by Cliff Mann
I’m pretty sure there are not too many people out there who get a section of water almost all to themselves. Believe it or not, I’m one of those people. The farm I ‘work’ on in my ‘real’ job has the headwaters on one of the local creeks running through the back of it. There’s a smattering of species on offer including barra, sooty grunter (which I’ll often refer to as just sooties or soots), tarpon, the odd freshwater mangrove jack and I might have seen a jungle perch there…. once…
Sections of the creek are barely ankle deep and sandy while others are several metres to the bottom and hold secrets beyond the imagination of the common man. I suspect that there are parts of it that never see a lure all year round, which as you can imagine, is a novelty these days.
I’ve explored various sections but my most recent trip was more exciting than usual due to the fact that I knew without doubt that I was the first person to flick a lure here since the flooding caused by cyclone Ita.
There was a section of creek I had in mind where a huge tree hugs the bank and changes the course of the water around it. On the other side of said tree there is a deep hole, back-eddies, snags and assorted structure that hold fish no matter how many times I go there. After forging a track through the lantana and chinky apple jungle, I came to the first snag filled pool and kicked off the proceedings with a barra smacking my lure as I dropped my first exploratory cast. Another 100 metres on, and the discovery of previously unknown fallen tree allowed me access to the other bank and a more advantageous casting position over a newly created snag filled hole. And it paid off, with cast after cast of the Atomic shad in ‘Real Shad’ colour getting drilled. My Samurai Inflict 8-16 lb spin set-up was more than a match for the natives trying to dust me in the timber and its fast tapered extra length allowed me to pendulum the lure and with a calculated flick of the wrist send it skimming low and accurately out into the zone. When fighting a hooked fish using these longer rods I was able to create better angles to exert a more precise controlling pressure and steer my prize away from line busting snags.
As the sunlight started taking on that special getting-close-to-sunset sweet golden hue…very closely followed by the incessantly hungry swarms of sand flies and mosquitoes materializing from thin air, I soon called it time to go, as no amount of repellent will discourage the ravenous hoards when they get a taste for man-flesh!
Besides all this, technically (as far as my better half was concerned) I was still out at work and it was time to be heading home!
I’ll be back here soon, and rest assured, I’ll be ‘Inflict-ing’ as much as possible!
Catch ya later!