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Almost Perfect Day


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Having upgraded to a bigger boat in November and doing a few months of estuary and inshore trips I decided that Friday was the day for a wide trip. Port Hacking Fad was to be the location chasing dolphin Fish. I have been out there previously but always in my Dads (HookerBruce) Boat and nearly always with him. I knew he would be keen for a trip but for some reason I wanted to go on my own this first trip in my own boat.

The trip sort of started after dinner on Thursday night when I went down to the river to get some live bait. Took the 3 kids with me, it would of been much easier on my own but it was more fun with the kids and my wife tagging along for the bait gathering trip. It was a nice night and the kids enjoyed their bonus trip down the river, and we got back home in time for their bed.

Up early the next morning launched at Grays Point at 5ish and got to the heads just after first light and continued out to the Fad came across a few birds and bait fish in 40-50m jigged up a few extra live baits, a mixture of Slimies, Yellowtail and Pilchards, it was tempting to stay and fish this area but the dollies where calling. Conditions were sloppy but ok, got to the Fad first boat there, Perfect, current was absolutely racing to the south set up for first drift could actually see fish in the water cast out the first livie and drifted, nothing, not a touch, fish everywhere and my live bait left alone, finished the drift and thought I was in for a very frustrating day until I wound in and found my livie was hiding under the boat and I had been feeding slack line into the current. Ran back up for the next drift, this time casting out a bit further and instantly my bait was set upon by dozens of lit up fish chasing it across the surface. Solid hook up and after a fun fight i had my first fish in the boat, not big but high 60's.

Ran back up again and the fish where just as eager for the next live bait, this continued for the next couple of hours with every drift resulting in a fish or at least a strike. Conditions improved and fishing became easier but the current meant you only got one cast per drift.  After a few more boats arrived it became a bit more difficult to fish with some boats drifting through and others motoring to stay on the Fad. With 8 fish in the esky, a few around 80cm, and one better fish busting me off on the fad, I had had enough and decided to move on for a troll. Set a spread of 3 rods did a loop of the area and headed back in. Nothing on the troll except on small striped tuna, which at least gave me a chance to practice clearing the rods and bringing in a fish.

Got back in near jibbon bombie and pasted my dads boat heading the other way, went over to say hello, tell him what I knew and gave him the 6 live baits I had left and he went out to the fad to try his luck. Stopped at Lilli Pilli for a swim then back to the ramp to pick up my middle child (3yr) for a trip in the river, back to Lilli Pilli to start fishing didn't like our chances sun high over head clear water and frozen nippers for bait. Lost a few baits to pickers and could see some bigger fish moving around but they were very wary. After a few cast I noticed my boys line had not drifted back as it should of, suggested he wind in to check his bait and he came up tight on a fish. He did fairly well fighting the fish but needed a little help at the final stages, slid the net under it and lifted a 44cm flathead on board he was excited about his fish and double excited as he new it's his mummy's favourite fish to eat. After that he lost interest and we went off for a swim and headed home.

The final part of the day was I wanted to do school pick up of my eldest, she started school this year and my RDO is my chance to drop offs/pick ups. I had to be home by 3:20 to make it for pick up, at 3:19 I backed the car into the driveway. Went to the school and waited with the other parents, when I realised in must of been quite a sight still in my fishing clothes, all day in the sun and salt chasing fish, blood stains everywhere, didn't matter I made it in time and got to walk home with my little girl holding hands talking about our days.

Maybe if I had caught that big fish it may of been a perfect day but it was still pretty close.

Thanks for reading







Edited by Oscarthebeagle
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Thanks for reading and thanks for the replies.

Sebcox i would of been fishing the  same techniques as what my dad showed you. Good luck if you get out there. 

They are great fun to catch and great eating. We ate lots fresh, gave lots  away and froze down the rest.

I was probably a bit lucky as it was  my first attempt for the season and i don't get many chances to get out wide. Also bad weather would of kept most boats away from the fads for a couple of days prior to my trip.

Interestingly when my dad got to the fad all the  boats were gone and they wouldn't touch the lives. He got a couple around 70cm on pilchard pieces. 

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