OFFSHORE: There was no joy for the weekend warriors or the many visitors to Noosa this week. Fresh to strong south easterlies hammered the Sunshine Coast relentlessly over the long Labour Day weekend limiting offshore excursions to Laguna Bay and then, only to the more experienced jet ski anglers.
In the latter half of the week, lighter variable winds with a westerly flavour were the norm rather than the exception although on Tuesday morning a gnarly, dumping 1.5m-2.0m swell on the bar was a challenge (see above) for all but the bigger boats. The next day (see below) it was pretty much business as usual.
The relative shelter of the Great Sandy Straits was worth considering though. From Luke Hughes... "This is my 12 year old son Luke (below) with the Spanish mackerel he caught on Monday. We were actually bottom fishing with a paternoster rig on a small patch of reef out in the Straits when this horse took his bait. The odds were against us as the fish was underneath the boat at one point then got the line hooked up around the trim tabs and somehow the line didn’t break. His arms were exhausted afterwards and he could barely pick his rod up to keep fishing lol. We didn’t weigh it but It measured 1220 mm long."
There were no reports from the outer reefs and very little (apart from the odd longtail tuna and Spanish mackerel on trolled baits) from the middle reef belt.
Weatherwise (as mentioned) the last couple of days of the week were the standouts and Sunshine Reef was the preferred local destination for those boaties who made the effort. Report and photos from Trekka 2 skipper Nat Turner... "Hey mate. We ran back to back charters to Sunshine Reef on Wednesday in pretty good conditions. We had no current and light southerly breezes. This fishing was steady and got better as the day went on. We caught yellowtail kingfish, a couple of nice coral trout (as pictured above), grass emperor (below left), venus tusk fish, snapper and pearl perch.
And we fished Sunshine again on Thursday morning. All three boats were booked for a corporate charter. Conditions were really nice with light westerlies and a 1.0m swell. Our boat caught plenty of grass emperor, venus tusk fish, a few squire and (as pictured above right) this quality coral trout. Cheers, Nat."
As the murk from the recent rains slowly dispersed (with the aid of the bigger tides) Laguna Bay gradually came to life as the mackerel tuna, followed by the longtails, moved back in to feed on the still present bait schools. They were in close behind the surf line, around the shark nets and out towards Granite Bay.
COASTAL: Adam Neilson, Tackle World Noosa... "Once the winds dropped back the open beaches fired again. Down south, squire and grass sweetlip were responding well to flesh baits off the rocks at Yaroomba while flathead, jewfish and dart were the standouts from Castaways Beach. The bigger dart were on the prowl at the back of the surf gutters towards the top of the incoming tide. Further north, whiting were biting at the northern end of Sunshine Beach.
On the National Park headland, longtail tuna were within slug casting distance of the rocks at Hells Gates and jewfish were on the bite after dark at the Fairy Pools. Around the corner from there, Granite Bay was good for garfish while Dolphin Point produced a few trevally. Across Laguna Bay, dart, flathead and whiting were active around Teewah village while the waters up towards Double Island Point fished well for bream, whiting, flathead and quality trevally."
ESTUARY: Adam Neilson, Tackle World Noosa... "Not a lot of activity in the system earlier in the week with more rain shutting things down in the short term. Having said that, there were still a few flathead and the odd trevally on the prowl from the river mouth to the pump station and up along the Dog Beach stretch. From Riley Woolmer, below left... "Hi. My dad took me fishing on Monday and I caught my first trevally! I was using a soft plastic. It was about 49cm and we released it after a quick pic. Thank you." Riley's first time trevally won him this week's $100.00 Tackle World Noosa/ChaseBaits Fish of the Week prize.
The Frying Pan area was worth a look with whiting responding well to live yabbies and prawns while across at the Sand Bags there were a few quality bream on the chew. Along from there, trevally and queenfish were again active in the Current Line while Weyba Creek was another whiting hot spot. Upriver at Tewantin the waters opposite the Council Chambers yielded more flathead and further up, the deeper holes between the lakes produced school jewfish."
Report from Jimmy Free, Noosa River Fishing Safaris... "Hey mate. It's been pretty quiet around the traps this week. A few tarwhine and flathead on the bite around the mouth and lower estuary. Hayden from Brisbane (above) boated his flathead there on Monday afternoon's charter. In the Woods Bays we caught a few fringe fin and tea leaf trevally while up along Hilton Terrace near the commercial pwc area we picked some small golden trevally."
FRESHWATER: Grant Budd, Northshore Bait and Tackle... "Impoundment fishing continues to be a game of patience and searching around for bass anglers. These fish aren’t in big schools in Lake Macdonald but it pays to nose into bays and work the edges especially as it is now spilling at 103% capacity. If on the troll you will certainly find smaller mid 30cm sized fish and smaller hard bodies around 70mm in length are a great start. Look at the Zerek Tango Shad for a consistent performer that won’t break the bank. Borumba Dam hasn’t changed its level and it remains at 82% so as always extreme care has to be taken in the timber and it pays to play it safe and navigate with an electric motor. In the main basin there are schools of smaller bass and these can be jigged or vibed up. An older often overlooked lure is the Ecogear ZX Blade. This once hugely popular lure has dropped off the radar in recent times but still proves to be a great bass lure due to the huge vibration it emits. Cast this out and slow wind it back especially on shut down or deeper fish.