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juvenile black marlin Townsville
Larva Lure - Change it, lock it, catch it

Weekend marlin fishing reports from North Queensland (Cairns and Townsville):

The weather gave fishers in North Queensland to enjoy some time on the water. Reports are still coming in but a few to start us off.

In Cairns, Capt. Darren “Biggles” Haydon on Bounty Hunter made the most of all three days fishing Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Biggs tells me they went 3 from 3 on blacks on Friday (and 8 mackerels, the Spanish are biting!), 1 from 4 Saturday ( one for junior Jack on right below) and a sailfish and another 10 mackerel yesterday (on left).

bountyhunter

Meanwhile in Townsville, we fished with O’Brien Boat’s Peter and Val O’Brien yesterday for a social day on OB1 with some pretty fresh SWs in the morning easing to absolutely glamourous conditions in the afternoon — and enjoyed a bit of friendly rivalry (read endless good-natured ribbing and needling on the airwaves) alongside the crews on Reel Crazy and Silverback.

I think the final figures were 3 from 5 for us on OB1, 3 from 6 on Reel Crazy (on countback ;-)) and 1 from a couple raised on Silverback. The fish of the day went to Renee on Reel Crazy who copped a lot of flack no doubt from her crew eager to get the fish to the boat, battling it for over an 1 hour – hooked perfectly in the corner of the mouth!

Photo I took of one of Val’s fish at top.

With a couple of tournaments coming up, there’s sure to be more pre-fishing as the weather conditions allow!

Pakula Lures

Two angler interviews via Tradition’s Capt. Tim Richardson – both return guests fishing with him again in 2014! Greg Seel below who is returning to the reef for the first time in several years as well as reef regular, female angler Lydie Fayard at bottom.

Angler Greg Seel

Can you give us a brief description of your angling history?
In the past twenty plus years I have fished South Florida , the Florida Keys, entire Bahamas, Mexico, Costa Rica, Venezuela , Dominican Republic, Australia and flats fishing in south Texas.

When was the last time the you fished in Cairns?
2010

What was your best memory of any Cairns trip to date?
That trip in 2010.  We had 14 bites and caught 10! (here’s the link to a report mid-way through Greg’s last trip here, that was a big week on the GB!)

What are your hopes for your trip to Cairns this year?
Grander.

When can we expect to see you here this and how long are you staying who are you fishing with?
I believe October 23 fishing for twelve days with my good friend Capt. Tim Richardson!

Angler Lydie Fayard

Can you give us a brief description of your angling history?
Coming from France, I spent most of my childhood summers in the Mediterranean and really never heard of marlin / game fishing. I was introduced to angling by Pete my husband who has been fishing since he is a kid.

I first watched him rock fishing on the Sydney Northern beaches where he grew up, then he first put a line in my hands in 2002 on a trip to Thailand and later put me in the chair during our first Cairns fishing trip in 2006 and I have been **loving** it ever since!

When was the last time the you fished in Cairns?
October 2013

What was your best memory of any Cairns trip to date?
So many good memories. I would say at least one good memory every year, but some of my highlights and favorite times are:

1103 pound black marlin on Tradition2003 First time I came to Cairns with Pete. I discovered (and snorkeled) on the Great Barrier Reef for the first time. I knew I would come back….
2006 First trip on Tradition, meeting Tim and first black marlin released. I was hooked already!!!!
2007 4 .5 hours in the chair fighting my first monster who got away….
2008 Winning the Lizard Island Champion Female Angler
2009 Pixie Pinnacle, where Pete asked for my hand while we were snorkeling in one of the most beautiful place on earth!
2011 Black marlin of a lifetime 1103lbs on 130lb tackle.

But the best one will be meeting so many fantastic people that we have made so many good friends now!
Read the rest of the report…

A discouraging weather forecast postponed the tournament by a week, allowing many to attend instead the Sydney Boat Show and make those tackle adjustments accordingly…

On the weekend of the rescheduled event (9-10th of August) with weather in the competitors’ favour, 25 boats headed to sea for the annual Sydney Game Fishing Club Geoff Woolley Memorial Mako Tournament.

11 year old Aaron Ayad is definitely someone to watch in the years to come. Managing 9 of Smartbill's 11 sharks over the years photo taken by Claire Jones.

11 year old Aaron Ayad is definitely someone to watch in the years to come. Managing 9 of Smartbill’s 11 sharks over the years photo taken by Claire Jones.

The majority of the fleet drifted the lucrative hotspot of Browns Mountain which lead to SGFC boat Casey getting off to an early lead tagging 2 sharks by the first sked. The T&R pace continued steadily throughout day with team Smartbill (with juniors anglers Aaron and Jerome Ayad capitalising on a busy tagging afternoon), taking the lead at the halfway point with 7 tags.  Hot on their heals, the teams on board Casey, Ambition and Chasin’ Tail.

Port Hacking GFC Boat Scirocco boated a pending Club, NSW, Australian and World Record thresher shark of 151.6kg to small-fry Angler Reece Cokrun (well done Reece!)

Other captures included a 141.1kg mako shark to junior angler Aj Qahoush onboard Botany Bay GFC boat Madness and eventual winners, SGFC The Executioner with a 160.1kg mako.

Read the rest of the report…

looking-for-crew

Skippers – Are you looking for someone to do this? I have several qualified/experienced crew looking for work on boats for this Cairns season. If you are looking for someone, please email me and I’ll send you their details.

Al McGlashan sent me these shots of a big eye tuna he caught (on the troll) off Sydney the other day.  All says it went 80.6kg (so would have been 91kg full weight). It seems like the tuna run has been hit and miss but certainly some amazing (and unusual) fish among them. They topped the big eye off with nice yellowfin as well!

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