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1.15 meter Kayak Jewfish (10 May '24)

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Set off from Berowra Waters boat ramp at first light geared up to deal with the dire weather forecast which was for heavy rain later in the day.

The water both at Berowra and the main river was a murky grey/green after the recent downpours and I have had some good catches in those conditions in the past.

First stop Joe Crafts Bay to catch some big mullet for live bait on a light float rig. I use a homemade berley of mulched Wonder White bread, bread crumbs and commercial berley garnished with fish oil to attract the mullet. For the first hour all I managed to catch was garfish and small bream but when I moved to the shallow water near the mangroves at the head of the bay the mullet were queuing up to take the bread off my hook. I put the small fish back and persevered until 4 perfect sized sand mullet were in the tank, all around 30cm long.

It takes me the best part of 2 hours to paddle from Joe Crafts Bay to the main river and by the time I got there I'd missed the slack water and the ebb was just beginning.

Fished 3 locations with a fat mullet on a double 8/0 hook rig for no return. I use a 70 gram running sinker to keep the bait down and I either fish on the drift or turn into the current and hold position off a likely spot.

By 2 o'clock in the afternoon the ebb was running full bore and I was considering calling it a day. The last throw of the dice was close in off a rock face in a little less than 4 meters of water. The mullet usually get very lively when a predator is close by but on this occasion there was no preamble and both me and the mullet were taken completely by surprise by the hit. The rod buckled over and the fish ran directly under the kayak which is a good recipe for a capsize and caused me a few heart flutters before I could square up behind the run. The fight lasted 15 minutes and ended in deep water with the fish suddenly giving up the battle and coming to the surface on its side ready for the gaff. I subsequently found that one of the hooks was deeply embedded in the fish's guts which may have been the reason for its sudden capitulation.

I paddled to the Twin Beaches to take a couple of photographs and gut and bleed the fish. This jewfish had already had his lunch and the stomach was full with a bream and a partially decomposed bully mullet which must have been around 40cm long when it was consumed. My filleting knife is 38cm long.

As I was getting ready to leave the forecast rain came rolling in and the paddle back to the ramp was in a veritable deluge. Thank goodness for good quality waterproof clothing.




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I love reading posts from anglers who are adventurous, to me at least. You probably take it all in your stride heading out in forecast horrid conditions. You certainly know what you're doing in every aspect of the hunt...gathering the bait using your own brand of berley and then setting off in pursuit of the quarry.

 You have my respect.


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