Sweeties North and South 30Sep14

TR by Redwood
Trip date: 30 Sept 2014
Participants: Pedro, Tunny, Redwood
Launch Site:  Middle Groyne
Destination:  Little Halls / Sunshine Reef
Conditions: Slight breeze early, little to no current, sunny
Keen Angler Program: none

A flash mob appeared in the MG car park at 4.15am consisting of Pedro, Tunny and myself. We'd all decided last minute to get out on the big blue given it was predicted to be a ripper day and that fish were caught the day before by Tunny and Diesel (the latter bagging a beaut 50cm Snapper). Apologies to Jaro for not confirming our intensions.

Pedro had Cobia on the brain and was planning to head to Sunshine Reef in search of them. Tunny and I had to be back on the beach by 8.30am so we opted for Little Halls as it's the closest and it's were Tunny snagged a couple the day before. The launch was dead easy.

We trolled HBL's to Little Halls without any action and once there setup our drifts. Tunny is a lure and plastics man only, whilst I am still hedging my bets with plastics and bait. I'm still to catch something on a softie, although I did get a few nibbles on a white placcie, so at least I know first hand that there is some interest. I was flicking a placcie out front and trailing a large pillie bait behind. After a few drifts the pillie was smashed by what turned out to be a small bream. Greedy guts. And after a few more the pillie was taken again, this time by a 37cm sweetlip; my first.

I radioed Pedro to see how he was going and despite poor comms managed to make out that he'd bagged two keeper sweetlip.

Unfortunately it was time for Tunny and I to head in. I think if we had some more time we could have seen a few more fish caught. We trolled HBL's back.

Just off the groyne while reeling in my gear I foul hooked what I think is a School Mackerel [see correction]. I don't know exact size but would have guessed around 30-40cm, so fish was released. This a sign of the pelagics returning? I've heard from a couple of people that they think the pelagics will come earlier this year because of the warm water. Time will tell.

[Correction] - The fish below is not a School Mackerel but a Needleskin Queenfish which has a typical size of 30cm, no size restrictions and a 20 combined bag limit. Pity I don't know my fish better as this was a keeper.

30-40cm Needleskin Queenfish caught off MG (fish was released)
37cm Sweetlip. These are good eating fish, better than Snapper.

Snapper at Jew shoal and Little Halls 29sep14

TR by Tunny

Wind: variable, 0-5 knots
Swell: less than 1m
Current: slight NE at Little Halls
Launch point: MG
Participants: Eyetag, Diesel, Tunny

I arrived in the car park at 3.45 am to find Diesel already there. Eyetag
arrived shortly after and we headed out at 4am. The tide was close to low
and the launch easy. Diesel, in the mood for revenge, opted to head for
Jew Shoal where he planned to catch the tuna that broke his reel a few
weeks ago. Eyetag and I followed the coastline heading north, then cut
across to Little Halls, with both of us dragging hard bodied lures. There
were no signs of bird activity or any surface action. At Little Halls I
switched to jigging ½ oz 5 inch soft plastics. Shortly after sunrise
Diesel came on the radio announcing that he had caught a nice snapper on a
ganged pilchard. It measured 55cm, his biggest ever.

After an hour of jigging soft plastics I returned to trolling the HBL back
towards the river mouth then returning along the coastline to Little
Halls. Back at Little Halls I switched again to soft plastics and caught
two snapper within a 15 minute period, both just over 40cm. I radioed
Eyetag who was not far away, suggesting he switch to soft plastics but he
was on a mission to test his recently repaired arm by continuing to
paddle. The good news is that his arm held up well to what in the end
must have been a 4 hour paddle, so he is ready for the pelagic season!

Shortly after landing my second snapper, a boat fisherman about 100m away
must have spotted my catches and moved within 5 metres of where I was.
The noise must have scared off the fish as I tried for another 30 minutes
without a bite. Diesel paddled across from Jew Shoal, and tried the same
area of Little Halls, also without success.

