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G’day raiders,

Firstly I would like to say that a 5 day ocean adventure is not for the faint hearted. If you are afraid of long distance ocean travel, sea sickness, living in confined spaces, not being able to see land and afraid of using a spheros 14000 with 80lb braid, 140lb wire trace, fully locked drag, bent over 15kg rod and being pulled out the boat, then a trip like this is not for you! I LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF IT!!!

Left for Darwin on Tuesday with anxiety about flying and excitement of the proceeding trip all mixed together, so I had a few settlers at the airport. A couple of reassuring texts from mrs swordy that I’d be ok, RayR messaging me, “are we there yet?” and I’m away. Arrived at Darwin and was greeted by 36deg heat and humidity but arrived safely and was now pumped for the journey ahead. Met up with the boys and of the 12 of us 3 were raiders, Scratchie, GUDude, and RayR.


Day 1


We went to load the boat for the trip and a few drinks and dinner had before our departure and scratchie was by now pretty “scratched”. We left Cullen Bay at 8pm and travelled throughout the night a 14hr hike to the top of the TIWI islands. I hit the deck about 630am and a bit worse for wear but keen to start fishing. RayR was already up keen as mustard but we still had an hour or two to go and everyone was now awake and the excitement for that first line in the water was building.

With all the rods rigged up and in position, we await to hear the sound of the motor cut out and begin our first drift. It does and the capt Dan, comes out the cabin and calls “lines in boys”. Well, I think we all dropped in unisen and await to hear that first sound off the rod scream off. But after 5mins of drifting, nothing………Then the young fella of the trip josh is on and his line is peeling at will and up comes a nice trevally that was quickly flipped. For future reference in this post FLIP or Flipped means that after all your hard work fighting this fish it is returned to the water that quick that you don’t even get a chance of a photo (poor eating fish). The capt then called lines up and the boat started again and we were on the move. No one said anything but we were all thinking it, hope the fishing gets better than that.

Well, we didn’t have to wait long. Lines in, and within 5 secs there was the first hook up and then a second, then the madness, the entire boat was onto some rod bending, line peeling trevally and the laughter on the boat was infectous!!! All the fish were flipped but we continued our drift and many reef species were boated and kept to fill our crates and quotas.

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The day was not finished there and Alan, (rayr nephew) caught this massive spotted cod and another angler dan was upgraded only meters from the boat. For future reference UPGRADED means you have exchanged your 5-20kg fish for a shark ten times the size! I also hooked to a massive wahoo which was the only one of the trip but during the fight not far from the boat it tangled with the prop and was lost insight of the gaff. We then had the call of lines up and proceed to our intended targeted area of the famous LYNEDOCH BANK which is located approxiamtely 9miles south of the timor/aussie boarder. 9.54.730’s 130.46.140’e. We had a fabulous dinner and tucked for the night.

Day 2


I awoke after a fairly restless night at 6am to find rayr already on deck fishing (as I did every day) and decided to join him. I grabbed my rod as ray was onto a fight and boated and flipped a nice grassy trevally. I started to throw my 12inch squidgie flick bait and after a couple of casts it happened. I was using a constant retrieve to the boat and just before I was about to lift and cast again the lure is smacked in full view of everyone and the reel screams, I check the drag and yes, its still on full lock and the fish is taking line at will. I manage to turn its head and proceeded to battle with this fish for 5 mins and then I realise what I’ve just caught. The fish I have wanted to catch my whole life my first ever GT!!!


What a start to the morning and we hadn’t even had a coffee or breakfast yet. After a well deserved breakfast of eggs and bacon and coffee, we move on to our next targeted area. We were now dropping in 80-90m off water and the action was constant throughout the 3hrs we stayed there for. We landed massive amounts of reef fish for the table and many fish were flipped and upgraded and we kept the capt and decky busy for the entire time. Between myself, ray and GUDude (salvador) we landed lots of firsts and some really hard earned fish. To name a few………

Red emperor, robinson sea bream, Jobfish, trevally, frypan snapper, goldband snapper, coral trout, long nose emperor, sharptooth jobfish and red sea bass.

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We then trolled for a while and landed a few spanish mac and 6 longtail tuna upto 8kg that were flipped and a few rainbow runners also flipped. Young josh was working his jigs and hooked a good size dogtooth tuna that unfortunately was upgraded and didn’t make the boat other than the head. Very scary big bitey things out there. I was just preying not to get pulled into the water!


