Lake Awoonga, Gladstone

QLD dam water levels
QLD stocked impoundment permits
QLD fishing regulations
Return to QLD fishing map

Lake Awoonga is a particularly exciting stocked impoundment, having produced barramundi to 30kg+, and some giant mangrove jacks.

Awoonga offers perhaps the best chance of catching an impoundment jack in Queensland.

An 80cm jack was landed by one lucky angler, although these fish are incredibly elusive and targeted by very few.

A 36.5kg barramundi was taken in 2008. Many barra over 20kg are caught each year.

Awoonga has been stocked with several species of fish, but barramundi, redclaw crayfish and fork-tailed catfish predominate.

By 2006 alone, 2.9 million fish had been released, including 2.4 million barramundi, 470,000 sea mullet and 15,000 jacks.

By 2013 the numbers were as follows:

About 300,000 fingerlings are released annually by the Gladstone Area Water Board Fish Hatchery, mainly barra, jacks and mullet.

As with most dams, the redclaw population fluctuates.

Accommodation is at Lake Awoonga Caravan Park.

There is a recreation area at the lake with toilets, picnic tables, barbecues, kiosk, playground, lookout, walking tracks and a restaurant.

No boating restrictions apply at Awoonga, other than a no-go zone in front of dam wall.

How to fish Lake Awoonga

Awoonga is large body of water and can get rough, with the afternoon sea breeze having a marked effect.

The fish in Awoonga are often big, so 15kg to 25kg braided line and 40kg fluorocarbon leaders are the norm.

Lures must have quality split rings and 4X/6X hooks.

Like most Queensland stocked impoundments, the lake will produce occasional barramundi in cool weather, but warm to hot weather is always the better option.

The general rule is to fish deep when the sun is up, but shallow areas may produce when barramundi are seeking warmth in the sun.

Otherwise, concentrate efforts where fish or bait is seen on the sounder.

Cast to timber and weedbeds in mornings and afternoons.

Bony bream bait balls in summer often keep barramundi out in the open lake.

Awoonga jacks are difficult to catch, having excellent eyesight and a wary nature.

The lake occasionally suffers from low water levels. It also overflows, with barra usually escaping alive over the gently sloping dam wall into the Boyne River.

In 2010 an estimated 25,000 large barramundi went over the wall, with the fishing in the Boyne River coming alive, although it appears there were too many fish for the local ecosystem as sick fish were reported in tidal waters later on.

Regular stocking and the fast growth rate of barramundi ensure good fishing returns to the dam not long after a spillway flood.

The Gladstone Area Water Board has a Track My Fish Lake Awoonga App that provides data on the number, size and health of fish caught. The board relies on use of the App by fishers, so prizes are offered. More info is here.

A Stocked Impoundment Permit is needed to fish Awoonga, which can be bought at the campsite office.

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Email us any corrections, additions, pictures or video here.

Some external videos filmed on Lake Awoonga are featured below.

Lake Awoonga barramundi

Lake Awoonga jerkbaiting

Peter Faust Dam, Proserpine

Queensland dam water levels.
Queensland stocked impoundment permits.

Peter Faust Dam, or Lake Proserpine, is one of Queensland’s best stocked barramundi impoundments.

It is a relatively new structure, with the dam built in 1990 on the Proserpine River, 30km north-west of Proserpine.

The lake covers 4350ha, with an average depth of 12m.

There are barramundi, saratoga, sleepy cod, sooty grunter, spangled perch, eels and redclaw crayfish.

Barramundi over 1m are common, as well as big sooty grunter.

Redclaw numbers fluctuate.

Like many such dams, the barra are somewhat “educated” by angling pressure and can be hard to catch. But not always.

Warm weather is always preferable when fishing this dam, although some fish are caught in cool weather.

Large floods assist barramundi in migrating over the dam wall.

A few fish survive this and move into the Proserpine River, which is also a good barramundi fishing spot.

How to fish Peter Faust Dam

The dam can be subject to strong south-easterly winds, so pick your weather.

Most fishermen target the big barramundi, but redclaw have a strong following, and some of the sooty grunter are brutes.

If the south-east wind blows, fish the submerged trees in the shallows on the western side. The big barra will often be lying against the trees in very shallow water, so move quietly.

In more open water, look for bait balls.

Big fish and timber means heavy tackle is required, with 15kg to 25kg braid the norm. Use 40kg fluorocarbon leader of around 90cm or more in length.

