Yesterday we left nice and early to explore the Inlet for the first time in a new tinny Ryan can borrow from time to time. The tinny itself is awesome and very well set up for estuary fishing. We were greeted by overcast and slight drizzle which is a good thing in the Trinity Inlet, keep the midgies away and prolongs the morning bite period. The photo above was taken just on sunrise and almost looked like it was going to be a fine day.


Wasn’t long before we found ourself in a ubiquitous mangrove lined FNQ creek and casting lures at anything the looked like a fish might be lurking. There wasn’t much run in the top of the tide so we slowly motored up the creek. Ryan was onto a little barra on about the 3rd otr 4th cast which jumped, shook its head and threw the hooks. A few more lure changes and bends in the creek and I picked up a small GT which went pretty hard for a little guy and put on a good show. With not much happening we left and went for an explore something new.


Motoring back out along the main channel a fair way up the Inlet Ryan noticed something get nailed so we went back to electric mode and stalked the flats near the mangrove line. Barra were boofing and jacks smashing bait up in the mangroves but they were too far in and the water needed to recede more. Ryan said, ‘stuff this, I’m going to cast out the other side’, his lure was taken the instant it hit the water and line screamed off the reel instantly. After a solid tussle, up popped a beautiful barred grunter that took one look at the tinny and dived off on another good run. I netted the fish, took a quick photo and sent him off to fight another day. The grunter measured around 38cm and was caught on a three inch gulp shrimp.


Continuing along the same stretch I was hit by something decent and as I backed my drag off it won its freedom. Might have been another grunter. As we made our way along the flats there were some impressive bust ups that were always just 50m either side of us and while that was fun to see it was frustrating at the same time. At one stage we both braced as a school of big mullet jumped all around the boat and how they didn’t end up in the boat I will never know.┬áChanging to a large soft plastic I had a decent hit from a barra but the hook didn’t connect and the fact I wasn’t looking and playing with the foot controller on the electric didn’t help much either. Bust up after bust up was still happening, however the run out was finally in effect, so keen to explore we motored off in search of something different. This is why the Inlet is so good, there are plenty of options.


This next creek had dirty water coming out from the mangrove flats and there was no bait to be seen, however as we got further up mullet schools were everywhere along with mud herring and plenty of gar. A good sign we switched to live bait and first cast saw me donate a net to the cast net gods however I managed to salvage 5 mullet. So we rigged up and threw them out into a tight channel holding bait. Didn’t take long and my mullet was snavelled, knowing I had to get it up off the rocks didn’t help my cause as this was a decent fish, certainly a Lutjanus! I could feel the head shakes and runs and I’d near locked drag but still, even with turning it’s head straight up I was busted off on the rocks. I was pretty devastated having lost what was clearly a good fish and I thought to myself and said to Ryan, that was a big jack! I cast my next mullet into the same spot and was hit within 2 minutes, no chance straight to bust off. Felt like a big cod, just hit bam, thanks for coming.

So I upped the anti and went for 40lb mainline and 60lb leader, threw out the last mullet and was rewarded with a small but very strong fingermark. So that first bust off was more than likely a larger fingermark I think. The 5 mullet were now either in fish stomachs, or donated to a rock somewhere on the bottom. Ryan did a bodgy repair on the castnet and I managed to somehow cast another 5 baitfish, this time mud herring. For some reason we couldn’t connect to a fish at all on the herring and every bait was taken without hook up. So we called it a day and headed home.