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Information on the quality and location of local Boat Ramp facilities. Includes photographs, maps and some video content.

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Promoting family fishing.

Fish for the future promotes catch and release fishing.

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Regular fishing reports from our fishing trips.

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Fly Fishing

Chasing Golden Trevalley on the Magnetic Island flats.


Enjoying one of the many beautiful beaches of Magnetic Island.

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Townsville Marine News

Boat Show Specials Now On!

The Townsville Boat Show is on at the end of May - but why wait to get a great bargain on a new Quintrex, Suzuki, Bar Crusher, Yellowfin or Hooker boat when you can get boat show deals now!

Just visit our website and download our catalogue - the specials are on now!

Just remember, the specials apply to the boats in the catalogue - so be quick if you don't wan't to 'miss the boat' you want!

Townsville Marine's new showroom! The slab is down!

Construction has commenced on the largest under cover boat showroom in Queensland - right here in Townsville!

We're still in the same location, 943 Ingham Rd Bohle (the showroom is being built on the corner).

(If there is a bigger dedicated boat showroom, please let me know)

It's so big, you'll see it from Mars. Will all Martians please email photos!

Emmanuel Theodosiou
Townsville Marine

Monday, 25 April 2011

Back to Hinchinbrook

Saturday morning dad and I took the little blue tinnie back up to Hinchinbrook for round 2 against the mighty Barramundi. We launched at Fishers Creek for the short run up around the Benjamin Flats area. To cut a long story really short, we had a great morning session boating 7 or 8 Barramundi before 9am. Biggest went 67cm with most in the low 60's. But once the tide bottomed out just after 9am the bite just stopped! We then fished the full incoming tide for not much more than a couple of Cod, a small Jack and one lone Grunter. We bailed about 4pm wondering where the Barramundi had disappeared to. Again the 4in Atomic Prong we deadly amongst the snags. 

As a word of caution. If you launch at Fishers Creek at all, make sure you have a GPS. Its a maze of small creeks up there and very easy to get lost. There is, however, very good 3G mobile reception up that way. I was able to use my iPhone and Google Maps to navigate back to the ramp. 

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Hinchinbrook Barramundi

Yesterday Dad and I went on a fishing expedition up to Hinchinbrook with GandT Fishing School proprietor Graham Knight (forum member Knighty). Graham and I have been planning a fishing trip together for several weeks now, and with the recent success he has been having with his clients up the channel, it was a no brainer to head back up there. We left Grahams place about 5am with his beautifully decked out 6m glass flats boat in tow. On the water at 6.30am it was then a long run up the channel to where we wanted to fish. Luckily his boat does 30knots quite easily!

We started drifting the edge of a small creek working toward where Graham anticipated the fish to be sitting. But without his usual hand remote for the 80lb iPilot electric, Graham was getting slightly annoyed working into the current with just the foot controller. So with nothing more than a small Barracouda attacking our lures the decision was made to pull the electric and head upstream and work back with the tide.

As we drifted slowly with the tide we entered a small creek mouth and worked our lures around the pressure points. This was where we saw our first Barra. A big fish took a swipe at my 4in prong right beside the boat! He missed the hook, but got the adrenaline pumping. A few more casts in this area and I was on. I didn't even see the take. One minute I was watching my prong in the clear water, and next thing I couldn't see it any more! Thumb on the spool of the Chronarch and 30lb Power Pro held to pull the fish from the snags. A short fight from here and we had our first Barra in the boat. At 71cm it was to hold the the 'biggest fish' title for most of the day.

We had several more hits, flashes and missed hookups before Dad nails his first for the day. Although it was a little unorthodox! A solid fish, it took him straight into the snags. We could see the fish still attached and Dad could feel it surging on the end of the line. So in Graham goes with the boat! Several attempts fail to get the fish to swim back under the snag, so plan B was to grab the fish by the tail and haul it over the side while Dad gives some slack! Success, Dad has his first of the day to the boat. Thanks Graham!

