TR by sunshiner
Wind: SW up to about 3 knots
Swell: 1m ESE
Water temp: 21.7°C
Tides: 1:43 am : 0.42 L; 7:21 am : 1.38 H
Current: none detected
Launch point: Middle Groyne
Surface action: none
Participants: tyler, eyetag, tunny, sunshiner
My trip distance: 11km
Keen Angler Program: Nil
The wind was light but the air was bloody cold. We were rugged up like footy spectators at the MCG. And still not warm enough.
Tunny was unloading when I arrived in the carpark around 05:40. Eyetag had mentioned to me the afternoon before that he was thinking of launching at Doggie Beach, but his ute was parked here at Middle Groyne so it looked like he'd changed his plan. Tunny confirmed that eyetag had launched already.
With the arrival of Tyler, soon after, from Gympie, we had our expected complement. This was to be Tyler's first launch at Middle Groyne and first foray into Laguna Bay. So naturally we looked after him. And it was pleasing to learn that he had a radio with him, an Icom M23, which he'd bought as a result of the recommendations he'd received in response to his recent question on our Facebook Group page.
Here's something interesting. It seems possible from my experience today that extremely low air temperatures might result in a significant apparent loss of pressure in inflated yak trolley tyres. I assumed early this morning that one of my tyres might have a puncture it was so deflated, but found that the tyre pressure had returned to normal after the trip, when ambient temperatures had increased somewhat.
The launch was a doddle, even though light levels were low. We three launched together and immediately found ourselves in the midst of a pod of dolphins, frolicking around us as we set up our gear -- a pleasant start to the day.
As we were paddling toward Jew Shoal, eyetag, who was already fishing there, gave us a running commentary on what was happening. Snapper, cod, snapper, etc. We paddled harder and soon I could see eyetag's distinctive headgear and shortly afterward his distinctive bent rod which he pulls out as soon as another paddler approaches.
Eyetag already had a 45cm snapper in the fishbox, and a grassy, I think. Also he'd said a very close hello to a whale. Tyler heard the warning about the whale, but probably thought nothing much of it. Just silly old farts trying to impress.
A few minutes later we were drifting just near the Pinnacles when I heard the unmistakeable air exchange process of a whale. Tyler was a little west of me and I looked to the south just in time to see a whale surface about 100m south of me. By radio, I warned my companions, as it was clear the whale was heading in their direction. On his maiden voyage in Laguna Bay, Tyler found that what we'd been saying about whales was true. I turned and saw him paddling at top speed as the whale headed straight for him before veering off a little.
Have I mentioned it was cold? Well, it was. The light wind was cool and there was very little sunlight getting through the high level cloud. Despite my three layers on upper body I was becoming chilled to the bone. Action for me was dead slow (only one take on the SP, and it was spat out) so I pulled the pin after two plus hours and headed home first, alone. By now, eyetag had nailed a 60+ snapper on prawn, and another grassy. Tunny felt like apologising to jaro for catching one of his specialty species (big mouth, name starts with a G). I heard nothing from Tyler but understand he may have caught and released a couple of undersize snapper. Apparently the action stopped as soon as I left, the opposite to what usually happens.
There were a few nicely shaped and friendly looking waves building at the groyne so I opted to hang back and wait for one to show up. It did and I had the pleasure of a nice ride all the way in to the beach.
Eyetag sent me a comment, and a pic.
I caught all the fish on large fresh prawns, using a pea-sized running sinker down to a 5/0 hook.
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