Kahawai (the Australian Salmo the leaper)

A day off work so decided to go for a cruise/fish in the harbour and launched the yak at Little Manly. Did not get there too early, darts comp started last night so a slow start and with kids getting driven to school did not get on the water until just before 9am.

Very humid conditions, a bit of cloud cover, a bit lumpy between the heads and no sign of surface fish so it was off to North Harbour. Paddled across the middle of the harbour keeping a keen eye out for the ferries, past Reef beach and there was still no sign of surface fish. Where had all the bonito gone? Over to forty baskets there were a number of seagulls sitting in the water waiting expectantly, joined them for a while and at last amongst the boats about 50 metres away the surface exploded with a flurry of splashes. Paddled across but as I approached the splashes died away and the fish sounded. This continued for a good hour with 10-15 minute intervals with the fish up on the surface for a few minutes at a time and either sounded as I arrived on the scene, was to slow to get a cast amongst the finnicky fish or they just ignored my fly. But a bit of perseverance, managed to get a cast into a thrashing school of fish and with my smallest trout fly I hooked up. Definitely not a bonito, it bore deep amongst the anchored boats and I had high hopes it was a king. I carefully followed the fish between the boats and after 5-10 minutes the fish was on the surface but was not a king but a salmon. Not a massive fish, maybe about 2-3 kg. Salmo the leaper references the Atlantic Salmon which is generally eaten smoked and is farmed here predominantly in Tasmania. I have managed to catch a few on the fly in Scotland many years ago. The Australian Salmon or Kahawai (not a member of the salmon family) is not as good an eating fish but not too bad fresh, but this one went back in. Chased a few more schools on the way back to Little Manly but no luck, I will tie up a few different flies for the weekend as maybe they are feeding on ultra small baitfish.

This evening a few Bintangs, which have probably been reviewed before, but picked up a case, labelled export only, at Brookvale Cellars and they slide down fairly easily, particularly on a hot humid day.