'Fix Round Hill Creek or I won't be coming back': Tourist over it
IF AVID angler Ashley Duckworth snubs his annual Agnes Water holiday, the region would lose almost $5000 a year.
He is one of many tourists rethinking their holiday plans because of the dangerously shallow Round Hill Creek.
Mr Duckworth, 39, said the notoriously shallow creek needed to be fixed for the region to retain its reputation as a fishing hot spot.
In the past two years Mr Duckworth has noticed the depth of the creek gradually decrease.
He said if the problem was not fixed soon, he would have to chose another holiday destination at which to spend at least three weeks of the year.
Mr Duckworth is the definition of what the region could lose if the creek is not made safe.
On each trip to Agnes, he said he spends about $2500 on accommodation and another $2000 on fuel, food, drinks and dining out at restaurants.
"I started going up every July since I was about 21 years old," Mr Duckworth said.
"I'm into my sport fishing so I drag my boat from Forster, New South Wales, to fish around the Bustard Head area chasing spanish mackeral and longtail tuna."
Mr Duckworth said he had "hit bottom" while travelling in his boat at Round Hill Creek plenty of times.
He said the worst experience was when sand gushed into his impeller, causing damage to his motor.
"I'm probably not the only one thinking about other places to go but Seventeen Seventy and Agnes are just too good to leave," Mr Duckworth said.
"Hopefully Mother Nature fixes it soon enough."
This year Mr Duckworth is going to try to time his trip with the high tides but he said if that failed he would look elsewhere.
"I'm limited for time on my trip, I'm not that keen on waiting for the higher tides to go out to sea," he said.
"It's definitely passable with patience and skill in my five-metre-boat but I do feel for people with bigger boats and the locals."