Brownie points and snapper! 14Aug12

TR by sunshiner

Wind: S, starting at 5 knots, gradually swinging to NE, less than 5 knots
Swell: SE, 2-3 metres
Current: at Jew Shoal, none
Launch point: Middle Groyne
Participant: sunshiner

Stayed in bed this morning while four brave Noosa Yakkers headed into Laguna Bay at dawn. Had a leisurely brekky with M (got some well-needed brownie points there), keeping a close eye on the wind via SeaBreeze all the time. At 9:00 am the trend was clear: the wind down south was slackening from its 15-20 knots overnight, so I loaded the yak onto the Zook. Checked again. Yes, the trend was still downward, I should go.

As M by this time had gone to golf I was a free agent so by 09:35 I was at the Middle Groyne carpark and by 09:45 I was standing on the groyne, with trolleyed yak in hand, talking to jaro by radio. He was at Jew Shoal and confirmed that the wind out there was slackening.

Launch time pic.

I dry bummed it, and within a few minutes was heading for the shoal in ideal conditions. There was a bit of radio traffic among the other, widely separated guys out there, and I’ll leave the writer of that TR to tell you about it. Suffice to say that I was aware that eyetag and pedro were heading back from SR area and that jaro and richmond were together, but also heading back in. The former two I encountered off the baited shark lines south of Jew Shoal where we had a bit of a chat before I went on my way north.

Eyetag and pedro, heading for the beach. Great conditions, eh?

Sensing that the breeze was now starting to come from the NE, I headed for the deeper water to the NE of The Pinnacles, intending to drift from the deep section SW onto the shallows, prospecting as I went. Good choice, as it turned out. Jaro had warned me that there was nothing much biting at Jew Shoal today but I've caught snapper in the middle of the day on several occasions out there and it was a beautiful day so what did I have to lose?

The wind was so light I didn’t even bother with the drogue. My trailing outfit was already rigged with a 1/2 ounce jighead and white 5 inch Snapback so down it went, about 10-12m. The water was beautifully clear with a few of those blue bell shaped jellyfish drifting around down there. Once I was happy with the trailing outfit I fired out my casting rig, the usual 1/8 ounce jig with wobbly tail green SP.

Didn’t have to wait long. Probably about two minutes I reckon. Pow, the green wobbly thing got taken.

And here he (for it was a male) is. No doubt in search of a big female but picking up a snack as he went along. Similar to us, I suppose. The evidence still in his mouth.

At this time the other Noosa Yakkers out there would have been just about to hit the beach so I thought I'd let them know by radio of this instant success. Jaro came back with a gentlemanly response, as one would expect from a gentleman such as he is.

About now I noticed some dolphin activity nearby. These weren’t the usual bottlenose dolphins but Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins, which I've seen before hanging around near Main Beach.

Not my pic. Borrowed from Google pics, with my editing.

Soon after tidying up from the first fish I retraced my track on the GPS to do the same drift again. But by now the breeze had shifted slightly so I couldn’t follow the same track exactly. But, no matter, this time the trailing outfit (hanging down about 10m), went off. Don’t you just love that sudden staccato ratchet sound!

Snapper number two.

I fished on a little longer but set myself a time limit as I had several admin things to sort out before going off fishing again tomorrow. So by 12:15 I was pointing the yak toward Middle Groyne and paddling steadily back, a big smile on my face.

Easy landing, at about 13:00, was chatted up by a (quite mature) lady kayak fisher on the beach, trundled the yak up the beach past the envious old blokes sunning themselves at the rock wall, home at 13:45-ish. How good was that?

Hope to see some of you out there tomorrow.


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