View Full Version : Yakking Marloo bay Fraser Island

03-10-2010, 11:36 AM
I have just returned from a week long family fishing holiday on Fraser Island and for the first time ever I managed to convince the wife to let take the yak up. Before we arrived at the island I made a bit of time to study the weather forecast for the area and had decided that this first Sunday was going to be my best opportunity weather wise to launch the kayak to fish Marloo bay and the wreck of the Marloo. This wreck is in around 6-8m of water and as the swells and tides push past large eddies and bubbling forms which apparently can be visible from the headland in certain conditions. My plan was to fish plastics around the wreck for snapper and any other local reef fish that may like a plastic. I had also borrowed a mates shark-shield to assist in reducing the likelihood of meeting one of the local tiger sharks the area is renowned for. Now the time came to make the launch through the shore break and paddle the kilometre or so to the wreck from the gutter where I chose to launch. The transit through the surf zone was a roaring success and I was safely out the back rigging rods and setting up in no time. I set out a laser pro to troll my way up to the wreck and arrived to within 150m without a touch so I decided to see which way I was going to drift and set up for plastic fishing. Fortunately my drift was taking me straight toward my mark so I cast out my first placcy, a five inch gulp stickbait in curry chicken on a 1/8 jighead with a 2/0 hook. Before I could rig the second rod my little 2500 symetre was singing as line peeled under drag, after a good fight with a few solid runs a healthy snapper appeared below the yak and proceeded wrap the line in the SS antenna hanging below the yak, luckily I managed to get him free and eventually gaffed a healthy 75cm snapper. What an amazing start!
After a few more drifts which yielded numerous rat kingfish around 50cm and small GTís of 30cm and less I had another solid hit on the same outfit that I had landed my snapper on. This was of course the lighter of the two outfits I had out with me on this day which consisted of 3-5kg rod with a 2500 size reel and 10pd braid with a 12pd leader. Once again as I struck the fish it took a solid first run heading straight back toward the wreck, I tightened the drag but the fish continued running before seemingly stopping for no good reason and changing direction. Once again it ran hard taking line at will, allowing me at times to get considerable amounts of line back before taking off again on long powerful runs. This went on for over 20 minutes with the fish leaving the wreck and then heading back toward it again each time with me in tow. I soon came to the realisation that I had no control over this fish whatsoever and was now questioning just what I had hooked. At one point I had even convinced myself that I had hooked and somehow stayed connected to a shark as it just did not seem to tire. But then when I had just about given up hope on being able to positively identify my unknown opponent I began to consistently gain line without losing it again 5 seconds later and in the gin clear waters of Marloo bay I got my first glimpse of a trevally shaped fish circling in the depths below the yak. At this point the heart skipped a few beats and the hands began to shake and then the shape developed a distinct golden hue just to freak me out even more. Suddenly I remembered my fight with the snapper and the tangle with the SS. In a split second the SS was turned off and the antennae drawn back up the scupper and out of harms way. A few more minutes later and an exhausted fish of a proportion that I had never even dreamed of catching was laying spent beside me in my kayak just 400m off the beach over a shallow wreck in subtropical waters. A gaff shot near its head sealed itís fate and I dragged aboard the single heaviest object that I have ever handled on the kayak. I let out a half scream, half squeal of excitement and relief and quietly packed up my stuff and paddled back to tackle the shore break once again.
Karen and the boys had been down at Waddy riding boogy boards down the sand-dunes and had just decided to travel back down to see how I was going when they saw me paddling back not much more than an hour after they had sent me off. I readied the yak for the surf zone transit which had seemed to increase in size with the dropping tide, this also included moving my catch from the front to the rear well to avoid the nose digging in with the extra weight and made a successful trip in with a final sideways ride through the last of the wash after a broken wave caught up and tried to overtake me. Ethan came running down to greet me and ask if I had caught anything and then saw the tail of the golden sticking out of the hessian bag behind my seat and promptly announced to Mum that dad had caught something and it was HUGE!!!
Once on the beach I measured, weighed and photographed my catch whilst Ethan took every opportunity to show off the fish to any passing traffic. The Golden Trevally measured in at 97cm and tipped the small electronic scales I had at 9.86kg.
