19th Annual Hervey Bay Game Fishing Club’s CLASSIC GAME FISHING TOURNAMENT 16th – 19th November, 2017
As usual the Hervey Bay Game Fishing Club’s Committee worked very hard in securing a Tournament Base with facilities to enhance the Bay’s reputation for Hosting excellent sporting events in pristine surroundings. They decided to Honour Albert and Pauline Threadingham for their untiring efforts on behalf of the Club by dedicating this Tournament to them.
The Briefing included notable personel from Marine Rescue Hervey Bay, Fish and Fauna on speed limits in the Turtle protection zones , Reef fin fish spawning season and no take season and even the Police showed their welcome presence and were on patrol in the Tournament Anchorage area. Add to that the enormity of staging the actual event with a Base at Rooneys Point in one of the most pristine of all areas along our coast in Queensland, where the Teams are comfortably and easily brought to the most accommodating “Mothership” for food and accommodation, if you are fortunate enough to get more than deck space to sleep on!
I’ve never seen anyone unhappy with anything and that includes the Crew ! The only unhappy person ever seen is the bloke that announces to the Angler that his gear doesn’t comply. It must be boring to listen to how the Leader or double line can’t be longer than their maximum allowable length within the maximum combined maximum length…
39 Teams decided to Enter and on Day One it was established that 2 Teams were happy to use light tackle of 8 kg only and fish in the “Inside” Tournament Zone while the other 37 Teams fished a combination of Tackle categories from 15, 24, 37 and 60 Kg in the “Outside” Tournament Zone and were also free to use light tackle of 8 kg until the depth reaches 100 meters.
Very exciting and to use the Heavy Tackle, all Boats had to cross the Great Sandy Cape Bar in several available locations by registering with VMR466 Marine Rescue Hervey Bay on VHF channel # 22 to cross East/ West and West/ East on each occasion and what a great service they provided to every Boat assisted by a schedule of each Tournament Boat’s details provided by the Club. They are really thorough and professional.
DAY 1 The Radio resounded over each Boats speaker and it was now OFFICIALLY ON !!!! …and it wasn’t long before the reports of Strikes and Hook ups and Fish Tagged and Released ! Reports kept flooding in and by end of first days fishing it was evident that some kind of Blue Marlin record catch was in the air … 128 strkes and 89 hookups with 46 fish that included 16 Blue Marlin, 8 black Marlin and 1 Striped Marlin ahead of 21 mixed ‘other Species’ that included Yellowfin and other Tuna, Wahoo Cobia, Mahimahi and Spanish Mackeral. Very Excited Anglers shouting one another after another exotic sunset with game Boats punctuating the Beauty of the surroundings.
Day 2 was another even more productive day after everyone was more aware of the behaviour of these Blue Marlin. Lots of strikes resulted in either the same fish or others in the group making a quick second strike ! This was the day that many Anglers got their first Tag and Release of a Blue Marlin and those that didn’t still had the memory of what they saw firmly imprinted on their Sunglasses ! Look at this result from 37 Boats ! 139 Strikes, 113 hook ups and 62 Fish…they really found them and what line they were travelling on !! 37 Blue Marlin ( one per Boat ! ) 2 Black Marlin, 1 striped marlin and 22 other Species that included Yellowfin and other Tuna, Wahoo that included Wahoo in the 30 kg category and Cobia in the same range, Mahimahi and Spanish Mackeral. There was obviously a lot to shout about, a bit of rain during gear checks but nothing to dampen the spirits for the few hours left for the last day with 5 hours Fishing left ! That is why we came and this will take it down to the wire ! most of the boats decided to fish the ‘shallows’ for Black Marlin on the Sunday and get back to the Harbour . Those that elected to look where they left off, did well with the Blues as well. One Boat that was in contention hooked a big Blue Marlin and spent a fair amount of time with her. The Score for the last day 48 Strikes, 44 Hookups, and 32 Fish consisting of 16 Blue Marlin, 5 Black Marlin and 1 Strped Marlin and 10 other Species which included Tuna, Mahimahi, Spanish and other mackeral.
Now we can look at the TOURNAMENT CPUE 39 Boats: 315 Strikes, 246 Hookups and 140 Fish ! there were 69 Blue Marlin, 15 Black Marlin and 3 Striped Marlin and 53 other species which included Wahoo and Cobia over 30 kg and Mahimahi to 8 kg. Everyone had a great time and only Jimmy could collapse his Chair !
A huge thank you to you Brad and your Committee and we all hope you will find a venue to cater for the influx of teams that the Results of this Tournament will surely bring !!! you may need the Super Bowl !!
Pauline and I are very thankful of being able to assist the Club once again and look forward to being of assistance in the future.
Albert and Pauline.