Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A Day On The Adelaide River.

Hi there,

Yes last weekend I went for the first time fishing on the Adelaide River, and what a great day it was.
Arrabmundi invited me on his boat to go to fish in company of his good friend Jamie.
We had a very reasonable start, living Darwin at 11:am, not too early for a Sunday morning, and giving us the time to arrive in time for the tide.
To be honest, I was a little apprehensive to go and fish on this river, due to the large number of big crocodile who live in it.
And Ms Frugal Down Under, was not very impressed when I told her what the destination of my day trip was...

But I found that the boat ramp looked a lot safer than a lot of other where I had been in the past. And we hit the river with no problems, despite a car park full of cars and trailers, the river was going to be busy.

At the first spot where we stopped, I was quickly on to a nice little Barramundi, that Arrabmundi estimated to be in the 60 cm. (23.622047 inch) but I lost it at the boat...
Yes this was on a soft plastic, and this is often the curse of using soft plastic lures.
But still it made me happy as I thought that this was going to be a ripper of a day, if I could be on a fish so early in the day.

We moved to another spot but someone was already there, so we didn't stay long and moved to yet another place. Where Arrabmundi boated the first fish of the day:

First Barramundi of the day.

This was to me another proof that the day was going to be a good one.
We passed Donald's creek, but a boat was anchored in the middle of it's mouth so we moved along.
To another spot where we stayed for a little while, and with good reason.
We started to cast some hard body, at the mouth of a little creek, where the water was showing some mild turbulences.
Arrabmundi got another fish there, and soon I started to get many hits.
Not just little tap on the lure, but full on hit with the fish taking a bit of line or even jumping, then spit the lure...
I lost them all... 
What was going on? This was on a brand new lure, we even checked the hooks, and they were of good quality, and sticky sharp.
I just had a very sever cas of "Dropsytite", and could not hold on to any fish.
All the while Jamie and Arrabmundi were boating some nice fish.

Jamie first fish for the day.

Jamie first fish wasn't the bigest one of the day, but he did catch some bigger ones later on, and even had an 80cm one the previous day. And me you may ask? Well I kept dropping them, one after the other...
When lunch time arrived and my two accomplice stopped for lunch, I decided to try a bit longer. As they were munching on sandwiches I had the water for myslef, and changed lure... 
That was a good move and I finally boated my first fish for the day on a Classic Barra 120 +3 in the Bleeding Mullet colour:

64 cm of Adelaide River Barramundi.

Being my first fish in the boat for the day, I didn't take any risk, in the esky it went. Just in case I was not goint to catch any other, at least I would have a feed.
Then the boys started to cast again and got a few more, and I lost a few more...
As the water was dropping with the tide, we were able to spot the footprints left by a Jabiru in the mud, just next to where we had parked the boat

The Jabiru footprints.

We then moved to the mouth of Beatrice creek, did a few cast just there.
And decided to move between 50 to 150 metres upstream, and this is when it started to be like in a fishing commercial.
I had reverted to a soft plastic, a 5 inch from Reidy's in the Tiger Green colour, when I felt a little tap on my lure. Nothing big, just like tap, tap on the lure, but it didn't feel like a snag, just like if something had hit the line under water. By reflex more than anything else, I gave a small jerk to the rod, this is when the line went tight, and a nice little fish jumped, I was on!
With the amount of fish that I had already lost on soft plastic lures, during the day, I was a little anxious that the same scenario was going to happen again under my very eyes.
The fish first went right, on the other side of the boat, then dived under the boat, to appear just where it had all started. Then it went for the motor, and I feared that the prop would cut the line, from there it was back  on the other side of the boat, trying to go for the middle of the river. Finally, it came to the boat, and Arrabmundi told me to just bring him head first to just slide it in the net. And it worked!
This was going to be my biggest Barramundi on a soft plastic lure to date.

My Personal best on a soft plastic.

Yes, I was more than happy with that! It went 76 cm (29.92126 inch).
As I already had a fish on ice, I put it back in the water to fight another day.
Arrabmundi and Jamie keept landing a few more, there was a very good buzz going on aboard the boat at this moment.

Good mood all-around.

This session was short but for sure, will stay in my memory as a top Barramundi session.
It came to an end when things started to slow down, and Arrabmundi boated the last fish of the day.

