Gamakatsu Elite Series, Forster

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With Forster being one of our home waterways expectations were always high for Round 1 of the Gamakatsu Elite Series mid region, 14th-15th Feb. 2015

GES-Logo-300x97A bit of an un orthodox start to comp day sleeping in till around 8am before a bit of breakfast & hitting the water around 10am for a quick pre-fish, not the norm by any means. A quick drive around in the less then desirable conditions saw quite a few fish actively taking our top water presentations that we removed the hooks from to prevent stinging to many fish. Being one of our home waterways can be good as well as bad because you know so many great spots you sometimes second guess yourself on your chosen fishing location. The decision to leave a few of the spots we had found in the weeks leading up to the event defiantly paid off come Sundays final weigh in.

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Heading out for Saturdays 4Hr afternoon session felt quite bizarre, leaving Forster boat harbour at the time your normally getting back in from a comp, We headed off to a spot we found quite a few fish unexpectedly on the short pre fish, This decision paid off with 4 fish swimming in the live well fairly shortly after arrival.  A decision was then made to head to the flats where we had been getting some very solid fish prior to the event but as time went on the fish we were looking for were just not about. After filling the bag & a few more small upgrades we decided to move once again. Getting further away from the start is a gamble with such a short session but we knew we had the boat speed to make it home quite quickly. The final spot for the day saw us land a few more upgrades but also loose 4 nice fish on screaming runs after they climbed all over our top waters. We headed back to the weigh in with not a great bag but with the un favourable weather & the bite being slow we thought every other boat would have had much of the same day as us. Our 5 fish tipped the scales at 2.90kg, a reasonably average bag for Forster but enough to put us in 4th place heading into day 2.

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Day 2 saw the conditions improve somewhat with the rain & clouds clearing. Funny how when the weather is bad you wish it was better but when the weather is good you wish for it to be worse. Flats fishing is always better with low light & wind. The stronger the wind the better in most cases with the surface getting broken up & the fish being far less spooky in the crystal clear waters Forster is renowned for. Heading off in 4th we had to adhere to the 40 knot speed limit through the lower part of the system till we cleared the oyster leases then it was time to punch it right to the bottom end of Wallace lake. Arriving in no time thanks to the Yamaha SHO we were greeted with a light breeze that would set us up for the perfect drift. We had to make the most of the low light conditions & we did with 7 fish going in the live well in the first hr & half but with 5 or 6 boats around us & the sun getting up as well as the wind dying down things went pretty quiet. With the other teams leaving one by one we knew that we would soon have that section of the lake to ourselves but after a almost fishless hour had we made the right choice? our questions were soon answered. With the wind increasing we positioned the boat for a drift onto the most productive water as found early in the session & this soon payed off. The first drift filled our well with the 3 biggest fish so far, We were pumped with or plan to stay & over the next 2 hrs drift after drift increased the weight of our bag with a further 20-25 legal’s caught & plenty of under sized fish.

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Over the weekend our main go to lure was defiantly top water with the Cranka minnow accounting for the fish when the wind had dropped off but the aggressive top water explosions when the wind was up had us favouring that technique. Another key part of our success was the switch bait technique where if you couldn’t hook up on the surface after half the retrieve your mate would switch to a lightly weighted 3″Zman grub & pitch it just behind the top water being retrieved, this would normally result in an instant bight however this was not the case on Saturdaywhere we were throwing the smaller 2.5″ Zman grub. IMG_3718We put this down to the fact that the 3″ grub resembled the size of the top water lures we were throwing. With a reasonable bag of fish in the well & nothing under 30cm we headed for the weigh in. Arriving back with 10 mins to spare & finding not many boats back we thought it must have been a tough bite for most. With the usual talk of some nice bags going around we wondered was our bag good enough. we watched as limit after limit was taken to the scales until we were up. our 10 fish had a fairly respectable weight of 5.65kg & was enough to secure us a 2nd place over all.  

We were quite happy with result considering the potential Forster has too produce big bags from anywhere in the system. Well done to all anglers involved & a big thank you to Carpet Court & Cranka lures. See you all at the next round.    

Grant and Mike

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