Reefari Hardline 2009

After heaps and heaps of planning, our Hardline Reefari 2009 has finally come around again, and it was once again with another keen group of Anglers uniting  from locally and all the southern cities of Sydney and Melbourne. Also Jason Kennedy and film crew from “Fishin trip” on behalf of Southern Cross TEN as well, we were off on another fishing adventure of a lifetime.

With Centurion as our 80 foot Mothership, a 33 foot Cougar cat “Raptor” and 21 foot Centre Console, and three 15 foot dories, we had all bases covered and then some.  Expectations were high with vessel’s in tow, for 7 days and nights of awesome fishing and exploring the remote sections of the outer Great Barrier Reef, not for the faint hearted with distances of up to 200 kilometres offshore, and even on the edge of the continental shelf.

Fishing nirvana with Giant Trevally, Spanish Mackerel, reef fish, and heaps more on the agenda, the following is a brief account of this special trip.

Giant Trevally FishingBoats were fueled up, with enough diesel to keep a small country town powered, and OPEC very happy, it was an early afternoon start, with Raptor and centre console in tow, and we were off at a cruisy 8 knots, No speed records, but time and distance wins out with a cruise through the night to arrive at Bugatti Reef, nice and early.

GT heaven or is that fisherman’s heaven, probably both with a massive Coral lagoon with Kilometres and Kilometres of Reef, Bommies and great fishing.

The Weather was unbelievable with a week of light winds to 15 knots, with only one day with 20 knots winds at the end of the week, we were truly blessed, someone upstairs was smiling down on us.  Tenders and gameboats were dispatched, loaded up with an armament of tackle and off in pursuit of Fish.

Raptor II was off to Sharon Shoal, The guys from Fishin Trip chasing GT’s and the Dories assaulting the reef trip.

What a life, Some horse Red Throats were coming in thick and fast on the reefs and out on the wider shoals, and the film crew were getting a crash course in GT Fishing, definitely not for the faint hearted.   Losing more than they could land for the cameras, it was time to beef up the gear and tackle and swing things in there favour.

Life takes on another pace having a week out on the Great Barrier Reef with none of the stresses of the real world, Great food, Company and plenty of amber fluids, everybody quickly settled into the rythym of the trip.   Over the next week, we fished Whitetip Reef, Lipper Lagoon, Big and Little Bugatti Reef and numerous other unnamed and uncharted reefs, real adventure stuff, especially when we’re talking 200 kilometres offshore!!

Raptor II had a great week, trolling lures for Spanish Mackerel and Sharky Mackerel, Casting Poppers for Giant Trevally and bottom bashing with good quality Red throat on Tap, and Multiple hooks up on some quality fish.   One of the Highlights was a quality 4kg Barramundi Cod caught by yours Truly to make my day.

Decky Adam Shields, did the honours and in the diving gear, dived down and released the Barra Cod, as Baratrauma can be a real drama for these wonderful fish and successfully released.

Some real nice GT’s were caught by the film crew with some phemonemal footage and a great TV Show for Sure.  Check out Fishin Trip on Southern Cross on Sun 6th Dec, and Sun 13th Dec for some Phenomenal fishing action.  Numerous fish were caught and released with the best going 26kg’s.

Other Giant Trevally highlights were a  couple of 32kg monsters, one caught from the back of the Mothership “Centurion” by Adam, on a floating pilchard of all things, a battle royal with 80lb braid and the centre console was called into assist, check out the video on reefari youtube as Adam took off into the darkness to eventually return triumphant for the enjoyment of all watching, a heap of happy snaps and the GT was released to fight another day.

Giant TrevallyAnother Monster GT was caught by Murray, trolling from the dories along the reef edge,  and of all things was caught on a Murray Cod lure after a 45 minute battle.  Not bad for his first reef trip. This great fish also went 32kgs and was a great introduction to the Great Barrier Reef for his Murray’s first time.

Cyclone Hamish’s damage to the outer reef was still evident with the reef badly damaged with coral littered on the ocean floor, plate and staghorn coral suffered badly and coral trout catches were well down.

Redthroat numbers were still good with Double Bag limits reached for all 20 anglers.

The last night was spent cruising into Scawfell Island for a bit of R&R, hard to believe I know, but a great way to wind down from a week out on the reef.  Bit of snorkelling and a nice afternoon cruise back to Mackay.

Bookings and expression of interest taken for next year and also putting together a 10 day charter to Princess Charlotte Bay, Bigger and Better, so make sure you get in early!! Contact Reefari for More Details here Charter Bookings