Round 1 of the Top End Barra Series was held on the Mighty Daly River.

With the scare of a cyclone and the possibility of a rising waters on the Daly River, the fish gods must have been looking down on the competitors as the round at the Daly went as planned.

Lots of anglers made the journey down Friday and by 6am Saturday morning the small public boat ramp carpark was filled with empty trailers and high hopes.

The river itself had dropped significantly but was still an easy river to navigate with caution, many snags and logs are marked by buoys and even with the larger tides Browns creek was accessible throughout the tide.

The anticipation of great fishing on this Iconic River didn’t disappoint after what you would say has been average rainfall so far.

Over the course of the weekend fish were caught from Bamboo creek all the way down to the mouth of the river on a wide variety of lures from soft plastics in 3, 4 and 7 inch to soft tail vibes and hard bodies.

Fish were mainly caught flicking, with a few fish falling for a trolled hard body as the tide came in.

Last year saw only 42 fish registered with 1 angler scoring a bag of 5; however, this year was a different story with over 150+ fish registered by over 40 anglers and 18 of those anglers getting their bag of 5. A first for quite a while on the Daly saw 2 metery’s caught 118cm and 106cm however even after such great fish they only positioned 3rd and 5th place respectively to give you an idea of how good the fishing was.

The river is currently alive with juvenile Barramundi with reports of 20+ fish caught by many anglers on each day of the competition on every snag, back Eddie and junction indicates a very healthy system now.

As with most rounds there are always mischief’s or mishaps and this round was no different, reports from anglers forgetting their vital equipment such as sounders to 1 angler about to launch at 5:30am on the Saturday only to find that his main battery had been cooked Todd Arthur said “After an 800km round trip, with the new battery in tow we finally got on the water at 11:30am and made our way up stream to fish the run-out tide with hopes of a couple of easy scorers. After a few catfish and sharks which we caught using vibes I felt a “donk donk” and then an epic run and jump show, I was only using my light gear 10-20lb rod/4000 size reel and 45lb Reidy’s Schneider leader, with a shark hot on the tail of my fish, it wasn’t until we netted the fish that we realised the shark had bitten part of the tail off”.  Todd was able to release the fish and got a bag of 5 fish 106,66,69,64 and 54 great effort Todd

So, who were our winners this round? Coming in third place was Kirk Bartholdt-Green who scored an impressive 118cm fish and an 84cm Kirk was fishing in vicinity of the first few run-off creeks down from Browns Creek, using a 3” and 7” soft plastic. Kirk wrote “Was my first trip down to the Daly in 4 years with only the 1 fish on Saturday we headed back to the same area I caught my first fish I tied on a 7” plastic to match the hatch and started snag bashing.  15mins later I found myself connected to the biggest barramundi I had ever seen come out of the water.  A 10 min battle running around the boat in between the electric motor saw this amazing fish in my net and it wasn’t until we had it in the boat that we realised the size of it.  It was successfully released to fight another day”.  No doubt a trip Kirk won’t forget for a long time to come.

in second place was our very own Vice President Morris Pizzutto with a healthy bag of 94,93,80,75 and 60, Moz was fishing with Evan at the mouth of the Daly in a tidal creek avoiding the crowds and trying to get their lures past thread fin salmon that were in plague proportions

and in first place for the first round goes to the ever-consistent Evan Dixon with a great bag of 69,70,94,93,94 Evan said on the incoming tide 90cm+ Barra were heard boofing everywhere and his go to lure was the Live Target Mullet 5.5 inch matching the hatch to secure the win a great effort Evan.