A memorable night north of Perth
Entering in the ORSSC Mason's Bar Classic for the second year in a row, dreams of winning a Stella were in the air and hopes of some good fish were high.
After a somewhat delayed start waiting for a member of the crew, we hit the road and arrived at Guilderton just after dark. The wind was pumping and the swell was up but on first inspection there didn't seem to be too much weed in the shore break.
We set up and began fishing. As soon as the first line went in I could tell it wasn't going to be easy with the large swell magnifying what weed there was around, making it hard to keep baits in the water. My solution to this was to bomb out an 8oz grapnel with a mullet/yakka combo on a couple snelled 6/0 circles on my heavy Beachmaster.
The bait wasn't in the water for more than a few minutes before I heard the ratchet on my torium go off and as soon as I saw my line heading straight down into the waves I knew there was weed on. I cranked up the drag and winched in what I thought was a huge clump of weed. It pulled a bit of drag as the wave receeded and I had thoughts of a fish but thought I knew better and kept cranking.
A small amount of weed hit the beach around my leader knot and as I shone the torch at it I thought I saw a glimpse of silver behind it so kept pulling and up washed a fish! I ran down and gilled a reasonable mulloway which came in at 96cm and just over 7 kilos. I was very lucky the circle hook had pinned it securely in the corner of the jaw and I didn't lose it considering the pressure I put on it and the fact I was only using 60lb leader.
After the good start things were very quiet for the rest of the night with only one more hookup (big dirty ray which spat the hook eventually) so I decided to have an hour or two's rest. I woke up at 3:30 and got to work resetting the burley (was using a bunch of frames along with Mick's mulie shred blocks from Shorecatch) and put out some fresh baits.
An hour passed and as I was sipping a lemonade for a sugar kick I heard my big lethal screaming in protest as a good fish had the rod buckled over. A very violent fight ensued with big headshakes and dogged lunges. I was thinking either a shark or a good mulloway had picked up my bait but when a big waves washed up my PB pinkie of 86cm and 6.5kg I was stoked! Never before have I caught a legal snapper off the beach and now I'd picked up two in as many weeks!
I though I was a shoe in for the Twinpower 10k and Assassin prize with this good fish but alas I got smashed as two monster snapper over 7kg were also weighed in. I can't complain, I got well and truly beaten by quality fish and don't think I could've have done anything else.
For the rest of the weekend we tried to build up our bags with the smaller species but the sizeable swell made things difficult and we struggled.
All in all a great weekend and another well run comp by ORSSC. Ill be back again next year to hopefully get on the winners list!
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