Cairns 2018 season wrap up

Big big fish, and lots of them !!!!

Another Cairns season is now finished for us on Tradition with the boat back home at the Gold Coast City Marina & Shipyard.2018 will go down as one of the best Cairns seasons for close to 15 years, with great weather and some incredible fishing and a bunch of really big fish.We ended up with 68 blacks for us for the season and some real nice ones in there as well. We caught 6 over 900 lbs. 2 of which I called 1100 or more.Jeff started off the season with us with lots of spearing in the mornings and some good numbers of fish in the afternoons. Paul and the boys had a great 4 day trip with us in early October with 8 fish in 4 days up in the Ribbons.Changa and the boys had a fun week with us, and as long term friends and guests we had a blast on the GBR as always even with the fish being a little off this week.Herve joined us for the first time this year and had such a good time he came a second time when another guest couldn’t make it, and had some of the most incredible fishing with us we have ever seen.

On Herves first trip of 6 days we caught 8 fish, but one just standing out from all the others. Fishing back at the end of the day down #10 we got piled on on the shotgun and new it was a big fish right away. She did a couple of big jumps early and could be seen from other boats that later commented on how big it was. A really tough fight over 4 hours with the fish being wrapped in the leader not helping at all. Herve pushed our big RodsbyDru rod to the limit with over 90#s of drag for many hours. She came up jumping on the leader at 8.30 at night and we got a really good look at her, a massive fish. We kept going as we had her on top and going for the gaff shot with the double almost at the rod tip the sharks got hold of her. We got back enough for some measurements and the girth of 6’10” put her over 1250 +. One of the biggest fish I have had on and so close.

It was Harmons retirement trip with Curtis and Rick, who regularly fish with us on the Tradition and the Chaser each year. The weather was spectacular and we started off our 6 days with a couple the first day, and a nice 400 for Curtis on day 2 , then followed up by a really nice big fish for Harmon that I called 900 or so. What a nice big fish and ticked off a bucket list item for Harmon !!! We tagged a few more and had some great drone action and snorkelling and spearing on the GBR each day.And we also caught a massive wahoo with the boys.

Aaron returned again this year and bought his youngest son for his first GBR trip, we started off with a bang having a few bites in row and hooking a double at 5.50 pm, the fish on the shotty fell off before we got a look at it, but the right one stayed on and we made pretty quick work of a really big fish that was 1100 all day long. The next few days were slower but we caught a few more small ones. A great trip with a fish of a lifetime for Aaron. Congratulations again on a very special fish Aaron.

One of my regular clients couldn’t make his trip this year, so Herve came back to seek revenge on the previous week. and what a week it was, probably the best bite the reef has seen for 10-15 years, it was just incredible, all my buddies having the some of the best days of their careers , and thats a whole lot of experience fishing here.

We ran up from Cairns the first day and arrived a bit late for the bite, but confidence was high for the 2nd day as we settled into a great dinner behind the reef. We started a bit slow , but came thru later in the afternoon with a total of 5 blacks tagged for the day, nothing really big, but a hell of a day for Herve who was fishing by himself. Day 3 was one of my best, my first day with 7 black marlin in a day driving, and some really good hot fish in the mix. We started off wth a hot 600 jumping all over the place, then followed with a 250, a 550, another good one at 650. We had too have seen over 20 fish this day, packs of fish in the spread at once, doubles being hooked. We then tagged another 200, and at 6.20 marked a pack of fish on the Garmin and hooked a double and almost had a triple on but decided 2 was enough to deal with at once with 1 angler, we made quick work of a 200 , and then another 30-40 minutes on a hot 850 which we let go as it got dark, just an incredible days fishing and one we won’t forget for a long time. 14 bites and tagged 7 fish.

The next day was slower overall, but we still had an exceptional day with a 250 and a solid 900 fish.Last day of the trip we again had great fishing with a 200 and really solid fish we caught quick that was 950 all day, another nice fish and what a way to finish the 5 days with 16 blacks in 5 days, and some really special ones as well.

Jason joined us after a few years break and we fished out off Escape the first day and Jason got a 400, followed up by a 200, and then out wide of Opal Reef we fought a really big fish for 2 hours that was over 1100, and tagged her and let her go, a really powerful and tough fish, so big and strong, it could have been much bigger. We tagged a couple more the next day and one more the last day to finish a great trip back in Cairns.

Kim and Charles have fished with us in the DR a couple of times and have been looking forward to fishing Cairns for many years, and this year we made it happen, with a hectic few days. the first day we started off with a big fish on for over an hour before unfortunately pulling the hook close to the boat, and then jumping off a 500 lb fish later in the day. The 2nd day was a bit quiet, but we got lucky the last day with a nice fish around 700 that gave Charles a real workout and some fun chasing her around the ocean, such a nice fish for some great friends.

We had a 2 boat trip with Sparrow and Tara on the Hotshot , as the boys from Redrum Charters in Cabo joined us for 4 days of fun on the GBR. This was a special trip for John and his son and their good friends, we rafted up each night and had a blast, also the fishing was good for us with 9 fish in 4 days up to 950 lbs !!! What a season it had been.

Our last trip we fished Rob and Dan out front for 2 days with a couple of fish, and then fished to Myrmidon off Townsville. We raised 4 fish one day, jumping them off, and had a nice big fish in the spread for a bit but never ate anything.

A big thank you to Garrett and Thompson for working hard all season and to my wonderful friends and clients who choose to fish with us all over the world.Cairns 2019 is almost filled, with a few spots left , as well as Lady Musgrave and Fraser Island Late November and December an option.
If you can’t make Cairns, we are back in the Dominican Republic late January on the Chaser thru June.

for more information, please contact me here or email [email protected]I would like to thank my sponsors for their ongoing support: Garmin Australia Garmin Marine for the best electronics you can get, I use Garmin exclusively on the Tradition and the Chaser. RodsbyDru for the finest rods you can buy. Costa Sunglasses for great eyewear, Lindgren-Pitman Inc. for all of our leader and the Dredge reels, Melton International Tackle for great worldwide service and support, Pakula Lures and Tackle for lures and the best trolling hooks available. South Pacific Marine Group for helping with all of Traditions needs.

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Tim Richardson

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