Report 20/9/17

Mal McKinlay
malcolmmckinlay0@gmail.com
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Nicole Penfold
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Report 20/9/17

Post by Nicole Penfold » Thu Sep 21, 2017 1:14 pm

After a fairly productive day on the Maroochy I finally feel I have something to write about.

Two days before the Sept New moon with a high tide at 7.30am and low tide at 2.30pm, Willy weather was predicting a gentle breeze all day. I was hopeful that some soldier crabs would start to come out after 3 hours of the runout tide around about 10.30am. When I arrived at the ramp I could see the crabs hadn’t started to work yet so I pumped the usual 50 yabbies and started to fish the run back for whiting all the while keeping an eye out for the soldier crabs to appear.

Because the New moon tides recede from the sand banks with better speed and energy than with Neap tides the whiting like to hang off the edges of the banks waiting for that last tit bit of crustacean to wash their way before they head out in to deeper water. This is the perfect time to drift a yabby or some soldier crabs from the shallow water on the bank to the edge of the drop off into the channel. You will quite often catch your best whiting at this time of the tide. I drifted yabbies for a half hour or so with only a few juvenile whiting and 4 small flathead to 40cm (all released) for my efforts. The soldier crabs were now starting to come out so I gathered enough very small black coloured crabs and went back to look for whiting.

By now the tide had been running back for 4 hours and the water was well and truly off the banks. The water I look for has to be fast running. This spot I was fishing was a channel less than a metre deep where a large section of the river runs through it like a funnel. The force of the water causes the sandy bottom to form undulations or melon holes and this is where the better class of whiting hole up as the tide recedes. I like to park my boat upstream (as far as I can cast) away from the start of the undulations and slowly work my way down stream casting soldier crabs into each melon hole.

The first undulation produced 2 nice whiting around 28cm and a flathead at 45cm. All were caught while I was working the bait in lure fashion i.e. flicking the tip of my rod. You don’t have to retrieve the line as the force of the water running back keeps the tension on your line. Once I can get no more enquiries I lift the anchor and drift back a couple of metres and continue to work the next section and so on. A lot depends on how much traffic is passing by i.e. boats and jet skis as to how spooked the whiting may be. Some days when you have the river to yourself and you are pulling these big whiting in to the boat in 2 feet of water you can almost believe you are in fisherman’s heaven.

I fished the run back tide till almost slack water then went for a walk over to the surf beach to stretch my legs and check out any gutters etc.(sometimes I like to pull a few beach worms and have a fish here). I went back to the river and fished the run in tide for 40 mins or so and pulled another couple of whiting on the early flood tide. I ended up with 8 quality whiting to 28cm and 1 flathead. So, although there were no real arm slappers among them it was great to see “they’re back”.

In my next report I’ll cover the rigs and sinker weights etc. I use when chasing whiting.

If I was going fishing over the next couple of days I would be targeting whiting. For the flathead fanatics, based on my last trip, you should get plenty of action at the moment.

If you would like to share some advice or ask me any questions please feel free to email me on malcolmmckinlay0@gmail.com any time.

Good Luck Mal McKinlay
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