Port Stephens Shootout…
The Port Stephens Shootout went ahead quite successfully on the week-end in spite of weather predictions of disastrous conditions.
Sadly it wasn’t plain sailing for at least a couple of boats crossing the bar. The conditions on the bar at the entrance to the Port were not exactly favourable and a great degree of caution was required with the four to five meter swells rolling over the bar on the run-out tide.
However once past the bar, even with the swell it wasn’t too bad . The only problem was the very brown water which virtually made the inshore fishing a waste of time. Consequently most headed offshore.
The fleet was basically divided into those chasing Striped and Black Marlin on the shelf tagging and releasing and those venturing further looking for the $200,000.00 money fish, a 258 kilo Blue Marlin.
Sadly the big one wasn’t found but several boats said they had lost a possible winner. The boat ‘The Cuban’ did find a Blue of 157 kilo’s and took out the heaviest Marlin category.
The water on the shelf wasn’t fabulous. But at the known spots bait was holding up and lots of Marlin were caught by those dropping live baits into the schools and trolling lures or live baits around the schools. Places like the ‘Car Park’ have came alive again after a couple of lean years.
Out wider there were quite a few Mahi Mahi and Yellowfin taken. Although they weren’t large fish ranging from 10 to 25 kilo’s they were potentially good food for big Blues.
On Saturday I opted to chase the big one which we didn’t find but Travelled a long way looking for the good water which we also didn’t find. What I did find was a very, very brown current but on the edge the water looked quite good. Consequently I trolled along the edge. There were a few birds in the area and the occasional patch of bait. Then out of no where we had a strike , then another and another, a triple. As it turned out we tagged a Black Marlin and kept two 10 kilo Yellowfin and that was it for the day.
Sunday was the perfect day, it was hard to believe that such a large ground swell could disappear so quickly. The guys bait fishing on the shelf, bombing the bait schools continued to have success and those chasing the big one tried in vain. We ended up with a nice Mahi Mahi.
So while we didn’t end up in the money we had plenty to take home for the table.