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First time poster: Boat based report - (Riv 27 Hardtop) Went out early (6am) with an awesome weather report and high expectation. Need a quick session to be back by lunch. No luck with yakkas or squid south side of middle head. Few boats were picking up the odd yakka and further out a few squid were picked up - not by us... we had some squid from the previous trip so moved on. Water was filthy dirty with loads of rubbish drifting by. Headed out to Narrabeen wreck (?) and a couple of reefs with no luck apart from a Sargent Baker on a Shimano Coltsniper wonderfall!. Some bait on the sounder however was feeling queasy from staring at the screen too long..... Headed back into the heads and dropped a whole squid on the downrigger at 10m. Right on the outside corner of north head picked up 3 Rat Kings (50-60cm) on the squid and one more casting the jig in at the wash. At one point there was 12 boats on this spot with guys on sinking fly's killing it. Everyone was hooking up for a while. Seas were bigger that forecast and the back wash was pretty bad as we were right in close. with time running out called it a day. No pics - wanted to get the little fellas back in asap. Thanks for reading. GI
Hi Raiders, Went out for a fish a few days ago but didn't post a report straight away because I wanted to make a video as well. Fishing with my brother as per usual and we launched the boat at Tunks just before sunrise. Tried to get a few squid but no luck, but did manage to get a few yakka. Plan was to try and target some kings with the live bait. We went near north head and managed to hook up a bonito on one of the yakkas but spat the hook near the boat, apart from that not much else was happening. This was until we saw heaps of birds working a patch of fish about a couple hundred metres away. We quickly motored over there and saw a huge football field sized school of salmon busting up all over the place. I always have a light rod with a small metal lure rigged up handy for times like this. Threw the 10g halco twisty out but was having no luck, the salmon just weren't interested at all. After a couple casts I changed the lure over to a very lightly weighted soft plastic in a sort of clear/greenish colour. We re positioned the boat so the wind was behind us, that way we could get the most distance on the cast. I casted it out and as soon as it hit the water it got smashed and I was onto a nice sized salmon. Now I'm using a very light outfit with only 6lb line and leader so I had to play it safe. The fish jumped several times and I was worried it was going to bust me off. But after a 15 minute fight, finally had it boat side and netted it. The salmon felt about 3kg and very healthy. We had a blast chasing the salmon around for the next hour and catching them on light tackle, their were a few frigate mackerel mixed in there as well. All the salmon were fat and looked very healthy. The swell and wind picked up by then and it became too uncomfortable so we went inside to try for some flathead. Tried a few spots for flathead using soft plastics but no luck. Ended up going to manly and having some food. All in all it was a wonderful day and really good to be out on the water. With uni break finishing, I don't know when ill be able to go for another fish. I've been meaning to put more effort into making videos but have struggled to find the time. So hopefully you guys enjoy this video. Cheers
Thursday just gone, Razz, Krause and myself set out just before sun-up for North Head. We're all pretty new to fishing there so were looking forward to the combo of expectation and the unknown that is so much a part of fishing mixing it with waves crashing on rocks and North Head's grand cliffs and - please, please, please this time, please - some kingfish. It's a short paddle from the ramp to the bait grounds where pretty quickly things seemed encouraging. A few bust ups in the half light and fish thick on Razz's sounder made up for the breeze that pushed us around while we tried to gather bait. A few yakkas were collected before, one by one, the breeze and impatience got the better of us and we set off around the corner toward more prospective 'real' fish grounds. We tried the first big drop off but there was nothin' doin' there and, in kayaks the swell and the breeze made staying appropriately in place quite difficult. Pretty quickly Krause was towing his live baits parallel to the cliff line and straight out to sea - as he is very inclined to do. Razz and myself hung in the first little bay near Old Man's Hat, one bait down, drifting around, and hurling plastic in all directions. I could see someone spinning from the ledge at Old Mans Hat, catching an occasional fish. It seemed a reasonable place to give a go. As time wore I grew impatient. Krause had vanished over the rolling hills of water that made up the horizon. I decided it was time to give way to the current sweeping gently oceanwards, and worked the water just out from the shore line, occasionally correcting my position to keep a safe distance from the rocks. The swell wasn't massive but it was both big enough to deserve taking account of and running straight up against the cliffs and the reverb made bobbing around in that faint bay constant work. Razz decided the move out toward the sea would likely make things even more uncomfortable and stayed put in the Old Mans Hat area. As I drifted past the landslide, another kayaker - who hadn't come with us paddled by, trolling lures. He'd caught a few bonnies and mack tuna he said. Only people out were kayaks A few drifts later Krause reappeared. He'd been smoked by something that took a livey. As we chatted I picked up a little mack tuna. Krause jumped at the chance to pop it on as a bait. More used to yellowtail as live bait, we both chuckled a bit at its size. But not even a few minutes after it was dropped down Krause had a take. Sadly the line parted and an unknown fish swam off with bait and hook. It was a barely formed thought to pull my rod from its holder and throw a lure in the general vicinity of the missing mack tuna but one cast was all it took. I let the lure sink for a few seconds and then almost in the instant I began retrieving I was on. Quickly I was confidently declared to Krause, 'this one feels like a king.' The fish went straight down in a series of runs punctuated by short breathers. As the runs continued, the initial excitement morphed in to worry. The longer the fish went without stopping, the bigger it became in my mind and the more I wanted it. And, the closer it got to the bottom the slimmer the odds became. "How deep do you think it is here", I nervously asked Krause. Neither of us had a sounder, this