Graham, not to be outdone by his visitors to the boat, was next to hook up. This time on a small Hard Bodied lure. I tried to get a little video footage, and almost lost the fish on him while trying to film with the camera in one had and net the fish with the other. But somehow it all came together and fish number 3 was in the boat.

Dad's next fish was a carbon copy of his first! Straight into the snags. Well, back in we go. A little mucking about and few broken mangrove roots and the fish swims free. After the fish is boated both Graham and I start yelling to Dad "MORE DRAG...MORE DRAG".

We continued to boat fish after fish during what was supposed to be the quiet period of the incoming tide. Graham had indicated earlier that fishing would be slow as tide rose, but the bite would improve on the falling tide. Wow, we had just experience a pretty good session on incoming, and were keen to see this 'hot bite' the falling tide was to bring!

As the tide topped out the fish did go off the chew. So we looked around a couple of other creeks and had some lunch and a rest. I changed over from the 4in Prongs on 30lb and pulled out the Stella 1000fe with 8lb. I put on a 3in Prong and Graham says "what are chasing there?". "Bream" I said. "What are you chasing Bream for when there are Barra all over the place?". "Well, its gone a bit quiet, though I might chase something else". But I was really keen to have a go at a bigger Barra on the light gear!

The tide eventually changed and we headed back to the secret spot. Almost immediately Dad hooked and boated another fine specimen. Then I hooked up a solid fish on the light gear. Maximum pressure on the 8lb and I had his head pointing at clear water. But the hooks pulled and fish won his freedom. I was a bit annoyed as the fish had been pulled clear of the snags and should have been an easy capture from there. "That will teach you to use the small prongs and smaller hooks" was the response from someone else in the boat. But revenge is sweet!!

A few casts later and I am hooked up again to a solid fish. Full pressure on the line and some good electric work from Graham sees the Barra come clear of the dangerous snags. In open water the fish works me hard. "Take it easy" says Knighty "We have all day". "Not with a 20lb leader!" I responded. But after some very tense moments the fish is cleanly in the net. At 75cm this was now the biggest fish of the day, and it was to stay that way too! So after a little bagging from the boys the 3in prong and 8lb Stella landed the biggest fish of the session. But I had pushed my luck enough, back to the Chronarch and 30lb!

And a good thing I did too, my next fish was what I called 'the 2 second fish'. Hookup and bust off all in less than the blink of an eye! He grabbed my prong, went under a snag, jumped on the other side and busted me off at the leader, all in under 2 seconds. "Was that the light gear" says Dad. "Um, no" I responded. Good thing too, I would not have lived that one down!

A few more fish for the afternoon and we were stuffed. Time to call it a day. We raced back down the channel at 25knots and once back in Dungeness Graham says "so do you want call it a day or go looking for a Jack?". We didn't have to be asked twice, so we headed up past the ramp to the first run of snags. I missed a fish and boated a 55cm Barra before Dad hooks his best fish of the day. Its nice to see a fat healthy fish jumping clear of the water with Dungeness harbour int he background. In the net and this one goes 67cm and is the only non farm fish of the day!

In all we boated well over 20 Barramundi. Of these 15 or more were leal fish, 12 over 60cm and 2 over 70cm. Not a bad effort with lots of other hits, flashes, jump offs and hooks thrown. By far the 4in Prong in white rigged weedless as shown here was the lure of the day. We had fish come back for two and three goes at the lure. You don't often find that with Hard Bodies.

Graham really does know his stuff when it comes to targeting Barramundi on lures. If you want to charter him for a session like we had then visit his website and get in and make a booking. He uses nothing but the best gear, his boat is set up like no other and his attitude and professionalism is spot on. You will have the time of your life. 

Here is a little video footage form the day. Its a bit rough, but good enough to get an idea.

Saturday, 16 April 2011

How to rig Atomic Prongs weedless for Barra and Jack

Atomic lures make a range of 3 and 4 inch 'Prongs' that represent a small prawn. Prongs almost always receive plenty of action on trips into the creeks. One of the things I really like about these soft plastics is the ability to easily rig them in a weedless fashion. Rigged in this way the prong can be cast deep into snaggy cover and worked out without getting caught up. This is ideal when chasing fish back into the mangrove roots. The prongs also have a beautiful little action without the need to be worked fast. They have a tail that paddles and 'feelers' that drift beautifully in the water. These two things combine to provide a lure that can be worked deep and keep there for longer than most other styles.

