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Posted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 10:32 pm Post subject: Marion Bay and the Chinese fish
Recently back from a trip to Marion Bay with an eclectic bunch of mates from around the country. The trip had been on the calendar for a few months and all eyes were on the weather in the weeks prior with SA and the whole bottom half of the country experiencing shite weather for weeks on end. Given the moniker my mates in Gove have given me is "Wind Bringer" it was looking like I was going to live up to my name again but as the time drew closer it began to look more and more likely we were going to jag a couple of days of gold. It must have been the 180 degree change in direction of travel that changed my fortune because as luck would have it we we managed 2 1/2 days of perfect weather before it all went ugly again.
First day was a charter aboard a 65ft ex cray boat "Wingman". Conditions were as good as you get but given the weather of the previous weeks there was a fair bit of residual swell about which had some of the boys looking pretty green for the first few hours. I'm a renowned chunderer but a solid breakfast of Vegemite on toast and a handful of Kwells had me hanging in better than most. An hour or so out of port saw us behind Althorpe Island for our first drift. I've always wanted to catch a nannygai and was stoked to get the first hookup and bring one on board. Not a monster by any stretch but one to tick off the bucket list and a very happy camper.
We were fishing in 40m -70m of water and generally started with a drift to find the fish then anchoring up when we came across a patch. It wasn't a mad days fishing but consistent enough with some nice nanny's coming on board, a couple of pinky snapper and the highlight being a Queen Snapper of about 8kg caught by one of the other punters. One of our boys got a nice Queen Snapper and we finished the day picking up a dozen or so quality squid behind one of the islands that provided both some choice S&P calamari as well as some quality bait for the next 2 days whiting fishing. Saw some amazing country and, with nothing between us and Antarctica, the size of the swells (even on a good day) left me in awe of the power of the ocean. Real soul stirring stuff.
Day 2 saw a perfect dawn with the sunrise highlighted through beer, rum and wine tainted eyes. One of our crew has a "shack" at Marion Bay and along with one of the other Adelaide locals we had a couple of boats at our disposal, a very tidy 6.4m Goldstar aluminium walk around out of WA and a 5.8m Haines fibreglass jobbie. We headed out from the less than impressive Marion Bay boat ramp onto a millpond and pulled up no more than 5km from the ramp. Straight away our crew were into quality King George Whiting in the 40-50cm range and within an hour had 32 on board, only 4 short of bagging out. In the meantime the other crew had managed maybe half a dozen, despite several moves, the last of which saw them only metres off our spot but all to no avail. Of course we were more than sympathetic to their plight
A quick move a k or so away and we had just put our last keeper in the esky when one of the boys hooked a Scorpion Fish which the skipper, having previously gone through an excruciatingly painful encounter with, shouldered us aside exclaiming "whatever you do don't touch it!!" at which point he attempted to lip grip it with a pair of pliers that were way too short with the end result being getting spiked in 2 fingers and the air turning blue with more expletives than Tourette's convention. That was our day done and it was quickly back to the shack for some hot water relief for skip and and some serious drinking and fish cleaning for the rest of us. The other crew turned up 4 or 5 hours later, also having bagged out but having to work hard and move a few times to fill up. Suffice to say fresh Whiting 3 ways was enjoyed by all for dinner.
Day 3 and the forecast was for a cold front and associated wind to come through early afternoon so we dragged our sorry bones out of bed and hit the water early for a quick hit up while things were still good. It was a hard morning compared to the previous day but we still managed to put another 15 quality fish in the esky with the other guys matching our catch. Back to the shack and another filleting session followed by an hour or so washing down the boats and yet again we found ourselves indulging in some quality tucker, choice liquor and great company. Sleep came easy that night and as we headed back to Adelaide the next morning listening the radio broadcasting warnings of 90kph winds, thunderstorms and hail I grinned to myself knowing I'd finally jagged a win against Mother Nature.
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 1970 10:30 am
Images:53 Location: La La Land
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Posted: Mon Sep 19, 2016 9:23 am Post subject: Re: Marion Bay and the Chinese fish
What a cracker trip and a great story. Sorry about the skip, at least he educates people by showing how not to do it.
Reminds me of two Tassie teenage lads at a jetty here when I was fishing with my two girls, one of my girls pulled in a barracoutta and one of the Tassie lads jumped in with high drama and yelled "WATCH OUT, THEY'VE GOT TEETH!" and kindly unhooked the fish as I watched from a short distance away, having a good giggle.
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