We all headed back to MG around 8.30 am. With hardly a wave breaking, the
beach landing could not have been easier.

Double Stoked with a PB 21 Sep 14

TR by eyetag

Wind: 10-15 knot SE
Current: run out tide
Launch Point: Noosa Heads Lions Park
Participants: Eyetag

I launched 9.pm heading past the Sheraton with the trusty Gold Bomber out the back and as I entered the Inner Woods Bay there was a bit of surface activity, I stopped paddling, brought the Bomber in and had a flick with a Gladiator Prawn. There were Bigeye Trevally up to 30cm feeding on small prawns and my offerings were snapped up with almost every cast. I fished the area for a while having a lot of fun on the light 3lb gear, but I wanted more. I headed to Rickys' and had a drift but the wind was too strong making the drift too fast. I then went to spot "X" and on arrival I heard, then as I got closer, I saw some very big fish feeding. I trolled the Bomber through where the fish were feeding but didn't get a touch. Then as I was turning around for another pass a boat was approaching, he stopped and fished the area. I recognised the boat so I went over and started talking, he discussed how slow things were I agreed and after a few minutes he left to go home. I was still excited at what I'd seen so I had another pass and I hooked up, the reel was losing the 8lb braid at a frantic rate with the fish splashing and jumping, luckily the hooks held. I had to paddle with one hand to avoid a rock bar as the fish headed down stream. Managing to get into open water I fought the fish for about 20 minutes before getting a look, BIG BARRA, after a few more very tense minutes she was in the net, well half in the net. "Stoked" A quick pic on the brag mat and back she went.

96 cm Barramundi

Thinking from the earlier activity there must be more than one fish. This time I had a drift through spot "X" casting the Bomber working it slowly and twitching then whack it was on again. After another tough battle lasting at least 20 minutes I had Barra number 2. This one I kept and went home.

A nice eating size at 87 cm

Fast run-out and unexpected applause 20Sep14

TR by Redwood
Trip date: 20 Sept 2014
Participants: Redwood
Launch Site:  Weyba Creek
Destination:  River Mouth
Conditions: Rainy with strong run-out, tide almost full low
Keen Angler Program: none

Having missed an opportunity to go offshore earlier in the day the need to get on the water was strong, so I decide to hit the river even though the moon phase wasn’t ideal but fishing the run-out to the bottom can often be good. I checked the weather and the rainy patches looked they'd move off and their appeared to be nothing major behind them.

At 8.45pm I dropped the yak into the South Side of Weyba Creek and paddled toward Munna Point Bridge. Just before the bridge I thought I’d hooked something and spent 5 minutes fighting someones lost fishing line. No idea where it came from or where it was going, but I managed to cut it and get my rig back without too much drama. I paddled on headed for Ricky’s and just before turning East on the river proper my River to Sea lure was taken and a short fight later I boated a 39cm Big Eye Trevally. I decided to troll the area to see if I could pick hop another and 2min later lost one as I failed to set the hooks properly. I trolled around the Munna Point area for another 10min but no further action except that it had started to rain quite heavily. 

38cm Trevally will make a nice Sunday lunch

I decided to do a few drifts near Ricky’s as part of my ongoing efforts to try and land a fish on a soft plastic. I dropped the gladiator prawn in and the drift seemed to be going well as I could feel the lure softly banging on the sand ridges on the bottom and every now and again I’d give it a jerk. I’d drifted all the way to the sand banks without a touch. I redeployed the R2S and headed for the mouth and was immediately onto something substantial which put up a big fight. Unfortunately it turned out to be the dreaded Hair Tail. I boated this as rightly or wrongly I’ve decided to take a few of these out of the system as it’s seemed pretty thick with them over the last coupe of years. 

