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  1. 23 points
    Gday Fishraiders, With recent happenings of world events, there is certainly going to be members here on this site that are adversely affected by this pandemic of Coronavirus. Whilst the majority of us will not be directly affected ourselves by the virus, there will be plenty that will be indirectly affected via, loss of income, isolation, family members being ill, Members businesses affected etc etc. For such reasons I would asked that any posting related to this virus, either in jest or specific not be posted. This site can be used as a very good escape from the chaotic scenes of late and let’s try and keep it that way. Stay safe and best of luck to all fishraider members. Regards scratchie mod team
  2. 19 points
    Gday raiders, Headed out with the young fella this morning after @tyrone07 pulled the pin due to work. Got to the ramp and pulled up next to @Berleyguts. Quick chat and off we went. Loaded up with a few slimies and headed for the island. Hit our mark and first cast I’m on to a decent fish. Two casts later the boy loads up! Another respectable Broughton snapper. Worked the area for a while and I lost a ripper after a short fight. Changed locations and could see Baz a few hundred meters away. Set the drift and after a few casts get a screaming run. Fight the fish for 5 minutes and not far from the boat, pop!!! There goes another one! In the meantime the boy has landed a few just legal ones that are returned. We do a few more drifts in the area and landed a couple more for the box. Waved bye to baz and changed locations again to which we land a few more just legals. Then we thought we’d try one last location at the sisters to which there were bait balls everywhere! I cast in an area we call “whiskers” and sure enough I load up hard and fight this fish for sometime until it chews through the leader! Damn, I’m positive it’s whiskers! Same area, same fight and he’s done me 5 times now. Grrrr. Kept working the bait schools for a few more pannies, some bonito and another lost brut! Decided to call it quits and headed home at 30 knots. What another great day in the beautiful Port Stephens! Cheers scratchie!!!
  3. 18 points
    G’day raiders, Well the title says it all. Show us the best fish you ever caught and tell us why! It doesn’t have to be a monster, nor a game fish (It can be) but just a fish you’ve always wanted to catch and what effort you put in to catch it!!! I’ll start....... As you know I love chasing snapper! On this very day I took my son out and we caught a couple of nice pannies! The wind started to kick up and it had been a long morning and the boy wanted to go home! I made the call for one more drift and made it a long one. The boy just cast out and let his soft plastic drift behind the boat. But I “just kept casting“. We were soon in zone after a fast drift. Then I get a hit that nearly rips the rod out my hand! Boom...... but no hook up, damn so I thought to tea bag the lure! Next minute, zzzzzzzz I was on, and on hard! After a good fight and landed in 6-8m of water up cones my PB snapper at 95cms! I could have given up and gone home but no, I “just kept casting”. I’ve had some very special moments when fishing from GT’s, Spanish Mackeral to Marlin but this is truly one I will never forget!!! So what’s your best capture???? cheers scratchie!!!
  4. 17 points
    I could never overcome seasickness, so in my younger days it was all about landbased game for me. I couldn't decide which was my most memorable between these two, a 28kg black marlin and a 70.5kg yellowfin. The marlin was the most spectacular fight I've ever had and the 'fin was the biggest fish I've ever caught from the rocks. Both were taken on 15kg line. Sorry for the crappy photos, but the pics have degraded since they taken in the mid 1980's.
  5. 16 points
    bit of a belated post, caught weeks ago with all the goings on forgot to post it After 25+ years of bass fishing finally cracked the 50 went 52cm on a jig spinner and a 2.5 inch grub
  6. 16 points
    Great conditions yesterday to take the boat on its maiden voyage up to Longie with @REELCRAZY. Headed out at first light looking for a few squid. The usual spot wasn't firing but luckily the livey spot had the usual schools of yakkas (and boats!). We filled the tank and was heading to longie by 9am. Thanks to kind seas we made quick time to Longie and had livies under the boat by around 930. Heaps of bait and lots of surface action (bonnies) on arrival and hence we started casting metals and bubble floated plastics at the bonnies whilst the livies soaked. Soon enough the livies went off and we had landed a rat and lost a much bigger specimen, mainly due to giving it way too much leeway on the drag (lesson learned). Fishing in 10-13m so not a lot of room to play. Nailed the next fish at 85cm and landed a couple of nice bonnies, Lost another king on an unmanned rod whilst we were battling a good king (which Ev gave serious grief to on his Saragosa) and I was landing a solid bonnie on 10lb. Didnt quite have time to get the bonnie in the rod holder and pick up the king. The bite went quietfor about 45 and then it all came around again. Bonnies and kings rampaging for about 15 mins. All up took two kings home at approx 85 cms and 3 nice bonnies. Lost 3 larger specimens to the reef (due to amateur hour and just pulling power). Put back a few rats. Heaps of yakkas in the burley trail the whole morning. Packed up at 1230 after a memorable session in glorious conditions. The ramp coming in was PACKED with boats coming in and also launching. Thankfully everyone was being respectful and helping out those who might have needed it. I had a good chat to a few guys whilst waiting and I think we were all just happy to be out on such a great day. A nice end to the day. Cheers Dunc
  7. 15 points
    I went on a hunting and gathering mission in Port Stephens this morning. I had heard the odd report of this species about but I have not seen one for a long, long time. The story has always been the same - “You should have been here yesterday, mate!”. 😞 Finally, however, I had some success! I manoeuvred my way cautiously into the area, not wanting to draw attention to anyone else that was around. I had the area to myself! 😎 I approached from behind and managed to snare him with a short battle and minimal resistance. Woohoo! I took only what I needed. I am so pleased with my capture! Details below: Location: not far from the Car Park, Port Stephens. 😉 Method: sight casting Species (scientific name): toiletpaperus almostgoneus
  8. 15 points
    This award is for members who go above and beyond to help other raiders in various ways These members below have been given the badge - well deserved @frankS @kingie chaser @rickmarlin62 @zmk1962 @Yowie @dirvin21
  9. 14 points
    Here one of swordies efforts A mako taken off Botany in the early 90’s on 15kg gear. It was the best jumper he ever saw - 14 aerial summersaults! It is a great story when he describes his brother and him taking it home in the boat along the M5. Cars were almost running off the road trying to get a look! Their Mum was also surprised when they turned up and said “look what we caught Ma”
  10. 14 points
    Gday raiders, Just a quick report from this morning. As I think this is the only weekend left for 6 months without sport, I just had to get out there. Took out the 2nd eldest and his mate. Got on the water at 530, loaded up with bait and hit our mark by 630. Flicked the area for about an hour. The boys got a few pennies that were returned and I managed a decent fella and a pannie. Changed locations to see some birds working bait schools and trolled a livie through it, bang it goes off! Hoping it was a longtail but eventually brought in a legal kingy! Then we decided to keep at it, trolling baits and the boys ended up with two each. Two more legal but we had enough so returned. I must say there were heaps of boats. I hate fishing weekends. None of them realised we were working schools, should have been obvious! Anyway, did that for an hour and headed home. Back at the ramp 8:45 before this southerly blows up! Another beautiful morning in Port Stephens. cheers scratchie!!!
  11. 14 points
    Fellow raiders, The reason for this post is simply due to the magnitude of this situation. We will ALL have to deal with this crisis either directly or indirectly for an unknown period of time. It is not to single out anyone for undue comments or someone trying to make light of the situation. I’m sure we all have a good joke or comment. (I know I do) Although, Let’s save them for 6 months time when we can all look back and laugh! But reality right now is that people are sick, people are finding it hard to cope with bills, food, employment as well as the general struggles of life. So let this time be a reminder to ourselves, be kind to each other, embrace your family and friends, don’t be selfish, sharing is caring and the fact that there is always someone worse off than you! From a personal level....... I’m a baker at Woolworths. Today I watched 300-400 elderly and disabled people come through our doors in a frantic state. So me and my fellow baker went down to the front door to welcome them. Why??? Because they are the vulnerable, we are a familiar face to them and that made the mood remain calm and welcoming. As we are a strong community here, let’s also be strong for the community around us. Keep fishing when you can, keep sharing your knowledge on this site and remember that this is our happy place! Kind regards scratchie!!!
  12. 14 points
    Headed out early to Gunnamatta Bay this morning. Pumped some nippers yesterday, also had pillies and some salted tailor. I fished on the edge of the deeper water, and threw the nippers back over the sand bank with a bigger ball sinker to get some distance. A few yakkas turned up, so caught several and cut them into long strips on a hand line. Pillies on a rod, which produced nothing, and nippers on another rod. First fish up was the flattie on the hand line. Put up a good fight, and as I pulled it out, the nipper rod took off. I dumped the flattie into the fish box, with water in it, and battled the bream. Around the anchor rope, then around a big clump of kelp, then under the boat. Took a little while to get in into the boat. I was going to release the flattie, but when I returned to the fish box, the flattie had it's mouth open and it's body was a bit stiff. It was half dead, so I figured it would not release. Only a couple of minutes in the fish box, and it was on the way out. Usually they last for an hour or two without any problem. At least the son-in-law will like it, he is on a fish diet. Also pulled out the whiting. The nippers also produced several sting rays and a couple of fat puffers that chewed off the hooks. The yakkas also produced 2 eagle rays, one large banjo shark and something else similar to a wobbegong, but not quite one. All finger burning action on a handline. Later drifted a few places with the nippers, and only pulled out one long tom that was released.
