Kakadu Klash 2019 was a big week for Team Joker, held on the South Alligator River in Kakadu National park. A massive Thanks needs to go out to Aurora Kakadu staff and volunteers for putting on a great event. Tough week for a few but we found the fish and stayed with them. We had a fantastic finish this year with 15 teams sharing placings in the top 10. Want to thank my team members Angie and Gary for the past week, it was epic! Also want to thanks my sponsors Top End Regional Finance, Mad Keen Fishing, D-Flector Stone Guards, Northern Propeller Service/ Team Solas Propellers, Tonic Eyewear and RAILBLAZA for making this possible.
This comp is very unique, only fishing competition held in World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park. Not only that with 1 biggest fish a day counting to your score making this comp quality over quantity . This year my self and team mate Gary did some pre-fishing up to the competition. We rocked up Monday morning and put the boat on the water and decided to head up stream. Our main goal was to find where the fish were holding up and make sure we could find them a couple days in a row.
We spent 3 days before the comp on the river working out tides movements and changes. To our surprise we found them from the first hour of being on the water. We had a cracker few days landing some solid Barramundi before the competition had started. With myself and Gary both landing some good fish in the 90s (90cm+).
Well it didn’t start out the best of ways. I wasn’t paying a attention at 5:45am in the morning and put us up onto a sand bar. So the first 1.5hrs of Kakadu Klash we waved and smiled to all the teams as they passed us. Once we were floating again, we were at WOT (wide open throttle) to our first spot. It wasn’t long and I made up for my error with a fat 76cm hitting the deck reasonably early in the day, we were off the mark and in the comp.
Wasn’t as eventful with the sandbars, the fishing was a little harder than the day before. We had to work for our fish not landing the first one till bit after lunch. Most frustrating bit was being able to see them moving through and working down the bank but not take a lure. Gary was convinced a Barramundi was sitting amongst some big diamond scale mullet. He flicked his lure past the bait and set off twitching erratically at a slow retrieve pace. We saw the silver slab come from the depths of mullet and just whack this lure, it was not only impressive but satisfying to watch. After a hectic battle we got her in the net and on the deck, going 73cm day 2 was a success.
Saw myself a bit thrown back as both years I have fished the klash Team Joker have never caught a scoring fish all 3 days. A bit under the pressure to push myself to achieve this goal took my team back a little. I was a little fiery as we were seeing schools of Barra coming through, yet again nothing was interested. We moved boat to a different position, to which I suggested to make lunch as I needed a time out. Moments latter hearing her make a “OWWW” sound to a “I just got a hit”. She was winding in the slack to find the line go tight and a Barramundi erupted a couple metres in front of us. The 69cm fish was a sight as it was the only action we have had all day. Pressure was off when we got the Barra to the deck and we were excited. I felt epic that we managed to get 3 scoring fish a day was a great feeling. I managed to upgrade in the afternoon to a 73cm Barra out of some tight timbers.
The week was epic starting and finishing on epic highs. Finished equal 7th overall for the 3 days on 222 points. Big thanks go out to my sponsors and a massive thanks to my team mates Angie and Gary. Cant wait for 2020 Kakadu Klash.