FISHING With Alex Julius
The Runoff continues and there has been no end of great fishing reports.
The old Silver Fox, Roger Sinclair, hit Shady Camp with Glenn Hubble (aka Harbourmaster), late last week and caught upwards of 150 barra and a bunch of threadies.
Interestingly, many of their fish were caught on the long wand – fly fishing.
“Glenn fly fished more than I did and caught at least 30 on fly, including heaps at the Shady Camp barrages,” Roger told me.
“At times the fish were thick casting at and around the second Shady barrage.
“Mainly we used Clouser flies on Rio fast-sink tips, but Glenn also did well with a spinner-bait-imitation fly.
“We used both hard bodies and soft plastics, and caught most of our fish casting to creek mouths with prawn-imitation softies.
“The Reidy’s vibe stirred the barra up when they went quiet; I only had one and caught six barra quick time before I lost it to a snag,” Roger said.
“We also trolled the mouth around the turn of the low tide but nothing happened until the water was well on the rise.
“There were about 40 boats on the water each day, even on Saturday.
“Most of the barra were around the 50cm mark, but there were enough legal fish to keep us happy, and the biggest measured a neat 80cm,” Roger reported.
The story was similar at other rivers, including the South Alligator.
Matt West from Fishing and Outdoor World told me Nourlangie Creek was still the go at the South.
“There are heaps of small blackies up the top, and still plenty of colour at Nourlangie mouth.
“We trolled the Nourlangie Creek rock-bar quite a bit, and the best barra we saw was about 85cm.
“I was surprised how dirty the water was up the top, even on neap tides.
“The runoff is pretty well all over up the top of the South,” Matt reported.
Lots of anglers having been hitting the East Alligator River for mixed results.
It’s interesting that many have been getting to the East via the South Alligator River.
It’s not a bad plan to head down the South late in the day, then overnight at the mouth, and hopefully bag a big one.
The following morning, it’s a quick run to the mouth of the East Alligator, and the plethora of feeder creeks heading upstream.
The road to the East Alligator River boat ramp is open to high-clearance four wheel drives, but you’ll have about 0.6m water depth to traverse.
Once there, you won’t need to travel far as the first few feeders on the way down are all producing barra.
Some of the best barra fishing close to Darwin has been the Finniss and Little Finniss Rivers which are accessed from the great new boat ramp next to Lodge of Dundee.
Some terrific barra are getting caught trolling the mouth of the Little Finniss.
Closer to Darwin, the Adelaide River is still producing at feeder creek mouths, including a fair way down the river.
Perhaps most action over the weekend will be on the Daly River where anglers competing in the Club Marine Insurance Barra Nationals will be scouring the bed and banks researching for this great NT tournament.
The Nationals begins with the briefing at the beautiful Banyan Farm Tourist Park venue next Wednesday night.
The Banyan Farm copped a hiding from the Daly River flood this year but I understand long-time owners Wally and Kerry Draper have brought it back to pristine condition with some great new facilities in place for the Nationals.
Hosted by the Palmerston Game Fishing Club, there’s well-justified anticipation of some great barra fishing in this year’s event.
1. Roger Sinclair used his Redington fly reel and Rio super-fast-sinking fly line to catch this salmon and heaps of barra in some hot sessions at Shady Camp.
2. It’s no secret that Glenn Hubble bagged this chubby barra fly fishing below a Shady Camp barrage.
3. Trevor Tierney’s 136cm barra of a lifetime was caught at a secret spot on a Reidy's Big B52.