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Author Topic: Awoonga – A New Beginning  (Read 3980 times)

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Awoonga – A New Beginning
« on: February 14, 2012, 09:57:27 PM »
After having a 12 month break from the dam and being my first weekend off as Mr Mum for 2012 I didn’t care what the weather was doing; I’m going fishing! 

Thought I’d have a poke around the dam and see what was happening, headed out at 4am Saturday and trolled around on the electric watching the structure scan. First thing I noticed was the dam is alive, fresh green weed banks, lily pads everywhere, trees and the grass is green, bait and bugs on the move. Wow! This is what I've been missing.





After an hour or so found some barra sitting on the edge of some lilies, lowered they the noiseless anchor and began the ritual – ziiiiinnggg, splash, click, twitch, twitch, pause, wind, twitch, twitch, pause, wind and repeat the process.  The suddenly I got thumped, sorry old habits die hard I’m use to metre plus fish, it was more like a whack. A little rat barra around 300, he didn’t warrant the effort of getting the camera out .  A few more cast with a few follows by little fish and one more rat for the morning.  Mental note to myself, need to down size to some bass gear for the afternoon session.

Unfortunately I didn’t make it back on Saturday afternoon due to a line of storms on the radar, oh well there’s always tomorrow.

Headed out early Sunday back to the same spot with some ‘bass’ lures and 20 and 40lb leader. Yep! North Queensland light gear… lol. Started off with a few follows right up to the boat, nothing big, but you could tell they were males, young, dumb and full of c#m.  Had one barra repeatedly try to grab the lure when I was lifting it out of the water.  A few more cast and I got smacked by a 68cm specimen, which was great fun on the light gear. Also managed a couple of 55cm and a rat around 30cm. Decided to call it a morning and head home for brekky.







Was talking to the new neighbour who is a diehard bass and bream man, he commenced to tell me about his multiple donuts at the dam. I said grab your gear and we’ll go and get a couple of barra. Scott arrived with real bass and bream gear, nothing over 15lb and lures smaller the my split rings…

After fishing a few weed banks and discussing tactics for an hour we headed to where I had left the anchor.  As I was reaching down to clip onto the buoy I heard and almighty yelp from the back, YEP! Scotty busted his cherry and had hooked his first ever barra, you can’t buy that smile.







Anyway, we managed 6 barra for the afternoon, of which Scotty got 2, plus I dropped 1 fish at the side of the boat and numerous follows. All fish were healthy and ranged from 30cm to 71cm, which was friggin awesome to see, which means there are plenty of young dumb fish to catch.





Headed back on Monday afternoon after work and the wind was up and the temp was down 1 degree to 31.4 degrees. Didn’t even get a follow, well that’s fishing

Regards
Earl


There's a fine line between a hobby and mental illness,
He who dies with the most toys wins - more tackle box jewellery

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2012, 10:30:01 PM »
Nice report and well done. Uncle just got back from up there. They said they couldn get a fish to take a lure. Said the dam was flowing over well.

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2012, 06:43:19 AM »
That's great news Earl.  Good to see you getting a few.

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2012, 08:12:26 AM »
A great report Earl.  :thumb

I've been hearing some sneaky reports about Awoonga for a while, it's good to see it's not all doom n gloom. I guess with so many people giving up on Awoonga after the flood it's a bit of a downward spiral, no reports = nobody goes there = no reports.....

The fish are there for sure & it's great to see a next generation of fish coming thru.
A New Beginning is an apt title, thanks for sharing with us.

Cheers,

fitzy..

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2012, 12:49:47 PM »
Sounds like the same story as Monduran Earl, the fish are still there but they are a lot smaller than the 'old' days. 

We haven't fished Awoonga since the floods but we have visited Mondy 6 times since and we have caught barra every time - sizes range from 41cm to 79cm...

Smaller lure presentations are the go.

Cheers

Pete

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2012, 05:20:04 PM »
Great report Earl, welcome back to the land of the living!

Thanks for sharing mate, great to see a good reported session coming from the lake.

Dave

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2012, 04:02:31 PM »
Considering that these fisher gents are reporting on what would be considered 'rats' when we refer to Awoonga in the halcyon days.....Does this diminish the experience??? Thoughts


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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2012, 09:27:28 PM »
Jordo,

Had the same issue, just downsized the gear to 5 – 10cm lures and lighter leaders and the dam is still flowing over.

Fitzy,

It’s not all doom and gloom, but they are bloody hard to find, they big girls use to stand out like a sore thumbs on the sounder. Have a similar saying - “You won’t catch them sitting in the lounge room”

Pete,

You hit the nail on the head, made all the difference

Fishfolk,

Definitely not! The ‘rats’ are great fun to catch, firstly they put on an awesome aerial display and are way more energetic, like most kids. 

Considering the gear is much lighter, they are still a challenge to catch before they wear through the leader or straighten the light gauge hooks.

Earl

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2012, 07:05:29 AM »
Considering that these fisher gents are reporting on what would be considered 'rats' when we refer to Awoonga in the halcyon days.....Does this diminish the experience??? Thoughts


Fishfolk

Sadly, for some it may.  I suppose for those new to the sport they still want to catch a "metrey".  For the old campaigners I see it as an opportunity to renew our view of impoundment Barra.  When I first chased Barra over 10 years ago, Teemburra was seen as a good fishery, with lots of 60 to 80cm fish.  We fished there with our Bass gear.  Faust was the "big" barra dam, and Tinaroo was similarly known.  Awoonga was a fledgling fishery with a few big fish being caught and Monduran was seen as a failure as only Bass were still being caught.  I saw and participated as Awoonga became the trophy fishery, quickly followed by Monduran and often thought it may be a timeline thing with the number of years from the initial stocking being key to Barra size.  We all then saw the floods of 2010/11 and watch as plenty of big fish took the exit stage right approach and hit the salt water.  The doomsayers would have had us believe that all the big fish disappeared.  After only 12 months, we're now hearing about, and seeing here, a return to catches of Barra, all be it smaller fish.  I'm sure the core temperatures of the lakes have not returned to normal yet and we're sure to see plenty of developments over the next couple of years.  We lost 1 year out of a 13 year old fishery at Awooga, that's not too much in the overall scheme of things.  Lake Wivenhoe has been a similar experience with very few positive reports coming from there since the big wet last year.  I'm confident it will soon return to its former glory.

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Re: Awoonga – A New Beginning
« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2012, 09:05:40 AM »
I was up there last week for work and took the boat. Didn’t fish the dam but fished the Boyne below it and got some good fish. So they might have left the dam but they are still in the area!

 

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