Illawarra Flyfishers Club

October 2007

Offshore - Kiama

Hi all

I went out with 3 other guys and Dan Bennett on Predator Charter back on 30 Oct. Left Kiama at 3.00 AM yes that early - steamed to 25 mile offshore Kiama Canyons hoping to catch yellowfin. Drift burleyed till around 7.00am and then radio contacted a pro boat out some 50 miles who said the water change from 19 degrees to 21 was alive with fish - tuna mainly - he was pulling a long line and his catch rate was very good.

We trolled to 70 miles (radar) and lost the depth at 5000 fathoms or 2500 metres - found heaps of bird life, whale pods travelling north, dolphins etc on the way out but zero fish - at all. 

At 1300hrs we headed back in and around 60 miles we came across school after school of albacore - we picked them up on skirted - trolled lures at first but then they took a liking to bibless minnows.

At one stage, the whole school of alberts came to the boat with some hooked fish, so we burleyed them up and tossed live baits, cut baits, plastics and just about everything else.

I dragged out the #10 shooting head - 8kg tippet and my own tied orange headed white deceiver and hooked up on the second serious cast. The boys saw the alby take the fly from their side of the boat and estimated it around 12/15kg - the last I saw or felt was the 100 foot running line parting with the backing - like a rifle shot - on the tuna's initial run - tackle destruction at the worst possible time.- my fault for not checking ALL connections - it came apart at a braided loop that was sewn thru horizontally, super glued and heat shrink finished. ????
I loaded the spare spool on - type 3 deepwater express sinking line ($150) and pre tested most of the connections. - second cast with my own pink squid - hooked up and landed about 20 minutes later.- pending Sportfishing State record - 6.165kg albacore on 8kg tippet.

In all we landed unknown number of alberts on lures - kept 2 each for the table. The photos show just how flat the seas were- back at Kiama 2100 hrs and kinda knackered in a big way

I now have albacore 6.1 on 8, longtail tuna 5.1 on 8 and mack tuna 4.75 on 6 - stuffed if I can get a shot at a bloody yellowfin.

Next target is a big dolly - mahi - dorado...     watch this space..