The weather changed during the week and presented no further opportunities to tackle the surf break but once again the Sunday weather looked the goods for a yakking trip so I set off back to the Marloo with to try for more Snapper and whatever else may find my plastics appealing. Safe surf launch once again, uneventful troll to wreck once again, snapper caught on the first cast whilst rigging rod once again. Ooooopps!!! Dropped fish over the side trying to de hook, oh well, no problem I think to myself as I saw at least 3 more fish swimming with the hooked fish whilst fighting it and besides it was probably only around 50cm, so no great loss right???
It was about this time that I hear that familiar buzzing noise slowly increasing in volume and turn back towards Waddy Point to see two black specks with large white rooster tails of water shooting up over above them??? No it canít be? I come all the way to the top end of Fraser Island, one of the more remote fishing locations in South East Queensland and all of a sudden my peaceful yakking trip is being disturbed by not one but two jetskiers. I originally give them the benefit of the doubt and accept the fact that they are on holidays also and should be given the opportunity to enjoy this environment in their own peace shattering way and that they wonít come around bothering me with so much other water to play in. How wrong was I? They came straight up to me at full tilt, did a couple of laps around me barely 30m away, buzzed directly over the top of the wreck, seemingly puzzled by the bubbling and eddies forming before doing a couple of donuts right on top of it before zipping away again. I could not believe what had happened right in front of me. Needless to say I did not get another hit of any substance for well over an hour. The next fish was another snapper of what I estimate to be around 40cmish as once again I lost grip of this fish and had it slip over the side. Next cast I got slammed on the drop and had line being freely pulled from the reel under a heavy drag setting. This fish had those characteristic head shakes of a good snapper and it had taken two solid runs already, on the third run the fish made directly toward the wreck and the inevitable bust off occurred when light braid meets rusty steel. This spelled the end of my snapper hook-ups for the day obviously spooking any other snaps in the area.
Then it finally happened, I had a solid hookup on my trailing plastic floating out behind me on my heavier outfit. This rod was loaded with the Ďdonít mess with meí gear and consisted of an 8-15kg live fibre rod with an Okuma Salina II 10000 with 50pd braid and 60pd leader. This out fit took no prisoners and made short work of what turned out to be a good Jewie. The fish measured on my small plastic 40cm ruler as around 73cm but I cannot be completely sure and may well have released a very legal Jew but I had no means of measuring the 75cm required to check itís legality and it swam free after a couple of photos.
Not long after this whilst quickly retrieving a plastic across the top of the wreck I discovered a school of aggressive little trevally that hit anything and every thing moving at any pace above the wreck. These fish were a heap of fun and made a perfect live bait to drift out behind me in the hope of big mackerel or cobia. The pelagics never really came to the party with the livies but there is definitely something of large proportions hanging around that wreck that made short work of these live offerings and busted me off in the wreck on numerous occasions even with the Ďelephantí gear. After being busted off for about the fourth time in a half hour period I had started using snapbacks to cast and retrieve over the wreck for these little trevs when one of my casts got smashed by a fish with lots more weight and power than my little trevally friends that look so good wearing 8/0ís. After several long hard runs on the 10pd outfit I had a good 80+cm of unidentified mackerel aboard the yak, bled and into the bag. Then the weather started to look ugly, the wind shifted direction, the tide turned and the overcast conditions dropped the light levels, it was at this point that I saw my first shark for the week cruising with dorsal fin and tail out of the water patrolling around the wreck. This seemed like a good time to pull the pin and head back to shore.
Once again when back on dry land photos were taken and the catch showed off to any passing vehicle by a proud 9 year old. Later research indicated that the fish may be a shark Mackeral and common around this area and very, very tasty on the table after the evening BBQ.
A couple of photos,
Cheers all,

03-10-2010, 11:49 AM
A great read, Thanks for posting. That Trev is a great take on that light gear, and from a yak, too!



03-10-2010, 11:53 AM
well done Kev..sounds like you had a top holiday

03-10-2010, 02:04 PM
Awesome report! Some great action. Pity bout the bloody jetskis. unfortunately they're cropping up everywhere nowadays.


03-10-2010, 02:38 PM
Well done mate sounds like a great trip and a great report!!
Thats the reason i dont have a yak im not a big fan of sharks!

03-10-2010, 04:23 PM
well done on catching that Golden on light gear they pull very hard.

04-10-2010, 12:58 PM
Great report ,
That's some skilful fishing from a Kayak. Coochin

Scott Mitchell
06-10-2010, 08:30 PM
Really enjoyed your post - great read & photos 8-)

Thanks for sharing - Scotto

06-10-2010, 09:24 PM
Nice work mate, great going on the yak

11-10-2010, 09:19 PM
Well done great read and thanks for the effort you put in to your report.
Cheers Scott