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Hidden Dangers of the Cliffs


wazatherfisherman
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Hi Waza, I was wondering if you (or anyone else) ever fished Rosa Gully. The main platform up the end, where the small "murk" came out. At the Northern end at the base of the cliff there was a rope that went up to a small ledge. I never worked out if it was another way out (up) or if it was access to spots further North. I remember seeing some old iron pegs high on the cliff behind, but there was no other obvious way up. Also do you know if the little "murk" still pumps at all, like as an overflow.

 

 

 

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Hi Phil fished Rosa a few times with some of the "non-climbing" guys, always at the main platform where the outflow was. The water was always "opaque" rather then the usual colour of the Murks and I actually caught a couple of small reds there, which was fairly uncommon (from my knowledge) to be caught from the brown water.

The rope going up was to access another spot, as far as I know there was no other way up than down the gully and up the ladder- I wasn't a fan of getting on/off the ladder, due to it being cut off square to the top, so I took a short piece of rope to "lasso" one of the pegs at the back. 

Never fished the "Green Ledge" for Blackies either, but they caught plenty there while I was watching. Used to put rock plates on to walk the narrow ledge up high past the Green Ledge on the way to main platform as the few times I went, it was wet and slippery there.

Yes Rosa Gully (known as Vaucluse outfall) is still operating, as are both Diamond Bay outfalls (Oceanview Ave and Kimberley St). They are the last three operating in NSW.

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Hey Waza, I was never a fan of that ladder either. I fished it a bit, some times there was a piece of rope someone had left attached to one of the pegs, (you've got a good memory!) and sometimes not.

Never saw anyone get any Reds off the platform I must say,  saw a few good groper, pigs and plenty of guys live baiting for Kings and Jewies. I fished "Green Ledge" lots for Blackfish. (caught a good size Salmon there once on a "streamer" bait of cabbage!). I'd also keep my "cleats" on to cross that ledge to the main platform , it was a wet and slippery dash across alright, the cable strung across did help. I'm amazed that murk still flows , it never smelt as bad as the other ones though..

There was another spot i wonder if you ever fished, beneath the Chapel at South Head. It was a serious climb for sure, dropped off into deep water, a bit protected from the South. It looked impossible to get to , though I did see some guys on it once. 

 

 

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Hi Phil there wasn't a cable across the narrow bit when I was going there! There also weren't many guys there on weekday mornings, usually just a couple at Green Ledge. Being a Mattens fisher, it just didn't compare as a fishing spot, but plenty of good fish came out of there for the regulars.

I only fished the Chapel from a boat- it's a well known spot for catching live bait and I went there a few times to catch Yakka's before going out to the Peak, but never bothered going there from the rocks. If it was too rough to fish the Mattens, it wasn't safe to fish any of the low platforms along the Bondi to South Head stretch. There was still a permanent ladder at the "Block" at Diamond Bay also in those days.

 

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Hi Waza, yeah I remember the "Block" ladder. Always seemed hairy. I've heard it's not there any more.

I've heard of a few people lost at Diamond Bay over the years. I'd always assumed they were fishing up high, in big seas and so on. In some ways fishing the low platforms seemed safer (assuming you didn't fall getting there!). If you waited, watched and read the the water, you probably choose not to fish. Of course a rouge wave would get you every now and then, (I've been bowled over a number of times!) but if you kept your head, short of a few cuts and scratches , you'd get back in.

On another note, I was wondering what you make of the changes in gear and tackle off the rocks. I learnt to make my own Rods, Butterworth MT4144's for light gear and MT6144's for heavier. Reels were all Alveys and Centrepins, I'm sure it was the same with you.

Today the rods are far shorter and its all eggbeaters.

 

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18 minutes ago, Phil Remington said:

Hi Waza, yeah I remember the "Block" ladder. Always seemed hairy. I've heard it's not there any more.

I've heard of a few people lost at Diamond Bay over the years. I'd always assumed they were fishing up high, in big seas and so on. In some ways fishing the low platforms seemed safer (assuming you didn't fall getting there!). If you waited, watched and read the the water, you probably choose not to fish. Of course a rouge wave would get you every now and then, (I've been bowled over a number of times!) but if you kept your head, short of a few cuts and scratches , you'd get back in.

On another note, I was wondering what you make of the changes in gear and tackle off the rocks. I learnt to make my own Rods, Butterworth MT4144's for light gear and MT6144's for heavier. Reels were all Alveys and Centrepins, I'm sure it was the same with you.

Today the rods are far shorter and its all eggbeaters.

 

Hi again Phil- from memory, the council removed what was left of the "Block" ladder after a young fisherman fell to his death when the ladder broke. They also removed the pegs and cemented in the holes. This has happened at other rock spots where deaths have occurred also, Jolong platform past the pistol range at Malabar even had the chains etc removed, due to multiple fatalities.

You're right about the low platforms being safer and picking the days/times to fish them, we used to fish "Greenie" at the Mattens on the run-out tide on flat nights for Bream and it was really low- it was where the most red crabs were and hence the most Bream. Nobody ever got washed off Greenie to my knowledge. Good "procedural" practices like never turning your back on the sea and learning to call/listen for the call of "WATER" are the most important things for rock fishing- far more important than actual fishing.

As for "advanced" technology in rods, I don't think any of the new materials would stand up to the harsh environment like fibreglass does. Butterworth, Snyder, Sportex, Fenwick and Conlon blanks made well over 40 years ago are still going strong- put a scratch or score in most graphite blanks and their structural integrity is compromised resulting in breakage- not always, but often. Ugly Stick rods are the one exception and are pretty much indestructible also.

I try to encourage new fishers to stick to Alvey's for general rock work- bar spinning and chasing Marlin and Tuna- the "give-no-give" advantages when washing fish up need no explanation. Bruce Alvey told me that due to the advancements in spinning reel technology, most of the younger fishers seem to have gone the spinning reel path, yet many of the older fishers have stayed with their beloved sidecast's, even after trying spinning reels.

For beach fishing, regardless of really good care taken of reels, sand/salt gets into pretty much everything at some point and being able to simply dip your reel in the saltwater to remove sand is a great thing while out fishing- can't do that with an eggbeater.

I can fully understand why the changes happened, with far better built reels, capable of dealing with large fish, great drag systems and of course the popularity of braid/gel spun etc, which in my opinion are really suitable for these types of reel and can present problems when used with a sidecast type configuration

On a side note also- most of my rock rods bar Luderick (which were 12 ft one piece) were around 9 and a half to 10 and a half feet long, offering better leverage but less casting distance, which isn't an issue when you're only using the small "ball-on-the-hook" rigs that are the staple rig of Sydney rock fishing, for most species.

 

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