Last Barramundi for the day.

We then proceeded to troll for a small amount of time, during which we all had some good strike, but no fish stayed connected.
And it was time to head back.

This was my first time on this part of the river, and I loved it.
The scenery is beautiful, and the fishing was great.
Thanks Barramundi for the invitation.

From the dozen of fish boated only two of them had my name on them.
Arrabmundi and Jamie got the king's share, and this show that I still have a lot to learn when it comes to Barramundi fishing.

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


Fish Whisperer said...

What an awesome trip. If you don't mind me asking what gear are you using? Rod, reel, line, and leader?

Rambling Expat said...

Hi Fish Whisperer,

Thank you for the comment, and there is no problems about asking what gear I am using. No secrets there.

For Barramundi fishing, considering that I fish for them, either in rivers full of mangrove and snag, or in the sea in places full of oyster rocks, I don't exactly do it with the utmost finesse...

I have two outfit:
- A Top Ender/Abu Garcia Revo fishing rod it is 1,77M long with a line rating of 6-10KG. The rod reference is PFLTE-CA511HFT.
it is coupled with a reel Abu Garcia Revo Inshore.
It is the outfit I would use the most for land based Barra fishing.
- The other is a G.Loomis GL2 and the rod reference is CR665 / 5'6" Heavy.
The reel mounted on it is the Shimano Curado 201E7. Together they made a sweet combo, very light and pleasant to use all day.
(I got both rods for free, one as a present and the other as a prize, I would not have been able to afford this type of rods, the ones I bought myself were Ugly Stik, and yes both of my reel are lefties).

For the line it is the braid that they put on the reel at the shop... It is a yellow one, and is 30LBS, but this is as much as I know about it, sorry. (not sur but it could be fireline)

For the leader, I used 60LBS Black Magic or the Penn 10X Leader in 60LBS. But for a few weeks now I use The Schneider Klear-line in 55LBS.
A friend from the FFF forum recommended it to me, and so far I am happy with it.

So yes all this might seem a bit heavy handed, but I still have Barra taking me to the sticks on a regular basis.
I think that it depends of where you fish, and of course of your ability as a good angler, or just average like I am.

Hopefully with time and persistence, I will be able to downsize my gears.

So do you ask because you are planning a Barramundi fishing trip in our area?

Have a good day,

Fish Whisperer said...

Rambling Expat, I am not going to make it your way any time soon. But if I do I will let you know.
I was just curious as to why you are not sticking the soft plastics very well. You might want to try a heavier rod in order to set the hook better. Just a thought. Also have you tried Fluorocarbon leaders? Extremely abrasion resistant and invisible in the water. You might be able to size it in the 40lb range.
I use lefties also. After all my strong arm is my right.
Anyways just some ideas for you to play with.

Rambling Expat said...

Hi Callan,

It's too hot here, to use a heavier rod...

I have never tried a Fluorocarbon leader.
Is their any that you would recommend?

The only place where I used 40lbs leader is in a Billabong (and I don't go there often at all). And with the one I was using, I got the leader shafted by a Barramundi.

So I would be interested to try a Fluorocarbon one.
Are they expensive?

Thanks for your comments and advices, they are always interesting, and informatives.

Have a good day,

Rambling Expat said...

P.S: "I use lefties also. After all my strong arm is my right."
This is exactly what I try to explain to all my mates here, but to no avail...
I am right handed, but use lefties reel, to have my good arm to do the hard work on the fishes...

Fish Whisperer said...

Fluorocarbon is about 6 to 8 time more expensive than regular mono. It is also extremely strong for it's size. BY heavier rod I mean stiffer to allow you to set the hooks in the Barras mouth. When I fished them I noticed they had very boney mouths.

Rambling Expat said...

Hi Fish Whisperer,

Yes Barramundi have a very boney mouth, and the soft plastics with just a single hook have a hard time to stay connected to them.
When fishing for reef fish with soft plastic it is not as hard, they hook much easier.

Also Barramundi, often don't hit the soft plastics the same way that they hit the hard bodies.
Must be something about the way we swim them.

I will need to go to the shop one day, and have a look at these Fluorocarbon, and see what they are like.

Have a good day,