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Summer Camp Report


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There was a lot of excitement and anticipation in the months leading up to this trip only to discover that the forecast was predicting a 20-25 knot south-easterly a few days before we went up. You cant help the weather, and if the accommodation wasn't pre booked I would have canned the trip. Im glad I didn't….

Aaron and I headed up on Thursday night and made plans to fish sheltered waters the next morning chasing jacks, barra, or whatever else. After a brief 3 hour sleep we got up at sparrows and launched in the marina to check out the conditions outside and maybe throw a few lures around the rock walls. As expected, the bay was looking awful but we were confused to see a couple of locals in their smaller tinnies brave the conditions. Did we miss something? At this point we were second guessing ourself and put our plans to fish the burrum in the afternoon on hold.

Wayne called me when we got back to the caravan park letting me know he was on his way from Brisbane and was going to stop in to a tackle store to get some local advice. I'm glad he did because it changed our trip for the better.

Long story short, the manager there said as long as we don't head out or come back wind against tide we will be fine to cross the exposed 13km stretch from urangan to moon point. I must add that we did get a bit lucky with the wind, it was mostly 12-15 knots with occasional gusts of 20 knots, we weren't complaining too much as it could have been much worse!

When Wayne and his crew arrived we hastily packed the boat ready to fish the bay after all the disappointment not expecting to get out at all! It was obviously a bit rough getting over there but behind the lee of the island from Moon Point up to Wathumba it wasn't so bad.

It didn't take long to find the spotties...DSC_0237.thumb.JPG.3433aad2a47eb3640b0cf



Aaron and I had a couple of double hookups as we stopped at each school along the way. We eventually got a bit sick of catching them and actually started driving straight past them looking for bigger and better things! Longtail was the plan and every now and then mixed in with the spotties there were one or two big schools of medium sized fish terrorising the bait. We got close to them a couple of times but being only a couple of schools in the area they were pretty hard to target being so spread out.

On our way back we saw a tuna breach the surface and that was it. There were one or two birds circling above them so we drove up to the area we saw it and blind cast some of bersims stickbaits. I hooked up to a longy on surface out of nowhere which certainly got the adrenalin pumping! Unfortunately I lost the fish after a spirited run. Give it a couple more weeks and I reckon the longies will be frothing up there.

The next day we stuck to the same plan of finding some pelagics first followed by some microjigging if we found fish on the sounder.

Again we got fed up with catching mackerel (although still so much fun!) and ended up driving past them again. We stopped for a drink break near a couple of birds circling. We didn't really think much of it and there was nothing on the sounder but I dropped down a microjig anyway just to set my drag and see what the action of the jig looked like. Much to my surprise I hooked up and called it for a golden straight away. It was great to finally test out my microjigging combo on a decent fish.

New pb 89cm.IMG_20160206_144055.thumb.jpg.3ad168c950


We could not find any longtail today so decided to make our way back around midday along the island to avoid wind against tide and catch up on some much needed sleep. We stopped at some birds diving and dolphins feeding and had a few casts. At the same time we saw the birds we saw Wayne coming towards us to come say hello as they had a late start and wanted to see how we were going. We had a quick chat and all of a sudden both boats hooked up at the same time. It was a bit chaotic with their fish wanting to hide under my boat but eventually we steered clear of each other before Aaron got spooled on his lighter gear.

5 minutes later Aaron doubled his golden trevally pb with a 90cm fish :).IMG_20160206_222106.thumb.jpg.5735ac77cf


We left on a high and got some rest in the afternoon before catching up with Wayne and his 2 brothers and dad over dinner. They did very well. We also caught up with @Tybo at the boat club and shared a few stories. It was nice to meet you and your dad mate.

On Sunday we decided not to head out due to a busted seat and hit the road around midday. Already cannot wait to get up there again…

Thanks for reading,


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Thanks guys.

@bersim yeah it was a bit of a shame @Angus couldn't make it! :P

Thanks @kmcrosby78, you can have those days in moreton bay too when they are around in good numbers. I wouldn't say I saw more up there than I have in a day in moreton bay this year. It has been a pretty good season apparently (because it has been my first season targeting them).

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Being up there that weekend, and seeing that weather, is in my opinion what makes this such an excellent report. It was great to meet you also, Sam, along with Wayne, and just shows the skill and determination you have as fishermen. Once again well done!

