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Instilling the fear of missing out on a small bream


linewetter

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Little_Flatty
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"A fantastic adventure, with great photos to boot. Thanks for sharing."

linewetter was awarded the badge 'Great Content' and 400 points.

My fishing fantasy has long been hiking into the wilderness and finding a small creek or river devoid of human life with crystal clear waters running and fish you could see from shore.  Today I fulfilled a small bit of that.

I had been eyeing this one spot on Google Maps for about a month and a half now.  While it wasn't exactly devoid of human life considering there were houses just a short walk away and a semi paved walkway, I was still really curious.  I saw that it would involve a bit of hiking to get to and was keen, today was finally the day where the stars aligned and I made my way out.  

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It was a beautiful day, not too hot and the clouds were out.  Still though, I checked the UV index and it was set to extreme on 11.  I set out with some sun protective gear and bug spray.  Last time (and also the first time) that I went hiking in Australia I was eaten alive by bugs and ticks.  I wasn't taking any chances today.  Any part of me that was exposed got a healthy dose of bug spray.


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It was a surprisingly easy walk until I realized I was walking downhill.  Eventually I was walking down a damn near 50 degree angle.  It was steep to say the least!  I had to take it one step at a time or else the angle was going to make me gain momentum and involuntarily run down.  I was for sure going to feel it on the way back up.


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Since moving here to Sydney from America a few months ago, what amazes me is how you can travel such a small distance and be immersed in nature so beautiful and serene that you feel like you're in another part of the country - yet you could be just 15 mins away from one of the largest cities in the world.  As I walked along, that's all I could think about.  Hearing all the different birds and the cicadas buzzing and knowing all of this was so accessible even if you lived in the middle of the CBD.

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After about 10 minutes of walking from my car, I made it to the water.  It was so quiet, all I could hear was my thoughts.  I took a few moments to look around for an easy access point to the water without disturbing the local fauna.  I hate going off the beaten path when it comes to these things because I don't like stepping on the vegetation if I can help it.  Just feels bad disturbing nature like that.

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After a bit of wandering I found a clearing amongst the trees and bushes and made my way to the water.

As you can see in the picture below, the water was crystal clear.  I could see from one side of the shore to the other side and see everything that was happening under the water.  There was a slight current going and lots of little baitfish swimming around.  The water was quite shallow - I estimate the deepest probably less than knee deep.  I had a few casts with my topwater and got nothing but did end up attracting a small school of whiting up to my feet!  They looked pretty big, about 25-30cm.  They didn't seem to be spooked by me and I had a few casts over them to try and get one but to no avail.  They continued swimming with the current. 

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After a few more casts, I ended up with a really unlucky one...and lost my brand new MMD Splash Prawn that I had just bought yesterday with @DerekD and @AlbertW.  It was high up in a tree somehow.  I was devastated because I was really hoping to use that the whole session since the conditions really seemed perfect for it.  Disappointed and also frustrated, I moved along the shore looking for better luck.  This area was a bit deeper and had more structure.  The water was still super clear.  I tied on a light 1/16th jighead since the water was quite shallow and I didn't need to throw that far anyway. I had some casts out with only pufferfish bites.  After just a few more casts I ended up losing my tackle again. This time it was also a tree...I got too ambitious and tried to cast into the shadow of the tree.  Instead I got tree.  

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I was really, REALLY frustrated now!  But also a little surprised.  I was able to cast the 1/16th jighead pretty far despite it being pretty light and me not having an UL rod.  I decided instead to tie on a 1/24th jighead next.  Something to force me to lose some casting distance because I was getting tired of constantly retying my tackle.  It's also my first time trying out the 1/24th jigheads.  They were on clearance for a price I couldn't pass up and I had been looking for a reason to not have them collect dust. 


