Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:01 pm Post subject: Still kicking around....
I'm still chasing the beaked bandits the location has just changed!
Cape Bowling Green Solo
As a fishing mad kid growing up in Tassie during the early 90s' there were some special places that were indelibly etched into my memory via a steady diet of fishing magazines. Cape Bowling Green was one such place and when I found out that I was moving here at the start of the year the race was on to find out as much as I could about fishery and then wait and see what the season would bring. When reports started filtering in that the fish were starting to show up inevitably it then started blowing a gale and I just had to wait it out.
After kicking myself for missing out on the good weather last Sunday I made a promise to myself to get of my butt and get the big boat ready to go just in case another window appeared. After most of Friday and Saturday replacing fuel lines and trailer bearings, re-rigging the outriggers and respooling and checking all the gear I looked at the weather report and thought I had missed my chance so I didn't bother getting up too early Sunday.
I got up around 830 and thought "Bugger it, it doesn't look so bad I'm going anyway". So after launching at the Jerona Ramp I Rounded the Cape and cleared the top corner of the green zone around midday to be greeted by super clean water with conditions approaching glass out apart from a bit of swell. There were a half dozen Flybridges' on the Southern Grounds ranging from a 24' Bertie to a 40 plus O'brien. And then there was me, some mad bloke by himself in a 20' centre console.
So the baits' go out and I join in the circle work, the bait was looking promising. Small schools packed high and tight with distinct "walls" typical of Black Marlin feeding. The first bite came quickly and took me by surprise, a fish of around 40kg crash tackling the left bait and exiting stage right like a freight train. A slow five count and I come up tight and I come up tight only for the fish to shake the hook on the first jump, needless to say some choice words were said at this point. This happens sometimes, I think when a fish is moving fast sideways the belly in the line prevents the bait being swallowed properly for a good hookup. I think the fish are lost often just because they let go of the bait when they jump. The second to turn up was a bit of a non event, as it just came straight up on the right hand bait and followed it for a bit before fading away when the bait was freespooled back to it, pretty sure it was a Sail. I must be rusty, should have teased it a bit more perhaps.
The second bite was a carbon copy of the first. A crashing strike on the left rigger with the fishes' dorsal fin scything through the water heading right at a rate of knots. A slow five count again and the drag lever goes up and everything comes up tight and this time it stays that way. Let me tell you, this fish was a real handful Solo on 6kg tackle! After frantically clearing the teasers during the first run (It's amazing what you discover you can do with one hand!) the fish settled down and after a couple of good runs was near the boat. I was a bit surprised by this and sure enough, he saw the boat and that's when all hell broke loose and the fish decided to turn into a UFO jumping all over the place before sounding and being stubborn to the point of needing to drive of the fish to plane it back up. Every time the fish got back up to the surface it would put on an ariel display and sound again, this went on for 25-30 minutes before I finally got a hand to the leader and was just a fantastic fish.
So the final score for the day was 3-1-1 but realistically I only fished for 3 1/2 hours so I think this was pretty good numbers for that short a trip early in the season. The other boats appeared to have about the same amount of action from what I could tell and everyone was catching fish. So that's a tick in the box for Cape Bowling Green and I can't wait to get back!
Sorry about the quality of the photos' yet another thing that's hard solo!
4 from 4 and some lucky Gold - Cape Bowling Green 30/6/1
This trip started like most seem to around these parts with a faint glimmer hope from the weathermen early Tuesday that the wind would drop for the start of the long weekend. Not holding my hopes up I organised a couple of mad keen crew and waited to see what would pan out. Sure enough by Thursday arvo the reports had firmed up and it was on for Saturday, The usual flurry of last minute preparations ensued and Saturday morning rolled around found us at the Jerona ramp just after day break.
Once again we rounded the North Western corner of the outer Green Zone and backed off to trolling speed. The plan for the day was to take advantage of a full crew and run a full spread consisting of 2 x Swim Baits on the riggers, a skirted skip bait and a Wine cork head rig in close on the flat lines. The decision was also made to try something different and run 5000 size spin gear loaded with 20lb Braid for the two swim baits on the riggers. In addition I had made a new subsurface "exciter" type type teaser so that went out on the same cleat as the bird teaser line the idea being that they can both be cleared at the same time by hauling in both lines simultaneously.