  13. 13 points
    The best fish I've ever caught was a 81cm Snapper. I have caught a lot bigger fish (Marlin, Sailfish, GTs etc) but I rate it the best fish I've caught because of what I had to do to catch it. I sent my kayak on a train from Sydney to Perth, where a mate picked it up. I then flew to Perth and drove to Denham (820km North) with the kayak on a trailer. I was then taken on a large dive boat to Steep Point (Southern point of Dirk Hartog Island) with the kayak on the back of the boat. I then kayaked over 6 days to the Northern End of Dirk Hartog Island where I caught the Snapper below. The Northern End of Dirk Hartog Island is in the background, which is about 50km from the nearest point of mainland Australia.
  14. 13 points
    Bycatch of broadbill fishing. Hands down these big eye tuna pull harder than any other tuna Ive ever caught. First run went from 15m under the boat to around 300m straight down. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw it was just a small fish by tuna standards, these must have twin turbos!!!!... only ever had the one and haven't found anyone else who can comment on their opinions on fight quality from them.
  15. 12 points
    First try at river bass ( wild not stocked ) fishing for my eldest, 55cm. Now addicted to beating that!!!!
  16. 12 points
    I have very few photos of fish I catch as I only seem to take pics of what the kids catch. In desperation of a scratchy sized snapper I headed up to Foster a few years back where we were rewarded with this one on the first drop, closely followed by three we couldn't stop.
  17. 12 points
    In the last few yrs 94cm on bait broughton island over the years plenty of marlin macks tuna cod how to choose anyway this reds the most recent top catch
  18. 12 points
    When I was about twelve years old, one of my schoolmates invited me to go on holiday with he and his family-the Lark's- to Narooma on the NSW South Coast. We stayed in a caravan park adjacent to a lagoon on the southern side of the town close to the main beach. As a twelve year old, it was a magic location with the lagoon and beach so close for fishing and swimming. Also, there was still plenty of 'bush' as the area hadn't yet been developed to a great extent, leaving plenty of scrubby, tree covered space, ideal for young 'adventurers. Along with the area's interesting low cliffs, rocky shoreline and coast, there were limitless things to do and explore. Fishing was one of our favourite day time activities and a great many days and hours devoted to the pursuit of fish we could catch and then eat. Our holiday was a two week trip, so after exploring everything close to the caravan in the first week, the beginning of the second week saw us starting to venture a little further each day. One of our plans involved walking to a large rock monolith known as Glasshouse Rock, which sat on the far end of the second beach, to the south of the caravan park. The plan was to take a small haversack each, with enough food and drink for the day, plus our couple of small fishing rods, some basic hooks and sinkers, a knife and the usual bag of green prawns for bait. It was quite a walk to "the rock", from memory about forty minutes from the caravan and too far for any of the adults, so accompanied by two other boys our age from the next caravan, we set off with the usual warnings of "be careful and make sure you get back before dark". Once arriving at the rock, which stood high out of the water, a bit of exploration showed us several promising looking fishing spots around it's base and we proceeded to try them all, one by one. After the long walk, the fishing was a little disappointing with only a couple of the 'desired' eating species being landed, in the shape of three barely legal sized Flathead and a small Bream, not much of a result for the effort involved, however something to "trophy" when we got back. Then we decided to try fishing from the western side of the rock, facing back in towards the beach. This side was a maze of small channels and holes in between broken reef and rock, surrounded by big patches of kelp. To be honest, it didn't look very promising, but we gave it a try. We got plenty of bites but only caught very small fish such as Sweep and tiny Black Drummer, nothing over six inches long and certainly nothing big enough to eat. Then after 'lowering' the line down a crack between rocks, suddenly a much heavier fish was struggling as it was pulled straight up and onto the rocks. This was a "Spotted Groper"(or so we called it) and at about fifteen inches long and a couple of pounds, was a great capture. The crack the "Groper" came out of, separated two really large boulders and was two feet wide by about eight feet long, with kelp protruding out for most of its length. The kelp moved backward and forward in rhythm with the movement of the ocean swell which lapped around the back of the monolith, and on each 'draw' of the water back towards the ocean-side, a deeper crevice was revealed, allowing our baits to go down further into a hidden labyrinth below. All of a sudden, fishing had changed! Every bait that dropped down into the unseen lower cavern resulted in fish that were at least a foot long and put up a much better fight than the small stuff we'd been getting earlier. In the next hour we managed about twenty fish between the four of us. We weren't sure of the different species proper names, and whatever one of us suggested, became the 'official' name we gave to each variety. There were "Rockheads, Stripeys, Cods, Parrots and Spotted Groper". Nothing under a foot long and each one a prize to its captor. The 'slaughter' only stopped when the bait ran out. The two huge boulders that we'd been fishing from were angled down, each one sloping towards the other and as we were pretty much fishing at water level, the higher tops of the boulders blocked our view of the way back to the beach. We hadn't noticed that the tide had come in considerably and there was now a couple of feet of water over previously dry sand that separated us from the beach. The decision was made to just gut the fish and then leave, so we all took turns with the knife to slit our fish's gut cavities. We hadn't taken a fish scaler with us anyway. By the time the gutting was complete and we dropped all the gut down the fishing crack, the route back in to shore had deepened to well over waist deep and it took a few minutes to wade back through the swirling water with our now full haversacks. The long march back to the caravan was done quicker than when we'd left, and our triumphant return with fish laden haversacks brought a bit of a crowd to the caravan site. Plenty of admirers congratulated us on the large haul and several fish scalers were swiftly produced. A burst of laughter from a couple of older, more experienced fishermen, followed by the re-naming of our catch to "Rock Cod, Wrasse, Butchers P's, Parrots (we got that one right!) and Wirrah's didn't deter our scaling and cleaning efforts. Once the catch had been prepared, the large caravan-park barbecue was fired up and foil wrapped fish placed all over the grill plate. Mrs Lark must have known that most of our fish were called as rubbish species and cooked a heap of sausages, for 'variety' she said. When the lot was all cooked, we four fishermen were given the privilege of having first dibs on which fish we wanted. Luckily, I had overheard one of the experienced blokes state that "you can eat the Parrots, but the rest are crap"- so I chose a Parrot. It was ok, and we were all given a 'taste' of each of the other fish, so we could decide on the merits of keeping any future captures. ALL the other varieties were pretty terrible, yet we ate them anyway, not wanting to admit they tasted so bad, as we had already made plans to go back the next day, with more bait and heavier gear. The people staying in the caravan opposite us were English and 'Bob' who was probably in his fifties, asked if he could tag along with us the next day. We didn't really want to give up our secret spot, but Bob said he'd shout a couple of bigger bags of green prawns for bait and as twelve year old's with limited spending money, we agreed. The next morning, Bob came to our Caravan with two really large bags of frozen green prawns and told us to go without him, as his wife needed him to go somewhere with her. He didn't want to disappoint us about the bait and said he'd meet us at Glasshouse Rocks later in the day, so off we went again on the long walk down the two beaches. When we arrived at the spot, we went straight to the 'crack' as we now called it and armed with heavier handlines instead of our small rods, we started fishing. This time, when the lines went down the crack, the bites were different and pretty soon green eels were being dragged out and up onto the rock. No fish, just bloody eels, one after another. Maybe all the guts we'd dropped in the crack before we left yesterday had attracted them? Do eels travel in schools? We didn't know, but after dragging about a dozen out of our crack, we were convinced that nothing else was going to beat an eel to the bait. The main trouble with eels is that they always swallow everything, including the hook. They then tie themselves in knots and tangle everything leaving a major mess. They are also slippery and extremely hard to kill. To a twelve year old boy, a slippery green, bait stealing eel was such an unwelcome catch. Each one cost us a hook, as nobody was game to try and retrieve them from somewhere deep inside the eel's throat. We didn't want to handle them and a quarry you couldn't kill was even worse. Eels have 'beady' little eyes and quite visible teeth, added to this, their aggressive demeanour demanded that the best approach was to cut your line before they wrapped themselves in a knot- at least you'd save your sinker from being caught up in the ensuing tangle. To say we were disappointed would have been an understatement- we'd come so much better prepared than the previous day. We had left the rods and reels behind and arrived with heavier strength handlines. Dropping our baits through the crack to the hidden cavern lying beneath it, was much easier, except the damned eels intercepted every bait before a fish could find it, if indeed there were any fish there at all now the eels had moved in. We all agreed that we should try some of the other smaller cracks in close proximity to 'our' crack, as the eels must have taken-over and chased the fish out. Trouble was, most of the other cracks only seemed to be about three feet deep and none had a hidden cavern below like our original crack, with it's deeper water that went down to five or six feet. After trying about twenty-odd other spots, finally one was found that had the same type of features that we were seeking. Same kelpy surrounding, same sort of deeper cavern below and there were fish in it! Only problem was that it was a much smaller crack, roughly fifteen inches wide by about thirty inches long and too small for the four of us to all fish in at the same time. It was decided that we'd have to take turns, one line down the crack at a time. The rule we made- you could only take one prawn and use it as either one or two baits. If you caught a fish or lost your prawn you had to go back to the end of the line while whoever was next jumped in to replace you. This system seemed to work and same as the day before, fish started to be dragged from the crack, rather than the eels from the original spot. We decided to call