Some clouds. Dirty water around the north wall even at the top of the tide, cleaner water on the south wall & rest of seaway. Lots of bait offshore in 30-40m between the Narrowneck Arti & Oracle. Mack Tuna schools feeding on surface in the same area.
On the water at 3.45am we moved into the seaway, tried slugs, minnows, poppers but got zip, no hits either. Water was quite dirty which may have been a factor. At sunup we moved offshore and followed the birds, which were all flying south. We followed them all the way down in line with the Oracle and found some good tuna schools working the surface. First cast with 40gram Raiders and we had a double hookup, unfortunately we lost both those fish, one after about 5 seconds, the other next to the boat. We chased more schools around for the next few hours landing 6 mack Tuna from 60-69cm, losing that many again. They weren't easy to get a hookup on and required alot of manouvering to find the right school. We worked our way north and further out with some large schools at about 40m east of the narrowneck arti but by this time they were quite fussy and hard to get a cast into. We gave it away and went back to the seaway for the top of the tide, jigged plastics for a bit with only 1 60cm Jewfish as a result. Gave it away at 8.30am.
So not a bad day overall, good to see some Tuna out there so early in the season, some years they don't show up until early march. Its been a excellent pelagic season so far, hopefully it will continue to get better as we get closer to the peak in March.
Well more rain and another flood for the gold coast. Another mild one so it shouldn't take too long to clean up, the gold coast certainly faired better than brisbane and moreton bay. I do think however that it is only a matter of time before the Gold Coast gets hit with a major flood which will wreck whats left of the summer season.
Fished the seaway at dawn but with it being the bottom of the runout the water was very dirty and we had no luck so we headed offshore to look for tuna.
We headed south and briefly dropped into mermaid to see if there were any mackerel on surface at around 6am(which there weren't), saw a few fish caught but certainly not alot of action. Spent the next frustrating hour chasing schools of tuna about 200m off surfers beach. Hundreds of fish in the schools that were busting up but as soon as the lure touched the water they were goooone. Only managed one hit out of it. Good fish too by the looks of the ones getting airborne... around 3-5kg.
Headed back to the seaway and fished the washes managing 3 bigeyes all small, water was alot cleaner with the run-in tide. Water temp was up between 26-27 degrees and there was tons of bait in the triangle but didn't seem to be any fish into them.
Rain Periods, Heavy Overcast. Strong Winds. Difficult fishing conditions.
Headed straight into the seaway to be greeted by challenging conditions. They were ideal for wash fishing along the north wall edge though so I started off with a 14cm Saltiga Dorado Slider stick Bait and started working the edges. Wasn't long before a decent tailor around 50cm hit it and after a short tussle and a pic he was back in the water. Tried that for a while longer before switching to a Megabass Vision 110 and soon hooked up on some bigeye trevally, managed about 5 of those ranging from 40-50cm before they went off the bite. Switched to a twistie and managed 1 dart at around 30cm. Switched to a 65gram Raider and started working along the face and soon hooked one more bigeye at 48cm. That was it though, messed around for a bit before giving it away for the morning.
Not a bad start to the year but nothing too exciting. Need better conditions to be able to fish the tips of the walls where the bigger fish lurk.
So what can we look forward to in 2011? Well alot depends on the weather.. more cyclones are forecast, that means more strong winds, more rain and more floods. The Gold Coast has got off lightly so far with only 2 mild flood events, which have only taken a couple of weeks to clear, that can change at any time.
From now until late may is pelagic season, its been a good mackerel season so far so hopefully that should continue. Tuna have been around but not in any numbers, schools have been found all the way from south straddie to palm beach reef but all schools have either rejected offerings or been impossible to get a cast into. We should start to see some striped tuna and yellowfin tuna in late January/early feb with the bulk of the mack tuna schools showing up in mid february and staying with us until late May. The full moon in March usually provides some excellent tuna fishing just off the mouth of the seaway, as long as the weather allows you to get out there.
As for the seaway itself, Jewies will still be around at the top of the tide changes on plastics. Bigeye Trevally will stick around until about the end of January then start to fade out though the smaller ones will stick around. Giant Trevally usually show up in numbers as the Bigeyes move off, they usually stick around until July/August but can be difficult to catch regularly.
Tailor should be around all year but will stop surface feeding as the water gets colder, the bigger fish will be caught on poppers and shallow running minnows from now until about May, when the smaller fish take over.
Tarpon are still a mystery fish, I caught alot in winter last year but that was due to the good conditions we had, lots of flat calm seas enabled me to fish where I had not fished for them before. None have been captured in summer so far but the conditions have been challenging to say the least. 2011 will hopefully add a few more behavioural patterns to my knowledge of seaway Tarpon.
Yellowtail Kings can show up at any time, they don't seem to have a preferred time of year but they do seem to prefer cleaner water.