After lunch we went for a bit more pain and started to drop our lines into 200m+ of water. If anyone reading this has tried fishing at this depth you know what I mean. Its hard enough to wind a 16oz sinker let alone this 8kg’s of amberjack that would peel line at will. Absolute mind blowing, back breaking work but the satisfaction was immense. Many were caught, as well as some red ruby snapper that made an awesome dinner.


Next session was when we returned to the bank and anchored up for the night. Well what happened next only has one word to describe it…..EPIC!!! There were fish flying and being flipped over the side, left, right and centre. For the next two hours was some of the best fishing I’ve ever seen and I racked up yet another new species. A hard hitting, line peeling, arm stretching fight with the DOGTOOTH TUNA!!!


The fishing was that red hot, that a couple of the older blokes even forgot it was past their bedtime and they hadn’t even had dinner yet. But with our arms shredded and stomach growling we put the rods in the rack and called it a night. Wow, sitting there over dinner and a few ales it was hard to believe how red hot the fishing has been and how sore we were and this was only day 2. Time for bed!

Day 3


Woke up pretty early yet again after another sleepless night with the boat rolling in a wind blown swell. Hit the main deck to find ray yet again throwing jigs and sp’s. So I joined him as you do and ray hooks up first to another nice trev, great fight and flipped again. Then I change my rig back to my 12inch shad, throw out and start to wind, bang zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz, I have no choice but to let it run for a while, I checked the drag, yep full lock, yet the reel was screaming. After another awesome fight up comes a 10kg plus spanish mac and once again before brekkie!!!


We started the morning off with a troll and landed a heap of spanish macs and longtail tunas. The longtail were all flipped except for one about 6kg that was kept for some pre lunch sushimi. We then did some more bottom bashing before sitting down to a lunch of S.mac burgers rolled in flour and lemon pepper. Yummm. Some more fishing and it was time to rest and a few more ales to be had and let the old boys catch up on a early night. Me and my new found mate Doug, sat up to celebrate the day and to soak up our environment. You can try to explain fishing stories to people all you want, but unless you living there in the moment, sometimes words are hard to find. Thoughout our quest, I kept asking ray when are we going to get to the good spots but he knows it was in jest and the rye smile we shared was always endearing. We both new how good this trip was!!!

Day 4


The day started like every other, the 3 raiders on deck throwing lines, all keen as the first day. We upped anchor and began the day trolling. First up was Tas and he fights and boats a nice 8kg yft, with calls from me “don’t you dare flip that fish” needless to say it was quickly cored and into the fridge for some sushimi later that morning. Next was a big noah on the troll and the first time I’ve ever seen this. It was then my turn up and the long corner goes off. This fish strips line at will and with massive weight and I know I’ve got a good fish. I fight hard with this fish for some time and then close to the boat it launches and I get my first sight of this thing, it’s a huge spanish mac and the heart starts racing again. After some tence moments the deck door opens and in flys this huge fish! 147cm and 25kg+ s.mac!!! and a new raider record!!!

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Back for a bit of a bottom bash and GUDude pulls up this huge goldband snapper of 70cm plus on a jig. Then ray hooks up to a double header of goldband from the deep.

One of the boys then hooks up but cant fight the fish its way to big, so after only two winds he hands the rod to the skipper. After a fight of hour and a half of back breaking work in 150m of water we get sight of this huge shark. A quick tail rope, photo and returned to the deep but an epic battle to watch by the skipper!

After this, it was decided that it was time to start the journey back home as we were 18hrs away and there was still a promise of a jewfish session before we returned.

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Day 5


We arrived at our destination at Bathurst Island about 1230am and what was really exciting for us ended up the shortest session of the trip.

But what a freaking session it was. The most INSANE fishing experience of my life.

TARGET: Black jewfish QUOTA: 2 per/person regardless of size

Anchor was deployed and lines in. The advise from the decky and skipper was: Full drag lock. Strike hard and fight harder. Once someone is on, lines up and wait for the fish to be boated.

Well, first line in the water was Sal and instant hook up and the fight last about 3 second before his braid was shredded. He turns to look at me and his face said it all wow!

It took us an hour only for the entire boat to bag out. 12 anglers with 2 fish each. The smallest of the fish was 102cm and all fish were between the 15-24kg mark. Absolute mayhem, excitement, sweat, exhilarating, heart racing action all rolled into one. No one really spoke we just all looked at each other and shook our heads. I turn to ray and go when do we go to the good spot? As we crack a beer in celebration knowing that this is our final session, as there is no longer any room in the freezer, fridge or esky.


