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Westernport overnight trip

2617 Views 16 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  hoit
Decided to head off for an overnight fish for Gummy sharks Friday lunchtime. Weather forcast was good, full moon was Wednesday, and a low tide at 8.45pm was perfect.
Ever notice how when you pack for an overnight trip, the amount of gear you need to take is also enough for a week! The plan was to head out from Jam Jerrop at 12.00pm, ferry all camping gear and surf rods to Sandy Pt French Island, drop it all off and then head off further down the bay for a fish. Managed to squeeze all and sundry into the Hobie and headed off. I knew Friday was going to be a bit of a tough paddle all afternoon as the tide was against me all day. The usual 35minute trip to Sandy Pt took just over 1 hr. After dropping the gear in the bushes the next leg down the bay was another 3.5 km slog into the rising tide. Got anchored in a promising spot an hour before the tide change and over the next 3 hours managed 1 gummy of 600mm and a large ray that took 30 mins to get to the kayak.
You guessed it the trip back to Sandy Pt was into the now falling tide.Sunset over French Island was well worth all the effort.
After carting Hobart high and dry above the tide it was time to pitch camp gather firewood rig surf rods and cook a meal. Got fishing from the point by 7.00pm for an 8.45 low tide. The reason for the lowtide was to be able to access a nice deep channel from the shore.
Fished for 4 hours and managed 2 more Gummies, another in the 600mm range and 1 just on 1 metre. Decided to keep the metre one. Also managed to snag another large ray so in all was very pleased for my effort.
Up at 6.30 Sat morning to have breakfast and break camp before heading off back down towards Corinella for another session on the sharks. Managed 1 small school shark before heading back to the Island to repack for the trip home.
After heading off pushed a few kms up the Island towards home and fished for an hour or so in a fishy looking spot before finally turning back towards Jam Jerrop and ending a very enjoyable trip. Trip tally was 4 sharks, 3 returned to grow some more and 2 large rays, both returned. Steve.


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Great report Steve, and so true...an overnighter needs almost as much gear as a month long trip. Great photo of that sunset, too.

I've never caught a Gummy. What do they fight like?

Top notch effort Steve, the gummies are coming thick and fast for ya :D Bloody beautiful pic of French as well. Last Friday night was a hoot of a night to be outdoors (we had a fire going in the backyard to sit by too), to spend it fishing for gummies with Hobie by the side would have been good for the soul. How'd the waterline of the Hobie fare with the extra gear :?:
Great report Steve. I really miss fishing Western Port and love reading your reports and seeing some photo's.
Great report Steve. Trips like that are good for the soul, even without fish
Great stuff Steve, you've already got me thinking about a similar trip :D
Nice one Steve, Grats on the Gummies.

It's incredilble how much you can squeeze in to the Hobie, though she looks like she should be up in orbit :lol:

You said that you were going to do this trip and you did it in fine style. Now that I'm back for a good while I'm also interested in a similar trip although I would probably not be able to join you for so much of the days either side.

How was it fishing off that point on French Island? Was the current ok once the tide starting running in. Also are there no probs with having a fire on the beach? It would have been enjoyable on your own but if a few of us get together for the next trip it could be a lot of fun.

By the way what baits did the damage this time? Also just thought it was a bit weak of you catching your two rays only one at a time (but I guess you did actually bring yours all the way in) :D
Thanks everyone, yes it was a great trip, quite easy to plan and all within an hour from home and full mobile service. Total cost $5.00 for pilchards and 1 hook.
Poddy the hobie only sat about 30mm lower in the water. I`d say she`d handle another 50kg easily.
Shoey yes there certainly is something about Westernport, even the trips where the fish don`t cooperate. I think it has to do with it`s wild nature and the tidal runs that scour those incredible channels. It`s all about the channels in Westernport.
Cid/ Gatesy the gummies fight really well with the bigger ones giving you a top workout. Also they can keep the best action for when you actually get them on board!
Kevin fishing off the point was every bit as good as we discussed. The channel was easy to reach and there`s plenty of room. I dug a pit fireplace and kept the fire fairly modest. Driftwood is plentiful also. It would be a great spot for a get together trip, as you know it`s so remote on that side of the Island. Pillies, eel and salmon fillet did the damage this time.
Here`s a couple more photo`s. See how the flats get exposed when the tide runs out.Steve


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Fantastic effort Steve. I'm still hoping to join you sometime soon for a crack at the gummies. I'm a lazy bugger so I don't know about the overnight camping though.

A good read Steve and you can't beat an extended trip for enjoyment.

Like many from further north, gummies are a mystery; what would would be considered an average size, and what would be considered a biggun down there
The average size for me is around 35cm (I have only caught one) :lol:

I have read that they get to 1.8m & 30kg. At that size I would be getting a few photos of the big girl in the water and then release her.
Hi Dodge, the min partial length for gummies is 450mm. The reason partial length is allowed on gummies is due to their exceptional eating quality. Regarded by many as the best of all Australian fish!! Partial length is taken from the back of the last gill slit to the start of the tail. People take the heads off to remove the gills etc to help maintain the quality of the meat. The better gummies I`ve been getting at around 1 metre are great eating size and weigh in at around 7/8 lb. Good for 12 or 14 fillets. Gummy sharks would top out at around 6 ft and by this size would be in the 55/ 60lb bracket. Still good eating however not as good as smaller, younger one`s. Have heard of a 6`6`` gummy producing 30kg of meat from a mate however I`d be a bit skeptical of that. A large gummy: of 5` or more would be a real handful to boat as they are just SO strong. Relatively harmless however. Steve.
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Top report and interesting adventure. Those massive rays look like a handfull. :D
hoit said:
The average size for me is around 35cm (I have only caught one) :lol:

I have read that they get to 1.8m & 30kg. At that size I would be getting a few photos of the big girl in the water and then release her.
I cant see the Gummy cause the live Yakka's in the way :roll:

Sorry hoit

:D fishing Russ
But Russ, the battle tale Hoit has told is of a 35cm monster of the deep...huge nashing gums a hundred times worse than at the local RSL club....a dorsal fin constructed of pure evil.....and a staring eye that very nearly melted an extra scupper in the fine rotomoulded hull of Sharkbait 1. :wink:

I guess it's winter, all the old fav's are coming out :roll:
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Gee Russ, you know how to put a man down. :p At least its going to be easy to improve upon my PB ... :wink:
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