I carried on toward the mouth with the tide sweeping me down very quickly. I’m not sure if the run-out is always this fast, but it seemed particularly quick. I crossed the mouth channel in my usual pattern heading diagonally across to the fishing platform on the South Side. Half way across the yak hit a sand bar and I struggled a bit to get over it. Once over I was in the even faster flowing main channel which s only 6-8m across and I was thinking to myself that it would not be good to hook up here as I’d be dragged out to the bar very quickly. Just as the thought was exiting my brain to wherever thoughts go, I heard a big thump on the line. I grabbed the reel and started winding hard. Luckily I had some heavy gear on and could wind pretty much as hard as I liked. It was difficult to tell how fast I was going out toward the bar as I was going backwards with the rock wall on my left and the fish on my right, but out of the corner of my eye I could now see cars and bright lights. It’s hard to tell time either, but I guess I’d managed to get the fish boat side in under 2 minutes and could see a large silver shape that resembled a Jew Fish. I didn’t have time to muck around with lip grips and I couldn’t gaff it as I couldn’t tell if it was legal size or not, so I'd just have to heave it and hoped the hooks didn’t pull. They didn’t and I got the fish into the hatch at which point I got a very unexpected round of applause and 'whoops' from my new fans on the rock wall and car park.

By this time I was almost at the Life Guard tower and I now paddled like mad to get into the calmer waters near the fishing platform. As soon as I was out of the main channel I checked the chart to see if it was a river Jew or a Black Jew and it seemed like a Black Jew to me [correction - the fish is neither River nor Black Jewfish but a Mulloway or Silver Jew Fish - thanks Aussie Stew]. A quick measurement had the fish around 70cm, maybe 72cm, but not 75cm, so it had to go back. I took a quick snap and let it go.

70cm Silver Jew fish caught in the river mouth rock wall channel on a HBL

I did a few more laps after that but nothing more so I decided to head back to Ricky’s. Going back against the tide was hard going. At Ricky’s I gave the softies another crack but again no luck. I spotted some lighting off to the North so decided to pack it in and had the yak back o the roof around 12.30am. And thus ended another fun night on the Noosa River.

Seems the one thing in common for both excellent nights I’ve had on the river is rain. Just coincidence or is there something in that?

Busted Diesel 19Sep14

Fishing Report Friday 19/09/2014 by Jaro

Conditions: beautiful sunny day with no swell to speak of.
Wind 5 knots increasing to 7knots and then dying out altogether.
Negligible current.
Participants: Diesel, Mahatma, Stormin, Red Greg, Carlo and Jaro.

Everyone arrived at MG around 5.00am (+or- 20 minutes). The seas were very calm so exit (and entry) was dead easy.

We all headed for JS at various intervals with Diesel leading the way. Diesel hooked up off Dolphin Pt/Granite Bay and proceeded to have a long fight. Unfortunately, Diesel's reel broke and he then used his hands to pull the fish in which turned out to be a long tail tuna. He did get it to the kayak but missed his attempt to gaff it, whereupon the tuna had a flurry of action and broke the line.

Well that was it as far as any further action was concerned. We all headed back in around 8.30am landing around 9.30am.

A nice paddle on a beautiful Spring day, especially for me as I had not been out for 2 months.


Lots of wildlife but min fish at Jew Shoal

TR by Redwood
Trip date: 12 Sept 2014
Participants: Tunny, Mahatma, Redwood
Launch Site:  Middle Groyne
Destination:  Jew Shoal
Conditions: light breeze, sub 1m swell, light current
Keen Angler Program: none

Sub 1m swell? No wind? I hardly recognised the graphs on Seabreeze and also chose not to recognise my alarm going off at 3.45am which, is why I arrived last with Tunny and Mahatma already prepping in the car park. We were scheduled for a 5am launch and if I hurried we'd make it.

Mahatma and Tunny at 4.50am

The launch was dead easy and we were out the back of the small surf just after 5am. We pointed our yaks at the crack of light on the horizon and headed off. I'd only paddled for 10min when I could feel the sweat starting to bead on my forehead. It was warmer than expected. After the usial 45-50min we arrived at Jew Shoal with the sun not up yet, but light enough to see clearly. everything looked perfect,  now would the fish come to the party?

