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Trevally at Dammerels Head

Trevally at Dammerels Head

Salt Water
While camping at Emerald Beach, the lure of the many beautiful beaches surrounding us was far too great, and saw us heading north to explore Woolgoolga Beach. This proved to be a good decision as we drove onto the sand at the incredibly picturesque Flat Top Point. From there we headed south, looking for a good spot to setup camp for the afternoon. On route we passed multiple promising looking holes in the surf, all sure to hold fish, before coming to a stop at Dammerels Head. We selected the rocky point for both it's aesthetics as well as the promise of species other than dart, which we were beginning to tire of. Aerial photo of Dammerels Head While our kids chased (and amazingly caught) crabs, we kitted up our…
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A Windy Fingal Bay

A Windy Fingal Bay

Salt Water
Warren fly fishing the rocks at Fingal Bay During a recent trip to Fingal Bay (Port Stephens) I snuck away for a quick hour on the water. I chose to head to the rocky point at the southern end of the bay, as I believed this had the best possibility of holding good fish. The beach was devoid of wave action, which made me believe it was unlikely to hold any good fish (or at the very least, they would be widely spread out and difficult to find). In theory this proved to be a good choice as I had access to good structure, deep water, and multiple impressive gullies. Sadly, the 40 km/hr winds made fly fishing exceptionally difficult. In fact, at points the wind actually lifted my fly…
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Prospecting the Spit West Reserve

Prospecting the Spit West Reserve

Salt Water
Sunset at Spit West Reserve Having moved to Sydney just under a year ago, it was truely amazing to realise that I had not flicked a fly into the abundance of water available right at my doorstep. Eager to put a stop to this poor behaviour, I grabbed my fly rod (and the 6 salt water flies I own) and headed down to Spit West Reserve. On a previous visit (to the park) I'd seen a few trevally shoot out from under a yacht to chase some baitfish in the shallows. Unfortunately, fishing this part of the reserve was near impossible due to the many joggers, walkers, kids, dogs, and so on. I was therefore forced to fish the southern end of the reserve, closer to the rowing club. On…
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Trying My Luck At Turon Gates

Trying My Luck At Turon Gates

Uncategorized
My family and I recently spent a magical weekend at Turon Gates. Despite not being considered a top trout water, the Turon River is apparently stocked with around 7000 brown trout fry per year (according to unreliable sources). The river is better known for it's carp population, and also holds the odd bass. Despite poor fishing reports I was excited to get knee deep in a crystal clear stream, missing my home country rivers, like the Bushmans and the Pholela,  In preparation for the trip, and at the advice of local fishermen, I invested in a pair gaiters to protect me from the various venomous creatures Australia has on offer, and bought a fresh supply of dries, nymphs, and other trout flies. A new trout net sadly eluded me. The…
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My First Session in Australia – Toowoon Bay

My First Session in Australia – Toowoon Bay

Salt Water
According to my blog the last time I flicked a fly was at the 2017 Xplorer UHTFC Festival, which was way back on the 24 September 2017. WOW! I'm truly embarrassed. How can it be that for well over a year I never flicked a fly?! Putting the embarrassment aside for a second, I was massively excited to step out onto the beach, fly rod in hand, with the only 6 flies I own in my pocket. My target? Tailor (that's shad for my South African friends)? Luderick? I wasn't really sure to be honest. I just wanted to wet a fly. My family and I were in Toowoon Bay on camping trip, and I'd managed to sneak away for an hour in the early afternoon. The wind was howling,…
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Buying My First Flies in Australia

Buying My First Flies in Australia

Randoms, Salt Water
[caption id="attachment_2981" align="alignnone" width="1600"] My first 6 salt water flies bought in Australia[/caption] Back in February I sadly got rid of all of my flies, as well as all of my tying material, when immigrating from South Africa to Australia. It was perhaps a little drastic, but considering the volume of natural fibre in both, it seemed like the most logical and simple thing to do. After all, I didn't want to be the next victim of "Border Security." Now while this may have made the packing process easier, it was perhaps little short sighted. With a weekend planned at Toowoon Bay, I headed down to a local fly fishing shop on my lunch-break. Much to my dismay each of the flies I purchased cost around $10 (R100). Considering these…
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Bonito in the Bay (and Mackerel)

Bonito in the Bay (and Mackerel)

Bait, Salt Water
[caption id="attachment_2969" align="alignright" width="267"] Nick with a mackerel caught on lure[/caption] A family wedding meant that Sharon, the kids, and I boarded a plane and headed to Brisbane. Nick picked us up from the airport and, much to my wife's dismay, immediately started discussing the day's fishing plans. We dropped the family off at Nick's place, had a quick cup of coffee, hitched up the boat, and headed for Moreton Bay. Conditions on the bay were near perfect - well, for us humans. A warm autumn day with sunny, blue skies and not a breath of wind. The water looked like glass as we skimmed across, it heading for some structure between Peel Island and North Stradbroke. We started the day with some bottom fishing, using squid and pilchards as…
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The Xplorer UHTFC Festival 2017

The Xplorer UHTFC Festival 2017

Event, Fresh Water, Trip Report, Trout
Having hosted a very successful (inaugural) fly fishing festival in 2016, we (the UHTFC committee) decided to build on the event by hosting our second festival in 2017. We updated the format, extending the festival by a day to 2 days, and then threw in a formal dinner and  braai. Although Neill and I were fishing in the festival, we were also partially responsible for putting the event together, and therefore had to do our due diligence. As such we drove up early on Friday morning and spent the day checking the condition of the festival waters, unlocking the various gates and boat houses, packing goodie bags, and setting up the evening venue. One of the waters was slightly off-colour, and we therefore removed it from the festival, otherwise all was looking good. With…
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Castleburn

Castleburn

Fresh Water, Review, Trip Report, Trout
I was lucky enough to win a 5 day stay at Castleburn in last years Xplorer UHTFC Festival. After (accidentally) letting it expire I managed to get it extended by a month and took the family up for a much needed break.  Having spent the weekend fishing the Boston Fly Fishing Festival this was intended to be a family trip. I did however manage to pack the  fly rod and to sneak away for the odd hour here and there. And I'm certainly glad I did - the fishing was great.  For the full (family) trip report please head over to my personal website. This blog post is going to be more focused on Castleburn's fly fishing, as well as any activities related to fishing. The Venue [caption id="attachment_2907" align="alignnone" width="1600"] Sunrise…
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