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  • Boys Burdekin Trip 3 2

Author Topic: Boys Burdekin Trip  (Read 5166 times)

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Boys Burdekin Trip
« on: September 28, 2013, 11:57:44 PM »
Just got back from an amazing week spent with my dad Gordon and son Jules in our home country area of the lower Burdekin. Took Jules up there to show him where some of his roots lie and took dad for  atrip down memory lane. Some of  the places we went we hadn't been to in 40 years! The last time I did a fishing trip to the Burdekin with my dad - was ten years ago almost to the day and my wife (at home) was close to giving birth to Jules - this time we had him with us!

The fishing was great and started with a road stop camp on our way north near Rocky when I got a 10 lb barra on a popper having three casts off a creek bank before serving dinner! :)

First day in the Burdekin dad got an even bigger barra on his very first cast at dawn.  Barra up the river (above the Clare Weir) were a bit thin on - but those that were there were willing to bite. Dropped a couple off snags but finally connected one decent one with my southern Jewfish technique bouncing a soft plastics off the bottom of a deep rocky hole.  Sooties were also present - but seemed to not be in bank side snags but concentrated at the heads of rapids - probably breeding as those caught were running ripe.

Fished a floodplain lagoon on our last couple of days and it was going off with smaller lagoon barra and tarpon and even managed a lunker sooty - which is unusual for the floodplain.

Overall it was a great boys family mission - great feeds of fresh fish, beautiful country and a bit of hunting chucked in too - including cane toads which Jules was keen to thin out with the family air rifle!!

The Burdekin is really still one of Australia's greatest rivers and regions - but I could be a bit biased  ;)


Stick to fishing instead of fighting - JC

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2013, 12:00:28 AM »
Few more pictures to fill in the story.... :))

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2013, 12:03:44 AM »
Fishing poppers in the early morning on a floodplain lagoon and a freshwater croc decided to get into the action  - was a bit of fun getting him off :o

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2013, 12:09:08 AM »
Julesies toad bag and a few Burdekin scenery shots including the famous 'The Rocks' - saw a barra swimming around there while we were standing on the pumping station that we initially thought was a bull shark - humongous (many fond memories of that place - bomfires, bundy and barra - and occasionally even babes... ;D )

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2013, 06:59:19 AM »
Wow awesome trip mate. Looks a very special place!
What did the freshy go like? Lol

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2013, 09:06:58 AM »
Mate the freshie went well took plenty of drag  ;D - he was persistent - hit the lure several times, got unhooked mid fight then re-jagged himself in the tail fluke... was happy to get him off :thumbsup

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2013, 10:03:45 AM »
Haha jeez he was keen alright!

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #7 on: September 29, 2013, 10:31:35 AM »
Thanks for the report Jim.  Classic stuff.

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2013, 11:18:57 AM »
Hi Jim,

A great reports, thanks for sharing your trip, photos are inspiring. Brilliant to see three generations out there living it up.  :thumb

I've never looked around on the lower Burdekin River. Can you offer any tips on access and better areas to look at?



Cheers,

fitzy..

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2013, 05:36:59 PM »
Great trip Jim, there's a lot more to that river than where you cross on the highway.
JD

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2013, 09:09:43 PM »
Fitzy,

access is a bit tricky but the best bets are pumping stations such as the Plantation Creek pumping station upstream of the Highway Bridge on the north bank and the Rocks pumping Station about 20 ks upstream from the Highway bridge on the north bank (place of big barra and a few big crocs) - boat (with trailer) trailer access is harder - canoes and man hand-able punts are the go - there are a few places where you can back up to the bank but many are private - the Dalbeg puping station is doable with a trailer (and a winch) - for 4wd enthusiasts the best wild experience is to go up to the Gorge (Dalberg) Weir or take the turn off to the Bowen River junction (on the way to the Gorge) - public road but not graded since 1977 - so puts Cape York 4wdriving to shame ;D - the barra are thinner above the Clare Weir because the fish ladder there is ineffective and numbers depend on stocking to some degree - but there are still fish there to be found and the sooties are always obliging!  :thumbsup

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2013, 10:42:21 AM »
Thanks Jim.  :thumb

Clare weir would flood out during the wet run off each year wouldn't it? (If they get it)

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2013, 12:08:51 PM »
Most years and floods the Clare weir does not flood out completely Fitz and the two lock fishways installed there (the 2nd fishway built at the weir) also fail due to flow pressures through much of the wet season, which as you appreciate is when a lot of fish want to move. While fisheries cite the 'thousands' of fish monitored to be moving through the fishway they don't always readily acknowledge that most of them are small bodied empire gudgeons and rainbowfish and not the metre plus barra (& Mangrove jack, bull sharks, saw sharks, giant herring, milk fish, silver biddies etc etc +dozen other catadromous species)  that historically moved freely up the Burdekin and Bowen Rivers at least as far as Collinsville and the Burdekin Falls historically. My belief is that most of the barra encountered above the weir these days owe their origins to Burdekin and Bowen River Fish Stocking activities - but it would be nice to get some real publically available monitoring data to explore the issue further.

For my money I believe the only fishway design that is fitting for a river of the magnitude of the Burdekin (Australia's largest river in peak discharge) would be some form of low gradient river bypass channel (see attached image concept). The weir has a fixed outlet height and there is also ground basement rock outcrop that adjoins the weir site lending itself to the safe construction of such a design. In my biased greenie view, considering the enormous economic activity generated by the Burdekin Irrigation area it is only fair that substantial investment be made into maintaining fish passage in the river whose ecology is being prostituted for water resource development  :(

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Re: Boys Burdekin Trip
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2013, 10:57:11 PM »
Touché Jim. Might not always agree, but respect given where its due mate. I feel the same is the case with other fish ways where it's politically convenient for a fish way to be successful.

Fitz..

 

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