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Barrenjoey Wide 12/1/2018


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Hey Raiders,

With all the unsettled weather and big seas forecast for next week indicating that a trip wide was still unlikely for some time ....and Friday's (12/1/18) Seabreeze forecast being N-NNE winds 6kts (5am) - 14kts (noon) on 0.8m seas the Mrs and I decided to grab the opportunity and head out to target some flatties.

Earlier in the week I had scoped out on the marine charts some likely haunts along West Reef that we marked on the GPS.  Friday was a 3am start, 4am departure from home seeing us launching the boat at Parsley Bay around 5am.  We were anchored up at our first spot by about 530am - and put out the lines with pilchard halves, squid and Berkley Jerk Shads.

The conditions were millpond, with a low lying foggy haze so no sunrise shots folks.

Anyway, by 9am we had landed a couple of undersized pannies, undersized flatties, 4 banjo sharks and a a 60cm barracouta. So the barracouta was quickly dispatched with my shiny new 22 calibre ikejime, filleted for strip baits, the head went out on a long leader with a small bead sinker (I remembered reading one of rick's reports that the heads are a great snapper bait)...and sure enough, 15min later another 4ft banjo was being released....no snapper to be found!

So by 9am after 3 hours of junk fish the missus and I called it quits on West Reef and headed out further to our 40m mark to drift for flatties. 

First two drops, a kindergarten pair came up, then another pair of juveniles then some teenagers...4th drop BANG.... she brings up a 60cm beauty! First keeper of the day and I marked the spot on GPS. I then brought up a keeper flounder and before it went quiet again. Motored back to our mark and dropped the anchor.  We spent the next 4hrs swinging on the anchor rode and picked up a great feed of flatties mostly in the 50-55cm range (smallest 39cm). The last 6 came up at 12.30pm when the blazing sun :sun:  finally broke through...just in time for that boat ramp / fish cleaning dance - THANKS mr weather!!! 

But all in all 14 flatties and 1 flounder - total of 3.6kg of cleaned flattie fillets - not bad from 14 fish !


Zoran (and Maria)

PS - invited the mates are over on Sunday for a fisho dinner

PPS - you will notice the 22 caliber ikejime holes - works a dream to dispatch them - thanks scienceman!!!

PPPS - and given all the recent banana debate we put the myth to the test, made sure we brought bananas on the boat and had some for lunch...hmmm I know what will be in my lunch bag from now on !!!






Edited by zmk1962
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3 minutes ago, rickmarlin62 said:

nice feed of flatties mate..yummo....pity the head didn't get converted to a red..maybe next time zoran..rick

I'll keep that strategy in the kit bag..... local conditions always prevail.... on any day we can only try mate !!

Cheers Z


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32 minutes ago, rickmarlin62 said:

raging look at [ Brisbane waters flatties] in this category fishing reports...rick

@rickmarlin62 don't tell me what to do :) thanks mate, I'll take a look


edit: looks like I need to sacrifice an old screw driver

Edited by raging
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11 hours ago, Sigma said:

Well done Zoran.....really niece feed there, yum!

Did the better half out fish you on this occasion? :fisher::icon_razz: :D

Well we both caught 7 flatties but I caught the flounder as well - so on a fish count I am up, but then she caught the biggest fish of the day so I reckon caught weight wise we are about the same.... BUT as I carefully pointed out to her she managed to have 4 massive tangles (which I had to undo) and I had none... so I reckon I'm just a tad infront on the penalty count.

Generally speaking though she does well - and strangely enough always gets the oddball fish of the day eg the barracouta..... come to think about it maybe that's how she ended up with me as well !

Cheers  Z  B)


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12 hours ago, King chaser said:

NIce report mate and good bag!

I’ve fished West reef a few times now and haven’t come up with anything good! Has anyone had any luck here and if so what species??? 

A few weeks back I posted in @antonywardlepost on Box Head Wide ... also put a picture there of us at the fish cleaning tables - the guys next to us had a good mixed bag - trevally, morwong, snapper, flathead, kingy etc but were "mum" about where they were fishing - they only mentioned 27m and that they had seen my boat.  So I tried to triangulate of those data points and figured it had to be a broken reef structure with sand inbetween at 27m that had visibility of me fishing 4km out from barrenjoey.  Figured it was West Reef.  So maybe it fires up at times - but not last Friday !!!

Cheers Z

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12 hours ago, raging said:

..... Everytime I head odd, it's never as calm as it looks in fishing report pics.

Hmmm  not sure what to say mate... you gotta pick your time and place I guess... 

I can say heading out it was choppy near the heads and for about 1-2km past. It always is with any breeze and tide movement as the heads are quite shallow so the water builds up.  But once past there and away from the bounce back swell it generally calms down.  The area we were fishing is also quite protected from a N-NE wind and at 6kts it barely stirs the water.  But mind you, the charts show that area (West Reef) can be "dangerous seas" --- an incoming tide with a southerly would get it cranking nicely.  

I tend to pick the fishing spots based on the forecast conditions and fine tune when we get there...eg if forecast is for an afternoon 6kts N in morning and  NE 14kts arvo .... I head in the N or E direction in the morning (against the lighter wind)....I would not head south in the morning only to have to punch into the stronger NE driven chop in the arvo. 

Cheers Z

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Nice report @zmk1962. I was out yesterday and ended up with 10 keepers as well as putting three other keepers back.

Waves started getting up a bit big for me so I was back inside by 11 with most of my breakfast intact. ;-)

Very windy today, but i took my wife and son to the entrance and ended up with some mullet and bream. A good family day out and they young one was stoked with catching.





Edited by antonywardle
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HI @King chaser

I've not had a lot of luck at West Reef. When I'm outside, I'm usually just going for flathead. I'm going to try and have a go for Reds and something a bit more exotic, but htat requires a flat sea, as I'm not that good when breakfast retention if I have to retie too many times! As forr the flattys, this is what I try and do for them.

What I do it head go early, and drive in to the Sun from Box head until I get to about 55 metres, then drop over a paternoster rig with pilchards for bait, and wait and see. Just drift around and if there aren't any hits, or you only get little ones, go out a bit further and do the same thing. If you can, mark where you get some and then go back and drift over them again. There isn't any real science that I've been able to discover in it.  I like it when the water is a nice dark blue. Keep an eye on your speed, if you are drifting faster than about 5km/h, then consider throwing out a drogue to slow down. For hooks, I like the wide gap ones for Flathead, they seem to catch themselves. Keep an eye on the angle of your line, if its not mostly straight up and down, then there is the chance that you aren't on the bottom, so you might want to up the lead.

@zmk1962 gave me a tip about also considering putting an SP on one of the hooks,, and I had some success with that too. I think it also gives you a second chance as the pilchards have been a bit soft lately and I suspect that they've been falling off on the way down.


Good luck and let us know how you get on.


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