Sorry for the big delay since last blog, The boats wireless system had a hick up, so comunication has been hard. The viking 11 arrived back on the Gold Coast on the 10th of December so playing catch up with every thing, including my Children.
As per some previous years, the fishing moved a little out from the reef edge, during the later part of November, and besides marlin to entertain the guests ,we were also ambushed by some big yellowfin tuna. To move around and find the pods of fish, lure fishing was the go. One special day we had out wide we had all of the 130lb outfits screeming at once, marlin in the air as well as yellow fin over 100lb, it was mayham to say the least.
The giant blacks were amongst all the comocean, and some very large fish were encounted by some lucky anglers. Giant marlin on lures are a blowout!, and the water that these huge fish move when chasing down a lure, resembles a submarine, arriving to the surface.
Our season was spectacular, some mighty fish, great times with my clients and crew, and Viking 11 ran like the machine she was built to be.
Being conservitive we released 4 marlin over 1000lb plus one of these over 1100lb plus, 2 marlin 950lb to 1000lb, 3 marlin 850 to 950lb Total just below 50 fish for 62 days, we had other days were we were not chasing marlin.
I will be working out of the Gold Coast untill the middle of January, than off to Port Stephens, untill April.
May I take this oportunity to wish all a happy and safe Christmas and New Year. And look forward to seeing you aboard with us real soon.
Another catch up on whats been happening on the reef with Viking 11. The lizard Island Tournament has been another amazing success, especially with the number of big fish Caught. A total of Seven black marlin over the Magical 1000lb number were released during the tournament, My client Jim Wild who was my angler when we won the tournament for the 5th time in 2010, caught his second black marlin over 1000lb. It was not our year this time and Top shot with Ross Finlayson at the helm taking out the the major award, But again we were on the podium with Champion boat day 1 and runner up Champion Angler.
Swiss client Johan Christensen has had a great trip so far with 6 marlin up to 900lb, he is keen to keep a real Giant and 2 days ago we had her on, the big gaffs were made ready but she knew all my tricks, the serious drag was put into play, and Johan was amazed at the power of these fish.
Alas it was not to be, another fish went though the line, while under maximum drag and it was over. We have one more day to try and make Johan Dream a reality, and with some sea monsters out there hear,s hoping.
Capt Billy Billson
Just finished a three and four day charter, Rodger and Barbara Cunningham, from NZ had 3 days of Glamour weather, and some good action, a 500lb and 300llb marlin were caught as well as some nice yellowfin on the bait rods to 15kg that gave them both some good entertainment, and the extra oversize spanish mackerel kept coming.
You may remember Dave Mcpherson from last season, Dave was lucky enough to catch 2 huge marlin in the one day. The first I called over 1100lb and than another that I don,t know but it was much bigger. Dave luck was not as good on this trip, the current had turned to be running uphill and the action slowed, but we stillo got a couple of smaller fish to 300lb for him, Dave is one of those Guys who loves it just for being out there and he has certainly seen the highs and lows.
The wind is kicking in and we have a few rough days ahead, but it will more than likely bring them on, I will keep you informed.
Capt Billy Billson
Hello Boys and girls.
Jus tfinished my second workshop for the season out of Port Stephens, and from thefeed back I got it was another great success. It was nice to have a couple o fthe female gender on board this time. The Two girls were keen to lean all the tricks, and were soon tying all the knots and rigging like seasoned crew. The day at sea saw us spending allot of time with bait and switching technique, as the strong current on the normal grounds had the fish stocks spread out, the class got very excited when they saw how the whole concept worked, when we teased a striped marlin right to the back of the boat and switched it to a skipping mackerel. It is without a doubt the most spectacular way to fish, and as well as highly successful when one becomes accustomed to it. Another marlin to a first time angler, and with one lost during the day and a few other sightings,the students were kept entertained as well as occupied.
You may remember lucky Steve Pennisi, who caught the 836lb blue Marlin off the Gold Coast earlier this year. Well Steve decided to get his family interested in his new sport, and got me for a couple of days charter out of Port Stephens recently. Steve put his young teenage daughters up on strike first. I don’t know what it is with the Pennisi’s but would you believe a blue in the 180kg to 200kg class climbed on the skipping mackerel,and the young lady did a amazing job on the 15kg outfit to land her very first marlin. Later in the day her sister also caught her first marlin, a very active stripy of around 80kg. The girls are now hooked, and on to Dad to get them out.again, God I love it when a plan comes together.
Frustration has a whole new Meaning
The first weekend of 50th anniversary NSW interclub tournament is now history,and as I ponder on the wording for this blog, I realise how much the luck factor can play in the sport of game fishing.