was the first time we'd been at North Head in conditions suitable for this bit of the headland - we were right at the heads, where the cliff turns the corner from the harbor to run up the coast. Very luckily, as the fish worked its way down, the current was steadily pushing us away from the shore, into deeper water. Luckily too the fish didn't head back toward the rocks, there's no way I could have stopped it if it had done that. As happens, when the runs finally slowed, I started trying to work the fish back. It didn't go well, I just made it angry and it took off again. On the second big pause I tried again with the same result: angry fish going deeper. I changed tactics and settled for steady pressure and only taking line that was given. It became clear this wasn't going to end quickly. Occasionally the line would angle out a bit and I thought the fish might be going to surface. They were moments of anticipation that faded to nothing, Pretty near the whole fight was straight up and down. I worked the fish up to within about 10m of the surface and there it stayed. 5m of line would come in, then 5m would go out, back and forth, as we drifted. Things passed through stages. From the initial, woohoo! to worry about how close the fish was to the bottom, to being really grateful that the fish had swum down not back to shore, to thinking this is a pretty good fish and joking, repeatedly to Krause; 'this one's legal - ha-ha', to worrying about sharks, not so much in the moment but knowing that we'd be spending some time drifting the ocean at the whim of wind current with the steady beating of a stressed fish below us. To monotony, both Krause and myself commenting on how fights that last longer than usual are great and all but it does start to drag after a while. When, eventually the fish came in to view, I was first floored, it was much bigger than I had imagined. Then, as more colour showed, I was a crestfallen. Seeing the big fork in its tail and the browny grey, I thought shark. Krause was the one who first picked it for what is was - more detached? and probably a bit cluier It was more than a moment, both of us marveled for a while at the fact of a cobia and its size as it inched toward the surface. The next big problem, one that hadn't been on the radar until we knew the reality of the fish's size was how, if at all, to get the fish aboard. We had no gaff and no gloves, only two laughingly insufficient landing nets. Krause wisely suggested recording its existence before trying anything else. I held it near the surface while he filmed for a bit. Then we consulted. We decided to try grabbing it by the tail. It would have been impossible for me to pull it within range so Krause paddled to the other side of the fish and I did what I could to swim it in his direction. As soon as he grabbed it the fish bolted back down to the 10m mark and as it did so we had line and rod running between two kayaks, with line and rod dominated by the fish, with my kayak also being pulled toward krause's by the fish's little run. It was a narrow escape for us and another is a series of unlucky breaks for the fish. It took quite a while to get the fish back up. In the meantime we went back to worrying about sharks. The second time the fish surfaced, it was properly tired and we had come up with plan B. Krause remembered he had an old pair of lip grips on board. He tossed them over with the caveat that they were not to be lost in the struggle, they were his dad's. Merely getting the fish's head close enough to reach with the grips was a major worry. Rod in one hand, my arm extend out as far from myself as I could push it, I twisted the other way to reach back over the kayak and put the grips in the fishes mouth. It took a few shots and when I finally managed it the fish just rolled and the grips popped loose - they weren't made for metre long cobia. In desperation, let me call it creative thinking out loud, I even unhooked my landing net at one point and waved it at the fishes tail. Krause laughed! I contemplated putting my hand in its mouth and hoping its teeth weren't too sharp. Likewise trying to grab it by the gills. It had to be the lip grips. They did work, sort of, eventually (and had to be repaired later). After about half a dozen tries the fish was too exhausted to roll out of them and I managed to gently pull it close enough to grab its head. I put the rod down and grabbed the leader. Krause paddled over to lift the rod to the safety of his kayak. Somewhere in the lip-gripping my line had both gone slack and got caught on something. As Krause took the rod I looked up from the fish to the rod where I saw a broken end of braid wrapped several times round the top guides. I thought of the size of the fish and the leader running from the fish to tip of my brand new rod and my stomach jumped to my throat. Lucky again: the fish was too exhausted to move. We cut the leader and I wrestled 20kg of unsecured slimy cobia over the side and into my lap. At this point the fish had one last freak out. It thrashed as I pushed it down between my legs and into the front of the kayak. It kind of swam its way to the nose where it got stuck. We'd drifted about 2kms out by this time. The paddle back to Little Manly was long and slow but happy. Stats on the whole thing are: the line was 8kg braid with a 30lb leader. I have no idea how long the fight lasted but at least half of that time was getting the fish aboard. Both Krause and I are buying gaffs! The fish measured 121cm to the fork and 135 to tip. I guess it weighed about 20kg - a cement bag being the reference point and looking at others on Fishraider, that seems about right. Below there's a pic of the bit of plastic the both the cobia and the mack tuna fell for. It was a no kingies result but, at 20kg the fish was few kilos heavier than the 'boat' it was landed from. On those grounds I think we can call the yak sesh a success. We are all looking forward to the next one
Hi This is my first post so go easy. I've been waiting to have something worthwhile to report. 3 mates and I headed out yesterday to target Kingies. It was awesome, no boats (the weather forecast wasn't promising) and bait fish everywhere. We caught some slimies at the artificial reef off South Head and then trolled a livey and a skirt around South Head. Had no luck at South Head so we headed across to North Head. Plenty of activity on the sounder and some bait fish in close .We kept losing the slimies so we switched to the skirt and hard body only. We had a pretty good time of it with a couple of double hook ups and we caught 7 salmon all up (not Kingies un fortunately). They were all in the 50-60 range so all went back in. Great day!! Couple of grinning mates below.