We must have done something right, with the weather gods looking favourably upon us with a forecast to die for, a Week of 5 – 10’s, and the odd 10 – 15.
Raptor II, our trusty 10m Cougar Cat was in tow, ready for the cruise out to the Outer Great Barrier Reef for some serious fishing Adventure.
MV Centurion was our 80ft Mothership and home for the next few days and nights, a big comfy base with all the comforts of home, Air conditioning and plenty of ice cold refreshments, it doesn’t get better than this.
Our Destination was Trogibee, and Eaton/Denton Reefs some 80 to 100 nautical miles offshore, almost double that too convert to kilometres and we’re just scratching the surface of this remote northern reaches commonly referred to the Swains. A massive reef system with hundreds of reefs and bommies, and a lot also uncharted.
The Grass is definitely Greener when you’re this far out, being out of the range of most trailer boats, except for the odd Long Range charter boat, or pro live trout fisherman. The plot thickens, and this is where Raptor II comes into her own.
Wouldn’t you love to turn back time and see what fishing was like 50 years ago, Well that’s what happens. Reefari’s specialty is targeting these remote deep water shoals, uncharted and not fished.
Live trout fisherman are targeting live Trout, Obvious you say!! But, they stick to the reef shallows, and generally less than 12 metres. The beauty is they’ve left the deep water stuff alone, Remote, isolated and so small it takes pinpoint fishing to a new level, and the results speak for themselves.
Day 1: Did I mention the forecast, with a beautiful sunrise and glass seas, waking up on the reef in a protected anchorage really is something.
The guys were keen, with some screaming runs and a broken rod to Sydney’s Steve, it wasn’t his greatest start, but luckily he had a couple spare. Plenty of laughs at his expense, and the guys were pumped.
The charter had a varied mob from all over, A group from Sydney, Townsville, Emerald, and a few locals as well. The Fishing State of Origin began, as well as the Biggest Red Comp, to make things interesting. The Maroons were the first shift, and we headed south and wide, a quick 15 min run and we were in fishing Nirvana.
The grounds look good, fished showed well on the Furuno FCV 585 and everybody was ready with rods baited. First drop and a legal size coral trout came onboard, and another bigger one followed, but this wasn’t what we were after, A slow start and even some unwanted Grinner ended onboard.
Not the Chaos we expected!!
We fished and worked hard some of the legendary spots from Last year’s mothershipping charter trip, and a good mixed bag resulted, with several large Nannygai’s, Reds and coral trout.
PE Tackles reef flies were also being used by the Townsville boys, and also with mixed results, Mick was pretty happy with his, as he set the benchmark for the trip and a Corker 84 centimetre Red Emperor on a green goblin fly.
The fishing was good, but a bit disappointing to be honest.
Normally you’d be over the moon with this catch, but I knew there was more!!
Back on the Mothership, August is a great time for Spanish Mackerel and they were around in good numbers on the reef edge. The guys were cleaning up on the back deck of Centurion floating out unweighted pilchards, they were fussy but, and trick was not to use wire. You will lose hooks, but you will catch some fish.
The Blues turn, and time for a game change, Head North East and try some other marks and shoals. Weather was great, but the fishing slow, Dead Slow and the marks were shut down. I was really scratching my head, and the clients were a bit stunned.
That’s when you dig deep and take bit of a gamble, we went for Fish Boom or Bust. Sometimes it pays to head out in the blue Yonder and search for new ground, It’s a double edged sword, Results can be legendary, or devastating, Luckily we hit Legendary Status, and found a mark that was Hot, Red Hot, we called it Incredible, and definately was some of the most Incredible fishing I’ve seen.
First drift over this hump, about the size of a basketball court ended up with 4 Red emperor and a Quality Bar Cheek Coral Trout and we were back!!
Next Drift five Reds and Nannygai, and it just didn’t let up . The next hour was mindblowing and the Esky full. It’s times like these you’ve just gotta stop, We had to leave them biting and the scoreboard was Blue 1, Maroon zero.
It pays to have quality sounders and GPS Plotters, and the Furuno FVC 585 with 1 Kw though hull transducer has paid for itself, with some mind blowing action. Time and Use is the best and don’t be afraid to play with settings and get used to your fishing style and depth. Once you can read the sounder and set it up properly, the fish should be very afraid.
I like the Gain at 4.7 and this will vary per boat and setup. The extra power is great for sounding whilst traveling, and alot of new marks are found whilst on the move. Keep an eye out, and don’t be afraid to check out small marks, as these can hold good fish.
Check out more of our website with more great fishing videos and tips. Centurion is available for Charter from four to ten days, with three 14ft dories all year round, or our limited Mothershipping Charters with Raptor II.
Spaces and trips are limited and is strongly recommend to book in early to avoid disappointment for next year.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can assist further with any inquiries.