this spot "Son of crack" and More 'Stripeys, Rockheads and Spotted Groper' were dragged out-(they were our names and we stuck to them!), each one cheered by the other boys next in line. And no eels. We had completely forgotten about Bob coming to meet us and were well into the second bag of prawns when he arrived. He asked what we'd caught and we showed him the dozen or so fish that we had placed in a dry crevice of the volcanic rock adjacent to "Son of crack". He said he expected to see a bigger spot that we could have all fished in together and we explained about the eels in the original spot. Eels? He wanted to know more about them, saying both he and his wife used to eat them back in England. What! The thought of eating one of the nasty buggers just never occurred to us, after all they were slippery and menacing, impossible to handle and would definitely bite you if given even half a chance! Besides, you couldn't kill them anyway, so we thought. We stopped fishing "Son of crack" and accompanied Bob back over to "Crack", some thirty yards back from where we now were. Bob had brought another bag of prawns with him 'just in case' and a couple of Mullet, which was good thinking as we had used the original lot up. Bob seemed intrigued at our fishing spot. I remember him looking at the crack and saying "now who'd a thought there'd be anything livin' down that hole?" He said "ok, show me one of these eels." A couple of baited lines were quickly deployed down the crack and we showed him how you could get the bait down the required extra depth by letting the water flow move the kelp, revealing the way to the hidden chamber below. Pretty much straight away, an eel was dragged out on one of the lines, but to our joy, the other line produced a large "Spotted Groper". Bob was impressed and he told us he'd deal with the eel while we went to grab all our gear from Son of Crack. With that, he simply grasped the slithering eel firmly behind the head and removed the hook with an old pair of pliers. WOW! What bravery to firstly pick it up and then get near it's tooth-laden mouth and get the hook back! We rushed back over to get all our gear from Son of crack and upon our return, found Bob standing about thigh deep in the water at the base of the huge boulder which formed the high beach side of the crack. This side was more like a wall that climbed about five or six feet above the water and actually out of sight from anyone fishing our crack on the opposite side. When we asked why he was in the water, he said come and look at all these nice eels! Nice eels? That was a completely foreign concept to four young boys who'd been annoyed and menaced by them, not to mention how many hooks we had already sacrificed to them. Bob laughed and said "watch how many heads appear on the wall there"- he then produced a palm sized piece of mullet tied to a loop of cord and 'waved' it along the wall about a foot under the water. Sure enough several green heads appeared, less than a foot apart, protruding out about an inch from the multiple crevices of the underwater wall. What he did next both fascinated and horrified us. Bob said "ok, this is how you get 'em" and chose an eel on the outskirts of the group to target. He then enticed the eel to come further out of it's lair by wafting the mullet, then dangling it just out of the creature's reach, slowly drawing it out about a foot. As he drew the eel out,his other hand was sneaking down the wall above the eel. He then allowed the eel to grab the mullet, which was firmly attached via the corded loop to his wrist. The eel would bite onto the mullet and try to pull the whole lot back into it's lair, but due to cord around Bob's wrist, would only manage to shred off a little bit of the exposed mullet-flesh as it seemed to 'suck' back into the wall. Within a few seconds the hungry eel would come back out showing no fear or hesitation and head straight for the mullet offering. This time however, Bob let the eel grab the mullet and he quickly gabbed it with the hand that had snuck down the wall above the eel. I know both how slippery and strong these eels are, plus the fact they could almost 'retract' their own heads into themselves and was amazed that they could be so successfully held by anyone. Bob must have had really strong hands, as he quickly pulled the eel from the wall and waded in to show us. None of us wanted to get too close to it and Bob laughed and carried the slithering eel to where his backpack sat a few yards from the wall of eels. In the few seconds between wall and backpack, the eel had wrapped the rest of it's body around Bob's arm, which didn't seem to bother him, but certainly horrified us! Bob reached into his pack and grabbed a large hessian sack, and he swiftly unwrapped the eel from his arm and tossed it in, then tied a bit of rope around the top to prevent it escaping. He looked at us and said "that boys, is how you catch an eel" and waded back in to go for another one. We watched as Bob repeated the same process again, drawing the eel out and grabbing it,then placing it in the sack. We decided Bob was probably the toughest man we'd ever seen! After he'd caught a third eel, crack fishing was resumed and we lost sight of Bob and his eels, due to us now being on the low, opposite side to where he was. Same as the previous day heaps more fish were dragged from the crack and only one more eel. I caught a big 'Parrot' and stating it would be my dinner, decided to have first use of the knife to go and clean it. I took the Parrot around the other side to show Bob and told him we were catching fish again and not eels. He replied that all the eels must have moved to where he was, as he had caught about half a dozen. By the time I'd cleaned my Parrot and rejoined the boys, the bait had run out. It was mid afternoon now and we decided to clean the whole catch. Bob had a knife and a scaler and we'd also remembered to bring a scaler, so while Bob kept eel catching, we four boys cleaned our catch. When we were packed and ready to go we asked Bob if he was going to walk back with us. He said he was going to stay a little longer as he had never caught as many eels anywhere and said they'd feed he and his 'missus' for a week. With that we left on the long walk back to the caravan. On arriving back, the adults informed us that we were going to get dinner up in town and to see if anyone in nearby caravans would like our fish. We could always catch more tomorrow if we wanted to. We took my big Parrot and a smaller one to Bob's wife in the next van and gave the rest to various others in the caravan park. Then after getting cleaned up, drove into town for an early dinner of hamburgers and chips. When we got back from town, Bob's wife was talking to a group that had just come back from beachcombing and had passed Glasshouse Rock on their way back to the caravan park. They'd seen him from a distance, standing in over waist deep water at the base of what we knew was the eel-wall. He seemed fine from where they'd sighted him and they just walked on by. About an hour later, the sun started to lower in the sky and Bob still wasn't visible, even in the distance. His wife was worried, he had his watch with him and was well over an hour late. We told her about the eels and how he said he'd never seen or caught so many, he was probably just filling up his sack. About half an hour later and with the sun now completely down behind the hills to the west, Bob was still nowhere in sight. A search party of we boys and several of the men from surrounding caravans was organised and right on dark the group armed with torches, set off on the long track down the two beaches towards Glasshouse Rocks . About fifteen minutes into the walk, Bob suddenly appeared. He had his backpack on and was shaking his head as we sighted him in the torchlight. He didn't have a shirt on, instead, he had it wrapped around his left hand and it was completely red with blood. He was glad to see us and thanked us for coming to look for him, but said he wasn't feeling well and had lost a fair bit of blood. He said he didn't want to stop and tell us the story until after he got medical attention. All he said was a "bloody eel" had 'got' him. Two of the men carried Bob's backpack and large heavy sack as we all walked with him back to the Caravans, where quite a large group had gathered. They'd been assuring Bob's wife he'd be OK and everyone was relieved when we returned with him. Someone from the caravan park rang the local doctor and Bob and his wife were driven into town to see him. As it had been a long day, I was asleep when they returned with Bob, some couple of hours later and didn't know what had happened until the next day. Shortly after breakfast the next morning, Bob and his wife (who's name I can't remember) came around to tell us what had happened. He told us that after we left, with the water starting to get a bit deep on the eel-wall, he decided he would only catch a couple more. He followed the same process he'd used the whole time- tempt the eel out and sneak his other hand down the wall from above and grab it. What he hadn't noticed was another much larger eel, that was hidden from sight in a crevice just above the eel he was targeting. As Bob's hand moved down the wall, this large eel, already hungry from the scent of mullet scraps floating in the surrounding water, quickly poked it's head out and grabbed the little finger on his left hand as it came down the wall. It then sucked back into the wall with it's jaws firmly locked on Bob's exposed little finger. The eel had grabbed his entire finger, from tip to the knuckle and locked it's jaws on. The more Bob tried to pull, the more the eel would wriggle, which hurt like mad. To add to his pain, every so often ,the eel would 'chomp and chew' on the trapped finger. Eels can swell themselves up and this one swelled and was impossible, even for Bob, who was obviously an 'experienced' eeler, to budge. With the water now up to his chest and no way to make the eel release his finger, his only hope was someone coming to his rescue. He hadn't noticed the group from the caravan park go past as he was too focused on his eeling and he probably hadn't yet been bitten when they passed, so he had no choice, he just stood there and waited. Eventually, with much blood and pain he decided he had no choice, he had to rip his finger out, regardless of how much it would hurt. He psyched himself up, took a really deep breath and as he breathed out, pulled harder than he had before. Thankfully for him, his finger came back to him, albeit shredded dreadfully to the bone and almost hanging off. He had then grabbed his shirt and tied it around the wound, before grabbing his bag and sack of eels and started the long walk back just before dark. Bob was a tough bugger, he must have been to have ripped his finger back from the eel and also for carrying his pack and big sack of eels. There were about a dozen eels in that sack, ranging from eighteen inches to over three feet in length. And most of them were still alive, well at least until Bob tipped them out on the grass next to his van, where he chopped their heads off with a big machete-like knife. That night, Bob's wife fried up some of the eels and brought us a big tray full of pieces. I have to say that it wasn't too bad, certainly better than all the fish we'd cooked two nights before. From that moment, early in my fishing career, I was always wary of eels and It still remains the only time I ever ate one.
