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Fishing Field Day Report, Open - October 2005

The boundaries for this weekend were any of the tidal waters in WA, so long as you can get back to George's place for the weigh in on Sunday afternoon. A group of us decided to give Rottnest another go and made the trip over on the last ferry on Friday evening. With the extended fishing hours for this field day it meant that we would have two opportunities to fish a morning session at West End.

The weather at the start was perfect, very little wind and swell and mid range tides, perfect for Rottnest. Saturday morning saw us all out on Radar Reef bait casting for what turned out to be very elusive tailor. A couple of snook, two undersize yellowtail kingfish, some herring and tarwhine were the group's morning catch.

There was however an interruption to morning session when Vix slipped and badly gashed her shin. Even the protection of a wet suit did not prevent the need for thirteen stitches. Thank goodness for mobile phones. The nursing post had a vehicle out to pick us up and take us back to the settlement for treatment in less than half an hour. Linda, the nurse on duty did a fine job of cross stitch and we were back at the West End by early afternoon.

The Club owns an air conditioned holiday house at Kalbarri which is available for rent to the public and club members at competitive rates

This I might add was not a recommendation from Linda, who would have preferred that Vix take it easy back at the settlement for the rest of the weekend. That was never going to happen but Vix did take some notice and only fished on the Sunday and then from a dry position. She spent the remainder of Saturday under a makeshift shelter at the top of Radar guarding the bait eskies.

The perfect conditions did not last all day and by late afternoon the wind was in the south and around 20 knots. The one thing in our favor was that there was very little swell so most spots were still fishable. The yellowtail kingfish turned up on cue late in the afternoon with their usual disregard for fishing tackle - diving into the rocks with predictable results. However two were landed, one to Mark Hansen of just over 2kgs (first time to Rottnest and first YTK) and the other to Ian Cook at 4kgs.

Earlier in the day Ian, Tony Ong and Mark Farnay had fished Cathedrals with four tailor to Ian, two to Mark and one to Tony. Sunday morning was cloudy and windy which kept every one except four of us in their warm beds. With the wind still in the south, Cathedrals was the only option but the pickings were thin. A breaksea cod to Mark Hansen, skippy and breaksea cod to Tony Ong and a tailor and herring for me were all we could manage.

Others who fished the weekend on the mainland included Peter Osborne who started the comp in fine fashion with a bag of eight tailor from Swanborne but then spent the remainder of the weekend fighting weed and wind for no addition to his bag. George was only able to fish for a short time and did well with a good catch of skippy and a flathead from one of the Metro beaches. Tony D'Alonzo usually heads north for open competitions and this was no exception. Tony's catch included the bag limit of tailor and skippy along with tarwhine, pink snapper and mulloway. The next field day is Cervantes to Sandy point on the 12/13 November which should be good with ample fishing opportunities for those with 2 wheel drive vehicles and good camping facilities at Cervantes and Jurien Bay.

You might like to put your name down as a Surfcasters team member for the AAA State Estuary Championships in Mandurah at the 26/27 of November.

Hope to see you on the beach next time. Malcolm Harris, Field Day Officer.

Recorder's Report October 2005.

Open Field Day was an exploratory trip to see how Rotto would treat us in October.

The group met at Rous Head on the Friday evening and with a large number of other people caught the 18:30 ferry to the island. The trip was calm and enjoyable. On arrival our gear was delivered to camp within 30 minutes. After setting up our huts we went down to the Café for dinner. Bretton stayed back at camp on security detail. We where most impressed with standard of the food. The meals where large and the food was very good. The cost is rather over the top, with steaks at $27. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere. Then back to camp and some organisation for the morning.

The weather was perfection on the Saturday morning so it was an excited group who headed for the drop off point at Wilson's Bay turnoff just before West End. For Mark and Wendy Hansen this was their first trip so it was going to be a real buzz. The conditions on arrival, where light winds, low swell and low tide. These conditions had us all eager to get a line in the water. Most people fished the area between Radar Reef and Wilson's.

Bretton was fishing at the Tailor Hole and hooked into a large fish, but unfortunately he lost it on the reef edge. It appeared to be a yellow tailed kingfish which wetted all our appetites for fishing hard. Bretton and I then fished the deep hole at West End without success. Mark Farnay had brought over his bike and new trolley so he headed of to his favourite "secret" spot at Cathedral. He fished out on the NE side of the Island and picked up two tailor. A group of anglers had a nice communal lunch in the sun at the drop off point which was most enjoyable.

