SHOALWATER BAY CENTRAL QLD – COAST TO REEFS – Reds, Nannygai, Goldband, Trout, Fingermark, Grunter & more – AUG 2020

After taking my boat on an adventure to the swains we had plans to come back to refuel at Yeppoon and then take both my 5m centre console and 7mtr Riptide 120km up the CQ coastline to the shoalwater bay region for our 2nd adventure of our holidays. Due to bad weather this didn’t happen and we headed back home to Brisbane a little disappointed we couldn’t complete the trip.

After blowing hard for the following 7 days a good weather window appeared for the next 6 days and seeing we were still on Holidays we decided to repack and drag both boats back up to Yeppoon. We launched the boats and after a long but decent run we arrived up in the shoalwater bay area just on dark and anchored in a nice spot with glassed out conditions and the moon rising over 2 yachts close by.

The first day we left the small boat in a creek and went wide while the weather was mint. I had no marks but It didn’t take long to find a nice rock in the middle of nowhere and I couldn’t believe it when we had reds, nannygai, goldband and trout coming over the side one after another.

I anchored on the spot in glassed out conditions and decided to put down the Fifish V6 underwater drone that I had purchased just before we left. I drove the drone down around 60mtrs to the bottom and was totally blown away as loads of Large Mouth Nannygai, Red Emperor and Amberjack swarmed around the drone to check it out. I was telling the boys like an excited 10 year old that there’s fish everywhere and began following them around capturing some of the coolest footage I’ve seen. I observed some strange behavior from the red fish and as someone who has been collecting underwater footage of red fish for over 10 years by dropping cameras down on a stand, I’m still in awe of the footage we captured on the drone in such a short amount of time.

To top all this off we had a pod of 8 Minke whales hanging around the boat all day and I captured some amazing footage of these cool whales cruising around checking out the drone. It was one of the days that everything fell into place and we will remember for the rest of our lives.

The following days we drove around sight seeing and fished the creeks and headlands for Fingermark, grunter, cod, longtail tuna, golden trevally and other mixed species.

Unfortunately one day it rained the entire day and night but the following day was mint so we headed out to high peak island for a look and then went searching for isolated ground. Once again it didn’t take long to find good ground that produced good reds, nannygai, grassies, trout and some goldband jobbies on mustad jigs. We kept searching and finished the day with a cracking sunset, glassed out conditions and good fish coming over the side. Another magical moment shared standing beside my Dad who turns 75 this week. Doesn’t get much better.

The trip was awesome and well worth the massive effort and planning which I must thank my mate Rob and my oldman for helping me with. Taking 2 boats for 6 days was a bit of a logistical nightmare but worked out well in the end. The fishing and scenery up in this remote part of the coastline is truly special and I’m glad I can share this trip with you all along with our Swains Reef Trailer Boat Adventure in my latest Fishing Movie which is available at –