  19. 12 points
    Took fellow raider Steve (Fishy Mcfishface) out on Tuesday to hunt down his first Kingie. God was good and we caught half a dozen squid in half an hour. We did try several headlands (unproductively) until cracked them. Yakkas were plentiful and perfect size. Steve’s first Kingie smocked him on its second run - straight to the bottom and Gooorn. He quickly learnt that drag has to be wound up tight and no “finesse” techniques on these bad boys. We also bagged a nice 53cm snapper. The southerly did make things choppy and unpleasant, but always somewhere out of the wind in our magnificent harbour. Fisheries came aboard (second time this month) to inspect the catch (no undersized fish of course) and interested in what was under the floor and any hidden compartments and very keen to see fishing licences. Steve’s licence had one day till expiry - keep an eye on your licences Raiders - the fine is $200. These folks were pleasant and courteous as always and do a great job. If we do the right thing, why be dubious of them.
  20. 11 points
    Many years ago, my mate Ross and I were having a beer at our "local" tackle shop, "The Fisherman's Friend" at Yagoona, as the swell had been really big for a few days and we couldn't go rock fishing. The shop was on Liverpool Road and outside of clearway times, there was plenty of parking straight outside. A guy pulled up with a 13 ft aluminium boat and came into the shop to buy some feather lures for Kingfish and we started discussing the favourite lures we all used. We pointed out a few of the "new" Christmas Tree trolling lures and a few others on the wall, but the guy then said "I just want plain white feathers- I've been getting a boatload of fish on them every morning- come and have a look in the boat" It was a small "sit-down" boat only marginally bigger than Ross's 12 ft car-topper and there were Kingfish literally all over the floor. He said there were genuinely acres of them and they were in the entrance to Port Hacking and all along the front of Jibbon Bombora, been there for two weeks he said. Some mornings, they were in almost to Bundeena. They were easy to get, you just had to troll the outskirts of the schools, which were clearly visible, pretty much right on the surface. He'd been using plain white feather lures with either 2 or 4 oz heads, but added that if the fish followed the feathers without striking, there was a simple trick that was working really well. You needed to take an octopus around 15-18 inches long with you and cut the legs off it. Then you just needed to add a single leg of the Octopus to the lure's hook (which was a 7/0 or 8/0 Stainless "O'shauhgnessy" pattern- a Mustad 34007). The hook was just pushed through the leg once, leaving both hook exposed and leg free to "wiggle"- this turned out to be vital information. After seeing all his fish and getting the info, we asked the guy if he thought the 12 footer would be big enough to go out in, he said yes you're only fishing the entrance really. Our mate who owned the shop agreed we should be OK, so we went up to the fish shop and bought 2 octopus and organised to go the next morning. We were going to meet this guy (who's name I can't remember) at Bundeena Wharf and go out together. As we were meeting at Bundeena, we decided to just drop the boat in off the wharf. Early next morning, we drove through the National Park and down to Bundeena arriving well before light and we carried the boat, motor, fuel tank and very minimal gear down onto the wharf. Fishing gear was just 2 Butterworth "Jig King Deluxe" rods- 6 ft 20 lb jig/troll rods, mine with a Penn "Jigmaster" overhead and Ross had a Shakespeare overhead, both with 20 lb mono. A small tackle box with feather lures and a few Christmas Trees, 7/0 and 8/0 trolling hooks, a few swivels and some 50 lb Weiss Perlon for leader. Plus the octopus. We had forgotten the anchor and rope, only remembering while unloading at Bundeena, however as trolling was the plan, we thought we'd be able to do without it. Gear loaded, rods rigged by the light on the wharf and we waited for the other guy to turn up. After waiting until well into the morning light, we decided to have a bit of a troll around where we were, keeping an eye out for the guy, who was by now getting close to an hour late. He didn't turn up, so we decided to head out towards the ocean without him. As we got to the entrance to the port, we could see literally hundreds of Mutton birds just sitting on the water only a couple of hundred yards out, no sign of any fish though. There was still a big southerly groundswell rolling in, but the swells, although large, were smooth and a fair distance apart, so we thought we'd brave it and off we went. The things you do when you're young. At first, we stayed within a couple of hundred yards of the entrance, trolling up and over the big swell- no problem, quite comfortable actually. After trolling around for more than half an hour and not sighting the "acres" of fish, we went just a little further out and finally got a double hook up on kings and as they came boat-side, were followed by a few more. Got them in the boat, but after taking the hooks out and trolling around again, no more action, so we thought we'd try the octopus leg trick. Octopus leg added to each lure and off we go again, but still no visible schools on the surface. After about another half hour we were thinking about going in- at least we had one each, trouble was, it was the week before Christmas and although we normally caught plenty of fish each week, due to the swell being up, neither of us had any in the freezers and we both had big family gatherings and fish were "expected" by the relatives, to take home. Then we spotted something large up on the surface about 50 yards away and went over to investigate. Turned out to be a really massive Turtle just up on the surface, however, in the shadow cast from the Turtle, were masses and masses of Kingfish, all jostling for position in the shadow. We dropped the lures over complete with octopus legs and watched as the fish came straight over to investigate. We were amazed that although there were heaps of them and they seemed interested, at first, no takers. We then dropped the baited lures just out of sight and they started "nibbling" -super soft bites on the powerful troll rods. We tried all sorts of different approaches, including raising the lures into sight to see if it was the kings biting or something else, then all of a sudden they just switched on and swallowed everything including the lure and leg bait. It was easy fishing for a while, then all of a sudden they were gone. We started trolling again and spotted the Turtle about 50 yards away again, so went to see if the Kings were in the shadow. They were, and this time we only had to drop the baited lures over about 6-8 ft under the surface and they literally climbed over each other to be first on the bait. There were no bag limits (or size limits on kings then) and we caught heaps before the fuel tank got seriously empty and we had to take off. As we were heading down the face of a decent swell right in the entrance, all of a sudden the entire ocean was suddenly alive with the kings, there genuinely were acres of them. Whether it was the stage of the tide that brought them up to the surface or not I'll never know, but they were in the tens of thousands I reckon. If we hadn't seen the Turtle and found that first school, we would have gone back in and not seen what still remains to be the biggest aggregation of Kings I've ever seen.
  21. 11 points
  22. 11 points
    Plan was to chase dolphin fish on light tackle but after hooking into marlin which flicked the lure on kids $20 rod we decided to up the class. Unfortunately didn't have any mono over 80lb for a trace but that didn't stop my daughter hooking into this 160kg stripe.
  23. 11 points
    Hey guys, Over the past few weeks I have turned a curiosity of top water fishing for bass into a full blown addiction. I knew that catching bass of the surface is nothing new, but I wanted to see what I could learn through my own experiences what bass fishing in particular top water fishing was all about. So I thought I’d do a bit of a report on my recent top water bass sessions and what I have learned along the way. Hopefully this helps some guys who are looking to get into it or who have done it before. session 1: 23rd February 19:30 start Rocked up to my spot while there was some sunlight available so I could walk around and see some locations that would be fishable, due to trees lining the banks and weed patches I was going to be limited to a handful of spots. I found my first location, it had large weed patches on both sides which sort of made a semicircle arch around in front of me. I though to myself, if I was a bass this is where I’d probably be. Being new to the top water bass game my lure selection was very slim. I had a Tiemco soft shell cicada and a Taylormade mini surface breaker. I chose to tie on the Mini surface breaker first. This lure puts out a really nice wake that I quickly found out bass could not resist. I tried a few different retrieve techniques from a slow to medium constant wind to a slow retrieve with pauses. What I found worked best with this lure was to cast it out and when it landed flip my bail arm over immediately and wind up the slack but not retrieve the lure. Let it sit there til the rings disappeared and then 3-4 slow winds to get the lure into action. Then another pause to let any curious bass come and investigate. This was repeated all the way back to my feet. Now I can not stress enough keep the retrieve going all the way back to your feet. I learned this throughout the week as I had a few strikes and hook ups from less than a foot from the bank. Over about an hours session I landed 5 bass with the biggest going 35cm and I had myself a new pb. It wasn’t a record breaker but I was just happy to see some quality come out of this location. The hit from the bigger bass off the top got my heart pumping straight away. I learned just quickly how super aggressive these fish are and he just exploded on my lure. Another thing I learned during this first session was that bass on the surface is going to take some patience and persistence as I had another 8 missed strikes/hits. session 2: 7th March 19:30 start This session was a tough one for me, as there was periods of rain throughout the late arvo and into the night