We were on the Board with one of the first tag and realises of the tournament, a solid black marlin, then with in another half an hour, we were again hooked up to another over size black for this fishery. This fish well over 200kg gave us a early chance with the Tag pole, but it did not find it’s mark, and it realised that it better keep as far away from that screaming engine noise as possible.
The hours ticked by and another couple missed opportunities, and then after four hours of what I could only call now wasted time the inevitable happened. Obviously feeling a bit flattened we were back on the spot, the sked report made me aware that we had wasted too much time and the pace was getting away from us.
When it rains it pours and again within minutes we were hooked up again, this time to a very large Striped marlin that took us all around the fleet in hot pursuit. Then it took off down sea at top speed for what seemed an eternity. Again when the opportunity arose, the tag shot went astray and made contact with the line. I remember saying something like bad luck or maybe something along those lines.
We had been hooked up most of the day and yet our result at the end of day 1 was one tag, well off the pace of 5 for the top boat.
Well with that day out of the way, you would think that, things could only get better. I arrived on the grounds at 0630 due to the crazy time they start fishing in this tournament. (leaving the entrance to Port Stephens at dark with another 170 odd boats of all sizes departing at
similar time is a navigation night mare, and it looks like they will not change this criteria until someone has a collision at sea, which could have a disastrous outcome. I only hope that this stupidity does not cause a loss of life.) The baits went in the water at start fishing 0700 and immediately we were hooked up to a double header, both going in opposite direction, and we were getting smoked, I made the decision to lock up one or lose both. With one fish gone I was just about to do chase to the other fish, and due to the amount
of line out the line parted. It appeared the Monkey had not got off my back.
Well my old mate Percy veer came to my aid, and our luck finally turned, after a shocking start we finally started catching. At the end of the second day we caught 5 striped marlin for the day, up there with a good result for the day, but our 6
fish total for the 2 days is well off the pace. The result for the Tournament so far in general is outstanding, good results both in marlin of all sizes and extremely large sharks. It looks like the 50th anniversary Interclub will be one to remember. Stay turned.
My season is finished and tomorrow we well begin the trip back to the Gold Coast. After my little holiday with my Children we had two trips to complete a overnight-er and a 5 day trip.
George Food shouted his Dad a 2 day trip, after we met in one of my workshops, The first day we were fishing off Jenny Louise shoal straight out of Cairns, fishing up till 5.00pm had been slow, and I was doubting my decision, when we had a bite on the scad, no hook up, almost immediately the big fish took the middle stinger bait, and we were hooked up to a solid fish. Young George did a great Job, and the fish presented itself early, we took the opportunity, and George released his first Cairns Marlin around 900lbs.
That day was over and after a very pleasant night behind Flynn Reef, and a beautiful snorkel in the morning we were back into it again. Again the action did not happen till late, and not until just before wind in, the scad again got the attention of a small fish, 250lb and George’s Dad Jeff was hooked up, to a very active fish. It was great to catch them a couple of fish and one nice one on a special father and son gig.
Word of some bad dirty water moving down from up north, had me a little concerned about our next trip. Good friend Joel Pallister, and friends were aboard the first day around lunch time the dirty water moved in, and the Action slowed right down. The next day we were moving back south to get in front of the water, which was found off Euston Light, with the good water came 3 bites on small fish, and 3 jumped off. The next day the dirty water was also starting to move into the southern grounds, so we went out a little wide with the lures, a decent fish had 3 goes at the Bobby Brown Lure, and than we nailed it. I am sure we were hooked up to a Blue around 750lb it did some great things, and had us giving chase to a real speed star. Stuart was on up to the task, and we were very close to a release when the hooks pulled ( bugger ) well we still got some good entertainment.
The next day we were forced to fish in the dirty water, and on a very slow day for most we still managed a couple of fish to 400lb, which I was amazed to catch in such water. It was a very strange current that had moved in and rarely before witnessed in these waters. with a early finish on the last day to see the sights of Cairns, we were finished for the 2011 season.
It was a magnificent season with all my charters have experience with nice fish, and many experiencing fish over the magic 1000lb
Well after a substantial run of magnificent weather, the south east trades let us know that they still existed in a big way, the weather reports telling us of 25 to 30 knots kept coming, and the warnings that wind gusts could be up to 40% stronger than the average given hear proved correct. Rain yes that as well and during some night time sessions it was beyond belief.
We have been on the Mothership Atlantic Princess for the last week, with my partner Beau Kuok ( Mr Shangri la ) Beau loves his reef fishing and mind you, anchoring in 30 knots of breeze and trying to get on the right spot, puts a whole new meaning to the word a boat driver, and for my 2 Wassa and James they did a excellent job on the bow dealing with the anchor, Beau has a nice lot of Trout and Red Emperor to take back with him.