Use strong split rings and trebles hooks of 6x rating.

When fishing the timber try to keep a short casting or trolling line or you will lose fish after hookup.

Many of the lake’s points have weedbeds. Fish these hard, working lures from deep to shallow. Work the lures slowly.

Large hardbodied suspending minnow style lures and soft plastics are proven.

Soft plastics work best with a stinger treble in the tail, but it must be attached in a sturdy manner.

Dog walkers and frogs work better than poppers on the surface.

Night fishing works well, and the surface strikes will provide an adrenalin rush.

There is no camping at the dam, with the nearest accommodation 2km away.

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Email us any corrections, additions, pictures or video here.

Some external videos filmed on Peter Faust Dam are featured below.

Peter Faust barramundi

Peter Faust barramundi

Peter Faust barramundi

Peter Faust barra and sooty grunter

Lake Somerset, Queensland

Queensland dam water levels
Queensland stocked impoundment permits

Lake Somerset, 25km from Esk, is a 4200ha stocked impoundment on the Stanley River, a Brisbane River tributary.

The dam was built in 1959.

Wivenhoe Dam is a larger impoundment located immediately below Somerset Dam.

There are two other smaller stocked dams in this region, being Atkinson and Cressbrook.

Lake Somerset is one of the most popular freshwater fishing locations in Queensland.

It is home to a major competition each October.

While the impoundment is large in area it has an average depth of only 9m.

Bass, yellowbelly, silver perch, Mary River cod, saratoga and snub-nosed gar have been stocked.

Bass and yellowbelly are the main catch.

Other fish are eel-tailed and fork-tailed catfish, bony bream, spangled perch, banded grunter, lungfish, tilapia and redclaw crayfish.

Somerset is known for its large bass, which probably grow fat from the prolific bony bream baitfish in the dam.

Tips to catch them are described below.

Camping is at Lake Somerset Holiday Park (www.lakesomerset.com.au) and Somerset Park Council Campgrounds (07) 5426 0108 or (07) 5424 4000.

A camping permit is required at both areas, available from the kiosk or ranger station next to the wall lookout.

A permit is required for trailer boats, phone (07) 5427 8100 for details.

There is a six-lane ramp at Kirkleagh and a gravel ramp used during low water, and a ramp at The Spit near the dam wall.

Ramp access is daylight only unless you are at Lake Somerset Holiday Park – phone ahead on (07) 5497 1093 to get a gate pin number before it opens at 7am.

Lake Somerset flows into Lake Wivenhoe, 150km above the mouth of Brisbane River.

How to fish Lake Somerset

Many fishermen target the lake’s trophy bass.

In the peak spring bite, to catch multiple fish over 50cm is not unusual.

Spring and summer usually produces the best fishing, but fish can be caught all year close to structure.

In winter and spring, use sonar to find congregations of fish over open flats.

In autumn and winter the Kirkleigh area often holds schools of bass – try the flats off the north side of the campground before the timber, near the former Stanley River channel.

Just like with saltwater tuna fishing, feeding bass sometimes attract birds as bony bream are pushed to the surface.

There are not many large weedbeds in Somerset Dam, with the best bass fishing usually over flats where the schools are located.

Finding the schools does not guarantee success as they do not always bite.

Bite windows vary in length, sometimes being just a few minutes.

During a cold winter the fish will look for warm water, usually in the shallows.

The flats above Kirkleigh, Pelican Point and Queen Street are popular spots, with fish most often found in depths of 6m to 9m.

Fishos must get baits or lures down to the fish. Half-ounce to 5/8 ounce jig heads rigged on light leaders with soft plastics, blades or tailspinners are proven.

When the fish are schooling in reasonably shallow water, small deep-diving lures can be trolled successfully.

Find local fishing holiday accommodation here.


fish finder book

Fishing gear for stocked dams

Much dam fishing involves casting or trolling lures around timber, so a lure desnagger quickly pays for itself. The simplest type is simply dropped down on a cord ... eBay link here.

For a fair dinkum true blue Aussie lure desnagger, try this one ... eBay link here.

A 1-3kg spinning rod-reel combo (eggbeater style reel) is ideal for trout, bass and redfin. See eBay listing here.

A 3-6kg spin outfit is ideal for yellowbelly and cod. See eBay listing here. For barramundi in dams, a dedicated 10kg baitcaster outfit is required, load it up with 15kg braid if big fish are expected or if there is a lot of timber in your dam.