so the time I got to throw lures wasn’t ver long. Due to this I stuck to the spot I found in my first session. With the mini surface breaker tied on again and with the same retrieve techniques. I managed to pull a new pb of 37cm. session 3: 9th March 19:30 start With the rain and wind about over the past few days I was keen to see how much it had affected the water level and the weed patches throughout the area. What I found was that it had pushed weed into the area I was fishing the previous 2 sessions which forced me to move around about another 50m or so to a spot which I could get a semi decent cast away and wasn’t going to get snagged up on some weed. Well wasn’t I in for a surprise! Ended up with 5 fish, the 2 biggest going 34cm and 36cm (so close to another pb upgrade). This night I made a rookie error one which I should know as I’ve been fishing long enough. But we learn from our mistakes. I dropped what would have been an easy 40cm fish at the bank 😢 I had the leader in my hand and as I attempted to lift/slide the fish on to the bank, it kicked and straightened out a stock treble and off he swam! Anyone who has lost a fish due to this will know my pain! This error was caused by me being lazy and not replacing the stock hooks! I figured oh I’m just going bass fishing, I won’t need to upgrade my hooks! Well wasn’t I wrong haha Session 4: 10th March 19:30 start During my lunch break I was able to duck over and pick up some new hooks to replace on my lures. I went with the owner ST-36BC. These hooks are deadly sharp. I just had to look at one and it was nearly barb deep in me! With all stock hooks gone and the bent one kept as a friendly reminder I was back at my local. This time I tried a different spot, due to a parrot with a remote control boat zipping around near my other spot and as we had recently received some rain I thought I would try a little bay where there is a creek feeding into it, and also as I moved around to the other side I found out a storm water drain also fed into this area. It ended up being a relatively quiet night, landed 4 fish with the biggest going 35cm. session 5: 15th March 19:30 start Now that I had caught my fair share on the Taylormade mini surface breaker I thought that I would give another of the Taylormade lures a crack. I picked up a jimmy lizard (from my local tackle store) which is a 4 segment wakebait style lure. I tried a few different retrieve techniques with this but I found the same retrieve with the mini surface breaker to be the most successful. I had to work a bit harder this night and move around to few different spots to find them but I managed 4 fish, going 22, 28, 36 and 37. session 6: 16th March 19:30 start Once again I tried out a new lure haha This time I bought 2 chasebait frilkseekers. These are 4 segment wakebait style lure with a soft plastic tail. One ended up without it hooks and my daughter now uses it as a bath toy haha not the first lure she’s had in there! This lure is an interesting one. I wasn’t so sure just how successful it was going to be. Being 17.5cm long I was hessitant to tie it on and throw it. But I gave it a crack, I found the best retrieve with this to be just a slow constant wind with a few 1-2 second pauses thrown in. Any faster than a slow retrieve and it would dive sub surface, I didn’t want this to happen as it was the surprise of surface crunch I wanted. I managed to land 2 fish which had eyes way too big for their stomachs and weren’t much bigger than the lure haha this made me realise that lure size doesn’t really matter to these fish. They will hit things just as big as they are. I swapped back to the Taylormade jimmy lizard and a first cast special with a 36cm hitting the bank. session 7: 18th March 19:30 start After watching a few videos of a lure fisherman (John Costello) that I admire not only for his skill but his persistence I bought a few packs of the zman finesse frogs. If you haven’t heard of John, I strongly recommend looking up his channel on YT. With all the extra weed around over the past few sessions I rigged these on a 1/0 gamakatsu worm hook. The spot I had in mind to try these out had a small bare section about 1.5-2m in front of me then bout 2m of weed bed the all clear water out from there. I cast as far beyond the seedbed as I could and 5 casts in I found out that these were going to be my new favourite lure! I managed to pull a 39cm specimen through some hairy weed and into my net. The retrieve I found that worked the best for me was I would cast it out, and this lure being a light soft plastic lands a hell of a lot softer than the hard body lures I was previously throwing. With this the surface ripples were a lot less. So I would immediately flip my bail arm over, reel in the slack line and give my rod butt a few taps to send a sort of shock wave through my rod and down my line to the lure. This caused the lure to pulse on the water which puts out good surface ripples. I would wait til they disappeared then I would start reeling at a medium speed to get the lure on it plane so to speak and then slow it down for about 0.5-1m then pause. session 8: 19th March 19:30 start With the zman finesse frog tied on I rocked up to what is now my usual spot. I had high hopes of what was ahead of me. First 5 casts for 5 missed strikes. My confidence went out the window haha but on the 6th cast I pulled a mid 20s out and I was on the board. With this weedless finesse frog I wanted to try a few spots around that I was previously unable to fish due to the weed and using treble hooks. Well it didn’t quiet go to plan. I had easily over 20 missed strikes/hits. Due to using a weedless hook I figured the hook up rate was going to be low but 1 in 20 was something I didn’t expect. On my way back to the car I tried one last spot. I put a cast in to the edge of a weed bed, a silly me goes to check the time on my phone and get a missed hit, so I slowly start retrieving the lure, another missed hit. Cast back into the same spot, as soon as it hits the water another hit but the hook doesn’t stick! I’m thinking wow tonight is just not my night. I put in one more cast just 1m to right a little bit wider of the weed bed and it gets hammered by a 36cm model which gave me some stick, I managed to steer him out of his weedbed and into the net. A few things I have learned over the past few weeks, persistence is key. I guess it’s key to any kind of fishing but fishing the surface at night it was going to be especially important. Bass have big eyes and are excellent night time stalkers but are prone to missing the hooks most of the time. I had tried using assist hooks to no advantage, I still had missed strikes and I found that using such small light lures, they deaden the action. Always, always, always replace stock hooks! No matter the species you are targeting. I found that overcast conditions were best, with the lure contrast against the grey clouds instead of the dark clear sky. I had a lot more action on overcast nights compared to clear nights. No lure is too big for these fish. Well to a certain degree, but they will hit lures just as big as they are. They will hit a vast array of lures as well. I found that lure colour had some impact to my success. The mini surface breakers I fished had dark bodies and the finesse frog I used was a chartreuse colour. I think the thing that has the biggest affect is presence and contrast. The easiest way I found the find out which lure has the best contrast is to hold it up to the sky and try to see from a fishes perspective. I fished a darker lure on the overcast conditions as I found the dark body contrasted better against the grey sky. Presence I found is key especially at night time, when a fish can’t see as good as during daylight they will utilise their other senses and will pick up the vibrations of a lure much better. Also when you’re out and about your local spots, look and listen to what is going on around you. Listen to the insects and other animals that are around, they will be clues as to likely food sources for the fish in the area. There are a lot of frogs around this spot I was fishing and that’s why I decided to give the finesse frog a go. anyways, I hope you get something out of my report. Hit me up with some feedback, I’d be keen to know what you think and learn from your experiences. I’ll try put some pics up soon. regards, Ragnar
  24. 11 points
    @Scratchie The man, the myth, the legend. This guy can fish hard and doesn't give up. I'll never forget what you taught me mate - don't give up and just keep casting that lure!
  25. 10 points
    In an effort to ensure raiders are getting reliable and informative information I have started this pinned post. I am an RN and a credentialed Health Informatician (CHIA) and am able to source reliable and credible information regarding our healthcare systems and where to go to find information. I thought I may be able to help raiders with presenting the information. I will not be expressing my opinion but helping others to find what they need to know. There is a lot of negative and totally unreliable and misleading information being shared on social media from "armchair epidemiologists" and "google healthcare professionals". Here is the official Australian Department of Health website. This is the single source of truth about the event and what is happening here in Australia. https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert
  26. 10 points
    58.5kg dogtooth on 30lb braid in Fiji. We we’re catching heaps of Spanish downrigging live baits so we put on a spin stick and bang!
  27. 10 points
    You gotta work the right areas Baz! There’s some big ones amongst them 💪💪💪 Local knowledge always pay dividends. If you want the gps marks then send me a pm! 👍👍👍 cheers scratchie!!!
  28. 10 points
  29. 10 points
    Hi Raiders, I’m usually out 2 or 3 times a week, mostly chasing Kingies. But keeping the boat in the shed till this Corona ( or has it mutates to Camry or Corolla yet) thing is over. I’ve cancelled my yearly fortnight to South West Rocks chasing kings, Jews and spotties (posted a pic from last year, so not current. Been practice casting in my dam (blessed to have 30 acres in the Hawkesbury) and planting out my veggie garden, but REALLY, REALLY missing being out on the water. Being a Gundungurra man, this is my country and my heritage, but trying to be responsive and responsible. It’ll give the Kingies a chance to put on a few more cm.
