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Fishing In Darwin


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Hi everyone,

My family and I just got back from a week in Darwin.

The weather was dry and 30-32 degrees during the day.

While I was there I managed to get on 2 half day charters and 1 full day charter.

The fishing was a little on the slow side, and according to the locals the low

water temp of 22 degrees this time of year is responsible. I found some huge prawns in Darwin

and I was keen to try them on the boats, free floating peeled prawns was a non event as the

current up there was running faster than an Olympic sprinter. They get 7 mtr tides up there so

u can imagine how fast the current has to flow to move such large volumes of water. We had

big snapper sinkers on the bottom of our rigs and even then it was hard to hold bottom most

of the time. :(

The other annoying thing was on the full day charter we were sitting on a reef way offshore, and

not much was happening, when all of a sudden we had tuna 80-100 meters away leaping clear of

the water. these fish weren't huge, probably 8-10kgs, all on board pleaded with the skipper to motor

the boat a bit closer to the tuna, but he refused. He kept saying they wont be up for long maybe a

minute or two so it would be a waste of time. Well we sat there catching little stripy fish (Spanish

flag I think) and for a good 30 or so mins those damn tuna kept teasing us, we were so disappointed. :(

However my sons and I did manage a small handful off fish along with a 103cm Jew, which was

hooked on squid bait kept down deep using a huge lead sinker. It took off like a slow

freight train and stayed down deep near the reef for awhile before I could turn him up towards

the boat. He was cleaned on the boat and cooked up on the bbq for all to enjoy. Tasted great :thumbup:

We also went landbased fishing around Cullen Bay breakwall and also the ferry wharf. We saw

some Barra there under the yellow light at nightime along with a heap of squid chasing tiny baitfish, I

left my squid jigs back home in Sydney :(

One of my LB sesh's at dawn saw me at the breakwall, on the high tide where the local tackle

shop owner told me there were Queenfish caught the day before by a couple of locals on poppers.

Armed with some poppers, and other assortment of lures and sp's, I tried my luck. The queenies

were there alright. They would follow my popper all the way back to the rocks at my feet and turn

away :1badmood: . I tried every lure and sp I had to no avail. I even turfed out large peeled

prawns and whole pillies but they didn't touch anything, they would only be interested in tailing

my poppers but not hitting them. Anyway I enjoyed seeing up close them at least.

We had fun cant wait to go back when the water temp up there gets up to 30deg. :1yikes:

here's a few pics

The calm waters of the north. No swell up there at all.


My 7yr old and his 1st Darwin fish, we got heaps of these but no size to them.


A Hammer I hooked on a piece of Saurie.


My Jew about to be landed.


103cm NT Jewie.


My sons Golden Snapper.


A Mother in Law fish (some kind of Bream)


My 6yr olds fish (I dont recal name) tasted great on boats bbq.


My boy lands a turtle :1yikes: released unharmed


My 6yr old foul hooks this little fish.


I caught this eel lookin thing at Cullen bay ferry wharf, any one know what its called.


Edited by penguin
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Mate - that is an awsome post!!! Well done on the fish.

Even better though is the happiness on your sons face. :thumbup:

You two have now built a bond that will never be broken.

Im looking forward to taking my boy on similar trips when he is old enough.

PS: that sized hammer-head is GREAT eating!!! Very tasty fish

Edited by tan the fisherman
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The one with a name you don't recall is a tuskfish - one of the most prized eating fish on the planet.

Looks like you had a great time there. Lots of fish and lots of smiles.

You just can't beat the top-end as a fishing destination.

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PS: that sized hammer-head is GREAT eating!!! Very tasty fish

Unfortunatly or fotunatly the charter boat has a no sharks on board policy due

to all the bare toes on deck.

The one with a name you don't recall is a tuskfish - one of the most prized eating fish on the planet.

Thats the one thanks Mondo.

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Sounds like a good trip, love Darwin.

I went out with a Darwin Charter and they were like that as well, just bottom bashing too bad if you want to do anything else or there are no fish on that spot.

Have fished the Cullen bay rock wall many times, fair walk round to the end across those rocks but is usually worth it. Have caught Queenies on metals off there before havent tried poppers.

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