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Big Tides, Big Fish 25-26 October 2014

Posted

Saturday,

This weekend had everything going for it. Big tides due to the new moon, the change of the low was just after sunrise and we all had a GT itch to scratch. Unfortunately the wind was looking very average. Lucky we had plenty of rum for what was going to be a long, rough ride and some sinking sinking stick baits to get under the chop. What was normally a 45 minute trip took us close to 2 hours so we missed first light and we enjoyed an amazing sunrise as we threw the first casts of the day. 

We were fishing a new location so we had no idea what to expect. We worked the lures hard up to the stones, drifting slowly until we found where the fish were holding. We soon found a deep patch of water and we knew that we had found the spot! Chris was casting his FCLlabo stick bait over 17 metres of GT city and it was only a few casts in when he found himself in a world of hurt. You see, Chrisso has never believed in gimbal belts or "bitch belts" as he likes to call them. But I can tell you that the faces he was pulling when he hooked up solid were absolutely priceless. We slowly moved the boat away from the rocks as he fought the fish which was holding deep, trying to drag the 200lb twisted leader on the reef. At this point, Steve from Raw Sugar photography was strapping on his flippers and ready to dive in for some underwater pics of the beast. A few minutes later the battle was being won by Chris, a large silver shape appeared and we were able to gauge the size of this giant trevally. The fish was lifted in and the celebration began! 

We made the easy decision to drift the same spot again, which led to another instant hook up. I was working an ASWB rigged with 2, SJ-41's on the belly and one at the rear but somehow hooks did not stick. I was fighting a losing battle for about 20 seconds with 100lb jerry brown braid peeling out of the Saltiga Dogfight as I struggled to find my feet! Possibly a blessing in disguise as I walked away from the fight stoked to have my lure back. The sun was well and truly up and the tide began rising again. The bite was off but we noticed some birds working close to where we were fishing. For a bit of fun we threw a 20 gram metal slice into the working birds. This would have been normal practice except we were using 6lb line spooled on a 1000 stradic! The inevitable happened and close to 100 metres left the spool before we began chase. Steve held on for dear life as we tried to catch what we assumed to be a long tail tuna. Another blessing in disguise as the fish chewed threw the leader before we lost the lot. Always wanted to do that for some reason... Never again! 

The wind was going to get significantly worse shortly so we made our way back to the ramp but not without a quick flick in a little cove where there are usually plenty of small GT working bait. The Sebile splasher did the job on the silly string. This baby trev made me work hard on the light stuff, fun way to finish the morning. Time to clean up for the day and organise the Sunday trip.

Sunday,

The alarm went off at 2:30am again and I rang around to ensure everybody was alive and ready. This time 2 boats were coming and we were heading to one of our favourite popping locations. With the weather looking much more forgiving, we hit the ramp and powered to our location. Persisting with poppers raised many strikes by big GT's but with just too much chop, nothing could seem to actually find the hooks. Soon enough everyone was using stick baits. The radio lit up every time a fish was landed and the banter was ridiculous. A lure change ended up making the difference as the bite slowed down. Majestic Lures were on the menu and as usual, the trout came to the party!

Majority of the fish caught were actually hooked in skinny water of less than 2 metres and needed to be dragged into deeper seas! There was a significant reef drop off so we worked sticks from the shallows, over the blue. This technique accounted for most of the hook ups.

This flowery cod inhaled the lure in less than a metre of water! 

The day progressed and with several lure changes, we picked up a variety of fish off the reef. Constantly drifting and slowly working new areas really increases the odds as you never drag a lure past the same fish. Similar to the day before, the weather was going to deteriorate around lunch time so we worked our way back home. With a few sneaky last casts, the boys found a gap in the rocks where packs of spangled emperor where smacking anything they threw at them. It was a chaotic weekend with lots of action and minimal sleep! All I can say right now in my sleep deprived state is that I can't wait until the tides invite me out for another topwater expedition. Get out early and enjoy what first light on the water has to offer!! Thanks to all the boys who committed to the trip and Raw Sugar Photography for capturing the moment!!


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