The Balista east coast trip started with an in house night at Trelly’s Fishing and Hunting in Shepparton. This was a fantastic night with a number of local lure manufacturers attending.The following day Andrew McGregor and myself hit the road from Melbourne to Cairns on an east coast trip with the purpose of visiting stockists as well as testing prototypes and showing off our 4 metre promotional fishing lures. We did 7500 kilometres over 23 days visiting many towns and stores along the east coast gathering the attention of a number of local newspapers.
We fished in a number of locations including Burrinjuck Dam in Canberra, Lake Kinchant in Mackay, Peter Faust Dam in Proserpine and Meatworks creek in Bowen.In Burrinjuck Dam we fished with Canberra local Ash Barber targeting Golden Perch. We snagged a couple of Golden’s amongst Murray Cod and Red Fin as well. All natives were released.
Our next opportunity to get out onto the water was on Kinchant Dam with knowledgable fisherman Ken Elliot who put us onto a number of Barramundi that evening. It was fantastic to land Barramundi in the black of night and see the flashing light in the darkness as the Barramundi leapt into the air. The Juggernaut 90 and Alive 100 were our choice of weapon and were ideal for fishing the edge of weedbeds where the fish were holding that night.
After an evening in Mackay we travelled to Proserpine with high expectations to fish with Barramundi guru Lindsay Dobbe to put the new Firestorm prototypes through their paces. Lindsay showed an uncanny knack of finding the schools fish, with strong southerly winds blowing the best bet was to troll and it didn’t take long for the first barra to strike. We landed a number of large Barramundi up to 115cm on the Firestorm and the Cyclone as well as one surprise Sooty Grunter popped up on a lure that one would think would be far too big for it.
Our last stop was in Bowen with QFM writer Dan Kaggelis to fish for Jack’s in Meatworks creek. This saltwater creek system is quite shallow so whilst we were fishing the run out tide it was important to get back to the boat ramp before the water was too low to navigate. We had a great evening catching Grunter, Jacks, Flathead, Trumpet fish and Barramundi (released safely). The Juggernaut 65’s and Alive 75’s were our choice for fishing this stretch of river and showed there worth fishing hard up in the structure.
To conclude our trip we headed back from Cairns and were lucky enough to miss the floods in NSW by a day. All in all the trip was a successful one with no time to rest we returned to Melbourne to prepare for the Cod Classic.