Having crossed the straits in an open boat many times before, we definitely weren't even considering it. Even knowing that the rivers were in flood, didn't stop us taking the calmer option over 20kt SE'lies. To fill others in, my Dad and I fished the Burrum, for very little. The river was a nice chocolate brown, only 21 degrees, and after having a taste, established it was mostly fresh. Bait were almost non existent, and after hours of casting, trolling and flicking, ended up with one small lizard at 39cm. Our only saving grace, was that I knew the muddies would be on the move, and threw in the pots. They were thick as thieves, with us getting 3 legal bucks out of probably 30-40 crabs, best pot pulling up having 12 crabs in it.

Our day was probably expected though, whereas Sam and Wayne definitely turned it on, showing that even when the weather is absolute rubbish, you can still catch awesome fish if you are prepared to put in the effort.

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Rather than start a new thread and being it was only Tybo,Samsteele,Skegz and I that made the trip, I though I would just add some of our limited photos here. if that alright with steely?

Was great to meet you and you dad Ty and hope we can do it again soon.

As Sam report was so good detailing the conditions I'll summarise our trip quickly. Friday morning we arrived and met up with Sam and Aaron then headed out in the slop. We caught spotted mackerel which neither of my brothers had done before so we kept one for eating and released the rest. They all liked the mackerel done in some butter and fried. Simple but enough for them to taste.

Day 2. the rain persisted most of the day and when your hands go white and wrinkly from all the waves and water you know the sun ain't out. It was an exciting time trying to keep Skegz and Glenn's golden away from each other and we were lucky not to lose either of the fish.

Once Sam & Skegz headed for home we saw some dolphins working near shore so we headed over for a look and this is what we found on side scan. The majority of the fish are between 10-20 meters out to the right hand side of the boat. If you see the marks on the downs scan you can count 3-4 fish under the boat. For people that are unfamiliar with side scan. The image under the map shows a left and a right side scan. The thin white line in the middle of the picture is the boat/transducer. The frequency is shooting out both sides and the dark blue is the section is the water column with a lot of surface bubbles. As it shoots to the side the solid objects show up and cast a shadow which is easy to see. The numbers across the bottom of the screen are how far they are from the boat.


And this is what they were. Each time the fish moved off we kept sounding till we found them again.


We boated 8 between us and had the 1 double hook up which is the photo above. The conditions close to Fraser were fine but getting there was the hard part. You can see from the photos how the rain didn't let up much.



The day the family arrived I picked them up from the Airport we headed home and promptly connected the boat. We headed out to Moreton bay to have a look around. We saw the biggest Long tails I had seen with fish in the 20-30kg bracket and they were very hard to get near, but the bros at the front of the boat had 2 chances but no hook up on slugs. Rather than continue with that trend I changed to a soft plastic and next fish we approached I got a hook up and quickly transferred the rod to my father who fought and boated his first ever mac tuna. He was astonished at the fight for such a small fish and was glad it wasn't one of the big boys.


All in all the weather was crap while they were here keeping dad off the water all but the first day, we pushed through and got a few firsts for the visitors. Funnily enough the guy in the tackle shop said that the 2 worst months for weather at HB is August and February.

Keep those months in mind if your planning a trip in the future, try and avoid them.



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The two worst months weather wise or fishing? We have been in both those months now and haven't had a problem finding the fish, so maybe the fishing is never bad up there? :)

Good report Wayne. Nice to see some more photos. I little bit annoyed we didn't hang around and catch more goldens with you but we were exhausted. 

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Nice reports from both of you, Sam and Wayne. Some beautiful goldens there. Can I ask you, Sam, what size is your tinnie? I know how cr#ppy that trip across to Moon Point can be, and it doesn't look like a massive vessel. 

Nice touch Wayne to explain the sidescan picture. I don't have it (yet) but have seen it on a couple of mates boats and it is pretty useful in the shallowish water.

Thanks again for the report and photos.  It keeps us desk jockeys salivating.


cheers, Steve

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Screenshot_2016-02-11-20-59-43.thumb.pngIt's a 4.2m, but very stable (2.2m wide) and deep for its size with the blade hull that cuts through the chop nicely. I avoid wind against tide when it is up near 15 knots, because that's when it gets dangerous with the steep waves. But otherwise it takes some pretty bad conditions to feel unsafe in it and I am more than happy to take my time and roll over the swells.  

Above is a screenshot of a video of the trip over. Was pretty rough and photo does not do it justice hahaha. Was a pretty easy trip when the wind was with the tide. @Old Scaley

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