Want to know more about the AUSTRALIAN MARLIN FISHING hot spots? The new destination guides are here:

Read the guides

Destination guides are here:


Get the latest offers and news every month direct to your inbox. Subscribe to the Black Marlin Blog Newsletter:

Sign Up Now

Join the newsletter mailing list

Sign Up
Larva Lure - Change it, lock it, catch it

Even the seasoned skippers are shaking their heads in wonder as the Cairns black marlin season 2014 continues to deliver.

And one such skipper, Capt. Corey Hard on Askari continues his dream run.  In the past three days he’s released another 13 marlin to put his total for the Dreamin’ On / Levante / Askari / Emerald Lady trip at 58 in 20 days fishing. And that’s only his total. The other boats are certainly getting into them as well (I believe that both got two each yesterday….I’ll ask Sharky the Halloween lobster when he wakes up ;-)).  Wednesday they released 4 including a 700 and 800.  Thursday was another three including the one that I took the picture of in the report below that Corey put at 650lbs.  And Friday (yesterday) they added another 6 including what Corey calls one ‘real one’ over the mark.  Just jaw dropping stuff.

seansAlso fishing nearby and also on a good day yesterday with Capt. Luke Fallon on KEKOA we released 5 from 7 to 600lbs putting us on 9 for the trip thus far and into Cooktown tonight.  Photo left from one of our guests Sean of one of the smaller fish yesterday.

Capt. Dean Beech’s Onsite released one from two, another nice one that he put at 800lbs.  Capt. Tim Richardson’s Tradition tagged a smaller fish and missed the bite out of a big one and encountered the ‘sea monster’ free feeding.  And Capt. Tom Francis Ultimate Lady has returned to the top and caught a smaller model and missed a better fish at the end of the day.

Catch up report from the day before (Thursday) when I told you that Capt. Haydon Bell’s Kanahoee was last seen backing out over the horizon at dusk…. well Haydon tells me that they fought the fish for 6 and a half hours before getting her beside the boat and on the leader at 7:30pm, a fish that he called over 1200lbs…and a super human effort for angler Tim Dobson on stand up 80!!  Well done Tim!!

Down the Middle, the fishing has been pretty consistent as well with big fish making up the mix. Capt. Tim Dean on Calypso capped off another great trip with his Texan guests adding two more at 400 and 950+. While Capt. Bobby Jones’ Iceman also returned to port for changeover with a tally of 7 in 5 days including three over 900lbs and one of those one that Bobby put at well over the mark for angler Adam Furst! I heard that Capt. Daniel McCarthy’s Moana III has also come up the Ribbons and released two yesterday as well that he put at 500 and 950lbs before lunch!

And another catch up report from Capt. Brett Goetze on AmokuraBrett says they they fished Thursday for just the one about 500lbs and then yesterday started out with another small one at 200lbs. Then followed up with a big girl for owner Darren Sandy’s father John that they got beside the boat in 6 minutes that Brett put at 1000lbs.  Well done John!

And a report also from Capt. Leigh Bradshaw on the Revive who was just back into Port Douglas yesterday after a week on the reef and released a 150, 400, 150 and for the owner Bill a 600, 800 and a nice one at 1100+!

And yet another catch up report, this one from David Crocos who you may remember from his epic trailer boat batttle down at Number 3 Ribbon about this time last year (I will find the report link and put it up – stay with me).  David tells me that he also just got back into Cooktown last night after 3 days fishing the Ribbons.  He started at Number 7, planning on heading up to 10 but the fishing was so good he never made it past Number 9 Ribbon. Over 3 days he had 16 strikes hooking 9 and after a bunch of thrown hooks and broken leaders he released 4 at the boat including this little fella that played up like a 20 pounder and wore itself out!  The others he released were around 300, 400 and 600lbs and he also had to break a big girl off at 5pm yesterday after 2.5 hours running out of time as he had to return to Cairns to work today… ahhhh work! Well done David!!


Pakula Lures

The toast of the day yesterday was the team on board Top Shot with Capt. Ross Finlayson, Capt. Laurie Wright and Andy and Jay on deck putting angler Stephanie Osgood Choate onto a pending Ladies World Record black marlin on 50lb. The record, which has been unbeaten for 38 years (1976) has been well and truly overtaken by this fish which weighed in at 1,111lbs (previous record was 876lb). Congratulations to Stephanie and the crew!


The fight time was 1 hour and 50 minutes and the fish was caught on the hot spot of 2014, Number 10 Ribbon Reef. This tops off a great weeks fishing for the team who have also put anglers, Stephanie, Tim Choate and Elida Grabowski onto some really nice fish. Hopefully some more details to come.

Elsewhere at the top it was good fishing as usual with plenty of good fish around again.  I snapped this shot of Capt. Corey Hard’s Askari in action nearby. Corey’s been notching up some more good numbers and will have a catch up report from him soon too.