At this stage Vix slipped on a rock whilst unhooking a tarwhine at the Tennis Courts and put a serve gash in her leg. On arriving back at the drop of point, the nursing post was contacted and they sent out the ambulance and nurse within 30 minutes. Vix was taken back to the nursing post and had 11 stitches in her leg. It was amusing to hear Vix swearing and then apologising profusely a second later. On arriving back after the remedial surgery she spend the rest of the day resting and cursing with her leg elevated under a sun shade. Wendy spent a fair amount of time looking round West End as this was her first trip to Rotto.

Tong Ong and I headed out to fish the island at Cathedral. We fished out towards the NE end of the island. I had a bite on my first bait cast. I landed a blackfish, 4 tailor and lost several more fish. Tony landed a tailor and a blackfish.

Towards 4:30 most anglers gravitated to Radar Reef. The word or thought of yellow tailed kingfish seems to make most angles blood run hot and they have this starry eyed look about them. Just before this both my rods where blown over by the wind whilst sitting in the rod holders on my trolley. The outcome was 9 broken runners including 2 tip guides. It was now my turn to curse. Vix kindly offered to lend me her Azziga rod.

Radar Reef was very quiet till about 5:45. Tony Ong hooked a couple of yellow tailed kingfish that were undersize. Mark Hansen landed a nice kingfish of 2.25 Kg. This was his first tussle with a yellow tailed kingfish mind you he was using 40lb line. He was over the moon after landing the fish. Well done Mark.

I landed a 4 kg yellow tailed kingfish and let one go. This is where a long stiff rod is useful as you can control the pressure on the fish and also keep it away from the reef edge.

Unfortunately at this stage we had to leave with the fish on the bite to catch the bus back to the settlement. We all had a good meal a few drinks and an early night.

Sunday morning was fine but with a strong SE breeze. Those who got up went out to Cathedral again. The fishing was rather slow during the morning. Tony Ong picked up two nice pike.

This trip provided information that there are quality fish to be caught under very pleasant conditions at this time of year. We need to have the bus schedule changed so we can be fishing at dawn and dusk. Going the Friday night made the weekend most relaxing as well as allowing another seven hours fishing.

I feel that the members should look at going to Rottnest on a more regular basis. If we could get 10 or more people we can always organise a trip on a weekend other than a Field Day.

Give it some thought and give me some feedback, please.

Cheers "The Cookie Monster"

Open Field Day- Rottnest Island Trip.

Well I hadn't intended to do a Rotto trip this year. I had been feeling a bit lazy towards my fishing and thought I would take a year off. But when Cookie rang me and said he was trying to get a group together to do a trip for the open field day in October, I thought, why not. It was to be a three day trip leaving Friday evening and returning at the usual time Sunday. That would give us an extra half a day fishing, turning Saturday's session into a full day.

We all arrived at Northport ready for a 7:00 pm departure time only to be informed that the ferry wasn't leaving till 7:30. No worries, just enough time to grab a coffee and speculate on all the fish we were going to catch and where we were going to catch them.

I had brought along my deadly treadly, along with my newly constructed trailer so that hopefully I would be able to catch a good bag of fish at West end and then move on to hopefully a hot bite at North Point in the arvo.

I think there were ten of us in the end and by the time we arrived on the island we had all developed a keen appetite and a lack of enthusiasm to do much about it for ourselves, other than to head down to the Tearooms and let someone else feed us. This turned out to be a great night with good food, good company and more talk about the hot fishing that surely lay ahead.

So after a couple of beers and a most satisfying meal it was back to the huts to do a bit of prep for the morning. We hit the hay about 11:00. It was difficult to get a continuous night's sleep due to the fact that I was sharing a hut with a couple of lumberjacks who were intent on - as John Jardine likes to put it - sawing particularly heavy jarrah logs all night. Haha!

Anyway the morning came around and the bus arrived to cart us off to our chosen destinations. Everyone decided on West End to begin with. After all, it's the pick of the crop, isn't it? Well, after a few hours of baitcasting up and down the reef at Radar all I had in the bag were a couple of herring! Dismal to say the least. Where were all the tailor we were supposed to catch. Not one at that stage.

