Barra Nationals 2014 results


It’s all about the tides.

That was the lesson from the Club Marine Barra Nationals 2014 on the Daly River.

During the pre-fish and the first two days of the event when the tides were at their biggest, the metre-plus barra were hunting mullet and those trolling the middle of the river were catching them.

Kane Dysart, who landed a stunning 118cm fish during the Nationals, said he caught three metre-long barra during the event’s pre-fish. Champion fisho Shane Compain had predicted that the Nationals would be won in the first two days, and he was right.

As the tides diminished to neaps later in the event, the barra caught were smaller and the bite was primarily in the morning. It will be interesting to see if organisers run the event on bigger tides in future.

The upcoming Barra Classic on the Daly will be held on building tides, so the big fish will likely show towards the end of the event.

Those fishing outside the Barra Nationals official hours found smaller barra were ravenous at night, an indication yet again that having many boats on the water during the day does put the fish down to some extent.

The question is, does the big tide rule extended to all big NT rivers? Some Top End rivers are quite different in habitat from the Daly.

The comp showed that there’s a good stock of fish in the Daly River this year, albeit not as many fish as the big flood years experienced in the Top End recently.

Fishos remember those years fondly, but they are not the norm. When the wet season rain starts in late November and doesn’t stop until April, the river barramundi fishing goes ballistic, often lasting all year, but more often than not the rainfall is not quite so co-operative and the fishing quality is average.

Average in the NT of course generally means very good fishing, and there’s always the bluewater fishing to fall back on – barra tend to distract from the NT’s excellent coastal sportfishing opportunities.

Barra Nationals 2014 results can be seen on this thread on the FFF fishing forums.





NT Barra Nationals 2014

It has been a reasonably good run-off this year on most Top End rivers. Although by no means close to some of the record rain years in the recent past, there was enough rain to keep the rivers up for long enough, and as I write this the popular greenwater season of trolling for barramundi is well under way.
One river was exceptional – the mighty Victoria River, which had extended rain, and turned on the best barra fishing it had for a long time.
The famous NT Barra Nationals event kicks off this week on the Daly River. The previous set of big tides saw the Daly produce barra up to a stunning 133cm, including a 126cm stonker from the bank. What will happen next week with the Barra Nats boats on the water?
It is impossible to say, but I suspect the big fish might come on again.
The Daly fished well this year, although delayed access to the public ramp slowed everyone right down.
While the Top End wet season was not as good as hoped, it was enough to get barra into most rivers and the fish are now there to be caught.
The Top End’s Shady Camp produced some great barra in March and April, and monster threadfin salmon are now a regular part of the catch along the coast out of Shady Camp since the gill nets were removed.
The Barra Nationals results will be posted as they come in at

Christmas gift for baby barra fishos


It has been a poor year for barramundi fishing thanks to last year’s terrible wet season, and that’s partly why there hasn’t been many posts from us on this site this year. The northern bluewater fishing has taken up the slack, with loads of spanish mackerel, as well as the usual trevally, queenfish, and reef fish.

However, another wet season is upon us and it has started well, with heavy rain as early as November. Visit for the latest barramundi fishing reports from fishos.

Meanwhile, if you are friends with a fishing family and they have had a new arrival, here’s something different for Christmas, “livebait shirts” …

We’ll be getting back to fishing posts soon as the North Australian wet season 2013/14 kicks off. Meanwhile, perhaps grab a copy of our latest mag, it has an 8-page Darwin Harbour fishing map, among other things …

North Australian Fishing and Outdoors Magazine

North Australian Fishing and Outdoors Magazine

Corroboree Billabong barramundi fishing

Lesley Mason from Sydney with a nice Corroboree Billabong barra, caught with Obsession Fishing Safaris

Lesley Mason from Sydney with a nice Corroboree Billabong barra, caught with Obsession Fishing Safaris

All fishos should visit Corroboree Billabong, a waterhole on the NT’s Mary River, at least once.

It is a beautiful and a prolific barramundi fishing spot, renowned for its wildlife, including big crocodiles.

Every year the fishing quality is quite different, depending on how big the wet season was.

This year there wasn’t a big flood, and saratoga and tarpon have been the main catch around the lilies.

There are plenty of smaller barramundi about, and the odd big fish to keep life interesting, such as this one, Lesley Mason from Sydney with a nice Corroboree Billabong barra, caught with Obsession Fishing Safaris.

Obsession’s Justin said: “We have been getting a lot more barra on the cast this year than the troll.

“With the late Wet, the lillies did not get a good flushing so there are a lot of old stems standing which fouls lures on the troll.

“So a change of game plan has done the job and casting weedless soft plastics to the weed beds and amongst the lily stems is the way to go, we are also catching a lot of ‘togas this year also.

“So away with the baitcasters and in with the spin sticks and the old faithful electric.

“We have been using one of Daiwa’s new mid-range spin rods the Swamp Donkey. which is a great all rounder.”

Other NT waterholes such as 2-Mile and 4-Mile Holes on the Wildman RIver, have produced the same quality of fishing this year.

Corroboree Billabong is a good place to fish weedless surface lures and flies. Nearby Hardies Lagoon and the Rockhole are also great spots. All are accessible off shirt dirt road sections from the sealed Arnhem Highway.

Darwin rain in late May …

Darwin radar May 23, 10.36pm

Darwin radar May 23, 10.36pm

You don’t usually see this sort of rain over Darwin in April, let alone the end of May.
Don’t get too excited, the run-off is done and dusted.
Everyone wants a dry season now, a nice cool one.
It turned out to be one of the Top End’s driest Wets on record.
Only a late, short flood saved it from being a complete “train wreck”.
But as always, the fish are still biting.

Not much of a wet season, but …

Ian Rees with his 107cm Daly River barra

Ian Rees with his 107cm Daly River barra

You can still catch great barra in the Territory when the Wet is kinda dry. Craig’s Fishing Warehouse says: “With The Daly all over the shop, timing is the key. Those that timed it right during the last phase of ‘the drop’ may not have found numbers, but they did find big fish. Barra from 102cm to 122cm were caught … more than enough to re-ignite the enthusiasm. Rob Rees from Craig’s Fishing Warehouse put his brother Ian (pictured) on the spot for a ripper 107cm fish, the first metery to Ian’s credit. I see the river is back up around 8m. That can only be good … let’s hope it can stay that way for a while.”