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Fishing With Alex Julius 10th October 2019

It seems the legacy of a poor wet season has continued to haunt competitors in this year’s Top End Barra Series (TEBS). This wonderful social/competitive event revolves around six locations fished respectively six times through the year. Sadly, the results in general this year have been the worst in TEBS nine-year history. Last weekend’s sixth and final round for the year, held as always in and around the Adelaide River mouth, was yet another tough event, with only 11 of the dozens of anglers who competed recording a scoring fish. This compares dismally to last year when there were 31 successful anglers, and to 2017 when 43 competitors registered fish. According to Regis Martin from TEBS, this final round is usually full of promises and big expectations, with the very real possibility of catching a metery. “With an early turn of the tide on Saturday morning, many had decided to launch very early, or even on Friday evening, to fish the morning bite time,” Regis reported. “As it was only the start of the neap-tides cycle, the water hadn’t settled and it was very dirty which almost certainly affected capture rates. “Even when spotted thanks to modern electronic technology, inactive fish refused to take any offerings; for example, Evan Dixon reported sitting on fish for six hours, dropping soft plastics and vibes on them for just one single hit. “Incredibly, the resultant 67cm barra put Evan in fourth position for the round. “Some anglers tried all of the Wilshire creeks, while others fished Chad’s, Leaders and Salt Water Arm, but the dismal results were fairly consistent,” Regis explained. It’s interesting how almost every TEBS event, a Good Samaritan steps up to help someone in need. This happened again on Saturday morning when Tim Bolch noticed a boat in The Narrows waving a light to attract his attention. Apparently, the boat had lost its propeller following a collision with an unidentified object, and Tim gave up two and a half hours towing the boat from The Narrows to the Salt Water Arm boat ramp. In fine style, the grateful anglers in the disabled vessel rewarded Tim’s efforts with a nice drop of rum. Ironically, Tim went on to register the most fish in the round, so karma was on his side even though he didn’t actually win. Anthony Dent caught a 72cm barra and came third in the weekend round. Tim Bolch was second with four barra measuring 50, 52, 54 and 55cm. The round winner was ever-consistent Kai Argent who made it look easy by posting an impressive bag of 52, 64 and 92cm barra. Regis said: “Even if the round was not going to decide who was first, it did decide who and in what order competitors would place in the rest of the top 10 for the series.” The final results for this year’s TEBS competition are: 5th Jason Gerdes with 721; 4th Dwight Shepherd with 768 points; 3rd Clayton Archbold with 780 points; 2nd Evan Dixon with 806 points; and 1st Peter Cooper with an impressive 990 points. Congratulations to Peter who has now won back-to-back TEBS events.

Thanks to this 92cm Adelaide River barra, Kai Argent stormed home to win round six of the Top End Barra Series.

Mark Grosser was one of just 11 competitors who scored in the final TEBS round.

Catfish were the mystery fish in the last TEBS round, and Regis Martin can hold his head high.


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