Soft plastic grubs are good all-round lures for bass, redfin, trout and yellowbelly. See eBay listing here.

Jig heads in various sizes are needed for most soft plastic lures. See eBay listing here.

Bibbed hardbody minnows, poppers and jigs by quality brands such as Reidys and Classic are generally used for chasing big barramundi in dams. Barramundi are strong fish that tear apart the split rings and hooks on cheaply made lures, so purchase wisely.

Where bait fishing is permitted, ball sinkers are ideal for bait fishing. See eBay listing here.

Floats are useful for suspending a bait. The polystyrene floats in the following listing are slid onto the line and a stopper is placed above the float to set the depth fished. For most impoundment fishing, use the smallest size. See eBay listing here.

Alternatively, especially where the water is clear and shallow, use clear bubble floats.

Hooks up to around 1/0 are suitable for bait fishing with shrimps, use smaller hooks for earthworm baits. See eBay listing here.

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Email us any corrections, additions, pictures or video here.

Some external videos filmed on Lake Somerset are featured below.

Kayaking Lake Somerset yellowbelly

Catching Lake Somerset redclaw

Somerset bass on tailspinners

Northern Territory barramundi fishing guides and accommodation

Booking.com

Every year North Australian FISH FINDER publishes a list of its recommended NT, NQ and northern WA barramundi fishing guides, bluewater charters, boat hires, remote camps and accommodation suitable for visiting fishermen.

Bookmark this page if you are planning a northern fishing holiday.

Here’s the 2019 list …

Darwin and NT boat hire services ….
Barra Boat Hire …. details here.
Darwin Boat Hire …. details here.
Top End Boat Hire …. details here.
Outback Boat Hire …. details here.
Corroboree Boat Hire …. details here.
Offshore Boat Hire …. details here.
Mary River Houseboats …. details here.
Katherine Boats and Floats …. details here.
Mixed Bag Boat Hire …. details here.

Bluewater fishing charters out of Darwin ….
Arafura Bluewater Charters …. details here.
Equinox Charters …. details here.

Barramundi fishing guides out of Darwin ….
Spring Tide Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Darwin North Australia (DNA) Barramundi Fishing Tours …. details here.
Darwin Barra and Crab …. details here.
Obsession Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Insight Fly Fishing …. details here.
Daly River Barra Resort …. details here.

Aerial tours with fishing ….
Outback Floatplane Adevntures …. details here.
Helifish …. details here.

Remote NT charters ….
Cobourg Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Cannon Charters …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing Bynoe Harbour ….
Crab Claw Island Resort …. details here.
Sandpalms Roadhouse …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Adelaide River ….
Goat Island Lodge …. details here.
Mt Bundy Station …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing Kakadu ….
Cooinda Lodge Kakadu …. details here.
Kakadu Lodge …. details here.
Mercure Kakadu Crocodile …. details here.
Aurora Kakadu …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Nhulunbuy ….
Bremer Island Banubanu Beach Retreat …. details here.
Walkabout Lodge …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Katherine ….
Cicada Lodge …. details here.
ibis Styles Katherine …. details here.
Katherine Motel …. details here.
Katherine River Lodge …. details here.
Knotts Crossing Resort …. details here.
Paraway Motel …. details here.
Pine Tree Motel …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Daly River ….
Woolianna on the Daly …. details here.
Daly River Barra Resort …. details here.
Banyan Farm …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Roper River ….
Roper Bar Caravan Park …. closed at publication, may reopen at date unknown.
Tomato Island Campground (Munbililla) only vans and tents …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the McArthur River ….
King Ash Bay Fishing Club …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Mary River region ….
Corroboree Park Tavern …. details here.
Mary River Houseboats …. details here.
Mary River Wilderness Retreat …. details here.