On Capt. Luke Fallon’s KEKOA we released three at 850, 400 and 350lbs and jumped off another real nice one (photo). And nearby, Capt. Tim Richardson’s Tradition released one about 400lbs and lost another nice one after a 90 minute fight.

Capt. Dean Beech on Onsite got another beauty at 950lbs and when we all were heading back into the anchorage to enjoy food and drinks, Capt. Haydon Bell on Kanahoee was still backing out to sea. I’ll try and find out how he ended up!

I had another message from Raffi on the private boat Serendipity with Capt Nick on their way through to Princess Charlotte who stopped in at the rock (Lizard Island) for 1 night and 2 days of heavy tackle. They released an 800lb-er Wednesday for James Whitelaw and then went out yesterday really late after 4pm and had an awesome afternoon hooking up almost straight away releasing one that they put at over 1000lbs for the owner Nicky Irvine (and that performed an incredible aerial display) and followed by a 950lb-er 10 minutes later for Di Baynes. Incredible fishing!

And last but not least, in the Middle Capt. Daniel Carlson’s Little Audrey finished up another top 4 day trip with 5 fish at 950, 700, 600, 500, 200. They almost ended on another big high yesterday losing another big fish about 950lbs after 2 hours.

Many more fish around I suspect and so I’m hunting down the reports!

Update: While its been a little slower down the bottom another report from Andrew Tivey who says that he fished Linden Bank Tuesday and Wednesday this week on Paul Campbell’s private boat Re-Fueled. Andrew says that the fishing was reasonably slow but they did get a nice fish about 800lbs that ate both skip baits on 50’s so it kept the 3 man crew pretty busy with lots of laughs!

There were plenty more big fish at the top of the reef yesterday but as most boats are also out of communication, I only have a few reports in. More to come when I hear more.


Capt. Tim Richardson on Tradition got his turn at the big day wheel with 4 fish at 400, 800, 850 and 900lb! They also pulled off a real big one after half an hour, and a second not too long after that. With long term client Greg on board they have released 13 fish now in 6 days and most half of them have been big fish. Well done Greg! Picture above.

Update: a report just in from Matt Fox on board Kaizen who tells me they had a great day yesterday with 5 fish that Capt. Russell Caporn put at 1000 and a 900 (to Dave Trask), 950 to (Mark Hallett) and 900 (to Matt Fox).

And likewise the other Capt. Tim (Dean) on Calypso followed up on his big day on Tuesday with two more yesterday that Tim put in the 4-500lb range for the Texans.

And I also received the catch up pic below from Capt. Damon Gruzdev on Kyrenia of their 900lb-er from last week.



If you’re a regular blog reader you’ve heard the term Linden Stadium – as in, that’s where you go to watch other boats catch marlin… But sometimes its good to be the boat doing the catching (although not fishing at LB).  Capt. Tim Dean’s Calypso was the boat doing the catching yesterday putting on a spectacular show for his Texan anglers.  They caught 4 from 4 beauties inside of an hour that Tim put at 950+, 950, 900 and 850lbs while some other boats watched on! Awesome fishing!

And another big fish, this one on Capt. Ashley Wallis’ Kalira that was sat tagged that Ashley put at 1100lbs. Picture at top.

Up a bit higher, Capt. Chris “Sharky” Miles on Levante caught a nice one. I’ve been promised a catch up report from Sharky soon as its been hard for him to get in touch with the service the way it is this year – stay tuned!  And Capt. Corey Hard’s Askari continues to catch them with another two yesterday.  Corey said they got one about 650 and then another nice 800lb-er late in the arvo which jumped around in the sunset topping of a great day on the ocean. (And it really was! Great weather!)

Also up the top on KEKOA with Capt. Luke Fallon, we started off a new trip with a fish about 700lbs for Andy and missed a smaller model. And Capt. Tim Richardson’s Tradition had the late bite with two fish late in the day after 5 o’clock.

Update: I just got a message from Capt. Brett Goetze on Amokura who was into Port last night on changeover who caught another nice fish fish similar size to the one the day before on the way in!

Gladstone Marlin

A report from Adam Amos who tells me the weather had finally come good enough for them to head out to the 300m contour past Heron Island which they did aboard Sharkcat 1. Two hours into the troll saw a large black launch onto the long corner but failed to hook up. An hour later a blue around the 300lb mark smashed the same lure and put on a great aerial display before winning its freedom. Its awesome to see some big fish in Central Queensland!

Montebello Islands / Dampier still delivering

Capt. Chad Mills on Blue Lightning Charters was lucky enough to see a sailfish free jump, while bottom fishing and popped the lures straight in, teasing up  a black marlin soon after. The guys pitched a bait putting Mark onto his very first 80kg marlin. Not long after Chris and Brian got their first sailfish each. The last day of the trip was spent game fishing off Dampier. Chris was lucky enough to get his second sailfish for the trip, and Tony finished the
day with his very first sailfish as well. The guys were absolutely stoked as never caught billfish before!