Well, the morning was very quiet apart from a very welcome surprise in the lucky capture of a decent Dolphin fish on one of the short lines. These things go hard, look great, and eat even better! The fish was hooked by the circle hook in the base of its' dorsal fin so we were all surprised it stayed on at all, the softly, softly approach paid off and it hit the ice with big grins all round. For once I would be going home with a feed!
No bait to speak of and not one fish seen by midday had me worried, I was down playing it saying "no worries they're late starters we'll see some action soon". Sure enough a feisty little Black appeared a couple of minutes later and proceded to belt the snot out of the right swim bait. Ok, flick the line off the rigger clip, drop the bait down his throat, count to five, bail arm closed, start winding, FISH ON! Text book circle hook hookup, this Billfishing thing is easy, Aye? A flurry of jumps and shallow runs and the first for the day was boat side on the leader. Well of course when I went to grab the bill it went crazy and threw the hooks didn't it? So one down but no in boat photo op. Oh well, it still counts, Next!
The second fish came soon after screaming in from the left smashing the long rigger bait the release clip crashing back into the outrigger as it exited the scene of the crime. "Mine!" was the call and once again the count down before the bail arm went over. There was no question about this one being on as it started greyhounding away peeling line from the Stella at an alarming rate. Let me tell you, despite my reservations regarding Billfish on braid these Juveniles are lit dynamite with no cushioning in the line! This fish put on a real show for the boys leaving me with my adrenaline pumping trying to get the rooster tailing belly out of the line before the fish managed to throw the hooks. The fish went deep after that grudgingly coming to the leader after being planed up 3 or 4 times. After being quickly hoisted aboard for a brag shot it was released and swum away strong.
Deckie number twos' fish went the same way with a hard strike on the long rigger swim bait but gave the Boys a real up close and personal view of his acrobatic skills right at the boat before going berserk on the leader and trying to pull my arm from the socket when I bill wrapped him. Three down and everyone with a fish, the deckies both with their first saw back slapping and silly grins all round as the fish swum off to terrorise the local bait population some more.
The last fishes' greed got the better of him and gave the boys a chance to see a Marlin take the bait up close and personal. It had taken the long rigger but stayed in the spread so Doddsy couldn't hook him as he didn't turn. In the meantime the boat had slowed so I pitched a bait beyond the fish and had it chase the bait right in before I opened the bail arm sinking it directly in the fishes' path. Without hesitation the fish took the bait and headed out of the spread so I handed the rod to Doddsy, he soon put the bail arm over and came up tight. The call of "Fish On" was heard for the fourth and final time that day and the Deckie got his brag shot.
So, good conditions a Dolphin fish on ice and 4-4-4 for the day. Not Bad, not bad at all........
So that's the news from Queensland, the Barra fishing is average but the Billfishing is going alright. Cheers, John.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post. _________________ "My wife says I never listen to her.... Or something like that."
Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2012 8:15 pm Post subject: Re: Still kicking around....
Doug, There seems to be plenty around at the moment so I'm making the most of it. Warren, looking to have a crack but I need to find someone with enough Know how to be able to tease them. The other option is to figure out how Ben Bright is doing it Solo in Weipa. With great difficulty I'm guessing!
_________________ "My wife says I never listen to her.... Or something like that."
Posted: Fri Jul 06, 2012 10:39 pm Post subject: Re: Still kicking around....
Matt Flynn wrote:
Awesome post and great to see there is life after the NT!
Now where that last piece of firewood ...
Ha Ha.... I'm originally from Tassie mate, Where are you living? It's ball tearingly cold this time of year. I fished the lakes in November last year and got snowed on in the morning and a sunburnt nose in the afternoon, go figure. Cleaned up on the trout though 39 in two days between the two of us.
_________________ "My wife says I never listen to her.... Or something like that."
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 1970 10:30 am
Images:53 Location: La La Land
Barrabucks points on hand:
Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2012 12:07 am Post subject: Re: Still kicking around....
We are in the Huon region.
Yep it's been cold the past three weeks, but nothing like up at the lakes. I don't know what the fuss is about tho, if you wear three pairs of undies, a beanie, two t-shirts under your jumper and woolly socks in the gumboots it is just like being in Darwin
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2011 9:25 am
Barrabucks points on hand:
Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2012 12:56 am Post subject: Re: Still kicking around....
Hi John Outstanding post,I,d just like to get one for the day. Decided to give the billies ago this year(first time) and have read your blog on light tackle billfishing,so thanks for all the great info and hope you enjoy your new hunting grounds,,,well done
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum