Jump to content

Middle Harbour Madness


Recommended Posts

Hi Raiders

I couldn’t have imagined a better start to the weekend! Started by hooking up with my mate for a Friday afternoon Bait collections session. Although there’s nothing worse than placing the outcome of your entire weekends fishing on one nights squidding! Luckily after 3 hours of playing the squid game we wound up with 10 in the bag and high hope for the morning! We Made plans to meet at tunks at 4am, but when 12am ticked over I couldn’t wait anymore, with everything sorted all I had to do was jump in the van and go! Before I knew it I was idling away from the boat ramp nothing but stars and glassy water in front of me! I Headed straight to me new favour Place in the entire world, not too far from Bantry bay in about 23 meters of water. I dropped anchor just as the tide turned, so with 6 hours till daylight and high tide all I could do was wait, daydream of the big Jew that was going to take my bait any second now! And of course burly burly burly.....

I had just curled up on the front bench seat (more like awkward foetal position) and closed my eyes, maybe dozing off for 5 min or so when without warning both my rods buckled over under serious strain!! Corking my knee on one of my oars as I leaped up I grabbed the closest rod and as quick as it began both rods went dead!!! Ahhhh I had kept my drag fairly tight hoping that the fish would hook themselves, not letting them run had seemed to work for me last week but that fishing! More burly and 20 min later with drag set to allow them the freedom so swim away and take the bait deep inside. What started as a slow taking of line of the spool quickly started to accelerate, I’m shaking as I pick up the rod! Straight away the weight and power of the fish load my rod and with one powerful run it stripped at least 50 meters of the spool. With my reel making all the noises I don’t want to hear I loosen the drag to let the fish run without testing my gear to much as I tried to retrieve it, With the initial run over slowly but surely I’m bringing it to the surface.... adrenalin is making me shake like a rattle snake, i’m trying to keep my cool, be patient and let the fish find its own way to the surface. All is looking good, even better than good! until tragedy strikes. I caught a quick glimpse of a slender shiny fish in my torch light, but just as the fish see the boat it makes a powerful run towards my anchor rope and with no time to get the pressure back on the drag I feel my worst possible feeling...snagged! Line pulled tight but clearly wrapped somewhere around my anchor rope, and within seconds it was all over!!!!

AHHH devastated and bewildered, I’m starting to think I had used up all my luck last week and when after the next hour all was quite I pulled up anchor and heading back to Tunks to collect Mattie as planned!

With Mattie still half asleep and complaining about how cold he is and how he regrets not wearing shoes and how Hungary he is bla bla bla :biggrin2: ...... (Mattie doesn’t like morning) we’re back on the spot! With More burly and extra rod in the water all we had to do was wait! And we didn’t wait long. Before I could get comfy my rod loads up again and line screams of my reel. I was thinking maybe a big king but with 30lb braid and 40lb leader on a 6-8kg rod this fish wasn’t giving an inch with almost half my spool empty in a minute all I could do was hold on and put as much pressure as I dare! Again the fish started to let me take back line but every so often it was roar back into life taking back my last minutes effort and some more! With my arms burning and most of my line back on the spool I’m just starting to think I have won the battle! ... but ahhhhh just I see the dark profile of the small shark under the tinny it makes another powerful drive to the deep and my line breaks cleanly above the hook!!! Now this is getting out of control!!!!ahhhh fishing!!!!!

As the light slowly spreads over the sky Matty wants to move over to where the sun will hit soon but I’m having none of it!! If there’s one thing I have learnt it is u got to be committed! Even though it was now allot colder than it had been during the night I was determined to see this through till the change of tide and beyond if necessary!! Finally Matty’s spirit rises when a lone kingy starts working its way around the cubed pillies, like a kid in a toy shop he rummaging through his bag looking for soft plastic of some sort! After a few casts and retrieves, the surface of the water is busted. Just as matty lifts the plastic out of the water, cm’s no mm’s behind a nice kingy makes a dramatic turn! Spewing missed it by seconds!!! But this was great fun.