  30. 10 points
  31. 10 points
    Raiders I am a little worried about what is not understood here. We are ALL being told to stay inside unless we have essential travel to do eg: doctor, groceries, to get medication at the pharmacy. Every time we go outside we are taking a risk and that includes fishing. Fishing trips may include getting fuel (touching petrol pump nozzle), visiting a tackle shop (usually very dirty surfaces anyway and cramped), touching money or items at the counter to pay, visiting a toilet at the ramp, touching door handles, congregating at ramps to launch and come back in. The list of things you may touch that an infected person may have touched or even coughed near is endless. This is before you even get out on the water. It is not ONLY about social distancing. It is about surfaces that we and others touch that may hold infected droplets. It is also about what age group we are in and if we are in any other risk group. A good percentage of raiders are over 60 and have chronic diseases for a start. If you are not 60 plus you will come in contact with a family member or another person who is. Read this below - for older folk for example. https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/advice-for-people-at-risk-of-coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-covid-19-advice-for-older-people I am an older person, what can I do? (from link above) Even if you are feeling well, it is important to take steps to prevent the spread of this virus. Good hygiene and taking care when interacting with other people, are the best defences for you and your family against COVID-19. This includes: covering your coughs and sneezes with your elbow or a tissue disposing of used tissues immediately into a waste bin and washing your hands washing your hands often with soap and water, including before and after eating and after going to the toilet, and when you have been out to shops or other places using alcohol-based hand sanitisers, where available cleaning and disinfecting surfaces you have touched where possible, stay 1.5 metres away — 2 arms’ length — from other people. This is an example of social distancing if you are sick, stay at home and avoid contact with others avoid non-essential travel think about having the chemist deliver your medicines think about having your groceries delivered Fishraider admin is not authorised to confirm if people can fish in any lake, beach or rock shelf. You need to look after yourself, your family and you have a responsibility as a global citizen to look after others. The government has made public orders and we have to abide by them. This is now being policed and fines are being issued. It is your decision how to interpret the orders and instructions and if you find it difficult contact the relevant bodies. It is your decision to go fishing but make sure you are armed with all the information re this global pandemic, know and understand the public health orders and not to mention your gloves, soap and/or hand sanitiser! Information is found on our Australian Department of Health website - read it for all information. Watch the news bulletins, listen to radio to get the latest info. Here is the DoH website link https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert Finally there is one member who has twice referred to one of our female policitians as "a cow". You know who you are. This will not be tolerated on fishraider. There is no manual for our leaders to use telling them how to deal with this. I personally think they are all doing their very best and I don't care about what party they represent. They are human beings as we all are. @Scratchie and myself have posted about what is expected here in our community regarding not posting about COVID-19 posts. I do not want to have to resort to banning members for site rule breaches. We are all in this together and we are all hurting financially, physically and mentally. Please show respect and kindness. How about someone helping by doing some posts about tackle, rigs, things you will do to the boat while you arn't using it? Maybe do some videos showing how you do that fabbo knot? mrsswordfisherman aka Donna (Fishraider Community Manager)
  32. 10 points
    Hey Guys, I'm new here so figured it would be best to introduce myself to the forum and write a little story at the same time. I grew up in Kalgoorlie WA, with Esperance being my childhood holiday destination. I have been fishing since before I could walk and never had much trouble getting the odd fish in Esperance. I moved to Nelson, New Zealand when I as 8 and from there was when I really got into my fishing. In Nelson the main fish species include snapper, kingfish, kahawai (salmon), mullet, trout, gurnard, butterfish, moki (morwong) and more. I have enjoyed a lot of success fishing round the south island. My personal bests include 90cm kingfish, 14lb snapper, 62cm blue moki (blue morwong), 65cm butterfish (greenbone), 70cm kahawai (salmon) and some big trout all measured from the V of the tail mind you. Mainly in NZ we use baits, trolling or vertical jigging for kingfish is popular and anything below 50lb braid is considered lightweight. For snapper straylining is the most popular and softplastics are rarely used by fishos. We don't have flathead, tailor or squid in NZ so I have been enjoying getting into those here in Sydney, I moved to Sydney a month ago and I am working here and adventuring around on a gap year between high school and uni. So far I have been getting out doing a lot of fishing with the users DerekD and Mike89. DerekD has been particularly helpful getting me onto a variety of different species using all sorts of methods of fishing that are so new to me as a kiwi fisho. I have caught 34cm blackfish, 50cm salmon, 50cm tailor, 46cm flathead, 32cm bream, whiting, squid, trevally, bass and more already no thanks to the expertise of DerekD. I have particularly been enjoying catching flathead on softplastics with the zman grubz in motor oil being my plastic of choice. The next fish that are on my bucketlist are bonito and jewfish. I have been thoroughly enjoying the Sydney landbased fishing which is exceedingly better than the landbased fishing where I am from in NZ. Today was probably the best day so far I have had in Sydney. We had massive tailor, salmon and bonito busting up everywhere inside the harbour. I managed to land some nice salmon and tailor on some halco twisties on 20lb and 5lb setups. Mike89 got onto some nice bonnies and a tailor and an impressive 40cm blackfish. Another guy we were fishing with managed to catch a 63cm flathead and a purple-spotted bigeye which was an awesome fish. Derek89 also got onto a variety of fish including squid as well. In total in one day we managed to catch blackfish, salmon, tailor, bonito, snapper, leatherjacket, purple-spotted bigeye, flathead, squid and we saw some kingis too! I look forward to enjoying more success in 2020 with my fishing endeavours. I would also love to give a huge shoutout to DerekD for mentoring me and teaching me the ways of the Sydney fishing. Please feel free to ask questions, Thanks, Jahmon
  33. 10 points
    Hi fellow Fishraiders. My first introduction to @wazatherfisherman was when he complimented me on one of my advice posts on kingfish. When you see the quality of the articles he writes it was high praise indeed. When @big Neilwanted to try some Sydney fishing I spent some time talking to Waza to see what could be organised. At the get together I got to meet Waza, @frankS, @savit and a few others. Since then I have called Waza on a weekly basis about fishing as he can’t get out as much as he would like and I can at least share my weekly fishing experiences with him. His breadth and depth of knowledge is amazing and I just enjoy talking to him. A few months ago he reached out to me. His computer was slower to get started than a hibernating tortoise and was on its last legs. I know enough about computers to get by so I did some quick research and sent him some relevant information so he could get up to speed. A quick trip with Waza to a store recommended by a mate and he had a brand new laptop with accessories. Took a few minutes to set it up for him, transfer his data, download a few suitable pieces of software and now he loves it. Several weeks later and I was reaching out for his help. My mother bought me a generation 1 Raider Snapper 762 as a birthday present over a decade ago and one of the bigger runners went. No, it is not one of those stories - my mum is still well and with us but that rod has sentimental value to me for a number of reasons and I don’t want to retire it yet. I could have taken it to a shop but I was concerned that because it is a business for them they would turn it around as quickly as possible with parts that were not quite right. The thread colour on the Raider series rods looks to be their own line and was going to be a pain to colour match. Amongst his many talents Waza is a rod builder and I knew that he could and would take the time to make it look as close as possible to the original design. I was pretty sure that it wouldn’t be spot on but if it needed a second glance to realise it was a little different then that was enough for me. I also reached out to Ian Miller the designer of this range of rods and he was kind enough to respond to my query on binding thread colour. Earlier this week I picked my Raider Snapper and another rod with a damaged runner that he was kind enough to fix. Took it for a fish this afternoon and it still puts a smile on my face. Thank you Waza for the care and time you took to repair them for me. You have earned that Gold Member badge you received recently many times over in my eyes. Sincerely, Derek
  34. 10 points
    Swordie and I are travelling in our caravan and stopped for a few days in Ballina to visit his bro in law Jimmy. Mr Bowers is old pal of Byron aka jewgaffer and Swanos cousin. He is a gun fisho. He lives in Ballina and here are some shots of a bit of his tackle (um shop). He has actually has a tackle emporium! The last pic is their catch on a few hours fishing.
  35. 10 points
  36. 10 points
    A mate called me and wanted a fish in Bate Bay last night (Wednesday) in his boat, so that is a good enough reason to go fishing again. Headed out late in the arvo before sunset. I hooked up a bit of pillie, dropped it down with a small sinker, and the line increased speed off the reel, so I closed the bail arm and was onto a rat kingie first drop, only about 50cm. A few small reddies on the bottom, then quiet until just before sundown. Some large slimies turned up, and a bait sitting just off the bottom was grabbed. The rod bent in half, I needed effort to get the rod out of the holder, then the drag was buzzing for a while. I managed to turn it's head then felt the faint tail beat of a kingie up the line. It was on a for a while, gaining line back to the boat, then more screaming runs. Definitely much bigger than the 50cm model, then a big screaming run and gone. The line was cut at an angle, and the drag was not tight on the 20 pound mono. I managed to keep the fish around mid water away from the bottom, but the line parted from the fish. My mate pulled out a bonnie, which we cut up for bait, and the little reddies started biting like crazy near the bottom. I said a few weeks ago that the little reddies had mostly disappeared from the Hacking after the big rain event, well, I found them, washed out into Bate Bay. About half dark, the tailor turned up. Between 40 and 45cm, bigger than what was out there earlier in the year. We kept what we wanted, threw back a few and were bitten off a couple of times. Also released a couple of trevally, and my mate had a good night on the banjos, shovel nose and port jackson sharks. He pulled up the only legal pannie. Headed home on full dark, as we had enough fish.
