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Post Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 2:17 pm    Post subject: Finniss question

I'm travelling up from Tas to do some run off fishing. If I get a chance I'd like to fish the upper reaches of the Finniss via the mouth. My understanding is that it is a restricted area due to the Blue Mud Bay decision in the High Court.
My question is it possible to get a permit to do what I want to do and where do you get them from.

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Post Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 2:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

Yes it is restricted but it depends how far up you want to go. The lower reaches and upper reaches are open to the public, it is the middle section that is closed. You can access the upper section of the finniss through the boat ramp on hardcastle road.


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Post Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 4:16 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

Thanks for that but I was interested in fishing the middle section with the option of pushing up stream into the fresh. I've done it in the past before High Court decision.

Also can anyone tell me why the middle section is closed. As far as my understanding goes the High Court decision was for the mud flats between High and low water level. I know the middle section does not dry on low tide so maybe there is something I don't understand about the Blue Mud Bay ruling.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated especially how I go about getting permit to fish middle and upper reaches going via the mouth.

Cheers again


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Post Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 4:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

We would all love to know the exact same question

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Post Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 4:32 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

I think you'd be screwed if they have trail cameras up past the 15km mark ? When heading up from the mouth section. .as for pushing up or cruising down it's pretty overgrown through there... so I've been told.

There's no permit on offer as far as I know to go in that way. As well as it more than likely costing a prop or 2 to do the trip. Up to you though. I'd love to see a report from up that way as I've not done the floodplain channels session up there for years. But there's plenty of fish around in the legitimate areas anyway at the moment. Heading back out next week to the legendary ''3 ways '' junction.


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Post Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 4:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

Thanks for that. I was after a permit solution so it looks like sticking to the 15km limit as you suggest, pity though, I don't mind paying for access but there are plenty of other places to fish however options are always good when fishing an area.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 12:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

River access is generally covered by Bed and Banks Claims in which Indigenous owners own both the bed of the river and the river banks and can control access over it.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 5:29 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

Very interesting Tristan.sloan. Didn't know that. Also please excuse any typo's as I'm typing without glasses.
So the point you made re river beds, banks and the water access over it, is that part of the H.C. decision or is that something completely different?

Question, so how does that affect the waters in the Daily, South, East, Moyle and in particular the strait between the Tiwi Islands or is that not a river?

So any river on Aboriginal land can be subject. To closure at any time, is that the case?

Thanks for the info.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

In a nut shell, yes, based on the court documents that I read a while back, this is what is wanted by the traditional owners.

It comes down to that the aboriginal people believe that their rights under the 1976 Aboriginal land rights legislation it includes the waterways as well. I can't recall the exact justification (search the threads here because we did discuss it) but it was something to do with the definition of land not excluding the waterways and therefore it was considered by the NLC and recognised by the HC to be part of the act because of the absence of a definition that states otherwise.

Effectively this decision has the potential to apply to any waterway, billabong etc bounded by aboriginal lands.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

Thanks for the clarity. So it comes down to individual land owner groups and their wishes, for lack of a better word.

So not sure if the fresh water section of the Finniss, via hardcastles rd, is that part of Aboriginal land, and if so is there a permit system to access this area. I've never been to this area before so a little unsure re access. Have only fished via mouth.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:45 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

Thankfully, I don't think it is as simple as that. There are some ongoing appeals and negotiations.

I think it was Ronge who pointed me to that information I discussed. What I had read earlier indicated that the HC had ruled that NLC were not providing anything valid forward to support their claim. The HC said that the intent of the constitution was that every Australian should be free to access waterways regardless of any birth right (or words to that effect) and the 1976 Aboriginal Land Act made no provisions to over rule this.

So the NLC effectively lost the appeal to prevent access to the inter-tidal areas. However' the HC ruled that in the absence of a definition in the ACT and given the NLC feel misrepresented by the ACT the NTG and the NLC must continue to negotiate the hand over of land to the NLC which may include inter-tidal zones and waterways.

This is probably got a bit to do with why it is so important that the constitution regonises the Aboriginal people as the "First Australian's" because an amendment to the Constitution could also simply include the necessary terms "waterways, inter-tidal, etc" that would enable the Blue Mud Bay decision to be enacted across the entire Northern Region. Or maybe that's the skeptic in me.

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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

No permit required to access the area off Hardcastle rd. 4WD RECOMMENDED currently a ck about 600mm deep just before the ramp

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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

So does the river upstream of this ramp open up to flood plains or does the river start to get taken over with shrubs?


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

No floodplains mate just little feeder creeks, most are under 3m wide a lot are just tiny trickles all of them hold fish as do the big snags ... which the river is full of . Youve got a bit over 20km of river to play in from here. Ramp is single lane concrete and in good nick.

Check google maps for detailed info.


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Post Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Finniss question

Upper limit blocked by rapids.

Lower limit below 3 ways all options are overgrown with pandanus and thick jungle.

Have fun, few barra getting caught in there lately

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