I saw Bretton Stitfold hook, play and unfortunately lose what was almost certainly a yellowtail kingfish. I also saw Vix land one from the tennis court right behind where Malcolm and I were fishing. That was followed up with a tarwhine that unfortunately for Vix cost her the rest of her weekend when she slipped over and put a nasty gash in her leg that required picking up by ambulance and multiple stitches. Ouch!

With not much happening on the south side I thought that it would be a good time to check out Cathedral Rocks. It's usually a pretty reliable spot, with fish that can be better quality than those caught at Radar. It was slow going but I was able to spin up two reasonable tailor fishing off the island. The hole was completely dead, probably because the water level was by now fairly low and way too calm. I cleaned my catch and then headed out to Cape Vlamingh and had a bite to eat and a bit of a rest.

By now it was about 2:00 and time to make a move to my afternoon fishing destination, North Point. The last time I fished this place my young nephew landed a Dhufish of very respectable proportions, so I was hoping it might be my turn to have a bit of luck. I jumped on the bike and pointed it east. It was quite easy riding towing the trailer. I found I could get a good head of speed up going down hill and then just coast over the next one The only time it was hard was when I didn't have enough momentum to carry me over the next hill, then the old legs would be burning trying to get to the top.

I arrived at the spot and humped the gear around the rocks and got set up full of 'anglers optimism'. Conditions looked good. A bit of white water and tide low enough to fish the reef edge easily. How could I miss out? Well someone must have told the fish I was coming because they were obviously elsewhere. I fished away for a couple of hours without a sniff. By now I was feeling pretty buggered so I waded ashore and promptly fell asleep on a nice flat rock for about an hour.

When I awoke it was about 5:00 or so and starting to get a bit darker so I thought I would try again. Prime time, right? I think I should have stayed asleep because there was still nothing about. Oh well, fishing can be like that. On the bike again and back to the settlement, arriving just in time to beat the rest of the mob to the showers. Nice to be clean again and relax with a beer or two.

Sunday morning came around fast with a 5:00 a.m. wake up call. I slept better Saturday night. Probably too tired to notice the snorers. Anyway, I couldn't muster the energy or enthusiasm the be on the bus when it left so I went back to sleep till about 8:00. Ah, luxury! It seemed I wasn't the only one with lazy bones. Half the camp had stayed behind! Bretton had decided to fish down near the basin so after a leisurely brekky I thought I would go and have a look see, just in case he was catching anything. Pretty uneventful down there. Fed the aquarium fish for a couple of hours with nothing worthwhile to show for it.

The weigh in turned up some nice fish, with the boys who stayed behind at Radar mostly weighing in a yellowtail kingfish each and a few more tailor from Cathedral. But considering the effort put it most of the bags where pretty light on. Still it was a good weekend with good company and it's always good to get away to our favourite island. See you over there next year!       Mark Farnay.

Species caught on this Field Day were:- herring, tailor, trevally, skipjack, yellowtail kingfish, breaksea cod, wrasse, western rock blackfish, tarwhine, snook, flathead, pink snapper, mulloway.


Results for the October 2005 Field Day.

AnglerWeightSpeciesFishTotal Points
Tony D'Alonzo 17.9 kg730299
Tony Ong 6.275 kg812192.75
Ian Cook 8.05 kg47170.5
Mark Hansen 4.25 kg56142.5
Malcolm Harris 3.305 kg415123.05
Peter Osborne 4.35 kg18103.5
Mark Farnay 2.8 kg2898
Vix Alexander 1.3 kg3493
George Holman 1.8 kg2888
Dale Coates 0.8 kg2378
Bretton Stitfold 0.1 kg1151

Sportsperson of the Year Sections for October 2005.

Best Scale FishIan CookYellowtail Kingfish 4.0 kg
Best Bag of Scale fish Tony D'Alonzo Mixed Bag17.9 kg

Field Day Prizes for October 2005.

Best Scale FishIan CookYellowtail Kingfish 4.0 kg
Best Bag of Scale fish Tony D'Alonzo Mixed Bag17.9 kg

Copyright © 2005 Surf Casting and Angling Club of W.A. (Inc.)

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This page was updated on 22 November 2005.

Display of this page was updated on 21 January 2013. Contents updated as above.

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