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Snapper season or silly season, you decide?

'Melbourne Cup Day at Altona Boat ramp. Good weather and a public holiday and the mayhem begins.'    Jarrod Day

Though some might think I am rambling on each week about boating safety but it seems that the message just isn’t sinking in.

I can fully understand the frustration with anglers wanting to get out but with each week’s Victorian weather forecast resembling a cyclone, anglers flock to the local ramps all eager to get out as soon as the weather allows. This unfortunately creates bedlam and mixed in with that, plenty of mistakes.

I am guessing that when everyone is in a hurry there comes a lack of concentration, especially when there is another 100 or so boats also trying to launch to be on the water before sun up.
At the end of a hards days fishing all you want to do is get home....not this day. -  Jarrod Day  

Last Sunday morning I headed down to the local ramp to work on board a friend’s charter boat. When I arrived on the road leading to the ramp, a line of well over 80 boats were before me. If you put this into a time period, you’d comfortably say that it would take at least 2 hours to get your boat in the water if you were at the back of the line.

Now, while this is just one ramp around Port Phillip Bays coastline, times it by 8 and you’d understand just what Victorians deal with during the snapper season.

In saying that, unfortunately, there still are those that are in a huge hurry to launch which is when, all sorts of things go wrong.

Just the other week, I wrote about the lack of lighting on boats when heading out early in the morning which can be a danger to others as well as yourself but this week certainly takes the cake.

We often refer to snapper season in Victoria as the silly season and while this year is the first year I have really taken notice, I am totally perplexed as to the reality of how silly it can be.

Launching a boat does require great care, especially because you’re often launching next to someone else doing the same job. Losing concentration for just a few seconds can see accidents happen, just like driving your car on a freeway. At my local ramp, there is all kinds of accidents occurring around this time of year from leaving the hand break off in the car only to have it slip into the water or not looking where the trailer is heading and driving it up on the edge of the ramp.

Further more; there is also the angler that decides it is a faster way to launch if you unclip your boat before reversing down the ramp, which usually ends in tears.

Still, whether you’re launching your boat, fishing in the dark or waiting to put the boat back onto the trailer just take your time. Don’t worry about everyone else trying to do the same. The more in a hurry you are, the more you’re likely to make a mistake which could cause serious damage.
Lack of concentration will lead to mistakes. -  Jarrod Day  

What about a checklist. It actually makes sense to have a few notes written on a piece of paper that is stuck to your cars dashboard just to remind yourself in order of how to correctly launch and retrieve. Even in the boat itself, it can pay do to the same just as a reminder. At the end of the day, you’ll at least have something to refer too rather than having the coast guard winching your boat off the ramp from forgetting to put in the bungs.

On a lighter note, this week Carl hyland takes a trip around Tasmania and writes about how good the fishing is at present. With plenty of different options, Carl ensures there is certainly something to catch if you’re down that way.
Tassie has plenty to offer anglers at the moment. -  Jarrod Day  

With snapper still on the minds on many anglers, bait fishing may be leading the charge but as I explain, lures are also very effective. Lure fishing for snapper is much more challenging that good old bait fishing and with so many lures available, there are times when each will out fish the other.
Snapper on lures, you betcha! -  Jarrod Day  

A look back – below are a few past articles that are well worth the read if you have over looked them.

Nothing gets a fisho’s blood pumping like the sight of a big school of fish actively feeding on the surface. It’s a full-on feeding frenzy scenario, as the hyped-up predators blast through the surface, gorging themselves on small baitfish, while screeching seabirds dive-bomb from above to also cash in on a free feed. Exciting stuff! As Ben Knags explains.
Ben Knaggs dosent get the winter blues.....not in Exmouth anyway. -  Jarrod Day  

When the first heavy rains and brutal low fronts of winter hit South Australia it usually signals the end of many fishing opportunities that may have been enjoyed over the warmer months. Some fishos treat this as a time to put their rods in cold storage, and almost hibernate for the winter themselves. On the other hand, many sport fishos would be well aware that these colder months in fact see some rather unique fisheries come online, one of which for me is targeting southern bluespot flathead.

Until next week,

by Jarrod Day, FishingBoating-World Editor


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10:34 AM Mon 11 Nov 2013GMT

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