On the Marlin seen, well we were doing a few hours each afternoon, from the radio chat from few boats that were venturing outside the reef, it has slowed quite a bit, the strong winds have pushed the current to the north, which has not been proven to be the best scenario.From our small effort over 6 days we caught 3 Marlin from 5 bites no big fish.
At last the wind is laying off, into Cooktown for change over, the forcast is alot more attractive for the coming days, 3 lads from Western Australia will be joining us for 6 days Phill Perry and his mates are back after a great treip last year, Hope we can put it on for them again.
Well after the 6th day of the Lizard Is Black marlin classic, The tournament has been another amazing example of this fishery, some quality fish have been caught and a few over the magical 1000lb and some maybe over 1100lb, the amount of big fish reports comming accross the Radio reports, has made it well and truly the best tournament for Big fish in the world. The current is running to the south in comparison to last season, and is strong and consistant, some boats have found some very hot, hot spots.
Askari is well and truly in the lead, and has had a super tournament, and will be hard to beat now, Little Audry has also done very well, we are still in the hunt for champion angler or runner up champion angler with 8 Tags for my little 14 year old. We are running around 3rd or 4th at present, unfortunately I had to fish with one motor for a part of the tournament as a clutch pack in my Port gearbox had a little hickup, it was a big night in Cooktown repairing the gear box half way through the gig.
The weather currently is georgous and the days and night on the reef our spectacular, The presentation of awards will be held tonight at Lizard Island. Always a big accasion and good to meet up with everyone.
We have to start a new charter the next day out of Cooktown so it will be another big night running down to their after the awards, better get to work by for now.
The 25 th Lizard Island black marlin classic is under way, and a little slow at present, I think the pace is currently 2 fish which a handfull of boats including ourselves have, I have a 14 year old as my angler, Conner Craven has come with his Dad Glenn, they fished with me in a few tournaments down south at Port Stephens, Great people and Conner does a great job for a young man, with the heavy tackle, Got a bit on so short note today stay tuned.
Started are first day of a 7 day Charter with Robert and Denise and their 2 sons. Robert was on the reef way back in 1981 and decided to return now he is retired and bring good friend Denise and there 2 boys. We fished No 10 ribbon and Caught the boys there first ever black Marlin, a 300 lber and a 500lber I also marked plenty of other fish and will be back at the same spot today, congradulations to Jake and Bob.
Hello Boys and Girls
LURStill fishing Japan Client Moto, Chasing world record on 8kg. We have not raised a fish around 700lb to have a crack at the title yet, But having alot of fun teasing smaller fish and trying to get them to eat the popper or stick bait. we are averaging 2 shots a day on the teasers and have been up the top of No 10 ribbon looking for the right fish. Today is our last chance for a crack at the record.
Reports from other boats show that the big Girls are starting to role in. ALURE, kEKEOA, TOPSHOT, and RELEASE have all caught fish over 800lb and the big girl bites are starting to increase, our turn today.
Currently fishing regular client moto from Japan, Targeting the world record on 8kg, 631lb and the smaller fish he casts a popper to after the tease, and if its a grander he will have ago with the 130lb tackle. All fish are teased and switch baited. Yesterday we raised 3 and had 2 bites on the switchbaits, One we coud’nt get off the teaser and the other woud’nt come in. Another boats fishing No 10 released a nice fish of 800lb and The release went 2 for 2.
Reports in from yesterday, few small fish on linden bank, and the boats in the ribbons also picked away at fish up to 500lb. The viking 11 left Cairns for the Start of another trip, I was keen to get up to the Ribbons and ran to opal ridge, and trolled lures up to the bottom of the Ribbons, The day produced 2 bites with Russel hicks from Moura, south west of Rockhampton catching a 400lber his first. Some nice Wahoo and yellowfin tuna on the Bait rod also kept the country boys entertained.
Hello Boys and Girls.
Reports from the boats that have started, shows that a sprinkling of fish are turning up, with the odd nice one amoungst them, but all and all still a little slow. Boats are still getting a bite or two a day, and the current especially were I have been EUSTON AND JENNY LOUISE SHOAL is running at 1.5 knots to the south.
We had a nice fish swipe a lure close in off Euston Light, but did,nt come back, and that was about it for us yesterday, Client Rodger Cunninghame and wife Barbara celabrated Rodgers birthday yesterday and last night, behind Flynn Reef 25 meter visability showing its true beauty. It was a great night and rodger is hoping for a big fish present today.
More boats are moving out today so keep tuned for all reports.