Posted by: kathandroger | February 27, 2017

Early morning Oz.

We go each time I come to Australia. The wide ocean and the wonderful Sydney Harbour have to be fished. Son in law Bill is an avid angler, and has a fast fishing boat, which is kept outside the house in the road, a common event here. Up before dawn, the vessel prepared the evening before, and off at 6am to another adventure. Bills’ expertise soon had the boat in the oggin, and we were off to the rising of the dawn sunrise. The harbour at that time of the morning is not deserted. Rowers, paddle boarders, kayakers and dinghy sailors are already about, doing their pre-work exercise in the first rays of the summer sunshine. There can’t be many more wonderful watersports venues in the world than this, and all overlooked by the hugely expensive luxury mansions. We wended our way past huge multi million pound yachts and under the bridge taking the less fortunate to their daily workplace, and were soon making our way out of the harbour to the open sea. Silhouetted against the misty rising sun on the horizon was a Tall Ship making its way to the port, and it was easy to remember this was how the first visitors came to the island so many years ago. The sea was a bit lumpy and the inner organs reflected on some discomfort, but breakfast did not reappear and the excitement outweighed the nausea. We caught a few bait fish a little way out and then motored on to seek our quarry, the tuna which pass this way with the warm water streams. Bill noticed a flock of fast flying dark petrels, seemingly feeding on small fish, and we gave chase. As we came closer we could see the main reason for the birds, a large pod of dolphins. They swim fast! At about 20 knots we were with the jumping school, dozens of them all around the boat, and seeming to want to play with us, leaping, sometimes in pairs, within touching distance of us. We were able to video the moment on Bills’ iphone and then they were gone. What a wonderful start to the day, and a unique moment for me. I have seen dolphins many times in the past but have never been so close to such a large number of them, and being all alone some ten miles out from the almost invisible coastline it was a breathtaking experience.fullsizerender-5

And we caught some Tuna, one each on the trolling lines. They were not huge, but large enough for several good meals, although I must admit to having a pang of regret in killing such beautiful and rapidly swimming fish. When they take the lure the little rod bends almost double, and the line screams out from the reel, a very exciting moment, and then it is a case of trying to control the fish until it can be raised into the boat with a landing net. Our mission accomplished, we motored in closer to the shore to catch some Flathead, the rather ugly and much smaller species found over a sandy bottom. They are very easy to catch once a good spot is found, and are the most tasty of the local fish. Bill also caught a lovely sole, and on the way back into the harbour I caught a Tailor fish on the troll. We had enough food for the table, and it was a pretty fish, so we put it back for another day.img_8955-1

Sydney is a crowded place, but with a boat the urban hoards can soon be left behind, and it was a real privilege to have day away from the noise of the city, and to be deep within unchanged maritime nature.


  1. Great piece, Roger! We loved it there. Home now, very cold here!

  2. Fantastic shot of the dolphin and baby! But you are right — that’s not a very big tuna 🙂

    • Susan, that is the first time I have had a complaint about the size of my tuna!

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