Mackay report

Queensland Fishing Reports
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Broomstick
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Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:27 pm

G'day guys,
So last weekend I headed up to Mackay with my old man and a couple of mates for a weekend of solid fishing. It's a long way to go for a weekend but the flights were cheap, the accommodation was cheaper, and the allure of big barra and jacks was just too tempting to pass up. Unfortunately, we didn't catch any of these hah. But we still had a ripping weekend and caught a lot of cool fish, even if they weren't the trophy fish we were hoping for.

So Friday morning we were up before the sun for our 7am flight and boy were we excited:

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I'd been to Mackay once before and even though it can be a tough place to fish given its monstrous tides, I still caught some great fish and lost some even better ones. So after telling a few stories about my last trip where I nearly landed a metre+ barra and pulled the hooks on a 50cm+ jack (I might have exaggerated a tiny bit) expectations were running at an all time high. We arrived in Mackay and were greeted with blue skys and light winds, and made our way straight to our motel. It's safe to say it was no Taj Mahal, but it was cheap and clean:

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After getting the gear ready, stocking up on food, and chatting to the locals at the local tackle shop, we were finally ready to wet a line. Mackay is a strange place to fish as all the best landbased spots are only accessible at low tide (I'm sure there are some good high tide spots too, but the vast majority are low tide spots). I chose this weekend to head up as the low tides coincided with first and last light, but it made it tough to fish in the middle of the day. So we decided to head to the breakwall at east point where I'd caught a couple of nice queenies the last time I was up there:

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Last edited by Broomstick on Mon Nov 17, 2014 12:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.



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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:30 pm

Unfortunately, the current was absolutely ripping through here making it almost impossible to fish. We had a few casts and were about to make a move, when my dad landed this cute little fella:

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It wasn't much, but we were on the board! By this time it was around 3pm so we decided to head to a low tide spot on the pioneer river and have a crack at some queenies and little GT's on surface lures:

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Last edited by Broomstick on Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:30 pm

The tide was perfect and there were fish breaking the surface everywhere. We quickly made our way across the rocks to our spot and started throwing a variety of stickbaits and poppers around. It didn't take long to register some interest in our lures but nothing was hitting with any real conviction. I decided to change stickbaits and tied on a duo realis pencil and a couple of casts later it was absolutely smashed! After a short but brutal fight (you have to fish super high drags here as there are rocks everywhere) a beautiful little GT popped up:

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:31 pm

It really does get the blood pumping seeing a fish smash a surface lure. I actually saw this fish make a bee-line for my lure from about ten metres away and come partway out of the water to eat it, which was super cool. I started getting a lot of attention on the realis pencil and it didn't take the boys long to commandeer my tackle box and tie a couple on. We had a heap of boofs, boils, swipes and a couple of heart breaking bust offs, but we couldn't land another fish. I don't think I've ever had such a fun single-fish session in my life, but watching these fish attack our stickbaits was just too cool. But after a while the fish seemed to wisen up to our surface tactics and the bite shut down, so we swapped our surface lures for plastics and vibes. And straight away we started catching little cod:

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:31 pm

These guys are super cute, and for a little fish they can certainly make the rod bend when they're trying to get back to their home, but they did get annoying after a while (actually who am I kidding, we were just happy to catch anything). So as the light started to fade we decided to head off, satisfied with our first day's work but optimistic that tomorrow would be a little more successful:

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So the next morning we were up at 4:30 ready to hit the flats for some flatties and hopefully something a little bigger. Again we woke up to a perfect, windless morning:

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We tied on a mix of plastics and vibes and it didn’t take long to register the first fish of the morning:

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:31 pm

Only a little flatty, but it was a start! Over the next couple of hours we caught a heap of small flatties but nothing over about 35cm. I hooked into what I’m sure was a big flatty but pulled the hooks halfway through the fight (so shattered), but that was as close as we got to a big fish. The little guys were still fun though:

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And it was a lovely spot to fish:

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:32 pm

So after heading back to the motel for a late breakfast, we decided we’d spend the middle of the day exploring, before heading back to the ‘GT spot’ as it was now called for the evening low tide. We covered a lot of km’s and explored some really fishy looking areas:

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:32 pm

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:33 pm

But all we managed for the day was one big catfish, which gave my old man some serious stick on 8lb:

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Re: Mackay report

Postby Broomstick » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:33 pm

But despite the lack of fish we still had a great day and got to see some really nice parts of Mackay. At about 3pm we decided to make our way back to the GT spot, but the tide was a little higher than the day before, which meant we had to wait for what seemed like an eternity to get to our spot. GT spot day 1:

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GT spot day 2:

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