After heading over to the weigh-in last year (2011) and seeing the quality of fish that were caught by the anglers I knew I wanted to learn how to catch these fish on lures. I had been waiting for the ABT to return to the Basin so I could enter and see what an ABT event was all about. So I entered into what I believe was one of the best learning experiences I have had to date on catching bream and met some great people along the way.
At the briefing on Friday night I met my two boaters (Mick and Dean) and we organised where to meet and what I should bring. Going to bed that night I could hardly sleep with the thoughts of what the day was going to bring and what it was going to be like fishing alongside some of the biggest names in bream fishing in Australia. When the alarm went off the next morning there were high hopes of catching some bream as I headed off to meet up with my day one boater Mick. I was super nervous as we waited for our number to be called so we could make our way to the first spot and get into the fishing.
As we started fishing I was shaking but I am not sure if it was from the cold morning air or the nerves. After an hour at the first spot we moved to another location where I started to feel more relaxed and was able to concentrate on the fishing and really enjoy the experience. I was pretty happy with the first day having three fish in the well and some good words of advice from Mick I had been given lots to think about and experiment with.
Day two started off with meeting up with Dean my day two boater. After a quick chat we loaded my gear into his boat to wait for the start. Dean headed straight to his first spot and after a short time started to give me a lesson in how to catch bream. I lost count of the bream that I netted for him but was totally blown away by how he just seemed to catch bream after bream as I remained fishless. Dean gave me a few pointers on what I should be trying to do and flicked me one of the plastics he was using to try and get me on the board. I was getting some hits and takes but I just couldn’t land the bream that I needed. Then we moved off to try some other spots in search of some bigger fish and managed get an upgrade for Dean. Before I knew it the time was up and we had to head back to the weigh-in and that was the end of one very memorable day on the water.
I am so glad that I entered as a non-boater and was able to experience everything that I did during the event. I truly believe that I have learned some valuable tips, techniques and strategies not so much by being told (it does make it easier) but by being out on the water among a quality field and just seeing firsthand how the seasoned anglers go about their business catching bream.
These events have a very friendly and positive feel to them and are extremely well run and organised. I would recommend that anyone who is thinking about giving one a go should do it, don’t wait around get out there and start experiencing. If I didn’t have the bug before I have definitely got it now.