Meanwhile my bait has been soaking for 10-15 min or so without anything happening, so I half expected anytime soon it would be game on and boy was I right! Again there was a slow take of line of the spool which I let go for 10 or so seconds, I picked up my rod turned up the drag and struck!! Wow again the power of this fish is taking line like there’s no tomorrow and with the experience of the last 6 hours matty’s yelling let him take it! Let him take it!!! With the fish swimming away from the boat I felt safe enough to give it some time, keeping constantly pressure the fish turns and come back in the direction of the boat my second rod was still out to my left, but with matty on my right it would have to stay there! All I could do was hope it doesn’t get me into too much drama! I was now taking back more and more line but this fish wasn’t finished yet he must have been half way up the water column when he turned directly into my worst fear! The fishing line of my second rod. Matty yells it will be ok, my heart is pounding!!! My body shaking… but the fish turns again to my right this time away from the line. (Thank you god) Matty reaches for the gaff with sort of expectation of what’s about to come but straight away I say it won't be necessary. Seeing him gaff in hand make me nervous (as much as I love ya matty I can’t risk you losing my fish on your first ever gaff experience!!) and just then, a long silver flash darts sideways in front of us with my drag backed off once again to avoid any last minute disasters I get the beautiful JEWFISH up to the side of my tinny! Holding the rod in my left hand I reach out with my right and grab the powerful tail, securing my grip I pull the `glorious’ fish into the tiny! With hoots and high fives we celebrated my third ever jewfish! @71cm it was 6 or so cm bigger than my previous PB set this time last week hahaha AWSOME!!! I had lost everything up to this point but all was forgiven and forgotten this was turning into an epic all time fishing adventure.

With more high fives and school boy antics we got the bait back in the water! This time I had on one full large arrow squid about 15 long it was all or nothing on a 10/0 hook!! Again unlike all my previous fishing experience, after a 2 min soak Bang it’s off!! haha (this is awesome) with a firm but relaxed strike I set the hook and the fish runs….. POP line goes slack ahhhhh (all I can do is laugh at this point!) I retrieve the line to see the knot with a no hook at the end, the eye of the knot had given way! Just another valuable jewfish lesson I had leant among many this morning!

With traffic and noise from a wake boarding boat increasing and with big smiles from an awesome session we decide to troll back to tunks, and just in time, as I start my new u bute outboard the wind picks up from the south (my timing was hot today) We get back uneventfully, tired but feeling more alive than ever we pull up at tunks triumphantly again! (I could get used to this)

What an epic session! Although I lost pretty much everything, even without my awesome catch I would still be stoked because I was crawling slowly along the learning curve that is Jew fishing. I think with more experience there could have been 4 or 5 good jewfish in the boat today but all is good, sharing the experience with a mate and feeling the action is priceless!

Cheers for reading guys and good luck to all!

Fast facts:

Water temp: 19.1C

Bait: fresh whole and squid strips

Line/leader 20p braid/40p fluro on 6-10 kg and 4-6 kg rod

Rig: swivel and light sinker running to the hook which is 4/0 and 10/0

Weather: clear

Burly: pilchards/ jewfish carcasses

Tide: fish caught 30min before high tide at 7am but there was action through all the tide stages from 1am to 8pm


The jewfish was landed using squid strip on 4/0 hook but today everything was been attacked with big baits not an issue, there was lots of bait fish action on the sounder

post-24833-091697500 1351340450_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Excellent report and a bit freaky as I just got in from a session in the same area for a very similar experience. Jews were "on" but hard to hook up. Lost a whopper and managed one in the boat a bit smaller than yours. All hits only on fresh squid. When someone gets onto a good fish the deckies really have to have your back and get all lines out of water, net or gaff ready and be prepared to pull the anchor and chase it down etc. as those big Jews are easy to lose.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

sensational report mate. persistence really paid off for you. every trip that you have success you will gain more knowledge, I would be fishing that spot of yours on a regular basis and you will find that it will consistantly produce jew fish - it certainly isnt a fluke that they are there if you have caught them on two different occassions. dont be frightened to lift anchor and idle after a big fish rather than go harder if you have to, far better to be inconvenienced for a while than lose the fish of a lifetime. well done.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great report mate and well done on a fine catch :thumbup:

You deserved that for sure with all your hard efforts.

And yes I also felt like I was in the boat with you sharing the moments (many of them) as I was reading your top post!

Keep up the nice work buddy.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...