Alex's Fishing Report 4 August 2016
It was almost a surprise earlier-to-mid this week to have such strong winds, and it’s the reason why temperatures have finally dropped to more-normal dry season levels.
Mainly for the dry season so far, winds have not been a big issue for those heading offshore from Darwin.
And it’s heading that way again this weekend, with light winds predicted for both Saturday and Sunday.
It means you’ll be able to travel some distance in your typical 5m-plus trailer boat and hopefully get stuck into some great fish.
Reports from just before the blow were pretty damn good.
Fishing and Outdoor World’s George Voukolos told me the mackerel were going spastic at locations on the South Gutter.
Fast jigging metal lures was doing the job.
In closer, ever-reliable No 6 Buoy (which for some reason everyone calls 6 Mile Buoy) fished well for queenfish on the top and goldies on the ledges.
The tides aren’t too shabby this weekend either.
They’re big, but the early-afternoon low tides are at a nice height for both offshore and Darwin Harbour.
There’s about 5m of movement both days, but that should get the reef fish biting.
Actually, reefies have been going well for weeks now, and last weekend was no exception, particularly down Dundee way.
For mackerel and other pelagics, the further out you go, the better it should be simply because water clarity will be much better out wide.
With heaps of current offshore, drift fishing the bottom will be the key to success.
If you anchor, then make sure you time your efforts for the change of the tide when the current slows and stops.
Bluewater pelagic fishing locations to consider include the aforementioned South Gutter, North Gutter, Dundee Wide and way out past the Peron Islands.
A good tip is to fish the Town Hall and near Channel island just inside Middle Arm; goldies around 2kg have been on the chew both day and night.
For barra fishermen, Corroboree Billabong is producing the odd barra trolling down the middle at night; no choice there as the lilies are choking this iconic waterhole.
A couple of tidal rivers are still producing the odd quality barra; namely, the Daly River and the Finniss River.
However, for consistent barra fishing, the saltwater estuaries are where the real action has been this dry season.
I’ve heard endless stories of great barra fishing in Darwin Harbour, Bynoe Harbour, Shoal Bay, Leaders Creek and the mouth of the Adelaide River.
Along the coast out from the mouth of the Daly River has also produced some wonderful barra fishing.
This all augurs well for this Sunday, in particular, because the big tides aren’t too bad for Darwin Harbour.
With a 1.7m low tide at 2.37pm Saturday, it’s a sweet barra scenario, and Sunday is pretty well the same.
Only last weekend, on much less movement, there were several reports of quality saltwater barra fishing in the harbour’s arms.
I’d suggest you get on the water and begin fishing your favourite arm or creek by 10.00am, then work through until a couple of hours after the turn.
With minimal winds, most of the flats will be clear and fishable.
Work them with shallow runners and prawn imitation softies, and don’t be afraid to troll the outer edge of the flats, but do so ever so slowly, preferably with an electric outboard and with your lure a long way back.
With skipper Neil Schultz at the helm, and Luke Burton lending a hand, Brooke Wilkins shows off her beaut black marlin caught wide of Dundee… her first-ever billfish.
Steve Compain decided to have some fun with this “toy” combo outfit, and promptly bagged a ripper black jew.