  37. 9 points
    Since most of us are land locked I thought another topic might help As a little kid living inland in South Africa we used to visit my grandparents every Christmas in Cape Town. My grandfather would take me with him to his work at the docks, he worked for I & J the fish company & the smells & atmosphere from the waterfront were quite fascinating. In 1971 & aged ten we moved to Sydney & I used to walk the 2k’s to school, after about a week of familiarising myself I noticed a wharf across the park from school & wandered down & watched an old Italian guy catching yakkas & leather jackets with mincemeat. Well I ended up going to the wharf most mornings & before long he gave me a hand line & showed me the way & I loved the fight of the fan tails on the light line. That wharf ended up being a favourite spot on weekends for me honing my skills & catching all sorts of species including a 31/2 foot shovel nose shark that I only lost when trying to lift it up onto the step of the wharf
  38. 9 points
    As many who fish the Sydney rocks already know, most of our spots have plenty of rats scurrying around after dark. Unless they're fighting or mating, they are pretty quiet and often when you think you saw something move after darkness has fallen, it's a rat. No noise, they sneak around and you often second guess yourself as to whether you saw something or not. They are natural "opportunists" and quick to get into anything that resembles a meal. Our first experience with them was on my third "official" fishing club outing, which was to "Jolong" ledge past the pistol range on Cape Banks. The plan had been to fish from dusk to mid evening, then stay at one of the guy's places locally and return to fish the dawn. When the evening session had ended, the rest of the party left to stay at one of the other guy's homes, leaving just the 3 of us on the cliff top to organise our gear for the 15 or so minute walk back to the car. Problem- Norm, the driver, couldn't find his car keys. We did have two torches, but the batteries were just about dead, and we couldn't find the keys anywhere, so we had to stay there for the night. Norm was in his twenties, my mate Fraser and I about 14. To say we were really ill prepared to stay the night was an understatement. It was autumn, blowing a westerly and genuinely cold. We'd already eaten our food and only had the clothes on our backs- nothing extra, no light bar the almost run-dry torches, no insect repellent and no shelter. Norm had a small "space blanket" which he rolled up in, leaving Fraser and I only our backpacks, a garbage bag each and about half of a Herald" newspaper to use for warmth. We'd left our bait- about 5 or 6 lbs of half frozen Garfish and some now defrosted Pilchards about 15 feet away on a ledge, so that as they defrosted, the juice would run off and not turn the bait to mush, after all, we'd be first there to fish the dawn now whether we liked it or not. After finally getting to sleep somewhere around midnight, we were all woken by a squealing, shrieking noise, followed by multiple noises of the sound of creatures fighting close by. I'd never heard rats fighting before, they make a lot of noise and it was obvious there were more than just a couple of them. Too cold to go and check on the bait, we just stayed in our garbage bags and newspaper until falling back to sleep sometime later in the night. Almost forgot to add- the mosquito's were thick and we all ended up being 'blitzed" by them too. Around half an hour or so before dawn, the other members returned and woke us up and we tried to get ourselves moving to go for a fish. When we went to grab the bait, there wasn't a thing left, blasted rats had eaten or dragged off the whole lot. The guys who'd returned shared their bait so we could at least have a fish. My total catch for the trip was 2 Tailor and 1 Trevally and to be honest, it almost put me off "rock fishing" for good. Then we started fishing at the Matten's below the big cliffs at Dover Heights a short time later and some 45 years ago, due to the difficulty getting down, we often stayed overnight. As you needed a decent amount of food for overnight trips, rolls and sandwiches were the go, a packet of biscuits and a few "Space Food Sticks" along with the mandatory 2 litres of weak cordial, made up the food kit for the summer months. We used to make camp in the "cave" which was just a wind eroded corner, set back about 40 yards back from the water and up about 40 feet above sea level, well underneath the cliffs and protected from most wind bar a Northeaster. It had a long, perfectly flat section that was great for sitting on or lying on to give your back a rest, but as it was about 250 yards from our main night fishing spot, all our gear was left unattended while we were off fishing. First couple of trips, the rats got into the food while we fished and we went hungry for the trip, even the Space Food in thick foil-like wrappers had been got to. We tried things like suspending the food bags about 3 feet off the ground, hung by fishing line from above, didn't work, the buggers would just slide down the line, tear or eat an opening and then it was a "free for all". Leaving a torch on, putting insect repellent on the bags and even leaving it in the old "Tupperware" boxes didn't work either, as they'd get into them, by biting holes in them or simply getting the lid off. Clever buggers. One night, after a longer than usual session, we went up to the cave for a feed, a break and just to get the wet rock plates off. For those who've never worn them, plates get uncomfortable due to your feet being soft from being wet and even 2 pairs of innersoles weren't enough to make you forget the flat heads on the bolts underneath. As we approached the cave, where a gas lantern had been left on in an attempt to ward off the main pack, rats took off in all directions as we clattered our way back- there's no "stealth" approach wearing noisy cleats. The approach to the cave was only accessible from the direction we were coming and all the rats bar three, had managed to get to a long undercut section where they could escape. The three remaining went in the other direction, where a small tunnel-like wind eroded hole went inwards off the cliff wall and in there they went. The hole went inwards about 4 or 5 feet with a slight raised section about 3 foot in- this is where the rats went. In the torch light we could see the three of them, but no amount of prodding inwards with the rod butt's could actually touch them. Better check the food! Only one of the four backpack's had been ransacked, but they hadn't been able to get the Tupperware box open and the food still intact. What to do about the 3 rats in the hole? It was decided to try and smoke them out, so we scrounged around and found enough stuff to burn, things always fell from the cliff above and we lit a fire in the mouth of the hole and pushed it in a few inches. We then armed ourselves with rock plates, PVC float tubes and knives, intending to put paid to the rats for good. After about 5 minutes of smoke going into the hole, we started running out of wood, so a plastic bag, followed by another added to the thick smoke filling the hole. As the smoke thickened we had to move back a few yards as it was really toxic black smoke from the plastic burning and we temporarily abandoned guarding the entrance, so as to breath ourselves.. We all agreed that nothing could survive in the hole, not in that acrid, thick, dreadful smoke cloud, so revenge was ours. Not so. First, as the smoke started to clear from the entrance, a rat appeared, looked at us and then ran and did a "suicide" leap off the steep wall in the other direction to us. It was roughly 30 feet down to the ledge below and it hit with a thump and rolled over the next ledge and dropped into a pool, a wave washed over the ledge and the rat disappeared in the darkness. About a minute later, rat number two comes out, looks toward us and decides to do exactly what the first rat did, "suicide" jumping over the edge, thumping down below and rolling off into the pool, to again be claimed by a swell coming over the ledge. Rat three was much larger and appeared at the entrance to the hole, but on seeing rat two jump and the smoke nearly cleared, decided to go back in the hole again. More plastic sourced, this time an empty 2 litre bottle was added to the plastic bags and we soon had another thick smoke cloud filling the hole. Didn't have to wait long after the flames were out and rat three reappeared. After looking at the cliff, the cheeky bugger ran straight at us and jumped on a tiny wind-grooved ledge that went right past the four of us at about chest height. Everybody had a "weapon" in each hand, so everyone had two goes at donging the rat and we all missed, even though he was only two feet from each attacker! After missing him with my left hand rock plate, I swear he jumped backwards to miss the blow with the right hand, then jumped the next attacker and the next and then had to go back the other way again- upwards to safety and he did it. That ledge was later nick-named "Rat's Highway" We decided to eat just about all the food, and as we already had a good bag of fish, stayed up at the cave for a few hours, before going back out to fish around 3 AM some three hours or so from when we'd first stopped fishing around midnight. Fished through until about 10 AM and then gutted and scaled the catch and were getting ready to leave by about lunchtime, when another mate, Wayne, came down. He was going to stay the night and tried in vain to convince one of us to stay another night, but after about 26 hours on the rocks, and it was also a Sunday afternoon, nobody was interested. Wayne had come well prepared for the night and had brought what we considered a "luxury"- a sleeping bag- which was something just too bulky and heavy for cliff fishing, besides, we were going down there to fish not sleep. We told him of the rats the night before and warned him not to leave any food anywhere with the gear while he fished that night, he'd be better off taking his food out to the fishing ledge, just to keep it safe. We said our good-byes and started the journey back. Wayne usually spun with big metals, casting them to the "horizon" with his 13 ft rod and Seascape reel until it was dark, then he fished for Bream or Tailor for a couple of hours before going back to the cave and crashing out for a few hours. Heeding our warning re rats at the cave, he decided to go and camp up on the next level above the cave, which involved climbing another 20 odd feet up via a short, permanent rope attached to a peg. Up on that ledge, it was quite open and although still under the cliff face, there were not really any protected spots for rats to hide. Although Wayne worked in a big tackle shop in the city, he'd never owned a decent torch, but had finally bought a good quality small torch, which included a spare globe and even spare batteries. After setting himself up on the high ledge, well away from the rats below, he got in his sleeping bag and keeping his torch close, lay down to have a snooze. While lying up there quietly, after a short time, the rat noises started up. As he was using his pack as a pillow and his remaining food was in the pack, he wasn't too worried about them getting the food- more concerned that they might have a go at him while he slept. He lay there listening to them squeaking away, quite close he thought. So best strategy was to put insect repellent on, close up the sleeping bag hood and crash out. He finally got to sleep, but woke in fright- something moved INSIDE his sleeping bag! He struggled to get the zipper down, but scrambled out and grabbed his pack and started belting the daylights out of the lump, visible in the moonlight, in the sleeping bag! The old 'H" framed backpack, with it's hard aluminium frame, made a great weapon and the daring rat lay motionless in the bag. After waiting a couple of minutes and now wide awake from the cold night air, Wayne poked and prodded at the now much smaller lump in the bag. No movement at all this time and no rat noise anywhere to be heard. Phew! Got the bugger! He then gingerly opened the sleeping bag right up to get rid of the rat- he could turn the bag inside out if there wasn't too much mess. Imagine his surprise when there in the moonlight was his new torch, smashed to bits in the sleeping bag- it, as it turned out, had been the "rat" and rolled against him in the bag.
  39. 9 points
    The fish in my earlier post I believe to to be rudderfish which looks very simular to oilfish, apparently the meat is very good but unfortunately gives people the runs. The marlin was out from Narooma and the biggest striped marlin we have seen. It would of most likely been a female record if we had kept it and certainly a junior record. Seeing the girth of it when it first rolled over at the surface we thought it had to be a blue at first. As for the wild bass, she's now had several over the 50cm size and knows where there's a couple she hasn't been able to stop. The light lure fishing seems to be what's ticking her box at the moment, with her best bream going 54cm from right in front of our house ( I will try to find a pic of it ).
