It seems that everyone’s given up hope of getting any sort of a rain drenching before the official dry season. However, it was interesting chatting with Ben Price from the Bureau of Metreology about our chances. “There’s a weak trough in the southern part of the Banda Sea,” Ben said. “There’s a bit of a low happening and we’ll see how it behaves. “If it comes down, it will drag that monsoon with it over the Timor Sea, and maybe deliver monsoonal conditions along the west coast next week if that scenario plays out,” Ben explained. Interestingly, there’s yet another low developing in the Coral Sea off north Queensland. Wouldn’t it be nice if it travelled west, across Cape York, and drowned the Top End? Longer term, the next MJO event isn’t due over the NT until about mid-April; possibly too late to cause a significant rain event. Meanwhile, there’s been some pretty good fishing of late. According to Fishing and Outdoor World’s Ron Voukolos, the coastal creeks down around the Daly River have been producing some terrific barra. “There’s also been some excellent barra fishing in the harbour, especially on the flats in Middle Arm,” Ron told me. “But really, this past week has been all about jewfish. “Big jew were caught in King Creek in Shoal Bay on the top half of the incoming tide, and on lures too. “Mattie West caught a 15kg jew at The Rock, jewies have been biting at Ruby Island, and the shallow reefs out the front of the Mary River have been going off with rampaging black jew,” Ron reported. He also said big goldies were on the chew wide of Dundee, but the sharks were everywhere. Arafura Blue Water Charters’ Steve Compain also said the goldies were seriously on the bite. “We had to stop fishing for them as all our punters bagged out,” Steve told me. There’s very little movement with the neap tides this weekend. Given there’s been some billfish action of late down off Dundee – including a run of juvenile black marlin – these neap tides are perfect for a shot at a sailfish or marlin. Water clarity should be amazing off Dundee and I’m told there are schools of baitfish all over the place out wide. And don’t forget that, on the last set of neaps, competitors in the Top End Barra Series caught a lot of great barra, including several over a metre. With similar tides this weekend, you can be the boats will be lined up to launch at Shady Camp for a pre-dawn start before the tide gets too low to motor down the channel. I’m sure plenty of fishos will make their way to the Wildman River which produced the biggest barra of the recent TEBS round. I dare say the South Alligator River will also come in for a bit of angling attention. The Aurora Kakadu Klash is scheduled for there on 4-7 April and a few competitors will be checking out the big Kakadu river. I do know some quality fish have been caught down around the mouth, with smaller barra hitting lures up inside Nourlangie Creek. The Aurora Kakadu Klash is a great tournament I reckon. It’s the first of the three Barra Majors, the other two, in sequential order, being the Barra Classic and the Barra Nationals of course. This year there will again be 45 teams in the Klash, all entered on invite, and everyone will be staying at the comfortable Aurora Kakadu Resort. The lack of rain will means the river will fish differently to the way it normally does in the late Runoff, but I still expect some terrific barra to be caught.
Here’s another great fish from last week’s Top End Barra Series round at Shady Camp: Aaron Neal with his 91cm barra.
Dwight Shepherd bagged this 91cm barra during the TEBS event.
Mark Grosser with one of two terrific fish in the 90s from Shady Camp last week.