We are just back from a few days down on Bynoe for the good tides, we did not really expect too much because it has not been the easiest of years with the wind and dirty water. But late October has always been kind to us and it didn't disappoint.
I am probably going to waffle on a bit about the paradise we live in up here, to use a Pete Davies quote, "On the Great Northern Pond". I mean Lord Jim got into the Barra last weekend, and now this weekend we all killed a pig, so to speak.
As I was saying we did not expect too much, and I had tied up a heap of new flies to try. Most of the flies were our standard clousers, but if you have a look at a lot of the photos being posted by lure fishers on line when a barra has been caught, the lure is usually a green top with yellow and orange in it. So I made up a couple that colour too on 4/0 hooks and about four inches (100mm) long. I also made ups some with a blue top yellow bottom and red bib like the blue nilsmasters and spearheads that used to work for us years ago. Made up some gold bombers too, because the barra seemed to be more interested in them if they were down deep. These two were Cathies 'best' selection.
|This is all that is left of these 'strange'ones, the top and bottom one are a bit large, but they were totally swallowed by Fingermark and Jack, to the extent it was difficult to get the out of the fish.|
|The first of many..but who is complaining|
|..they just kept coming|
There were schools of these small barra in patches with schools of black bream which we had first mistaken them for, but as soon as they started to feed the barra just took over from the bream. Speaking to Graeme the Grey out there, the bigger barra came on on the second low just on dusk.
Cathie was having a ball.....so then she wanted 'more' and bigger fish, that's a lot of pressure on the poor old skipper.
|Crystal clear water with fish all around|
Well we did get amongst the fish, we were in crystal clear water and it was alive with macs and queenies, all around the 60cm mark with some getting to around 70cm, and some bigger ones were lurking around. But it was the other fish that were exciting.
|A typical Queenie|
I have seen fish of that size caught up here, and have seen some that would have been a metre in the Blue Holes, but this one was spectacular in the crystal clear water.
Another of the other fish were the wolf herring. The didn't seem to be in the schools with the Macs. Queenies and Tarpon, but they would come up in schools chasing the bait, or either something was chasing them. If you got a small clear fly near them, you could have pulled in dozens. As it was I think Cathie alone got over sixty fish (60) that day.
|A very slimy wolf herring|
|Released the rest of them outside the boat for domestic peace|
|Cathie has another herring on, and in the background |
you can see the turbulence on the water where the schools were on the shallows.
Finally she hooked a fish, the screams of joy could be heard in Perth I'm sure. Then with all my advice being yelled to her (none of which she took any notice whatsoever of) she looked like pulling the fish in as gently as possible. In the meantime I had got the underwater camera ready for one of those great underwater shots of the Permit, like Jono Shales from Exmouth Fly Fishing takes. I took the boat in and beached it, but by that time Cathie had the fish in. It was, "another @!*#@ Queenie," which must be one of the exotic types?. Isn't it great when you can whinge about catching fish!!
We did not see the Permit anymore until the next day when we saw only three of them, but they were skittish and we never got a cast to them. We have caught different dart before but never one of these.
Here is some of the action...
|"I'm on", was the call...|
|Yes it was a ??????Queenie.|
|Lord Jim was "Woo Hoo"ing with all the fish around|
|Pulling in another with Graeme the Grey|
|Graeme took Cathie for a blast on the Hewes...she is a bit of a poseur|
Just on the flies....we pretty well ran out of all of the EP white with sea foam flies, because even though we put on short wire traces, some bigger fish, like monster Barracuda and Macs etc. kept chopping us off. We loop to loop connect our class tippet of 8kg to the 15kg that is tied to the fly
line and the Macs we attacking the loop to loop connection as well. Back to the tying bench, with a good glass of red, not that I need much more red, because I think we nearly drank our wonderful hosts at Sand Palms out of it.