My First Session in Australia – Toowoon Bay

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, straight onshore unfortunately, but I didn’t care. I was going to succeed no matter what.

The view north from Toowoon Point

I walked north as I knew Toowoon Point, specifically the rocky outcrop at the end, would give me my best chance of success in the wind. On route I found a beautiful gully where I could cast across the wind and decided to give it a try. I tied on an orange Crazy Charlie, and threw it out behind a wave. 

Two cast lasts later I hooked into a very average fish, which certainly got my heart pounding. Sadly I was only on for about 10 seconds before my line went slack as it bit me off. For once I didn’t care. There were fish around, and I had high hopes for the rest of my afternoon. I was however concerned that I was down to just 5 flies, and didn’t have a second orange Charlie.

Looking at my tippet I’m assuming it was a tailor that bit me off, but being new to Australia I can’t be sure as I don’t know the fish species. It did cross my mind that perhaps my tippet material had gone brittle in the heat in the container, but I quickly pushed that thought aside since I only had a single roll of tippet on me.

One of the gullies I fished at Toowoon Bay

I fished the gully for another 15 minutes, without any further luck, before moving on to my next spot. The small bay to the north, known as Little Bay, was cut off from the sea by a rocky ledge which was exposed at low tide. As the tide was pulling, the water was rushing out of this bay through a small channel, which looked ripe for the picking. I fished the white water in this area for another 10 minutes, but sadly to no avail, despite my effort casting into the strong onshore wind.

From Little Bay I moved onto the small island of Toowoon Point. Here I got distracted by my drone and ended up taking more photos than fishing. The protected side of the island was probably not worth fishing, due to the lack of structure on the bottom, as well as the distinct lack of wave action or currents. The exposed side of the rocks however, looked far more promising. But in this instance fishing would have been tough due to the wind direction and the size of the swell. 

Just over an hour from when I walked onto the beach, I climbed the stairs up to Swadling Park. My feet were battered from the barnacles (I had forgotten to pack booties), I’d lost a fly, and had landed no fish. But it was an incredible first outing none the less.

I’m not quite sure if I’d recommend this as a fly fishing spot, but it certainly appeared to have potential, and is worthy of a fish if you’re staying in the area. 

Fishing the trusty Xplorer XPS-S Bonefish

One thought on “My First Session in Australia – Toowoon Bay

  • Amy Bray


    Please can you email me with some locations for a great fly fishing experience around Umkomaas.

    We are going camping in December and would love to make the most of our adventure.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *