On The Water With Adam Williams and His Beast GT, YHQLD
- Adam is a Top Bloke and Lands a Wide Variety of Species From the Local Rivers, Creeks and Offshore
Adam doesn't post a lot but when he does you can pretty much guarantee it's going to be an epic fish with an equally epic write up. He recently ladned perhaps the most epic fish we have seen in a while and of course The Yak Hunter wanted to profile him! Not only do we have some pretty good images of Adam and his catches, including this absolute beast, down the bottom we have linked to his video so you can live his catch vicariously!
Tell us a Bit About Where You Were and the Conditions You Were in It was mid-September and I was fishing the front of Double Head off Rosslyn Bay Harbour near Yeppoon. I don’t have a great stomach for ocean fishing, so I head out when conditions suit. Bearing in mind that I am fairly new to offshore fishing, that is usually low wind and swell. I can’t recall exactly, but I think it was below 10km/h winds, swell below a metre and the current was NE I think and it was about mid-tide. The current was probably at about its peak. The current around the headland is often criss-crossed, so can be very uncomfortable and sloppy, but on this day if was rather clean. Being so close to the shore, I’d have to call this inshore fishing, really. It’s probably only 5-8m deep along the front of the headland.
Fishing here can be hot and cold, being quite shallow from the harbour to beyond Great Keppel Island. But when the bait schools are in, the fishing can go nuts! Tuna, GT, Spanish Mackerel, Spotted Mackerel, School Mackerel and Bonito, along with the resident species like Estuary Cod, Barramundi, Fingermark, large Jew and so on.
Adam with a 'toga caught on a previous trip in October.
On The Day You Caught the GT What Were You Targeting?
I had just got my new Viking Profish Reload and I was keen to test it out and get a decent fish in it. I actually had a heavy overhead setup ready to troll a Wolf Herring about with the aim of finding a big Spanish Mackerel. The Wolfie hung about on that rod all morning while I had my fun as I didn’t want to troll about while I was catching fish or finding live baits. Spanish aren’t hugely common here, but we do get little runs each year based on bait schools, etc. Around the time I caught the GT, all of the aforementioned species had been around to varying degrees.
The bait was thick, with Herring schools everywhere I looked, flicking the surface, so I knew something decent had to be hanging around. There was a pretty good crowd fishing off the rocks, which also gives a good indication that the fish are on. The day after this I caught a nice Spotty, then another two days later I hooked a 2-2.5m shark, and also got a few nice School Mackerel for the table.
What Gear Did You Catch it on?
I was picking up live Herring on my lighter setup using a Storm Gomoku Micro Jig. I didn’t have any bait jigs with me but I managed to get plenty on the micro jig casting past the schools and retrieving erratically through them. Some were jagged but most had hit the lure.
Unprepared for the scenario, I emptied out a cooler bag and stored my livies in there, refreshing the water as required, as I had resorted to this in the past. Thankfully, this one holds water pretty well. The livies were deployed on a heavy Ugly Stik Rod spin rod with a Penn SSV 6500 reel. It’s got 40lb braid and I had an 80lb fluorocarbon leader.
I have prepared my own stinger rig based on Rokkit Kit’s dead bait trolling rig (you’re probably already following him, but if not check his channel out!). Most of mine have 80lb fluorocarbon running from a swivel to a circle hook. I then have a short length of 44lb single strand wire that runs to a 6x strong VMC treble. I have different lengths dependent on bait but usually only have one or two onboard but I can run live Pike on the longer ones.
The Video Gives us Some Idea, But Can You Tell us a Little About How You Felt When You Saw it?
I have come across some pretty handy fish over my couple of years kayak fishing, including large Barramundi and a solid metre Queenfish nearby to this spot. I knew by the blistering runs and the time I had spent fighting it that it would be a good fish. When it surfaced, I was pretty excited, as the video shows. I also went into the phase of ‘can I eat this or is it too much?’ The real rush came when I had to try and land it. My lip grips wouldn’t hold it and it certainly wasn’t fitting in my bream style net. I think I had a glove stowed somewhere but couldn’t remember where. I tried to grab it with a towel, but the tail wrist was too thick, so I ended up handlining it while I tail grabbed it and had to lift it with the gill plate.
It’s always a thrill sliding a big fish onto your lap, but there can be some trouble. I had been concerned about getting it into the kayak, but the beauty of the Reload is that it is so stable. I think you can see that by keeping my weight centred I managed it fairly well.
We don't reckon you need to hold this thing any closer to the camera mate it's plenty big enough as it is!
The Important Final Question is Tow-fold: How Big Was it and How Heavy do You Think it Was?
Having no suitably sized measuring device, I had to rely on a measurement on my rod. It measured about 120-130cm in total length (to tip). My estimate for this fish is the 20-25kg range, but not entirely sure. I only know it was much bigger than the juveniles I typically catch in the estuaries.
Adam is a vet when he isn't catching monster fish so we think his guess-timation is going to be pretty damned accurate.
If the pics weren't enough to make you feel inferior, then check out the vid below!!!