about $1000 for a week. And you’re not slumming it, accommodation is in fully
furnished houses with all the mod cons.
Check it out on Google.