Report 19/10/18

Mal McKinlay
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Nicole Penfold
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Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2009 2:08 pm

Report 19/10/18

Post by Nicole Penfold » Fri Oct 19, 2018 2:03 pm

Sorry to keep you all in suspense, but I have been away in the van for a while dodging hail storms and tornados. When I got home mother nature dropped more than 300 mils over 5 days in the Maroochy catchment, so I’ve been cabin bound. The exciting news is that the rain we have just had has flushed some very big whiting down into the lower reaches of the Maroochy River.

How do I know this? Simple…I have just experienced a day on the river that fishos dreams are made of. I know from experience to get out on the river as soon as possible after a good deluge. There is no way I was going to sit out in my boat in pouring rain, so I had to wait for that off shore low to move away from the coast. On Thursday October18 I set out to fish the last of the run back on a fairly neepish tide, 2 days after the half moon. The river was the colour of mud, too thin to plough… too thick to drink. Just how I like it for whopper whiting. I pumped 20 yabbies to fish the runoff until the soldier crabs came out. I knew my yabbies would not stay alive long in this dirty water. Fortunately, the soldier crabs came out early and I immediately switched baits.

I went to my spot Y which is usually a reliable place to get the odd good whiting but still had to move a couple of times before I got that unmistakeable flick of the rod tip from an interested whiting. I took the weight of 2 good fish but dropped both. The third inquiry was a solid hook up but after playing it all the way to the boat it shook its head and was gone also. About now I was beginning to think it wasn’t going to be my day, when finally, I landed my first decent elbow slapper whiting for months. Over the next hour I landed another 5 whiting 31cm or better. There was also bream and grunter bream to 35cm in the mix, which I released.

At slack water I poured myself a well-earned coffee and waited for the young flood to start running back in. I re-positioned myself about 20 metres away to where the water looked like it was working a bit better over the shallow bank (the water was so murky it was a bit of a guessing game). Soon as the pace of the tide picked up, all 3 rods started to get inquiries. Over the next hour or so I was flat out and even had a triple hook up on whiting and grunter, landing all 3 fish. When the school moved on I had 14 of the best whiting the Maroochy river can offer, in my esky. They measured 2x38cm, 2x37cm, 4x35cm, 4x31cm, 2x27cm all on humble little soldier crabs. I dropped another 6 or 8 good fish after hook up which would have made the day even more sensational. One of the strange things was that the whiting didn’t know that they were hooked until they were right up to the boat because of the water clarity. When they finally saw the boat, all hell broke loose. It was easy to tell what species was on the line because those big whiting just keep their noses pointing to the bottom of the river until they are finally beaten

The quality of the whiting was what I have come to expect from the lower reaches after we have had a deluge. From reports from a couple of my readers, the whiting really started firing on the last full moon when they bagged out on good sized fish. The recent rain is an absolute bonus and over the next week or so, around the new moon there will be many elbow slapper whiting to be caught in the Maroochy river system. Also, there are a lot of grunter bream and tarwhine that have been flushed down to the lower reaches.

For more info about anything fishing, contact me on

Good Luck, Mal McKinlay


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