I moved along to a nice, open clearing.  I did not want to lose another jighead at this point so started to just cast straight into the open water:

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Edited by linewetter
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After a few more casts, I was feeling a little defeated but still happy I got to check this place out finally.  I was out my brand new lure...a few jigheads...but hey, any day out fishing is still a great day to me.  I decided to move a little further down shore and have a couple more casts.  I took this image through my polarized sunglasses so you can see exactly what I was seeing.  Water so clear, you could see everything that was going on.  I was standing over some soft sand and mangrove roots.  So many crabs and so big as well!  It was interesting watching them.  They scurried in unison as I got closer then would re-emerge behind me. 

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Here I put a few more casts in.  I matched my soft plastic to look like some of the baitfish I had seen and put on a paddletail.  I decided to try slow rolling the lure instead of doing hops and twitches.  I wasn’t having any luck.  Put in another good cast, optimistically hoping I’d see that school of whiting again.  As I watched my lure come closer to shore, I started reeling in a little faster so that I could recast.  There’s no point in doing the song and dance with my lure when it’s so close to shore right?  Wrong. 


Out of nowhere a small bream darts out and takes interest in my paddletail.  I was shocked and almost frozen.  I’ve seen enough fish now to know that any sudden movements can spook them, especially bream.  I stopped my plastic for a second, not wanting to startle the fish away with my reeling with it being so close to shore.  It also paused.  It was here instinct kicked in.  Remembering what Derek had talked to me about the other day and what the countless podcasts and videos I’ve watched also reinforced.  The fear of missing out.  You’ve got to make the fish feel like they’re going lose out.  Like they HAVE to eat this thing right now or it’s gone forever.  All of this happened in like a second.  I took a gamble and decided to reel in really fast.  Both were so close to me that if the bream didn’t hit, the paddletail would be in the air and up towards my rod in seconds.  It was do or die….though less dramatic of course 😊

A risky gamble but it paid off.  I watched as the bream panicked and went to strike my soft plastic.  Before I knew it, my rod was shaking and the fish was on!  I pulled the fish onto shore.  It kept kicking and kicking.   Eventually I got it to calm down and popped the hook out.  Suddenly I was happy.  Any fish is a good fish to me.  After a quick photo, I put it back into the water where it darted away. 

 

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I continued fishing some more but caught nothing after.  I was satisfied with my one fish and experience.  It was really, really cool being able to watch the fish strike my lure.  I’ve never fished water this shallow and clear to be able to see something like that happen.  I totally get what it means now to make the fish feel like they’re going to miss out.
 

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26 minutes ago, Robbo from Sydney said:

Well done on all counts @linewetter - getting out to somewhere new (and off the beaten track) and then catching a wily bream using the knowledge you have been gathering about fish behaviour

Thank you sir!  It's hard for me to try new places.   I always want to go to my ol' reliable spots where I know I've had success before so I don't waste an afternoon out, but slowly coming around to actually checking out new to me places.  

27 minutes ago, Little_Flatty said:

A fantastic adventure @linewetter and a great report. It looks very bassy where you are.

If this is where I think it is, there are hikes further downstream to some amazing looking fishing territory.

I'll have to give that a shot!  I did see there were some hikes along the shore.  Walked a little bit of one but I was still traumatized by my last hiking experience that I was weary of continuing too far 😝  Next time I'm coming back with duct tape around my ankles and wrists to keep the bugs from crawling into my clothes then exploring those hikes.  

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8 minutes ago, linewetter said:

I'll have to give that a shot!  I did see there were some hikes along the shore.  Walked a little bit of one but I was still traumatized by my last hiking experience that I was weary of continuing too far 😝  Next time I'm coming back with duct tape around my ankles and wrists to keep the bugs from crawling into my clothes then exploring those hikes.  

Sandflies and biting midges are terrible. I get totalled nearly every time I go north and still carry the scars (though didn't on my last trip...maybe I've finally learned). However I haven't seen that many of them in Sydney.

Mosquitoes however, we have in droves in certain areas.

