6th – 13th June 2014
Trip report posted at 11:01 am on the 13th June, 2014
I was sent this by one of our guests , apparently it was a little it was a little rough this week…. Fishing Swains Reef?????
But despite the wind and rain, Reg’s crew had a very successful haul of fish. I have posted some memorable images of the weather to illustrate that even in ordinary conditions you can still have a great holiday and a great resulting catch. Here is Bruce Robson’s ( guest) trip report:
GONE WITH THE WIND
ANOTHER GREAT TRIP WITH WIND
WHEN THE TOUGH GET GOING
WORLDS WORST WEATHER
In trying to think of a theme for the June Kanimbla trip the abovementioned titles came to mind, and as you will have surmised, it was not all sunshine and calm seas. After more than 50 trips on Kanimbla this was the worst week of weather that I or others have ever endured. On the Tuesday of the trip the wind recorded on Kanimbla peaked at 87 kilometres per hour – and yes, most of us continued to fish in the dories.
We started with a gloomy weather report but consoled ourselves that such predictions were often incorrect. Saturday started with showers of rain and we generally fished the drop-offs on the outside of the reefs. Some fish were also caught in the shallows. The fish were generally plump and large coral trout. The days tally was 180 packs which is good for the first day of any trip. Gordon got fish of the day with a 3.5 kg coral trout.
Sunday saw heavy showers and gathering wind with nearly everyone being soaked to the skin despite wet weather gear. We got 160 packs for the freezer and fish of the day went to Grant for a 3.1 kg red emperor.
On Monday the wind surprisingly decreased a little but at the same time the weather bureau gave a strong wind warning from the Victorian Border to Torres Straits – and we were about in the middle. Rain was in the distance so we kept reasonably dry. At lunch we travelled to Sandshoe Reef for more shallows fishing. Dave was awarded fish of the day for his 9.6 kg Spanish mackerel [due to the possibility of ciguatera we do not keep any over 10 kg - as recommended by health authorities]. Bruce Stobo announced that the predicted zenith of the wind would be tomorrow.
Wind to 87 km/hr and rain formed the basis of Tuesday. We fished the shallows and off the back of the reef. We ended up with only 80 packs for the day. It must be said that despite being blown to pieces, or blown over, high wind speed has some [dubious] advantages; such as bait and berley only need to be thrown vertically and the wind does the rest. But it is harder to cut up pilchards when they are blown off the cutting board [and the board is under the deck level] before you can get a knife to them. We had water splashing over the front of the dories inside the reef and had to use the scuppers to empty the bilges. The swells outside the front of the reef looked to be about 6 metres. Anyhow, is such the stuff of legends??? Fish of the day went to Paul for a 2.9 kg sweetlip.
Wednesday started with Bruce Stobo announcing a reduction in wind strength to 40 km/hr – almost a glass out compared to the previous day!!! The sun actually was seen for the first time on the trip. We headed to the old favourite of Sweetlip Reef. The morning provided us with 100 packs and the afternoon with 60 more. Fish of the day went to Sam for a 3.9 kg coral trout. That night we had a sumptuous and varied fish meal which was greatly appreciated by all.
Thursday morning saw a slight increase in wind strength to nearly 50 km/hr as we continued to catch trout and lipper in the shallows at Sweetlip Reef. At lunchtime we packed the gear for an initially bumpy trip back to Gladstone. On arrival at the marina the predicted drop in wind strength had occurred – it was completely calm for the lucky fishermen on the trip that was to follow us.
Total fish count was 790 packs [44 each] and 2 whole trout each.
Prizes were awarded by Reg on the return journey:
· Fish of the trip [and best Red Emperor] – 3.1 Kg caught by Grant
· Spanish Mackerel - 9.6 Kg caught by Dave
· Cod – 1.8 Kg caught by Darin
· Spangled Emperor – 4.9 Kg caught by Bruce
· Coral Trout – 4.2 Kg caught by Gordon
· Fisherman of the trip – Gordon
The crew, skipper, and Reg were all given solid rounds of applause for appreciation of their efforts.
Despite the poor weather we had a great time with excellent friends, and will be back there in 2015.