The water temperature is rising and so is my excitement for the upcoming pelagic season. My excitement coincides with thearrival of my 4.8-metre Galeforce over Christmas. My new ride will give me an opportunity to venture further afield to the offshore grounds of south-east Queensland.
When I was 19 my best buddy and I did our first ever long distance fishing road trip. We pulled a 14 hour marathon drive north to the beautiful Whitsundays to chase anything with fins and possibly some backpacker lasses as well. It may as well have been the moon to a couple of young wide-eyed chumps from the country.
The northerly front hit just as we passed Conical Rocks heading north out of Keppel Bay. It was 12 hours ahead of the predicated scheduled forecast. I pulled the throttle back on the big Evinrude and the bow of S-Cape II settled in the uncomfortable slop of the 15-20 knot breeze.
Variable northerly winds, mirror flat horizons and masses of feeding pelagics- now is unequivocally the best time of year for fishing as our (later than normal) FNQ dry season commences. Last month I described the onslaught of trevally species hammering lures in my regular haunts off Mourilyan Harbour. Since that time things have only improved with virtually every pelagic species emerging to feed on all our recent trips.
Ah, fill the Cup: - what boots it to repeat
How Time is slipping underneath our Feet:
Unborn To-morrow, and dead Yesterday,
Why fret about them if To-day be sweet!
(The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam)
At the time of writing I am feverishly typing in order to meet the deadline for this story between also watching bits of the U.S election coverage. It seems like the whole world has lost its mind with Trump now on the brink of victory. If it weren’t for all the good recent fishing action I think I’d even be little annoyed about this news.
When it comes to techniques, trolling is regarded by many anglers as a lazy man’s style of fishing. Most view trolling as throwing out a couple of lures behind the boat, sticking the rod in the rod holder and waiting for the fish to hook themselves. However, with a few adjustments and some sneaky additions, trolling like many forms of fishing can be much more technical and most importantly, highly effective when targeting both demersel and pelagic fish.
Even though it had been two decades since I had fished the mighty Mitchell River, the memories of its giant barramundi boofing lures and launching head and shoulders out of the water were still etched clearly in my mind like it was yesterday. This wild Western Cape York River was where I suffered my first and severest bout of barra fever which to this day has yet to be matched.