Mahatma doing is best silhouette impression of a kayaker
Mahatma was sans GPS (and sans radio) so he was relying on us to put him on some marks. I had gone to a mark 400m north of the Pinnacles as I'd had some luck there before. Tunny was trolling around the Pinnacles with his new deep diving lure and Mahatma was somewhere in the middle.

I've still not caught a single thing on a soft plastic, but I'm going to keep trying until that changes. I was hammering away with one of those big white numbers on one rod (Sunshiner specials I think they're called) and a 1/2 pilchard on a trailing outfit. Mahatma I could see had a paternoster rig with what I presumed were pilchards for bait. This rig proved to be a winner as he held up a keeper Squire as I passed him on my way back to my drift starting point.

Mahatma and a keeper Squire caught on dead bait and paternoster rig.
I fished the same area as Mahatma with a similar offering but was getting no action. All was quite on Tunny's end with Tunny fishing only with plastics.

Somewhere around this point we could hear and see a baby whale going nuts further west toward the beach. The thing was definatly full of the joys of life, larking around and trying out his new body. Jumping, rolling, slapping it's tail which you could see he hadn't really got the hang of yet. Typical kid. It's the youngsters that worry me, they're just kids and they can make mistakes. The adults seem to know you're there, but they kids might just go up for a big old breach and go; "Ah, not good, I'm going to land on that floaty thing". Mother and calf came within a few hundred yard of us, then went down and resurfaced quite a long way south.

I decided to try a new location just west of the pinnacles and see if that changed anything. Two drifts later and the status quo was the same. The pillie rig I was using had a fairly large hook (5.0) and fairly large 1/2 pilcard. I decided to cut off the placcie on the other end and add a smaller circle hook with a smaller pilllie bait. which, paid dividends as I was starlight on to something that felt like a Squire, and indeed it was, but unfortunately only 30cm. I did a couple more drifts with the smaller outfit but after each drift I'd check it and find the whole thing had twisted into a birds nest. I only had one light sinker on, so I added another to see if it would eliminate the twist, which it did.

Redwood's undersized Squire
Mahatma wasn't too far off me and I could see he landed a couple of small reefies and he also landed a small flattie earlier. The cupboard was still bare for Tunny and the plastics. At 8.30 I pulled the pin leaving Tunny and Mahatma in glorious fishing conditions. BTW I also spotted a number of very large turtles at JS and a few dolphins about 800m to the west.

On my way back about 400m ahead of me I could see large patches of darker water and as there was no wind I thought perhaps it was bait fish and as I got closer I could see it was. I stopped and decide to take some video of it which you can see below. I'm not sure what kind of fish they are (looked like pilchards) but Davos most recent NN article mentioned that Mac and Long Tail Tuna have been feeding on Frog Mouth Pilchards just past the headlands. So maybe they are Frog Mouth Pilchards? I hope there were no Tuna chasing them as I was shooting movies and not firing slugs. Should I have cast a few slugs in? Should you always cast a few slugs into a bait school JIC?

Someone's gotta live here
Tunny informed me later that he picked up 1x Grinner on his new deep diving lure. And that was it as far as the fishing went. A really nice day and great to be back out there.

A Very quiet day in paradise 1st Sep 14

TR by eyetag

Wind: 0-5 knot variable
Swell: 1-2 foot
Current: Nil
Launch Point: Middle Groyne
Participants: Pedro and Eyetag

The launch was easy with Pedro first and I joined him a few minutes later at 4.04am. We paddled to "A bay" reef where we drifted with plastics and bait for a couple of hours,things were quiet with a couple of nice fish dropped and nothing in the bag. We moved N/E and had a few more drifts. Things were very slow. Peter ended up with 2 Squire, 40cm 57cm and a 50cm Grassy, I had one of each.

Peter's smaller Squire not pictured.