St Georges Basin Flathead Classic gets juniors involved

What a beauty: Chloe Mayberry picked up 1st place Longest Flathead (female angler) with a 750mm fish at last weekend's St Georges Basin Flathead Classic.

What a beauty: Chloe Mayberry picked up 1st place Longest Flathead (female angler) with a 750mm fish at last weekend's St Georges Basin Flathead Classic.

Although St Georges Basin didn’t produce one of its one-metre mega flathead during the annual St Georges Basin Flathead Classic last Sunday, there was still some big lizards caught, in fact up to 91cm long.  As usual the Basin Lure and Fly Anglers Club put on an enjoyable event for anglers whose ages ranged from 4 or 5 up to 60+ years.   What I really like about this event is the focus on getting junior anglers involved, particularly fishing with their families or friends.

A change in format in this year’s classic and a good one at that saw any flathead over 60cm measured on a brag mat and released immediately where it was caught, greatly improving its post release health.

By St Georges Basin standards the flathead fishing was tougher than usual. Mark Fisher, John Daley and I fished the event as team “Casting for Suicide Prevention” and we managed to get our bag of five flathead, but not till after throwing nearly our whole range of lures at them. 

The lure that did catch the most fish was the Pro Lure 80mm Fishtail in the lime pepper colour fished on a ¼ oz TT brand jig head.  While talking Pro Lures the Grub Tail in motor oil colour is slaying the Estuary Perch up the Shoalhaven River at the moment.   Hop and twitch across the bottom or slow roll through structure or drop down deep around bridge pylons or holes, these lures will catch you bream, flathead, bass, estuary perch and even mulloway.   Totally Immersed Water Sports at South Nowra stocks a full range of Pro Lures.

Congratulations to all the winners from the St Georges Basin Flathead Classic, here are the main results:

Longest Flathead (male angler) - 1st Ryan Camlin 910mm, 2nd Liam Carruthers 880mm and 3rd Jim Harnwell 840mm.  A big shout-out to Liam Carruthers who in the true spirit of sportsmanship and recreational angling gave his prize to a junior angler. It was great to see and kind acts like this only encourage kids to get involved in fishing. 

Longest Flathead (female angler) - 1st Chloe Mayberry 750mm, 2nd Sally Bacon 615mm, and 3rd Natalie Webb 565mm.  Longest Flathead (junior angler) - 1st Jackson Taylor 775mm, 2nd Brock Evans 770mm and 3rd Jackson Taylor 770mm. Well done, all top three fish caught by juniors were over 700mm, that’s impressive.

The Classic is a team’s event and the winner team with the Longest Bag of 5 flathead was McBarron Constructions with 2880mm.

If your just starting out fishing the Basin or are after some fishing fellowship I can recommend joining the Basin Lure and Fly Flathead Club, check out their Facebook page or website to find out more about the club.  Thanks to Jason Mayberry and the team for putting on another successful event. 

Another Shoalhaven based fishing club, Southern Bass, held their Yarrunga Challenge last weekend, with 45 anglers fishing the event.  Fishing was reported as being challenging, however over 580 bass were caught and released.

Money raised through this event has been used to stock the lake for over 20 years, an awesome effort in ensuring future bass stocks.  The champion team for the event was Team Chubby with 1871mm of bass caught and released, with Andrew Malby taking out the champion male with 1854 of bass caught. 

Southern Bass has a solid base of female anglers and Linda Wright won the champion female prize landing 1633mm. The champion junior angler was Rhett Weiderman with 1253mm of bass.  The biggest bass was caught by Craig Hoare and it was 403mm, while Bryant Wright had a 396mm bass take a fly to win the biggest bass on fly section.

There are some nice estuary perch up the river at the moment, with a fair few fish from the 40 to 45cm mark.  Big E Phillips had a good top water session on the bass this week, we have been waiting for the surface fishing for bass to get better and it sounds like it has.  We really need some decent rain and for the cicadas to start their annual hatch for it to really fire up.

I reckon November is a gun time for inshore snapper fishing so I’ll be heading out to throw some soft plastics around inshore reefs and do a bit of bait fishing for the reds this month.  It’s hard to go past your 5” or 7” Berley Gulps in the chicken colour range fished on ¼ or 3/8 oz TT jig heads to catch snapper on lures.  Go see the boys down at McCallum’s Tackleworld, BCF or CB Tackle Culburra for all your soft plastic snapper fishing tackle requirements.