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Hi @linewetter,

So you were paying attention... :mfr_lol:

Congratulations on the bream and I loved the photos and the background story. I used to do 1 reconnaissance trip once every 4 or 5 trips out to learn about different areas. This trip out is a great start. Glad it wasn't me climbing up that steep hill. How was the burn in the legs?

Looking forward to your next report.

Derek

Edited by DerekD
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Wow what a great report and some stunning photos @linewetter. Really living the dream right there, even without the catch - the bream just a cherry on the cake. The nature in many ways is the best part of fishing I reckon and that’s a gorgeous location (wherever it is!).

Shame about the lure. I’ve lost many to trees casting parallel to a bank and have lost new lures on the first cast as well. But don’t let that get you down - or else the shiny lures will gather dust after all! Better to have loved and lost than never to have cast at all…!

I bet catching the bream helped with the uphill slog back too - might’ve been a few degrees steeper without a catch 😆

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10 hours ago, DerekD said:

Hi @linewetter,

So you were paying attention... :mfr_lol:

Congratulations on the bream and I loved the photos and the background story. I used to do 1 reconnaissance trip once every 4 or 5 trips out to learn about different areas. This trip out is a great start. Glad it wasn't me climbing up that steep hill. How was the burn in the legs?

Looking forward to your next report.

Derek

It was bad!  By the time I got home I was already feeling it in my knees.  Maybe a sign for me to get out and get in better shape 😁

9 hours ago, Mike Sydney said:

Wow what a great report and some stunning photos @linewetter. Really living the dream right there, even without the catch - the bream just a cherry on the cake. The nature in many ways is the best part of fishing I reckon and that’s a gorgeous location (wherever it is!).

Shame about the lure. I’ve lost many to trees casting parallel to a bank and have lost new lures on the first cast as well. But don’t let that get you down - or else the shiny lures will gather dust after all! Better to have loved and lost than never to have cast at all…!

I bet catching the bream helped with the uphill slog back too - might’ve been a few degrees steeper without a catch 😆

You're totally right...no point in buying the lures for them to sit in the tackle box.  And yep, that's the one thing I love about fishing as well.  Combines my love for the outdoors and desire to get outside.  Fishing is half of it, the other half is just finding places to explore and having a nice activity to do at the destination.  It's nice going to places like Blues Point where you get the amazing view of the Harbour Bridge while fishing.  Really makes you appreciate living here in Sydney, doing something so simple like fishing in front of such an amazing view that people come from all over the world to see.

8 hours ago, faker said:

Good job @linewetter, it stinks to lose lures and I have lost fair share. Alot of my lures are knockoffs so I don't feel as guilty when losing them when learning.

I have a few knockoffs myself...I end up overlooking them thinking they won't catch me as many fish but I'm sure that's what they mean when they say lures are made to attract fisherman and not fish 😄 I fall for the marketing a lot

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1 hour ago, linewetter said:

It was bad!  By the time I got home I was already feeling it in my knees.  Maybe a sign for me to get out and get in better shape 😁

You're totally right...no point in buying the lures for them to sit in the tackle box.  And yep, that's the one thing I love about fishing as well.  Combines my love for the outdoors and desire to get outside.  Fishing is half of it, the other half is just finding places to explore and having a nice activity to do at the destination.  It's nice going to places like Blues Point where you get the amazing view of the Harbour Bridge while fishing.  Really makes you appreciate living here in Sydney, doing something so simple like fishing in front of such an amazing view that people come from all over the world to see.

I have a few knockoffs myself...I end up overlooking them thinking they won't catch me as many fish but I'm sure that's what they mean when they say lures are made to attract fisherman and not fish 😄 I fall for the marketing a lot

i use sugapen and ecogear knock offs. i do have a couple of real stuff but those are only bought out in areas where I thoroughly know the bottom. like they say the lure only needs to be good enough not 100%

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