I usually cast the lure as far into the snags and timber as I dare. Then allow it to sink completely. Once the line stops, I give two quick, short jerks on the rod. This darts the lure up off the bottom just like a fleeing prawn. I then let it sink again and take up any slack before repeating. Most strikes come while the lure is sinking.

To rig the prong weedless you need a packet of Owner Wide Gap worm hooks and some small ball sinkers. I am using the '00' size sinker and it has proven ideal. The small sinker allows the lure to have a slow natural sink rate. But water flow and depth may dictate something bigger.

Begin by tying a loop knot of some description to the hook with the ball sinker contained in the bottom half of the loop.

Next push the point of the hook in through the front of the prong and bring it out under the chin.

Pull the hook through the prong until the eye is just sticking out. Turn the hook over so it points back toward the underside of the plastic.

Push the point of the hook through the belly of the plastic and bring it out as close to centre of the back as you can. It may take a couple of times to get the distance correct. The prong needs to sit straight and true on the hook or it will spin and look unnatural.

Finally, for that extra bit of snag resistance, embed the very tip of the point back into the back of the prong. This will easily pop out when a fish bites down.

Of the Atomic range I have found the 'Guzzlers' to be better than the 'Ripperz'. The Guzzler is a softer plastic and has a scent embedded into it. And as a bonus, they don't dry out and go hard like some other scented lures do. White is my favourite colour, but there are plenty of others in the range. They come in 3in and 4in sizes. The 3in have been dynamite on Bream, Jacks, Flathead and Barramnudi. I have even had 1m+ Barramundi take them. But the 4in is more a bigger fish lure. The 3in is best matched to a 1/0 Owner Wide Gap Plus and the 4in goes well with a 3/0. The '00' ball is fine for both sizes.

The 3in I usually fish on my Stella 1000Fe and 8lb Power Pro. But the 4in I fish on a Chronarch and 30lb. The 4in has plenty of weight to it to cast easily on heavier bait-caster outfits. I have also experimented with the 4in offshore for Nannygai and other bottom fish. They are very successful and readily taken. My best fish offshore was a nice Cobia that took the plastic boat-side after following another fish to the boat. I also think they will be red hot for Fingermark around the headlands. 

Monday, 11 April 2011

Boat for Sale - 2008 Seajay 4.35 CX Escape (SOLD)

• 40hp Yamaha 2 stroke.
   Electric start, trim and tilt tiller steer approx 53 hours
• Flat floor, front casting deck
• 2 swivel seats
• Plumbed Live bait tank
• Bow mount 55lb Minn Kota Riptide
  Foot control and auto pilot, 75 amp battery
• LED navigation and all round lights
• 480 Eagle mono sounder/GPS combo and East Aust coast map


Quiet couple of weekends

Have not had too much to report of late. The last two weekends have seen Dad and I tossing lures in Morriseys creek for Barra and Jack. But its been very quiet overall. We have upped to the 4in prongs in an attempt to lure out the bigger Barramundi, but we are yet to see one much over 60cm. And the Mangrove Jack have totally eluded us altogether. Not sure where they are hiding out at the moment?

But from massive tides one weekend to almost no run the next, I'm not really too surprised. But its still nice to find a few fish around to keep us entertained. Easter holidays not too far away. I'm sure we will get among em them. If we don't, the water will be cooling down soon and the fish will slow. Last weekend already saw the water temp down around 23-24ÂșC!

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Bar Crusher joins Townsville Marine

Townsville Marine are proud to announce that they are now the local dealer for Bar Crusher boats.  These boats have proven themselves in the southern states as soft riding and well built aluminium boats. Now Townsville Marine brings these spectacular hulls to the North! Emmanuel tells me they should have boats arriving as early as next week.