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Alex's Fishing Column 27 February 2020

It seems everything is coming together nicely for the annual Kakadu Klash which is scheduled for 2-5 April. Following the closure last year of the Aurora Kakadu Resort, which had hosted the Klash for nearly three decades, it seemed this iconic tournament had run its race. However, thanks to Parks Australia, and Kakadu National Park itself, the Klash was given a new life. Ever-cheerful Andy Ralph, who lives in the park, was appointed Kakadu Klash co-ordinator and has certainly gotten on with the job. “We have 41 teams entered now, including three local teams from Jabiru,” Andy told me. “We’ve also got Greg and Ali from Mix 104.9 coming out to do a live cross from the Crocodile Hotel on the Friday morning, and to MC the presentation night on Saturday. “We also have some great sponsors on board and there’ll be television screen coverage each night at the Croc,” Andy explained. As you may have gathered, the Klash will be held from Jabiru and competitors will be able to fish both the East Alligator and the South Alligator Rivers. Andy also reported: “While the fishing has been understandably slow on the Alligator Rivers, most attention is currently on rising water levels and the impending runoff. “The South Alligator has been receiving floodwater for two weeks now and, although levels are up, a decent burst is still required to scour the mud-bars at the top of the South and up Nourlangie Creek. “The same goes for the East Alligator River – Cahill’s Crossing has been running at over 2m for a month and, with Magela Creek Crossing finally going over a metre this week, the floodplain will surely fill up and pour into the East Alligator via the outflow which is located some 25km downstream from Cahill’s Crossing,” Andy explained. “It has been the location for some terrific big barramundi captures over the years and will no doubt be a target for anglers in the upcoming Kakadu Klash. “Some competitors have already done a recce of both Alligator Rivers and, with quite a few Jabiru teams competing, don’t be surprised if some local knowledge of the East Alligator River comes into play and some metre-plus barra are recorded. The culverts are also finally holding barra with some good captures at Nourlangie Creek bridges and the South Alligator River culvert just west of the bridge,” Andy told me. The next big tournament after the Klash will be the Barra Nationals in late April. Palmerston Game Fishing Club organisers, and competitors too, have their fingers crossed that more rain will fall on the Daly River catchment. According to Warren De With from Katherine Rod and Rifle Tackle World, the Katherine River, which runs into the Daly, is lower than he’s ever seen it at this time of year. “It’s never not had a pulse go through it by this time of year. “The highest it’s reached is one metre, and that’s why the Daly is so low downstream. “On the neap tides, it’s almost impossible to get below Alligator Head except on the high tide. “The Vic River is very low and dirty; it’s red basically,” Warren told me. According to the Bureau Of Metreology, a monsoonal trough is extending across the lower Top End. Hopefully the skies will open up and serious rain falls on our big-river floodplains, especially the Daly.

Fishing apparel trend setter, Dave Krantz, with a typical Darwin Harbour barra from last weekend.

This is Magela Creek crossing yesterday on the way to the East Alligator River – just under one metre deep.


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