Sunday, January 29, 2012

First Try At Culvert Fishing.

Hi there,

This is the story of how I got my first culvert's Barramundi.

Today for the first time I went culvert fishing, it took us on a 400 km (248.54848 miles) trip.
Culvert fishing is something that I had never done yet, despite the fact that doing the culvert run, is part of the fishing experience of the top end.
It is an highly seasonal type of fishing, which can be practiced only during or around the wet season.
This is the time of the year where the water from the rivers, the flood plaines and the culvert interconnect, this is the time to get in the action.

So why after all these years in Darwin, I hadn't done it yet?
Well mostly because to do it right you need a car, preferably a four wheels drive, which I don't have. And also someone who knows where to go.

All this came to me this week in the form of Mullet93 from the FFF Forum.
Mullet93 had done a post on the forum about his last rounds of culvert fishing, and I replied to the thread with a comment saying that this is something that I would love to try one day.
Next thing I know, I get a message the next day from Mullet93 asking me if I wanted to join him on one a trip the following day.
You guessed it right, I said Yes!

And thus the next morning at 4:25 his car was in front of my door, with him waiting for me.
We drove in the early morning hoping to be there first to have a good spot at the first culvert that we were going to fish.
As we arrived still in the dark to our first destination, we could see the lights of two cars coming behind us, but lucky us, they were going pig hunting. The pig dogs with gleaming eyes and blinking collars were in the back of their off roads ute and quad bikes, off they went in the dark over the crossing in search of their prey.

So we waited with anticipation for the first light of the day, as we didn't want to take the risk to walk on the crossing in pitch black and risk to face a crocodile, without even seeing it.
And then the fishing started.

Mullet93 fishing on the upstream side.

Not long after we had begun, as I was flicking the dowstream side of the crossing, I hooked a nice little Tarpon on a fizzer.
I decided that I wanted a photo of it still in the water under the little rapids, and as I was getting my camera ready, he found a way to free itself and happily swam away.

Not long after that Mullet 93 got a nice little Barramundi, on the downstream side too, and as he was taking the fish in his hands, and me getting the camera ready to make a photograph of the first Barramundi of the day...
The fish played an Houdini on us and escaped from his hands felt on the crossing, from there jumped in the water, and happily swam away...
Does it start to look like a patterns?
We had to break it!

It finally happened, as I was tossing a small soft plastic lure in the drop bear colour, once again in the downstream side, I felt a jolt in my line, and very quickly a nice little Barramundi jumped  clear of the water. Now whit soft plastics I am much better at dropping the fishes than at landing them. So the pressure immediately went up a few notches. 
I had spent all this time casting my lure in the calm eddies on the sides of the rapid flow on the borders of the crossing. This is just when I had decided to do a cast in the centre of the turbulent waters, to see how my little soft plastic would react in fast waters, that this fish had taken the bait. 
So much for the reputation of laziness worn by the Barramundis...
And in the fast flowing water is where this one decided to fight, putting the the stream to his advantage. After the first jump, he did all the fight under water, diving as deep as he could, like a Trevally would have done.
Being on the smallish side I was still able to get it close enough for Mullet93 to grab it and end it to me.

It was time for a photo:

My first Barramundi from a culvert.

At 59 cm (23.228346 inches), it was not huge, but it was legal size and I decided to keep it.

Not long after that we decided to go to the South Alligator culvert.
Where upon arrival we saw a guy who caught a nice clean Barramundi just as we had parked and were walking towards the culvert.
But the fish seemed to have slipped from his hands, and to swam away, with his lure...
That did not make for a happy bloke...
In fact he left just a few minutes after that, and we had the culvert for ourselves.

There we heard many boofs, saw many Barra, and even got a few hits, but didn't manage to stay connected to any fish.
Some of the boofs were directly under the culvert, it is a funny thing to hear a barramundi boofing just under your feet.
So we decided to drive our way back to town, and made just a quick stop of a few minutes to two other culverts, but they didn't produce.

This was a very interesting and pleasant fishing trip for me, the first time that I found myself flicking a lure from the road side, and I now understand why so many people are doing it.

So yes, some of you might think that this was a round trip of 400 km for just one bagged Barramundi, but still I really enjoyed this morning of fishing and seeing the countryside. 
Call me fishing tragic if you want...

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

8 Lures From Doors Off.

Hi there,

Not long ago, Doors Off, a respected member of the FFF Forum, gave me a few fishing lures as a present, for my small collection.
This is the lures that I am presenting you today.

First comes my first ever JaySea:

The JaySea Mundi 80.

