Monday, September 6, 2010

Northern Thugs

Every other winter I meet up with a group of like minded fishing mates in the remote wilds of Arnhem land for a few weeks of  fishing.  It is a pleasant escape from the cold weather and subsequent reduced fishing opportunities back home on the NSW far south coast at that time of year.  This is no fancy mother ship or lodge type holiday, more a self guided back to basics, bare bones outpost camping holiday.  Logistics are difficult. distances travelled are great, facilities are basic, but the rewards are big with an unspoilt wild fishery with boundless possibilities.

The rewards of far flung travel
The size and species available  in such places is often boundless and on the water  the plethora of species about can make targeting one species difficult but the sporting prowess of the Giant Trevally put them high on my list of favourites.
One of the hardest fighting fish your ever likely to catch - Giant Trevally
As a structure based fish, they love small reef areas, shallow rock strewn flats, fringing coral, bommies and the like.  Fishing prominent headlands early in the mornings with fly, plastics and poppers is almost a guarantee of a GT.  
A typical spot to start looking for Trevs
Popper fishing is particularly good for rat GT's in the 3-4kg range.  Conventional gear is an efficient way to cover structure but fly rod poppers can be used to great effect also.  I often find larger fish prefer the small fly rod poppers.

A horse of a GT taken on a 2 inch fly rod popper
Another flyrod GT on a small popper
GT's can often be found hanging around turtles or Manta rays also, a popper dragged past will almost always get a big surface hit.  

These little 'school' GT's in the 3 or 4 kg range provide a lot of fun on fly, plastics or poppers.
Trevally are such tenacious fish and the really big models are seldom landed.  One particular morning we got totally smoked on four fish fishing deep plastics on 8kg tackle with locked drags.  The same morning I lost about half a #12 fly line to the reef trying to extract a decent GT.

GT's do have a ridge of spines along the side of their tails so a glove offers protection from being spikes whilst handling fish

My good friend Sonny Potiki with a typical Northern Thug.
They are not all huge but they do all pull hard and provide great sport on all tackle.

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