Innisfail: The Innisfail Billfish Tournament kicks off today with 22 boats competing including 15 boats in the over 7.5m category and 7 boats in the under 7.5 m category. Tournament organiser Ben Heath says that the weather conditions are great and so we look forward to hearing how it all unfolds over the three days. Good luck to all who are competing!
Cairns: Amokura left Cairns yesterday on another trip that will take them up to Cooktown for changeover on Tuesday. Chris tells me they had just put the baits in fishing from Onyx and approaching the Bus Stop when they tagged a black that he put at 750lbs for angler Cameron. Later in the day, they raised another smaller fish but no joy. Still, its great to hear there are such great quality fish around already. Meanwhile on Wednesday, Kaizen released one from two in the middle Ribbons that they put at 200lbs.
Weipa: Just a few short days after Ben released the first ever billfish caught on fly out of Weipa, the second has been caught. This time a sailfish on fly for Weipa regular, Taswegian Tony Stent who was fishing with guide Jason Owen of Fish’s Fly & Sportfishing. Tony had just busted off a tuna on fly when Owey directed him to cast another at a bait shower that might have a sailfish under it, and it did! Great going guys! More Weipa billfish reports expected as there are a few more heading out to target them over the weekend.
Ben has also posted his GoPro footage from his solo marlin on fly from last weekend. Its really awesome stuff and shows the whole thing from tease to switch to hookup to tag. Go Ben!
Coffs Harbour: A catch up report from the Solitary Islands GFC season opener last Saturday. Gemini started it off with a hookup 5 minutes after start fishing at 7am releasing a striped marlin for angler Dean Szabo. Soon after, Matt McEwan on Wicked Weasel hooked up to a nice blue that was estimated at 200kg and gave him a tough fight, finally being released two hours later by an exhausted Matt–it turned out the fish was hooked just below the dorsal and so Matt was pulling it in almost sideways for most of the fight. Another club boat Triton put two lucky first time anglers onto their first billfish each – a short-billed spearfish to Chris Cherry, followed by a striped marlin to Kevin Cherry.
Rick says the club boats ended with 14 billfish raised and 6 tagged. The spearfish and blue marlin usually don’t show up off Coffs until early November so they are hoping its a early start for another red-hot season off Coffs. They have another club day out next Saturday and so we’ll be looking forward to hearing how they go then.