MURRAY VISIT: Unforgettable Houseboat 5 at Bow River on the Murray.
MURRAY VISIT: Unforgettable Houseboat 5 at Bow River on the Murray.

Plenty biting despite wind so stick to the shelter of rivers

WITH the wind blowing like blazes there's obviously not many who are willing to stick their noses out front but there are plenty on the chew at the moment just inside the harbour around South End, or North Entrance as many know it.

For most of us though even a trip across the harbour to the shelter of the Oaks is a task in itself so we will be sticking to the shelter of the rivers and creeks like the calliope and Boyne or maybe up at Targinnie and throughout The Narrows system.

We are right in the full moon lunar phase now with huge tidal run but petering off next week as we go into the last quarter which happens to be one of my favourite times to fish.

The crabs are nice and big and chocolate coloured at the moment right through The Narrows, Grahams Creek and all the way down through Wild Cattle, Collo, Mundoolin and Seven Mile so with the weather in mind it's a great opportunity to slip up those creeks and put your pots as far up them as you can while the big tides are around.

Grahams, Flying Fox, Targinnie and right through The Narrows produce some awesome muddies at this time of the year.

I can remember one trip after a HookUp a few years ago where over three tides we managed to get around 40 big bucks.

On that particular trip I asked Pat Laws what's better than mud crab to which he replied "more mud crab"!

If the weather predictions are correct, the small creeks and drains will be holding some fresh water with the run off, so if you end up in a situation like that, use the sounder to find a nice deep hole as the salt water will be sitting in the bottom where the muddies will gather.

Speaking of muddies, the Mud crab Classic is coming up in a couple of weeks where Ernie Vaughan and his 60 merry men is on and come Sunday week the Tannum Sands Hotel will be packed (hopefully) as we undertake some serious mud crab racing.

But prior to that a mother of all auctions of the crabs will be held to raise money for young Anika Gorler.

Read about it in next week's Observer and put a scratch on the calendar to be up at the Tannum pub come 2pm Sunday. May 25. Bring ya money!

Blue salmon are certainly on the move as well and judging by the size of the big fella caught during this year's HookUp (approx. 6kg) your gear should be up to scratch.

An Awoonga Barra which Matty annoyed and the hooks in the head.
An Awoonga Barra which Matty annoyed and the hooks in the head. Contributed

If you are new to the region visit one of our local tackle shops as the person behind the counter is very wired into what and where the best fishing is to be had.

The water is certainly starting to cool off and the barra will slow up as that temp drops off so during this weekend suss out where they are gathering as they become quite lazy waiting for dinner to swim within "boofing" distance.

Think about these conditions when you are targeting a certain species because once that water cools right off you will need to present your lure or bait in that strike zone and even get it to the point where the barra might even take a swing at it just because it gets cranky and wants it out of his/her face.

Often we see lures stuck on the side or top of the fish's head and that's the reason why.

Being wet and windy also gives you an opportunity to visit the tackle shop and have a wander around to look at some new lures or tackle.

Talk to the assistant, ask them questions and if you like what they tell you then buy it!

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that I'd just been down to the Murray, for a few nights on a houseboat, and what a sensational time was had just cruising along at walking pace driving this 40 ton block of flats, driven by twin 90hp 4 stroke Hondas, up the river from Mannum, in South Australia.

To be honest the fishing probably isn't that good unless you are mad keen to target those big cod down there and even then they are huge with some or even the average weighing in around 15-20kg, but the scenery was like colour saturation when you took a photo.

The rods and gear we were given was sort of token gesture as we had a go at catching a big carp.

They are a pest and any caught are either thrown up on the bank or put through a mincer and used as fertiliser, unless you are from Europe and apparently they love eating them.

Personally, I shudder at the thought as we have probably some of the best species in the world right on our doorstep.

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