Lizardboy

Encounter with a majestic beast

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I’m in awe of the majestic beast who towed my packraft from pool to pool for several minutes before I was finally able to land her.

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I was on a family camping trip and  with young kids, fishing windows were short, up before dawn 2 days in a row, and back to the tent by 7 or 8am.  

 

Not a hit the first morning, then I convinced my wife and kids to come out paddling and trolling in the packrafts for an hour or so during the day, hoping to get my son onto something, but still no interest.

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The 2nd day I decided I needed to hike further to find less pressured water, so I set off in the cold, well before dawn, hiking, paddling, wading and general boulder scrambling, stopping briefly to cast surface lures along the way. I found some nice water but I still wasn’t confident it had enough depth for natives to hold up during the day so I continued on.

 

I covered a fair bit of ground and after a long shallow stretch and a more major rapid, experience told me a deeper pool wouldn’t be too far away.

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A bit further and there it was, I decided I shouldn’t waste the premium bite period on surface lures, given my limited time and no interest the day before, so I opted for a sub surface offering, Into the raft and after about 5 casts I was thinking how good the water looked and it was only a matter of time, but there was still doubt in the back of my mind.

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I saw a big tree right on the edge of the river with some rock at the base and possible undercut bank so I cast at it, 2nd cast having just clicked the reel into gear I got hit on the drop and all hell broke loose, the fish immediately took off across the pool and came to the surface with an enormous boil and tail slap that had me thinking oh F$#% this is the one!

 

Over the next several minutes I was towed through 3 pools and the narrow channel connecting them, doing my best to cushion the lunges and powerful runs as she pulled line with ease.  She was in control, I was just along for the ride!

 

I was just hoping everything would hold and she wouldn’t find any timber, at one stage the line made a guitar string like sound, but I had her on a short leash and was able to apply some pressure and she swam clear. 

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I spotted a sandy beach and did my best to slowly paddle towards it one handed whilst maintaining pressure.

 

Eventually making it to the beach I jumped out and started to get things ready, but she wasn’t quite done, I maintained patience and didn’t rush, it was a massive relief to finally get the lip grips in and I had quick celebration.  

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Careful handling, a few quick pics and holding in the water as much as possible in between and she swam off strong! 

A memorable encounter I won’t be forgetting!

cheers,

Gus

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WOW, what an adventure and experience! 

 

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Absolute cracking fish Gus well done. 

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Now THAT’s a post. What a fish! 

What great family memories you are creating Gus! 

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Awesome report. Definitely one to remember. Love the RESPECT.

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awesome read mate, cheers for sharing

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Wot river system mate  looks like plenty of water

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Thanks guys, happy to have some good content to post, tell a story, and share it with like minded anglers who can relate to what goes on in a fisherman’s head!.

cheers,

Gus

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2 hours ago, rickmarlin62 said:

Wot river system mate  looks like plenty of water

Hi Rick,

This holiday I explored Trout and Cod water in the Oven’s and Bidgee river systems. I’m not familiar with the relative levels but Someone I spoke to indicated the river was up a bit after being very low. Later in the year i’m Planning my first foray into the New England Area, so hoping things improve up that way during the year.

Cheers,

Gus

 

 

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Yeah mate my fave spot is hardly flowing  it's a trickle  some of the other rivers further north are ok they have better feeder systems  I want to try near hill end soon  some good advice from other raiders has me keen to try the spots they have given me  hope you get a chance to give it a go up north  cheers

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What an awesome read and photos, nothing better than being out in the wilderness & what a great reward, bet it was heart in mouth stuff being dragged around like that, well done 👍 

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Wow, well done Gus, that is a fish of lifetime and certainly well earned. Sure it makes all the hours spent exploring and scrambling over rocks well worth it.

Cheers,

Rich

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I’ve just read your report 3 times. Great report, photos and unbelievably fish. Congratulations. A lot of work has gone into the capture.

Bruce 

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WOW Gus! What a brilliant report of every moment of the great capture. Cod aren't the best fighting fish but when you encounter them in THEIR environment, they definitely have the advantage. Your ability to keep a clear head and not panic made all the difference and you managed to land this magnificent specimen. Beautiful country, beautiful Cod, fabulous report...made my day Gus. Thanks, bn

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Thanks, it was real heart in the mouth stuff, particularly because, I have bent these hooks on much smaller fish, it’s not straight forward to charge them, so I was cushioning every lunge. The 16lb fluro leader faired surprisingly well despite being so deep, I was getting worried about that, but I now wonder if the same theory from big flatties and light leader applies to cod.

Every big fish you catch us special, but your first is generally the most memorable, I clearly remember my first big Bass, Barra and now Cod, the last taking me nearly 15 years.

cheers, 

Gus

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Your report  was a great read and a magnificent looking fish there well done. 

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Top report mate. Bet you wont be forgetting that trip for quite some time.!!

Cheers

Rah

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Nice fish! The rapids in the 3rd photo looked very familiar.

 

Here is the same spot with more water. You have done very well to get a raft there. 

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