Photos above and below from Brad Dobinson’s Special K who also wrapped up their three months at Fraser heading home on Wednesday. Brad tells me their last day of fishing at the top of Fraser was Monday in fairly sporty conditions and went 0-4 with three blue bites and a black. Brad said it was VERY wet with squalls and lightning making it interesting. Fishing south to Mooloolaba Wednesday they went one from one blue marlin at 300 pounds for first time angler Anton. Brad says his final stats were fishing a total of 16 days for 43 raised, 34 fought and 25 caught made up of 15 blacks and 10 blues with lots of first marlins for junior and new anglers Brad says they will definitely be back next year! (With a big thank you to Brett Alty and Ken Brown for support and advice along the way).
Brad said the biggest fish they saw was a really nice blue that straightened a snap as well as the one he is swimming in the pic which needed a hand to get going again. Their best day was 7 from 8 (mostly small blacks) with the kids in mid November.
Likewise on KEKOA with Capt. Luke Fallon we arrived home for a short break yesterday before returning to Hervey Bay for another trip later in the month. Our final trip was 25 marlin (20 blues, 3 blacks, 2 stripes) in 7 days of fishing. In the previous 10 days of fishing ultra light tackle targeting WRs we raised 59 our best days 12 and 10 respectively. And previous to that was the big southern Coral Sea adventure which ended at Fraser and Hervey Bay and saw 14 marlin released. (Photos and video to come as I start to go through them!)
The Cairns fleet have been fishing the Fraser Island to Lady Musgrave Island area regularly over the years on the way to and from Cairns for the giant black marlin season. And this year is certainly no different with the success the team on Mistress, who has been dedicating more time to the area since no longer bringing the boat to Cairns, and Capt. Tim Richardson on Tradition’s grander black marlin caught off Musgrave Island on December 6 last year (1054lbs) and among the southern heading fleet fishing over the next weeks are Steve Haygarth’s Kestelle, Tim Richardson’s Tradition and Capt. Bill Billson’s Viking II.
Stay tuned for the results.
Yesterday Capt. Brett steered Mistress for home as well with Barry reporting another 6 fish (5 blues and 1 stripe) in the last 2.5 days fishing again due to the inclement weather. Barry said that one of the blues caught by Anthony Goulding in 15 mins was est at 700lbs and they raised another that could have been a grander class blue. That should put them upwards of 120 marlin for their season since August.
Garry Holt’s French Look III is also back to the Gold Coast after a find few days that hit the high of 14 fish raised in a day (also record fishing).
Congratulations also to Sunshine Coast GFC’s Chaos who not only survived a serious ribbing on these pages just days ago but prevailed to produce yet another outstanding result leading the way for the private boat fleet being named the top tagging boat in Australia for the NSW DPI program for the 2016/17 year with 20 blues, 75 blacks and 1 sail. These results are particularly significant as they are inclusive of charter boats tags (unlike the GFAA who do not include charter results – although I’d like to point out that a lot of the charter fleet don’t tag fish) – the team scored Champion Boat Tagged Billfish (96 tag), Champion Boat Black Marlin (75 tag) and they tied with Mistress for Champion Boat Blue Marlin (20 tags).
The fish are making their way down the coast and there have been blues raised and caught off the Noosa Canyons this week. An ‘unnamed-to-preserve-their-dignity’ crew went 0 from 7 blues off Noosa on Sunday – but switch baiting will do that – while inshore a few blacks have likewise been showing up.
Meanwhile a very late (my apologies as I was traveling!) report from the waters off Port Stephens which is already producing fish and looking like an exciting summer of fishing ahead. Scott Lee reports a striped marlin on Sunday. Scott said that the water had rolled over after Saturday’s north easter and it looks like it has come back again since with boats reporting fish again yesterday.