We awoke in the morning and steamed back to Darwin.

To some up the experience in one word is very hard but on reflection of the many sessions of back breaking enjoyment over the last 5 days I would just have to sum it up by saying….INSANE!!!

I would personally like to thank the capt and decky for their efforts, the boys young and old that I shared the trip with and the biggest thank you goes to RAYR, who invited me. The bloke is an absolute legend, a genuine aussie larikin and a true fishraider fisherman, that enjoyed watching people catch fish, just as much as he enjoyed catching them himself.

I don’t think chasing flatties or whiting will ever be the same again. I wish we had marlin cod where I live! (you have to be there)

Thanks for reading and I promised you the longest post ever!

Cheers Scratchie!!!

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That's a top report Jeff! What a trip you had. Fishing will never be the same after a back-breaking, reel screaming week like that. You caught enough reefies to open up your own aquarium. Congrats on the record breaking spanish mack.

P.s. the photos of you counting the days with your hand over Ray is gold

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Wow mate I can imagine the excitement and thrill you guys got catching every single fish. It's crazy up there and can't wait to get up there in a week chasing the almighty barra. Well done mate you deserve it. Can't wait for beakie season to catch up up in port. Well done once more. Sooo jealous :-) Vic

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Woweeeeeeeeeeee there are some screamers there !!!! well done you lucky bastards

Thanks stewy. It was definately the most insane fishing ever. You would have loved it!

Wow speechless

Well done boys, there amazing fish

What a trip. Longest post ever for shore :)

Just amazing

Long post but so interesting

How much longer are your arms?

There some cracking new PB's/first's

Can't complain

No fishing for a week, I'm sure you've already been told

Cheers Gianni

Thanks gianni, the arms are longer. I can now scratch my toes standing up. No fishing for a week? Are you kidding. I went yesterday and absolutely skull dragged this poor bre to the bank! I've now loosened all my rod drags :)

That's a top report Jeff! What a trip you had. Fishing will never be the same after a back-breaking, reel screaming week like that. You caught enough reefies to open up your own aquarium. Congrats on the record breaking spanish mack.

P.s. the photos of you counting the days with your hand over Ray is gold

Thanks pete. Had to do something, each day rolled into one. I made a diary each day do I wouldn't forget. Rays a good sport!

That's 5 hectic days! Well done ;)

I know. I need a holiday to get over it!

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Great trip, good write up.

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

cheers Ian

great work jeff some amazing fish boated there mate

great work on all the new PB's some are monsters

25kg spanish mac and jewfish are fish i only dream of

what a great trip

cheers sydneyfisher12

thanks seamus, it was a great fight and the jew session was every Sydney fishos dream!

The trip of a lifetime, shame you cannot have that everyday down this way, sounds like a great time had by all.

Well, back to the bream and flatties next week.

cheers yowie! your not wrong about trip of a lifetime. I know fishing here will not be the same, might have to target a few sharks to get a fix!

That is awesome - sounds like a good way to do it, tour around and hit all the species you can.

thanks. you drop down and never know what species your going to pull up. you just need to land the bloody thing before you get UPGRADED

Wow mate I can imagine the excitement and thrill you guys got catching every single fish. It's crazy up there and can't wait to get up there in a week chasing the almighty barra. Well done mate you deserve it. Can't wait for beakie season to catch up up in port. Well done once more. Sooo jealous :-) Vic

cheers vic. yep looking forward to our next game session. If your heading to Darwin don't bother taking a jumper. bloody boiling hot up there. Good luck on the barra but watch those crocs!

Wow! What an awesome trip man, and that black jewfish session sounds mental!

To be honest, it was insanity x 10000000000000000

Turning absolutely green here, I spent the last 5 days at work, sitting in a cold office.

Well done and a great report.......too long?? I dont think so, I could have kept reading.


thanks J took a while to write. and i'm back to work now too! :(

A very entertaining post!


EPIC stuff! Was the rye smile referring to whiskey? cheers wizza

No, but I had my fair share of those too! Everyone on that boat knew that this fishing trip was something special.

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Geoff, all can say to describe your Trip . WHAT A HUMDINGER one to remember . Good Onya . r u coming down to the "22nd Hawkesbury Classic" 14,15 & 16th.

cheers Oziodin :fishing1:

of when??? probably couldn't get away with another trip so soon, but you never know :)

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