Remote NT private camps ….
Wiligi Arnhem Land …. details here.
Cobourg Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Lorella Springs Station …. details here.
Limmen Fishing Camp …. on the Limmen Bight River has fuel, riverside camping and very basic accommodation 25km from the Savannah Way Cox River crossing. Ph 08 8975 9844.
Seven Emu Station …. details here.
Manangoora Station …. access to the Wearyan River, Gulf of Carpentaria and Vanderlin Island. Phone: 08 8975 9549.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Dundee Beach ….
Dundee Beach Holiday Park …. details here.
Mermaid Rest …. details here.
Rustic Retreat …. details here.
Skippers at Dundee …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Karumba in the Gulf of Carpentaria (NQ) ….
Ash’s Holiday Units …. details here.
End of the Road Motel …. details here.
Gee-Dee’s Family Cabins …. details here.
Karumba Point Sunset Caravan Park …. details here.
Matildas End Holiday Units …. details here.
Riverside Karumba …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Weipa on Cape York Peninsula (NQ) ….
Anchorage Weipa …. details here.
Heritage Resort …. details here.


NSW stocked fishing spots

NSW has many stocked fishing waters, including trout and native fish.

Accessing a history of stocking events in each waterway is easy thanks to the government’s Google map.

There are markers on all the stocked waters with a popup showing the stocking history.

The screenshots below will give you the idea. Here’s a link to the current government maps … https://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing/recreational/resources/stocking

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Exmouth’s grander blue marlin

About 500 people gathered in Exmouth for the weigh-in of a 1089lb potential record blue marlin. Picture: Tackle World Exmouth
About 500 people gathered in Exmouth for the weigh-in of a 1089lb potential record blue marlin. Picture: Tackle World Exmouth

Exmouth is an amazing fishing destination, perhaps unique.

It was in the spotlight again after Peak Sportfishing landed Australia’s first grander blue marlin.

The fish was taken on New Year’s Day 2018.

Skipper, ex-Darwin lad Eddy Lawler, and Coffs Harbour fisho Clay Hilbert, landed the 1089lb fish.

It is likely to be a new national record, and the first 1000lb+ blue marlin caught in Australia.

The current record is held by Melanie Kisbee, who caught a 996lb blue marlin in 1999 off Batemans Bay, NSW.

Rowan Smith has the current WA record at 813lb, caught off Exmouth in February 2014.

The latest catch will attract international attention.

Exmouth is a prime location because the Continental Shelf comes in close, providing the deep clear water blue marlin like.

Broadbill swordfish are another possibility in such waters.

Exmouth is also renowned for nearby Ningaloo Reef, a fringing coastal reef that extends far south along the coast, with crystal clear water inside the sandy lagoon providing sight fishing for species such as bonefish, golden trevally, queenfish and giant herring.

Along the outside of the reef are all manner of fishing opportunities.

It is a true fishing playground.

Meanwhile, Tackle World Exmouth’s Jeni Gates said a fibreglass replica of the big blue marlin would be displayed in the shop.



Booking.com

Schulz Canal, Brisbane

Brisbane tides
QLD fishing regulations
QLD marine parks
Return to QLD fishing map

The Kedron Brook Floodway, locally often called Schulz Canal, is a man-altered waterway flowing into Brisbane’s Moreton Bay at Nudgee.

The canal leads upstream through Toombul and becomes Kedron Brook.

The mouth runs through muddy sandflat along Nudgee Beach.

The mouth is a great spot for sand whiting and flathead, with easy access along the western shore from the Nudgee Beach road.

There are tidal creeks located immediately east and west of the mouth, helping make this a productive fishing area, but there are sanctuary zones.

The area out the front of the canal where wave action meets the channel and flats edges is usually the best spot for whiting, but they can be caught on the flats and canal edges.

Use tiny fresh baits of worm or small pieces of frozen prawn.

Flathead can be caught reliably along the canal edges, and livebait works best.

Other local species include bream, catfish, pikey eels and stingrays. Jewfish and threadfin salmon are a chance.

There are prawns in season.

Whiting are best in summer and bream in winter.

The concrete boat ramp on the western bank has a large parking area.

The upper freshwater section of the canal around suburban Kedron has tilapia, eels and mullet.

The canal runs through Toombul shopping centre carpark, where it is slightly tidal. The canal floods the carpark during major rain events.

Read some Schulz Canal history here … https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schulz_Canal

Put your Schulz Canal trip reports in comments under this post, we love to hear the latest news.

****

Some external videos filmed around Schulz Canal are featured below.

Kedron Brook fishing

Kedron Brook Floodway flooding

Kedron Brook Floodway bike path

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPkjFbcPgnM

Nudgee Beach flathead

About the map

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This free fishing and diving spot map is a BETA work in progress, with more information added regularly.

We have prioritised adding boat ramps, artificial reefs and wrecks, and are moving on to rockbars, reefs and landbased spots.

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