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Tweed River Fishing Charter, October 9, 2017

Andrew and I enjoyed a great days fishing the Tweed River for bass. Andrew had never caught a bass before and it wasn’t long before he nailed his first on a cicada surface lure. His second fell for the same trap soon after. As the sun rose we switched to deeper divers and the bass continued to bite. Another 4 or 5 fish were netted before the sun made an appearance from behind the clouds and the bite slowed down. Andrew still managed another couple of bass before we called it a day. Andrew finished the morning with about 8 nice bass and a smile from ear to ear. Thanks for a great day!

 

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Tweed River Charter. Sept 28, 2017

What a great session we had this morning with Ben and Evo landing 3 fat bass each on surface lures and diving minnows. Well done boys!

Tying The Dahlberg Diver Fly

Dahlberg Diver

The Dahlberg Diver would have to be my all time favorite fly. Anything that swims and feeds off the surface of the water will be tempted by the Dahlberg. Murray cod, bass, golden perch, saratoga, barrumundi, even turtles and water dragons love this fly.

There are a number of pattern variations of this fly and so it can be tied to imitate a frog, insect, lizard, fish or even a mouse struggling on the water. Retrieving with short sharp strips causes the fly to bloop, leaving a bubble trail in it’s wake. Another retrieve that works well with bass is to just leave the fly sit in one place. Every now and then a little shake of the rod tip causes the fly to vibrate like a cicada caught in the surface tension of the water.

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The Dahlberg also has a very good hook up rate. When fish strike surface flies tied with foam, the fly will often bounce away from the fish and fails to hook up. The Dahlberg is made of deer hair which tends to stick to the water and is less buoyant than foam. I believe this helps ensure the fly enters the fishes mouth.

Simon Fitzpatrick

Tying The Donnie Brasco Fly

Donnie Bracso Fly

If you love fly fishing for Australian native fish and are looking for a good fly this spring, look no further than the Donnie Brasco Fly. This is a great all rounder fly for species such as golden perch that school up in our impoundments over springtime. Also with bass season now open, this fly is bound to tempt a bass or two.

This fly can be tied in a variety of sizes. A good starting point for bass and golden perch would be to tie on a 1/0 hook. Larger hooks up to 4/0 would be ideal for Murray cod when summer rolls around. Both the body and tail of the Donnie Brasco Fly consist of rabbit fur. This material is well known for its fish enticing action. When retrieving the fly with short sharp strips, rabbit fur tends to pulsate in the water, closely resembling the movement of a fishes fins.

Black and purple are proven colours when it comes to attracting Australian native fish. By tying on a purple tail and a black body you have a very versatile fly for both clear and turbid water. More often that not I tie in a weed guard too. By tying a double loop weed guard you can work the fly right in among the structure without snagging up too often. The weed guard shown in the video offers good snag resistance whilst collapsing easily when a fish bites.

Tight lines

Simon Fitzpatrick

The Bass Season Has begun!

The bass have started to return to the fresh after their spawning session over winter in the brackish water. I managed to land 4 solid bass and dropped another 3. All on the fly. Book your charter now. Happy days.

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August 14 Tweed River Charter

A few bass continue to show up through the month of August. Today Melle and Kim worked their lures diligently along the edges of the snags and were rewarded for their efforts. Another couple of weeks and this freshwater section of the Tweed River will be absolutely teaming with bass as they return from their spawning run. September is the best month for bass fishing by far!!! Now is the time to book your charter.

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Clarrie Hall and Tweed River Update

It has now been 4 months since the floods in March and Clarrie Hall Dam is still undergoing some change. The water is still coffee coloured but this will likely have a positive effect on the lake. It could be said that impoundments are in a constant cycle consisting of boom and bust phases. Clarrie Hall is probably in the latter phase now. My theory is that the elevated water levels and turbidity during the floods has cut off the cabomba weeds light source. Subsequently there has been a major die back of this invasive weed. The die off of the weed probably led to more turbidity which in turn caused more weeds to die. A kind of positive feedback loop. Hence 4 months later the dam is still turbid.

The good news is that much of the cabomba weed is now dead. This has exposed the edge of the lily pads making lure fishing a much easier proposition. The die back of the cabomba has also made access easier in a number of places including the boat ramp area which was previously choked with weed. The lily pads have had a bit of a shake up too and now there are gaps between the pads where anglers can swim a bait.

The Tweed River has also undergone some change. There has been some extensive erosion on the river bank where riparian vegetation has been removed for farming…..no surprises there. (River bank planting in these areas is desperately needed to stop erosion and siltation of the river.) However I was very pleased to see numerous new snags in the river. Some of these snags are absolute rippers and will no doubt hold good numbers of bass. On a charter yesterday Dan had some success fishing these snags with a Donny Brasco fly. On a number of occasions the bass appeared to be only sideswiping the fly but Dan managed to connect with a couple of nice fish. When the bass return from their spawning run in September there should be plenty of action to look forward too around these new snags!

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I do like Mondays after all

Not many things can get me out of bed at 4am on a Monday morning. Especially when it is zero degrees outside. But for big Murray Cod I will make an exception!

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Fishing Trip From Hell?

Have you ever had a fishing trip where everything seems to go wrong? When I hit a kangaroo on the way to the dam recently I should have seen this as a bad omen. Later that day I hit a rock in the boat and snapped the shaft on the electric motor. I also broke 2 of my favorite (and most expensive) lures and after 3 days of solid fishing, I caught absolutely nothing!! But with scenery like this I really can’t complain 🙂

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2017 Floods

A tropical low  (a remnant of cyclone Debbie) moving south has collided with a cold front moving north over the South QLD/Northern Rivers area. An astonishing 602mm of rain was recorded at the town of Uki, near Clarrie Hall Dam, over 2 days (30&31st) of March!! Needless to say the Tweed River was in flood and the town of Murwillumbah suffered some inundation. Clarrie Hall Dam is looking very turbid to say the least and it will be a while before conditions settle down in both the dam and the river. Fishing charters will not be running for at least a couple of weeks.

The good news is that the river will benefit from a good flush out. Once the river recovers there will be a whole new world of fish habitat to discover 😉  Here is what the river looked like in flood

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