Well for once lately there was a window of good weather recently to get out amongst the fish.
After some farewell drinks on the Friday night for a good friend I must admit Scott and I were both a little dusty in the morning. We had met good friend Ivan Maric at Port Kembla boat ramp, loaded the rods and gear in and took off for a day of snapper fishing.
We headed out to the usual haunts around Wollongong Reef. Conditions were almost too perfect with little drift. Both Scott and I also helped with the burley, something we would not normally do when plastics fishing but it helped remove the remnants of the night before. We had found bait schools, cuttlefish and could mark fish and although we landed about 4 smaller reds they were not the specimens we were after.
After taking a look at the GPS Ivan just picked out a contour line further north and suggested we try this. It was not a marked reef or anything just another contour line on the GPS. As per my article the other week “Contours” it was about to prove to be a successful move.
As we motored past the contour line there were a heap of bait schools and plenty of albatross sitting on the water, no cuttlefish under them though.
The first drift is always a trial to see what direction the current and wind would drift us. With Scott still sick up the front, Ivan and I went to work. We would throw out one rod, leave it in free spool and then proceed to throw out the next etc, etc. Soon enough we had rods lined up in a drift from the front to the back of the boat.
We were fishing in approx 52 metres of water. When turning our heads to take a look at the sounder we got very excited. Lighting up our screen was a heap of reds. Soon enough two rods were screaming off with approx 3kg reds on the ends.
Marking these fish in the GPS as a weigh point so when we were ready to re-drift we could plan to drift over this spot again. A slow day soon turned into being kept busy with setting up the drifts and catching fish as the lures rose on the other side of the boat. It was hard to contain my excitement.
I picked out a lure from Ivan’s lure bucket. A 6.5’ Nemesis plastic in pink shine color and threaded it onto a 3/8 Nitro Jig Head 5/0 hook. I turned around and commented to Ivan confidently “I am going to catch a snapper on this”.
After letting it drift down when I hit the bottom I grabbed the braided line and just started tweaking it with my hand saying, “come on fishy”. Just as I let go Ivan yelled “your on!” I turned around and started the battle. You never miss the way a red hits your lure and those first few runs to the bottom where they try and bust you off. I was able to lift it from the depths and finally placed it into the net.
After securing a nice feed, letting a few go and losing our battle to some we packed up leaving the fish biting and vowed to return and have another go at this area.
Thanks Ivan for a fantastic day on the reds, I had so much fun and am looking forward to the next trip. Tight lines everyone, hope to see you on the water.