As the morning fog lifted and the first dim light of the sunrise crept through the thick overgrowth of the distant Jungle canopy the silence was sharply broken by the sound of a fish leaping and splashing back into its tranquil surrounds. The location was a closely held secret that required a long and arduous journey by only the stoutest hearts of true fishermen..
Your humble correspondent is man enough to admit that driving further than about 20 minutes around 5:00am just eats into sleeping in a nice warm bed.. so this is a story about fishing in a floodway out the front of a major suburban shopping centre, roughly 6 minutes from the Brisbane CBD.
There we were us 3 brave, resilient, adventurous but gainfully employed and needing to be back at work by 10:00am type fishos. In front of us was the fairly well mown lawn in between a car park and creek. Through the high and bindi strewn long grass we shoved our kayaks. Luckily the drop was short and the water was warm!
As the dulcet sounds of freight trains and b-double trucks whizzed past on the other side of the creek, the constant spray of HUGE baitballs of mullet and garfish started! When you look down a glassed out early morning creek and realise the odd shimmering parts are in fact vast schools of baitfish you get pretty excited!
One of the great parts to Urban Kayak Exploration is the absolute look of astonishment that our fellow citizens give us as we paddle down a creek in a kayak in the inner city suburbs. People stop and stare in disbelief,
"look! There's a kayak! And another?!?! WTF?!?! And they're fishing!!!" Are pretty common sentiments that are expressed.
Yes you can fish in creeks anywhere and kayaks make it so much easier to explore cities. Adventure often is just on your doorstep!
Anyway, enough about Doris, Gloria and the other dog-walkers of Clayfield..
The fishing was a great outcome! Often life gets in the way of time and tide and my adventures have a certain Burke and Wills note of charmingly I'll-advised failure. Failure to read the tide chart, failure to double check google maps that the creek actually exists, failure to bring a rod.. charming!
Whoa.. hold up.. I'm off on a tangent..
So the fishing was a great example of targeting estuary species like Bream, Flathead, Whiting, Estuary Cod etc. We mainly used hard body lures and blades. Casting a hardbody lure into a promising snag is a great way to test your skills and drag while fighting a fish on a kayak. Keeping the leader to 10lb allows good lure presentations but also good abrasion resistance from mangrove roots and oysters.
Blade type lures are one of my favourite ways to seek out fish when there is no obvious structure. They emit plenty of vibrations that attract fish to them. The addition of assist hooks satisfies both my obsession and the ability to fish through snags without losing the lure. I actually like to troll blades in creeks and by this method I picked up a couple of good Flathead and a whiting!
Next time you're stuck in traffic going to work and you look down and see a creek that looks big enough to fish (maybe 2-3m wide and 1m deep) go back some time and wet a line. Adventure through the creeks of the inner city is heaps of fun and far more accessible than deep dark and brooding jungles! We will be heading out again on Friday 2/12/2016 and are looking forward to more disapproving looks from the dog walking crowd as we do something as ridiculous as put a kayak in a creek!!