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Victoria River Preparation


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Ronan's report

Sunday 25th April, 2010

Only 6 days to go until Andy and I head down to the Victoria River, where we have been invited to fish a section of river running through a private cattle station/Crocodile Farm that see's next to no angling pressure, and the Barramundi in the 70cm plus range are reported to be the regular catch.

The section of river is beyond the reach of the massive tidal influence, and is a perennial freshwater Billabong, flanked by ragged escarpments, and gnarled Eucalyptus trees.

I have been busy at the bench tying some flies that I believe we be appropriate for the fishing situation. Barramundi will eat live baits up 60% of the own body length, so big flies are a essential requirement in the fly box.

The biggest one is known as a Fatboy - a pattern of which Andy introduced me to a couple of years ago. A big, 3 dimensional profile that pushes a sonic signature, refined by us to suit specific applications. It is tied with collapsible rubber inner head, skirted with Steve Farrars flash blend, and finished with a silicone based glue. I also include a glass rattle in these large 6/0 flies, which may or may not help to entice a take. These flies have been proven to work on big Barra, with a number of metre plus fish being landed on these flies by us in the past.

Gold Bombers, flashy profile "bunker" style flies on 1/0 through 6/0 are also a great option, as the colour scheme is lethal on Barra. Whistler or "Thing" patterns are always winners and all colours and sizes have been prepared. Surface Poppers are also a great and exciting way to catch Barramundi, with the visual "takes" being an explosion! Fly looks aren't of a great importance in this scenario, but fly function is critical. Simple Foam gap sealer tubes from hardware stores are a great material for use. It floats high, never ever sinks, and is cheap as chips. You can walk the fly with short, sharp strips, or bloop and stop creating a massive disturbance to excite the fish. Often the take will shock you as the fly sits still between strips. Heart palpitations become enjoyable!

Weed guards are an important addition when fishing in heavily timbered areas, allowing the fly to be probed throughout the structure in which these ambush predators love to hold in, and have been added for this purpose.

Now I've got to go and fill up the jerry cans with fuel, and pack the swag.

Wish us luck!


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