Taking your opportunities can make the difference between going home empty handed or bringing home a feed of fish…..
Conditions: High tide at around 7 am, light southerly with regular rain squalls
Season: Early winter
Strategy: A: Get lures into bust-ups in the Seaway B: Fish the structure around bridges
Technique: A: Casting slugs B: Hopping plastics back with the current under a bridge
Target: A: Trevally B: Anything
Gear: A: 9ft 6-10kg graphite rod 4000 size spin reel 20lb braid & 20lb leader B: 7’6″ 3-5kg rod, 2500 size spin reel with 10lb braid & 10lb leader
Lure Types: 40g slugs & 3” soft plastic minnows
Session Rating: 3/10
Late Thursday night I decided to head south and do some fishing down the Gold Coast the following morning. Fortunately most of my fishing gear was ready to go so preparation was limited to just 20 minutes or so as opposed to the usual hour and a half.
On my previous trip down to the Gold Coast I was outfought by a beast of a fish which eventually broke me off on the sand pipe on the Seaway floor. They say “it is the fish that gets away that keeps you coming back” – and as I drove down to the Gold Coast the next morning I certainly agreed with that sentiment.
The Seaway holds plenty but does not always give them up
After arriving at the Seaway, I spent two hours casting slugs and plastics around with not even a bite. One fella not far down from me was bitten off by something decent on his 14 foot surf rod. I took heart from this and continued fishing but the rain started up and my motivation was gone. I called up the wife to let the wife know I would be coming home early. She asked to me to pick up some meat from a specialty butcher she likes on Chevron Island while I was down the Coast.
Waiting for the butcher
I arrived at 8am only to find the butcher did not open until 8:30. With time to kill, I took my 3-5kg rod down to the bridge to see what was biting. Standing at the waters edge, I noticed a lure snagged on an oyster covered rock. As I stepped out to pick it up I then saw a very large Flathead lie in the sandy shallows before me. The oyster covered rocks were scattered around the foreshore and amongst the eddy currents that formed around the bridge pylons. It all looked pretty fishy to me and I was keen to put a lure out.
On the first cast, I lost my 3” plastic minnow to what I later realised be a sunken shopping trolling I re-rigged and got a few grabs with no take. Pike were probably working the area and picking at my lures. I lost my second rig and decided to go and fish from up on top of the bridge.
Landing some fish
I went up onto the bridge and all the way over to the opposite side of the river. There were some very large Bream that came up to investigate my lure without striking. These fish were too smart to have a go at my lures presented on the end of a 12lb leader so I moved back toward the Chevron side. I cast out into the tide as I went and hopped the lure back along the bottom.
Half way back over, I came across a school of smaller Bream and landed a couple. A school of Pike then started hitting my lure. After landing one Pike and having some of my baits chewed up and ruined, I moved on to get away from the school. Sticking with the same technique through one of the deeper sections, I then hooked a healthy 44cm Gold Coast Flathead. It was a bit of challenge to land him as I needed to walk him back to the end of the bridge past the light poles. He was worth the effort though so I put him in the bag before dropping by the butcher and heading home with fresh fish for lunch. It was a a tough session that came good with a couple of fun fish at the end.