  40. 9 points
    Firstly, Scratchie this was a great idea giving us something read and think about other than the big C! Secondly thanks to all the other Fishraiders for their great stories and pics. I'm 63 and I've been fishing since I was four years old. My father and grandfather were very keen fishos. That partly came from the depression years when they were fishing to help put food on the table. Consequently they fished for eating fish mainly bream, snapper, flathead, tailor, whiting etc, which was my grounding in what to catch and how. All my fishing was in Pittwater and inshore reefs near there for many years and I caught some decent snapper and flatties in those days many flathead in the 7-8 lb range and one of 10lb - we didn't measure by length much then. Unfortunately not many pics then and none I can find at present. So when thinking about my best fish I tend to go for more recent catches. I've got into drummer fishing in recent years so my most memorable fish was caught at Seal Rocks a few years ago and I recall it nudged 60cm and was around 4.5kg. I was fishing off a high rock and had seen the drummer take my burley a few times before he finally took my bait. After a long fight I managed to wrestle him away from the barnacles and lift him onto a ledge about 2 meters below me. As soon as he landed on the rock the hook fell out! Luckily my quick thinking fishing buddy jumped down to the ledge and held onto him until I could get down. So it was a drama filled catch as well as being my best pig. I do annual trips to Weipa (apart from this year) and while we catch a shed load of different species, many bigger than this fish, but for for me my most memorable from up there was a 5kg back spot tusk fish. We were in shallow water maybe 6 meters deep but with coral heads all around us. As soon as you hook them tuskies go straight for cover which means under the nearest reef. So you have to lock the drag and pull like buggery or you lose them. It was a mammoth effort to get this one clear of the bottom . I was fishing 80lb leader which while badly shredded as the fish did his best to reef me held on long enough to get the fish into the net. So that tuskie would be the other fish I often think about. (Not sure if the pic of this fish has loaded, if not I'll add it separately)
  41. 9 points
    I have posted this before (I think) but, back in the early '80s it was common to anchor up early on our Kingfish spot and fish for Yellowtail before live baiting, as soon as we caught one, it would go straight back on our game gear, one morning, I had one out and kept bait fishing to put some in the tank, I hooked one, pulled it up, and it was the one I had as my live bait, complete with big hook in his back, and fairly hooked in the mouth with my bait line!
  42. 9 points
    40 pound Murry Cod caught between Pooncaire and Menindee way back when set lines were legal. The biggest of the trip went 98cm and 75 pound. Am still looking for pics of the big fella. All fish released successfully. Cheers Loomesy
  43. 9 points
    Like others I've had a few really memorable fish. I got this guy off the island at balmoral beach which I thought was pretty cool/rare for Sydney harbour. Also caught a 47 cm snapper at cremorne point.
  44. 9 points
    Recently I have tried out some topwater bass fishing and it has been absolutely insanely fun. This is like nothing I have really tried before but something I will definitely be doing more of in the future. First of all I would love to give a shoutout to the fishraider user called Ragnar (Todd) who has gone out of his way to show me how to catch bass on the topwater and also for showing me some spots he has been exploring lately. I am also sworn to secrecy so sorry but I am not able to disclose locations. Also Ragnar has a great report about his topwater bassing as well which I would highly recommend. So far I have had two sessions and have already enjoyed some success. Also a great discovery I may have made towards the end of the post! Session 1: Saturday 21st March 2020. We hit the water around 730pm, right as the light was fading. It was nice as there was very little breeze and it was a perfect night for fishing. I had no topwater bass lures at this stage, just a couple of white zman finesse frogs I had bought earlier in the day. The retrieve I was using was a slow wind just enough to get the frog on the plane with the paddletail legs working then stopping after about a meter of winding. The pauses are never the same. Maybe around 5-15 seconds with a few small twitches in between and repeat. I had little luck after an hour or so just a small hit which didn't stick. Meanwhile Todd (Ragnar) had caught 3 bass ranging from 15-30ish centimetres all on cicada lures and I think maybe a taylor made mini surface breaker which is a lure he has had lots of success on with the bass. After that my mate Josiah got a small bass on one of Todd's cicada. Then it was the fishraider user DerekD's time to shine as he landed another small one on another cicada after just a couple of casts and a couple of hits as well. The frogz just weren't working that night. However my luck finally turned as DerekD generously lent me his cicada and I was hooked into a nice humble bass after about 5 casts. I ended up finishing the day with 3 hits and the bass which provided a nice finish to my first topwater bass session. Session 2: Sunday 22nd. This time I was prepared. Armed with a couple of new cicadas and the zman frogz from the night before I was ready to slay the bass. We hit the water around 7pm this time as I wanted to get a quick look at the weed and lily pads that I would be casting through for the rest of the night. The lure I would throw for most of the night would be my new River2Sea Buggipop 35 in the white Bp-01 colourway. I picked this up from my local a shop and at $13 I thought it was very affordable. This night would be a little more challenging than the night before as it was getting pretty windy which never helps when you are throwing little 4 gram lures. The night started slow as we tried to find some more sheltered spots to fish. After maybe 30mins I had my first hit which didn't produce any fruit. Unlucky I thought for a lure with 2 sticky trebles underneath it. Alas we continued to try and after a while I finally landed the first little bass of the night. After this however the fishing was hard and slow with hits being few and far between; pretty much no action. Now comes my mighty breakthrough! A mighty fishing discovery if you will. Until now I had been just reeling the lure in until it made its designed buzzing movement then pausing every metre or so for 5-15 seconds-ish and then rinse and repeat. After an hour or this with little action you can resort to some somewhat unconventional fishing retrievals, something I'm sure a lot of you fishos can relate to. Lately I have been doing some topwater bass fishing with DerekD. This is done by using the Bassday Sugapen lures which are designed to be retrieved using the walk the dog action. Anyway I have been doing a lot of practice to try and master the walk the dog retrieve and I have started to get proficient at it. So I decided to try it with the cicada. I decided that I didn't want a fast retrieve as I have never heard of any cicadas zooming across the top of the water at a great speed of knots so my retrieve was the walk the dog with a slow wind maybe one full handle rotation every 3-5 seconds roughly. Anyway enough of the technical talk here are the facts. (Note that this had been after two hours of fishing and catching one fish). On my first retrieve using this method I hooked and landed a nice 29cm bass. I was absolutely buzzing. Perhaps I had found the secret to using this style of cicada lure! I immediately turned my torch on and tested what the action looked like. Honestly the lure may or may not have been designed for a walk the dog retrieve but this lure looked great as it slowly made its way on top of the water twitching left and right. This is the nice 29cm bass I landed. Put up a great fight as bass do and so far is my pb. Anyway after this my mate wanted to go so after a couple more cast I reluctantly made my way back home. On the way we passed one of the spots that we normally fish on a good windless day and since the wind had died down I half forced half convinced my friend to let me try a couple of casts there. And oh boy was I glad that I did! On the third cast at the new spot trying this retrieve hooked into a nice bass! Then literally the next cast later hooked another! At this point I was absolutely frothing. Two in a row and 3 in less than 10 casts really gets your blood pumping! I cant wait to get back onto the water to try this again and hopefully keep slaying the bass. The topwater bite is so good. It doesn't get much better than see those aggressive little Australian Bass coming up and smacking those lures. I was especially excited as I may have accidentally discovered a small trick which will hopefully help me catch more in the future! One more thing I was wondering was, is lip gripping fish a good way of handling a fish? I love the way it looks for a photo but I am thinking I may lean more away from lip gripping in the future because surely it cant be good for the fishes telescopic jaws and all the joints and bones in there. Especially for the bigger ones with a bit of weight. I would be very interested to hear peoples opinions on this. That's all for today! Thanks if you stuck with me through this article. I dunno how much fishing I will be doing in next couple of weeks but until then stay safe guys! - Jahmon
  45. 9 points
    May I offer my congratulations to all of the new GOLD MEMBERS. Each of you has made substantial contributions to this site over a prolonged period of time. Your unselfish contributions form the basis of what makes this site what it is today. Fishraider has withstood the test of time and will continue to do so in the future, provided we all continue doing what we are already doing. Cheers, bn
  46. 9 points
    Thank you Donna and thank you fishraider and all on board. It's the members here that help people like me and the rest of the gold members to do what we do. It's all about helping each other out in any way we can. I am proud to join a group of wonderful people and will continue to do whatever is within my ability to help anyone out that I can. Frank
  47. 9 points
    Thanks guys! Yes very embarrassing, thanks Matt! There is no better feeling than teaching someone to fish or target a species and become successful at it. That’s what this forum is for and why I love it so much. It provides like minded people a platform to converse, learn and meet up and share their common passion of fishing! cheers scratchie!!!
  48. 9 points
    I love where I live and thought I'd share a few pics with the (predominantly) coastal members. We have just had a lovely bit of rain here and are all hopeful for a bit more. Can't get many pics on here with the limit per post so I have compressed them. Hope that some of you enjoy them. Tight lines wherever you fish, bn
  49. 8 points
    Been lucky enough to have fished in "the old days" and caught some very memorable fish in local waters, I will see if I can dig up some photos, probably up there would be a 39KG Kingfish (cleaned) a 71 KG Yellowfin on Snapper gear, on my own, in the dark, maybe the best though, a 35KG Jewfish, in about 3m of water, on a small hand line just outside Shellharbour harbour.
  50. 8 points
    Headed out early this morning near Lilli Pilli. First cast with a pillie and a tailor hookup. Around the 2 pound mark, it put up a good fight, and the hook pulled next to the boat. No more tailor bites during the morning. No yakkas about, but plenty of little reddies, nowhere near legal size. They ate anything thrown their way. In amongst them I pulled out the 2 trevs and the salmon, all on salted tailor strips. I figured it was not going to be a good day, so I kept the salmon, which was gut hooked anyway. It will make some fishcakes so won't be wasted. I also pulled out a just legal blue spot flattie, and a spiky flattie. I headed to Maianbar and pumped some nippers. Pulled out the whiting, missed a second bite, then that was it. I tried a number of other spots for only little pickers, the place just seemed dead (probably not a good description with the virus about), so headed home after several hours of trying.
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