What a weekend!
The weather leading up to it was ludicrous – east coast low, torrential rain, 40 knot plus southerlies, 6m plus seas. What hope for us kayaks in an offshore stinkboat comp?
The seas had dropped to a “gentle” 3 meters by Friday, so it was game on - if launch was feasible.
Arrived at Coffs at 3pm, and wandered down to the beach to stretch the legs after a long drive, and suss out a feasible launch in daylight before sorting out where to sleep. Found KFDU Butts and Estuary Girl rigged up for a pre-fish with Dellboy, so what the hell, logistics can wait. Went for a fish.
How’s this for an offshore launch pad in a big sea:
Caught up with 20 odd yakkers for a laugh at the briefing on Friday night – representing the entire eastern seaboard from Sunshine Coast down to the Gong.
Hooked up with fellow AKFF comp veteran Physhopath, to form team XOPATH. (Team “Snap-One-Off” was taken).
Shotgun launch soon after dawn Saturday, after a briefing from local yakfishing legends Yaqdoq and Thommo.
Team Xopath smashed the rock cods on the inshore reefs for several hours before throwing in the towel, tired and wet, early in the afternoon. Clearly, Coffs is a crap place to hold a snapper comp.
On return, find that Butts has landed a 74cm snap, Bunsen and Stevie were on the board, the local yakboys had picked up some fish further south, and a boat has one over a meter. Hmmm….we’re just crap fishermen.
Sunday morning we gave it another crack, this time out a bit wider. Not a great start – wind was up - and Danny hooked an 85kg brute, but wrong species for the comp. He didn’t catch’n’release, and decided to take his catch back with him (after he finished fishing for snapper).
Yaqdoq sent me to a reef 2k’s out. Sounder lit up for the first time, and I hooked up to a heavy headshaker 2nd drift. Leader parted from the braid on the second run. These Coffs fish are bigger than the Sydney models, and 12lb mightn’t cut it.
Was more careful on the next one, and got him in the net.
Not so successful with the photos though. Looked like 78cm when stretched out on the mat with two hands, but couldn’t keep the wriggling bastard straight on my lap with camera in one hand for the glory pic. This was the best I could do:
Congrats to Dale, Dellboy and Butts for podium bags in the yak category. And thanks to Worleybird, Paul, Thommo, Dell and all the local guys for the warm welcome, and sharing the knowledge. And everyonr for giving it a go on those conditions. I’ll be back!