I am very happy with this lure, as this is my first ever JaySea.
JaySea Lures, were first made in Queensland, then moved in the Northern Territory to Darwin, then disappeared from the radar. So I am very happy to have one in such a good condition.

Then comes a Rapala:

The Original Floater.

A classic in a nice retro colour, alway something nice to have in the collection.

Then comes a nice little Killalure:

Killalure Trout Bait.

A very nice little lure, not easy to find in the tropical north, where Barramundi lures are a lot more common than trout lures...

Then comes one lure for which I have absolutely no idea of its origin or name: 

Do you know it?

It is actually very well finished, but I don't have a single clue as to what it could be.
If you know, please enlighten me.

And now comes some of my favourite lures to collect, some Reidy's:

Aquat Rat in gold chrome.

Aquat Rat in chrome.

Aquat Rat in blue and white.

I am starting to get a few Aquat Rat, but I didn't own or hadn't even see some in these colours. So I am rather pleased to have them now.

The Rattle Snake.

This rattle snake is very interesting to me, as it has the Reidy's logo on the back, and is in a colour that you can't find on their catalogue anymore. Another lure that I had never seen in this delivery.
One of the reason I really like the Reidy's, is first because they are the local guys. And in second, because my first ever Barramundi caught on a lure was on a Reidy's B52's, in the colour gold. It was in 2007, and I still remember it, and have the lure...

Doors Off even gave me a Floppy lure.
But as the bib broke during transport, it is at the moment in the expert hands of a repairman. 
So the photo will come latter, and I can't wait, as this is too, my first Floppy.

Thanks again Doors Off, these will fit very nicely in my small collection of fishing lures.

Once again, you will have guessed it, none of these lures will ever swim any more...
Because, even if I haven't fished in a long time, I am not ashamed to say that playing with these, is nearly as good ... 

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,

P.S: And don't forget to try to win a handcrafted lure in my giveaway just there.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Three Amazing Fishing Lures.

Hi there,

Not long ago I was offered three amazing fishing lures.
The lures are Scurvy Dog Lures, and the person who gifted these lures to me, is no one else than the man who made them.

Yes one day out of the blue I received a phone call from Balls from the FFF Forum, asking me the exact address of where he could drop a few lures that he had just made for me.
I got very excited and couldn't wait to see them.
I had heard of these lures, and read an article in the local newspaper about an 85cm (33.464567 Inches) Barramundi being caught on the mighty Daly River on one of them, but was yet to own or even to see one of them.
Scurvy Dog Lures are made in Darwin, with different types of timber, depending of the effect and floatation desired.

As they say that a photograph is worth a thousand words, so lets start with the images...

The Bleeding Mullet.

This is the shape of the lures, they are without the bib, 10cm long (3.9370079 inches) and dives between 3 to 4 meters (9.84252 to 13.12336 foot). The first one is of the very traditional colour called The Bleeding Mullet. A colour that has proved many times over that it is a very efficient, and most anglers that I know have at least one lure in this colour in their tackle box. This colour could be described as an all time classic.

Then Balls said that he had read somewhere that I loved timber fishing lures, so he gave me this one, which is really for the lovers of wooden lures.

Pure wood.

Traditionally, a lure showing the timber as in this photograph, is called a naked lure.
And yes this is my first naked lure. I have sometimes seen some for sale on Ebay or other places, but they were always way out of my price range for a fishing lure.
It is then very easy to imagine how excited I become when I saw it.
For the folks keen on wood, it deserves a few close-up.

Built strong.

With a beautiful finish.

Balls then told me that he was going to give me a lure in a colour called The Classic Drop Bear. I knew what the colour called Drop Bear was, but had never seen a The Classic Drop Bear... (The Drop Bear is a mythical, very dangerous,  Australian animal).
So be ready, because here it comes:

The Classic Drop Bear.

Look at that eye.

Like the two other lures it is made of timber, even if one could easily be fooled into believing that this one is made of plastic.
The quantity of paint, glitter and coating on it, is a testament to the amount of work required to produce this very lure.
As for the eye, many Australians will recognise it...

This is three fantastic hand made fishing lures, in their construction, colours and finish.
I do feel very privileged and lucky to have them.
Thanks again Balls, this is a very nice present. 
When you collect fishing lures, not many things came close to being as good as getting a lure directly from the hands of it's maker.

These three lures will definitively stay at the office, and will never be allowed near any water. I understand that some of you may think that it is a bit sad not to swim them. But I do not want to risk loosing them, or even to scratch them. 
Forever dry, they will stay.

But hey, It could be worse.
Have a good day,