Danial Roth of Monto with his catch at the last barra tournament at Awoonga Dam.
Danial Roth of Monto with his catch at the last barra tournament at Awoonga Dam. Contributed

Fishing tournament is back at dam as barra return to form

HEAVY rain across the Gladstone region which put a halt to barra fishing has now passed and the angler community could not be happier.

After two long years, Russell Nowland is proud to announce the return of the Barra and Basstastic Oztackle tournament at Awoonga Dam.

"We're back and we're keen to get going again," he said.

The tournament on January 12-13 will run from the free camping area at Boynedale, near the back of Awoonga Dam.

"It's safer up the back of the dam and a lot of fish are being caught there," Mr Nowland said.

"The tournament is an all-nighter on a new moon, so fishing is non-stop - if you can handle it that is."

One big change to the popular competition fishing tournament is the introduction of trolling.

"It brings the juniors into it," Mr Nowland said. "And the only thing that is not allowed is bait."

The tournament is open to the public and you don't have to be a skilled angler to enter.

Mr Nowland said he was looking forward to the tournament because the fish had been active. lately.

"That is really good news for us," he said. "I heard one bloke caught 80 fish over two days."

Fish activity on the improve, guide says

Awoonga fishing guide Rod Harrison has seen steady improvement in fish activity.

"Recent stockings are beginning to show," he said.

The author of Barra said it was the perfect time to bring back the popular tournament.

"It's a toe in the water effort to rekindle the tournament," he said.

"Fishing is finally good enough to sustain this type of event."

But expert barramundi fisherman Johnny Mitchell said it was still early days.

"Two years have ticked by since the floods and the fish are finally at a size ready to catch," he said.

"The fish are certainly there to catch."

But there were still a lot of people walking away from the dam empty-handed, he said.

"It's certainly a bit hit and miss."

Mr Mitchell said anglers might face the same situation again this wet season because the dam is almost at capacity.

The details:

  • The Barra and Basstastic Oztackle Tournament will be held on January 12-13 at Awoonga Dam.
  • Anglers 16 and over will be classed as a senior. There will be a junior section and a reduced fee for families who enter.
  • Prizes will be awarded for longest barra in tournament, best female barra angler, plus many more prizes which includes secret length prizes.
  • For more information phone Trevor on 4165 4286.